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Is it more efficient to partition a 500GB HD into logical partitions -- in terms of speed of access of programs and data? OR keep it in one partition?

If I want to add a SSD to an i7 (3rd generation) desktop running Win7 Pro, what is the optimum size I should get? And what should I put on the SSD besides the OS?

TIA

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I put my OS and all the software I use (Office, Games, etc.,) on the 128GB SSD and have ~40GB left over. Everything else is on my regular drives. Not knowing what type of software you have, I recommend 120 to 256GB SSD, larger if you need to manipulate any large files for whatever it is you do.

I buy and sell computer parts and build computers for a living.
I have built and repaired tons of computers, so I do know a ton about computer performance.

The best way to increase the speed of a regular hard drive is short stroking it.
This means you limit the data to the outer 1/3 or less of the hard drive.
This is the fastest part of the drive, and you reduce seek times because the heads do not need to travel the entire distance of the drive.
I tell you about short stroking so you can understand what the most efficient model for optimizing a regular hard drive.
Not because I expect you to use it.

If you access all your data frequently then spreading it all over your drive in different partitions would be counterproductive.
If you have a large amount of data that you do not access very often then putting that data on the inside of the drive might speed things up a bit, by reducing the size of the partition you are using frequently.

If this is all too complicated then consider a program like perfect disk, which does most of this optimizing for you, or allows you to customize its optimization method.

Having said all that.
You should just get an SSD.

My second generation i3 is much faster than your 3rd generation i7 because I have an SSD.

I think a Sata 3 60Gb is the Smallest SSD you should consider, keeping in mind that the smaller you go, the more often you may have to move files off the ssd and onto the regular hard drive.
If you can afford bigger then do it, but do not delay your purchase of an ssd because you are not sure what size to get or because you want a bigger ssd but cannot afford one.
At the moment I am using only 80gb on my SSD for two copies of windows 7 and a copy of windows XP.
One of these is my main OS and two are virtual machines.
Scott Dieken

sneuman said:   My second generation i3 is much faster than your 3rd generation i7 because I have an SSD
Scott Dieken


i fail to understand that, your computer is faster due to the storage media?

"I do know a ton about computer performance" <== that clears it up

based on your storage, you can perform more calculations per cycle

yes
most people do not understand that.

Here is some info for you from Wikipedia.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instructions_per_second

Million instructions per second

Comparison of processors speeds requires thorough analysis, as the speed of a given CPU is dependent upon many factors, such as the type of instructions being executed, the execution order and the presence of branch instructions (problematic in CPU pipelines). CPU instruction rates are different from clock frequencies, usually reported in Hz, as each instruction may require several clock cycles to complete or may be capable of executing multiple independent instructions at once. Additionally, the number of cycles required for instructions to complete is dependent upon the instruction being executed. MIPS can be useful when comparing performance between processors made from a similar architecture (e.g. Microchip branded microcontrollers). However, MIPS are difficult to compare between CPU architectures. This and other limitations of the unit lead many computer engineers to define MIPS as Meaningless Indicator of Processor Speed.[1]

Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition 3960X (Hex core) 177,730 MIPS at 3.33 GHz


Your hard drive can do about 100 to 150 4K IOPS

My SSD Does 5,200

My Ram Drive Does 100,000





Who really cares how many calculations you can do with your computer, what matters is responsiveness and how fast programs load and how long it takes for windows to start.

To be honest you could not buy a computer from me with an I7 that does not have an SSD.

After a few complaints from customers upgrading from one quad core to another or from a quad core to an eight core and not seeing a difference in speed of their computer, I stopped selling any PC with high end CPU without requiring an SSD.

Why dont you go and try and see if you can talk an SSD owner out of their SSD?

GOOD LUCK!

sneuman said:   Who really cares how many calculations you can do with your computer, what matters is responsiveness and how fast programs load and how long it takes for windows to start.While a fast loading Windows is nice, as are quick loading apps, I would much rather have a faster computer. I guess if all you do is browse the Internet and don't do much with your apps once loaded your reasoning would be solid. But if you are doing anything that requires speed, like 3D rotation, scrolling around large CAD drawings, etc... you want something FAST. Of course you want fast load times too, but the number of calculations your computer can do is very, very important.

#1
3d AND CAD users are a very very small percentage of the population.

#2
You have no idea how much difference an SSD would make until you try it.

One of my clients does wedding videos.
He cut his editing time down from an hour to just a few minutes with an SSD.

#3
Unless you are using 100 percent of your CPU for your CAD stuff you could do exactly the same thing in EXACTLY the same time with an I5 or less.

Regarding my experience
I think you are fully missing the point.

I SEE COMPUTERS BEFORE AND AFTER UPGRADES
I know EXACTLY WHAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE, AND WHAT DOES NOT.

Regarding your particular CAD program I do not know the specifics since you did not mention the program.

see this link
http://forums.anandtech.com/archive/index.php/t-2240925.html

#1 - True, but you were the one that said 'who really cares'. I answered your question.

#2 - I have and I do. And yes, of course someone making tons of drive calls (to do something like edit videos) would see a great improvement with SSD. I never said otherwise.

#3 - that makes no sense. You just talked about how wonderful the improvement with SSD is then turn around and say that the improvement with a faster CPU is pointless. BOTH are important. Of course, the i5 is a fast CPU, and most people won't push it to the point where they need something faster. But, again, you asked 'who cares' and I am answering you - there are people that care. Maybe not you, maybe not your customers, but that doesn't mean they don't exist. High end users are out there and they push their computers to the max. They need an i7 CPU, a Quadro video card, etc...

You seem to think I don't know what I'm talking about even though you don't know me. You sent a very rude PM to another member for no reason that I can see. You keep making generalizations then getting upset when people point out specifics that don't fit your case.

So be it. I'm done discussing this.

Duplicate deleted

Novice questions. Where is the "outer 1/3" of the HD? The beginning or the end of the HD? Or does it mean the out edges of the platters?

The HD on my old PC was partitioned into several logical partitions; and all my data is on one of those partitions.

From all the responses, it seems that I should put my OS, softwares and frequently used data files on the SSD ???


sneuman said:   I buy and sell computer parts and build computers for a living.
I have built and repaired tons of computers, so I do know a ton about computer performance.

The best way to increase the speed of a regular hard drive is short stroking it.
This means you limit the data to the outer 1/3 or less of the hard drive.
This is the fastest part of the drive, and you reduce seek times because the heads do not need to travel the entire distance of the drive.
I tell you about short stroking so you can understand what the most efficient model for optimizing a regular hard drive.
Not because I expect you to use it.

If you access all your data frequently then spreading it all over your drive in different partitions would be counterproductive.
If you have a large amount of data that you do not access very often then putting that data on the inside of the drive might speed things up a bit, by reducing the size of the partition you are using frequently.

If this is all too complicated then consider a program like perfect disk, which does most of this optimizing for you, or allows you to customize its optimization method.

Having said all that.
You should just get an SSD.

My second generation i3 is much faster than your 3rd generation i7 because I have an SSD.

I think a Sata 3 60Gb is the Smallest SSD you should consider, keeping in mind that the smaller you go, the more often you may have to move files off the ssd and onto the regular hard drive.
If you can afford bigger then do it, but do not delay your purchase of an ssd because you are not sure what size to get or because you want a bigger ssd but cannot afford one.
At the moment I am using only 80gb on my SSD for two copies of windows 7 and a copy of windows XP.
One of these is my main OS and two are virtual machines.
Scott Dieken

A separate question. If I want to set up a RAID(?) for real time backup, do I need another SSD for backing up the OS?

TIA

I replaced my laptop's 500GB SATA with 120GB SSD, the boot up and shut down time was day and night difference. I don't have much data and only a few programs, so 120 was good enough for me. If you have a lot of data, use the SSD for OS and apps, data for other hard disk. If you want to back up a RAID system, it depends on what software to use for back up, your back up hard disk can be non SSD.

WhyAskWhy said:   I replaced my laptop's 500GB SATA with 120GB SSD, the boot up and shut down time was day and night difference. I don't have much data and only a few programs, so 120 was good enough for me. If you have a lot of data, use the SSD for OS and apps, data for other hard disk. If you want to back up a RAID system, it depends on what software to use for back up, your back up hard disk can be non SSD.
I barely know RAID; but I thought that the backup drive must be of identical size to the HD that you want to back up. So if I get a SSD for OS, etc. and the original HD for data; do I need 2 RAID drives?

TIA

confused200 said:   WhyAskWhy said:   I replaced my laptop's 500GB SATA with 120GB SSD, the boot up and shut down time was day and night difference. I don't have much data and only a few programs, so 120 was good enough for me. If you have a lot of data, use the SSD for OS and apps, data for other hard disk. If you want to back up a RAID system, it depends on what software to use for back up, your back up hard disk can be non SSD.
I barely know RAID; but I thought that the backup drive must be of identical size to the HD that you want to back up. So if I get a SSD for OS, etc. and the original HD for data; do I need 2 RAID drives?

TIA
There are many types of RAID, but for home use RAID 1 (mirror) is the most common. For that you would want two identical drives.

Also, keep in mind that RAID isn't really backup. It's redundancy. If one drive dies in a RAID 1 setup you just keep on going because the other drive is an exact duplicate of it.

If you delete a file it is deleted from both drives at the same time. If you want a backup in case of accidental deletion, virus infection, etc... you do not want RAID.

minidrag said:   Also, keep in mind that RAID isn't really backup. It's redundancy. If one drive dies in a RAID 1 setup you just keep on going because the other drive is an exact duplicate of it.

If you delete a file it is deleted from both drives at the same time. If you want a backup in case of accidental deletion, virus infection, etc... you do not want RAID.


i was pondering the merits of raid for the OP as well, while i think RAID is a great technology, for the masses, a JBOD array with some incremental backup software running, is the cheapest, and easiest to recover from, and your not tied to any rules specified by a RAID setup

SSD's do greatly improve computers performance. It seems bottlenecks are most frequently due to reads and writes.
If I had to make a choice between processor and SSD, I'd go with SSD.

To answer the OP...
Put the OS and most of your apps on the SSD. Use your other hard drive for file storage and large games. Get some backup software that copies images of your SSD to the other hard drive.

Wish I lived in sneuman's town. I would love to buy a computer from him. He sounds like he knows his stuff.

minidrag said:   Also, keep in mind that RAID isn't really backup. It's redundancy. If one drive dies in a RAID 1 setup you just keep on going because the other drive is an exact duplicate of it.

If you delete a file it is deleted from both drives at the same time. If you want a backup in case of accidental deletion, virus infection, etc... you do not want RAID.

Thanks, minidrag. I want a backup more for the 2nd purpose. So, I'll just do what skh12 & riznick suggest.



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