Smerjel

Replacing Old Revisions of 36Raptor For 150Raptor?

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Hey there!

This would be my first post here then!

Now i have read in detail SR´s review on the 150 raptor and the forum comments about it.

I like both the disk and the review alot but i cannot tell wich of these various performance is the one i use for the most of the time.

Im an dedicated hardware enthusiast and have built my system for benching/gaming performance.

Currently im running:

2xRaptor36 00FNA0 (older revision) at RAID0 for windows swapfile.

2xRaptor36 50GHA2 (newer revision) for OS and installed games.

I also have WD caviar 200GB and Maxtor 300GB for storage.

It was very interesting to see that Eugene actually hooked up both Far Cry & World of Warcraft since i play both of them quite alot. Well, i PLAY World of Warcraft alot and BENCHING with Far Cry alot =)

So the jumping in and out of maps all the time of course puts me in the maploader very often in both these games.

Now i cant really tell wich of these values SRT, random access etc is the value wich is most critical for me. I have tried reading alot about it here but just cant really point to the one value or the other.

I cant really say that im frustrated over diskperformance inside the windows environment

If you would have any suggestions about how i could gain some more performance with some additional 150 raptors in raid or single in combination with what i currently have i would be very happy to listen and try to understand this furthermore.

Tho if i buy 2 150 ones i will have to replace 2 of the older ones since im limited with space except if there would be a very nice reason as of performance to keep my 4 pcs of 36 raptors and add 2 or more 150 ones then of course i just rebuild my case. It is an option. Forgot to mention that cost is no concern when i am buying something i use 24/7 =)

Any help concerning this is highly appreciated as i will also be able to share it with my swedish enthusiast community Techsweden.org

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EDIT:

â–ºThe newer revisions of the raptors are ALSO in Raid0.

â–ºFrom the VGA detection in system boot up until im on the desktop with 0% CPU usage takes me about 45 Seconds.

â–ºThe Raidcontroller are Nvidia NF4 & SiImage 3114 with a total of 8 Sata Ports. Occupying 5 atm. Maxtor 300GB using IDE channel.

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Welcome to SR!

You'll find that in gaming and office tasks, a single 150 GB Raptor is comfortably faster than a pair of 36 GB Raptors in RAID 0. So you could replace each of your current RAID 0 arrays with a 150 GB Raptor, keep your most frequently used data (Docs & settings, etc.) on the Raptor with the pagefile on it, and back that data up to one of your large disks.

An equally valid alternative would be to put OS & Pagefile on one Raptor, and apps & games on the other. The main point is to identify your concurrently accessed datasets and put them on independent spindles, so that each drive is only seeking around one area of localised access at a time. This way, you'll minimise the amount of time spent seeking, and maximise the amount of time spent transferring data.

For gaming performancel, it's a good idea to make sure you've got at least 2 GB of RAM, and a decent graphics card, before spashing out on two Raptor 150s - otherwise there are better ways to spend your money. The best way to speed up paging is to buy more RAM so you don't have to do it as much. CPU and GPU speed have a far greater impact on frames per second than the hard drive does, but if you already have a fast machine, new Raptors will give you an extra edge.

Me, I'd sell or reuse the old Raptors in another system, since it sounds like you'll already have a caseful of drives at that point.

As for the benchmarks, you'll find that the Gaming (obviously), Office and High-end SR drivemarks will be the most relevant to the effect a drive will have on your (single) user experience.

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Thank you alot for replying Spod!

I forgot to mention what other components i am using:

DFI LP NF4 SLI-DR

FX60 @ 3200 MHz or FX57 @ 3400MHz

2x7800 GTX @ SLI with water

2x512MB OCZ Voltage Extreme CH-5, 2-2-5-2 1T, running at 520MHz

The performance i was looking for now were not framerate but loadingtimes.

I went and bought 2x150 raptors wich i put in raid0. Replacing 2 of the older revisions of the WD36 ones.

â–ºNow i kept Windows together with its programs on the the WD36 raid0.

â–ºPartitioned the WD150 raid0 into 3 equally sized partitions.

â–ºInstalled games on of these partions of the 150 raid0.

â–ºUsing the other two partions for storage only so the games can run "uninterupted" and without interference from other processes.

â–ºPut the swapfile of 1536Mb-3036Mb on one of the bigger disks.

Shouldnt this share the load as much as possible on different spindles?

Since more or the less, each "action/process" got its own spindle or disk.

Tho i am a bit doubtfull about having the swapfile on one of the slower disks since they are ALOT slower then any of the current raidarrays.

My thought was that the swapfile aint that performance demanding but i might be wrong. I know very little about how it works actually.

What do you think about the setup?

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Upgrade the RAM first and foremost.

Try using one of the new Raptors for OS/Apps/Games.

If you must, use the outer 4GB for swap.

Use the 2nd Raptor 150 for your games, data storage whatever.

the new 74GB 16MB cache Raptor is out now. You could buy three of those for the price of two 150s

One disk per 'task' means one disk, not sliced raid partitions.

My current setup is 2GB RAM, 15K Atlas boot drive, a pair of 10K Atlas for data documents, downloads, storage and works nicely. I got this SCSI setup before SATA was really a good option and it is easier to just replace with newer Atlas drives than Raptors, otherwise I would be using 74 or 150 Raptors . I did use 36GB Raptors 3 years ago during testing, they came across as 'okay' but not enough to replace what I use.

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Upgrade the RAM first and foremost.

Try using one of the new Raptors for OS/Apps/Games.

If you must, use the outer 4GB for swap.

Use the 2nd Raptor 150 for your games, data storage whatever.

the new 74GB 16MB cache Raptor is out now. You could buy three of those for the price of two 150s

One disk per 'task' means one disk, not sliced raid partitions.

My current setup is 2GB RAM, 15K Atlas boot drive, a pair of 10K Atlas for data documents, downloads, storage and works nicely. I got this SCSI setup before SATA was really a good option and it is easier to just replace with newer Atlas drives than Raptors, otherwise I would be using 74 or 150 Raptors . I did use 36GB Raptors 3 years ago during testing, they came across as 'okay' but not enough to replace what I use.

Why not RAID-0 and slice them up? I don't get it. I see how you're dividing drives nicely, but is there a reason? And page file should be on the secondary raptor if you want to do that?

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Try your 150's 'as is' first.

yes, there is logic in my madness.

I think the "should I RAID for home gaming machine" faq comes to mind as a start.

Barefeats @ http://www.barefeats.com did some tests on boot time, launching files etc and found no difference or improvement in RAID'ing Raptors, 15K SCSI etc over a good logical non-RAID setup.

A dedicated 10K/15K boot drive - not RAID - works.

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Mad Hatter

Upgrading my ram to 2gb wont have that impact on either loadingtimes or framrates considering im running them DDR400.

Since A64 has an integated memcontroller you will win loads from having low latency memory like 2-2-2-5.

My CH-5 IC´s does these latencies in DDR520 and yields an responsetime of 34 nanoseconds while a pair of 2gb would end up about 50ns.

The games today that would gain an noticeble benefit from 2gb would be Battlefield 2 and maybe Oblivion if your running high texture size and high resolution.

Why are you refering to benchmarks run on a mac? lol

What do you mean with "-One disk per 'task' means one disk, not sliced raid partitions. " ?

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I used mainframes, too, but that isn't what I use now. I use what I like, not what I was forced to use.

Because paging is always going to be slower than RAM, I am surprised that 512 is enough, or that you think you need to RAID the 36s. Comparing Raptors maybe? I think, having used the original and some current 10K and 15K drives, that you might find using a single drive, or outer tracks probably, to be as good or better than the RAID setup you used or plan to implement. Most, I would try a non-RAID for awhile. I keep going back and forth, and right now found that four non-RAID drives (all same size) is 'smoother' and faster and better optimized - for me.

yes, different operating systems have different characteristics, but tracks, sectors and cylinders don't change. I use to have to code databases to use certain sectors and cylinders, that and tweak the OS performance over our "DASD farm."

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Mad Hatter

Upgrading my ram to 2gb wont have that impact on either loadingtimes or framrates considering im running them DDR400.

Since A64 has an integated memcontroller you will win loads from having low latency memory like 2-2-2-5.

My CH-5 IC´s does these latencies in DDR520 and yields an responsetime of 34 nanoseconds while a pair of 2gb would end up about 50ns.

The games today that would gain an noticeble benefit from 2gb would be Battlefield 2 and maybe Oblivion if your running high texture size and high resolution.

Why are you refering to benchmarks run on a mac? lol

What do you mean with "-One disk per 'task' means one disk, not sliced raid partitions. " ?

Do you have any real world benchmarks to back up your claims? All benchmarks I have seen e.g. from angry/happygames at DFI-street and one done either at Tom or Anand shows that in actual fact all this claim of how much a difference low timings makes with the A64 is bull. The difference is minor.

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Increasing your RAM will increase the amount of data your system can cache from the harddrive, reducing the number of reads. If you are trying to maximize the speed of loading maps, then the amount of RAM (not the speed) will have the greatest impact. And the greater the amount of RAM you have, the less likely your page file will even be used. Windows XP will use a maximum of 3.5GB of RAM, so getting 4x1GB sticks is your best bet.

If the maps being loaded from the harddrives are very large, contiguous files, then this is probably your best bet:

OS - 150GB Raptor

Page/Temp - existing 36GB Raptor

Game - 2x150GB Raptor in RAID 0

If loading these maps involves loading lots of small, non-contiguous files, then this is probably your best bet:

OS - 150GB Raptor

Page/Temp - existing 36GB Raptor

Game - 150GB Raptor

*'What do you mean with "-One disk per 'task' means one disk, not sliced raid partitions. " ?'

He means that (performance-wise) having stuff on several different partitions on the same drive, is the same as having the same stuff on a single partition. And putting multiple drives into a RAID 0 is similar to just having a single drive. (RAID 0 really only shows a benefit when loading large, contiguous files.)

So, your statement that you "Partitioned the WD150 raid0 into 3 equally sized partitions" means that it will run with similar performance to a single 300GB Raptor with one big partition.

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