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    Advice concerning hard drives

    At the moment I have a high spec set up. 8GB 800mhz RAM with Quad Core 3.0ghz and 8600 graphics card.

    The current hard drive I have Vista installed on is 2 or 4mb cache at the standard RPM. I think that this is holding my system back because all i can ever hear (louder than anything else in my pc) is the hard drive whirring.

    Is it worth the price buying a 10k RPM hard drive to install Vista on? Have you got a 10k RPM hard drive and can you say it has boosted your system performance?

    I appreciate ANY advice or experience people can share on this matter

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Also I've been told by someone that two 7200RPM hard drives in RAID are substantially faster than a single 10K RPM hard drive, is this correct?

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by raverbaby View Post
    Also I've been told by someone that two 7200RPM hard drives in RAID are substantially faster than a single 10K RPM hard drive, is this correct?
    I am sure others with more detailed knowledge will be along. But in the meantime...

    If I recall raid is faster than one 10K Raptor. I used to have a 150GB Raptor and it made a significant difference in game load times. Never built a raid set up.

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    raid one might be faster for booting windows but there is also an increased chance of failure. if your board supports it use intel matrix raid with 3 samsung t166 drives and use the split raid 0 + raid 5 option and then put windows on the raid 0 part and anything inportant on the raid 5 part.. if you dont feel up to reinstalling windows there are a number of tweaks you can do to enhance performance of the windows bootup
    Quote Originally Posted by Jay View Post
    What kind of emergency would need Windows 95? I think you are already in a bad state of emergency when your backup plan is Windows 95.
    Beginners guide to raid Beginners guide to raid post edition Hexus.Social - FAQ

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    well i'll only be putting my Vista and applications on to the 10k RPM drive or the RAID drive so losing data isn't much of an issue.

    so all i'd need for a performance boost is RAID1 using two identical drives?

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    No raid 1 mirrors both drivers ie two identical drivers so no data will be lost but no performance boost.
    Raid 0 speeds things up but no data protection.

    So to speed things up you need two fast new identical drives as suggested by alsenior

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by raverbaby View Post
    well i'll only be putting my Vista and applications on to the 10k RPM drive or the RAID drive so losing data isn't much of an issue.

    so all i'd need for a performance boost is RAID1 using two identical drives?
    Raptors are good Personally I would go for the raptor as a RAID 0 (what you want for performance) has twice the likeliness of failure and data loss.

    RAID 1 will give you data redundancy but no performance increase.

    Raid Defined - RAID Definitions Made Simple!

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by raverbaby View Post
    At the moment I have a high spec set up. 8GB 800mhz RAM with Quad Core 3.0ghz and 8600 graphics card.

    The current hard drive I have Vista installed on is 2 or 4mb cache at the standard RPM. I think that this is holding my system back because all i can ever hear (louder than anything else in my pc) is the hard drive whirring.

    Is it worth the price buying a 10k RPM hard drive to install Vista on? Have you got a 10k RPM hard drive and can you say it has boosted your system performance?

    I appreciate ANY advice or experience people can share on this matter
    About 3 years ago i had a Raptor. It was very quick but also very loud.

    A 10K RPM HDD will boost system performance (slightly) but the noise will be the deciding factor as it will be louder.
    or
    RAID 0 a couple of HDD's and get the performance you are looking for (without the noise or forking out loads of cash).


    (To be fair fella, you state you rig as 'high spec'.......its not. There very few that can claim that...)

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by Blitzen View Post
    About 3 years ago i had a Raptor. It was very quick but also very loud.

    A 10K RPM HDD will boost system performance (slightly) but the noise will be the deciding factor as it will be louder.
    or
    RAID 0 a couple of HDD's and get the performance you are looking for (without the noise or forking out loads of cash).


    (You state the system is 'high spec' but the card definitely isnt.)
    I wouldn't say they're that loud. I had my 5 year old raptor running as an OS drive in the HDD caddy of my P180 open on my desk the other day and it wasn't really that loud. If you have a proper case you won't really notice your hard drive spinning up.

    It sounds like the HDD the OP has at the moment is very old. Sounds like a 5400 rpm drive at best as I haven't seen 2/4mb cache drives widely on sale for years and years and years! Any 7200rpm and 16/32mb cache drive would be a huuuuge improvement and the raptor would be even better.

    I'm curious about what the PC is used for as it seems high spec other than the 8600 which is definitely not high spec at all

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    I think the first point is how old is your drive? I've no expert, but i think 2 or 4mb cache drives are quite old, with the minimum these days at 8mb. Not sure how important cache itself is, but the bigger point is that drives themselves are getting better and better (read faster and faster) EDIT - i was obviously typing at the same time as 306Maxi...

    The raptors are now quite old, and the only significant advantage they have is faster seek times (i.e. how quick it takes them to get to the bit of data they need), simply because they're spinning faster. With actual read/write times, I think the newer 7200 rpm have mostly caught them up. Of course the new 7200rpm ones are much cheaper and quieter than the raptors! It may be that just buying one of the samsung t166s that alsenior mentioned would make a difference. (i recently chose the 500gb t166 becuase i think it's a good price/performance/capacity ratio at the moment)

    I'm sure i've seen a few articles saying raid 0 with 2 new drives is quicker than a single raptor (again, raptor may be ahead on seek times)

    [QUOTE=alsenior;1320980]intel matrix raid with 3 samsung t166 drives and use the split raid 0 + raid 5 option and then put windows on the raid 0 part and anything inportant on the raid 5 part./QUOTE]

    I've just set up a matrix raid with 2 samsung t166s. one half is raid 0, the other is raid 1. Working well so far, and the raid 0 does seem faster. There are articles out there saying for normal desktop use it makes no difference. However, you will also see lots of people saying (subjectively) it helps with things like game load times etc... I'm one of them!

    What didn't occur to me is to use 3 drives rather than 2. Alsenior - can you set up a raid 0 with 3 drives them on the intel matrix system? (I'm on ich9r chipset). Is that noticeably quicker than with 2 drives?
    Last edited by GaryRW; 26-01-2008 at 11:11 AM.

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    OP - just noticed you're on vista. What "score" does the windows experience thingy give your hard drive?

    (op - I was going to use your name but couldn't bring myself to type it)

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    As a baseline. My 36gb raptor with 16mb of cache gives a score of 5.3. The weakest point of my system according to Vista.

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by raverbaby View Post
    Also I've been told by someone that two 7200RPM hard drives in RAID are substantially faster than a single 10K RPM hard drive, is this correct?
    Raid 0 will give faster data transfer rates (it is interleaved from two drives), but it will actually hurt latency (seek time) because both drives have to find the right sector before they can start reading, so there is double the chance that one of them will have some sort of minor jitter and introduce delay.

    For booting, latency is more important than sustained data transfer rate, as the OS has to read lots of small files scattered over the disc.

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by 306maxi View Post
    As a baseline. My 36gb raptor with 16mb of cache gives a score of 5.3. The weakest point of my system according to Vista.
    I have 2x200gb Maxtor Diamondmax 10's and my Vista Score for those is 5.9.

    Unfortunately though, this Vista score thing is pap.

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    In short, 2 things that make a drive "fast", seek time and throughput.
    Seek time is how quickly a drive can locate a file, helps in games since a drive may have to access many files at any time, and may have to load objects/textures on the spot.
    Throughput is more helpful with large file transfers.

    Current drive performance is seriously lagging compared to RAM/CPU/GFX, so yes while a Raptor is generally faster (for games) than modern 7200rpm HDDs, the difference is absolutely minimal, however Raptors are more expensive per GB and the seeks are very audible.

    I would get a 500GB Seagate 7200.11 32MB cache drive, it does have noticeably better throughput and although it is slightly slower in "gaming" performance, as mentioned in the bigger picture this difference isn't worth the premium you pay for a Raptor.

    Oh, I have a 74GB 16MB cache Raptor, wish I never bought it

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    Re: Advice concerning hard drives

    Quote Originally Posted by Blitzen View Post
    I have 2x200gb Maxtor Diamondmax 10's and my Vista Score for those is 5.9.

    Unfortunately though, this Vista score thing is pap.
    For the enthusiast it's worthless. But if someone is saying "Why won't Crysis work at ultra setting on my high spec PC" and they have a Windows experience score of 2 then you can tell them that their PC is crap

    I get a 5.9 for my 512mb X1950xt so apparently you can't get better than that

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