Quitch

Optimal desktop performance

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After five years it's time to setup a new desktop PC. Last time I played with SCSI and am of the opinion that it wasn't worth the cost involved. Especially now SATA drives are massive and cheap.

What (if any) is the agreed optimal setup for your standard desktop? Are there any benefits to moving beyond a single large and powerful drive (assuming some means for backup)? Will a desktop see a noticeable performance benefit from putting applications on a different drive to the OS? Is there any RAID level which will aid drive access, ignoring RAID0 for obvious reasons?

On a gaming machine are level loads (which I believe the most demanding hard drive task most PCs will do, beyond the initial boot) sequential access? If so is there a setup which would benefit them?

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I would say one large fast drive is fine. IF you wanted to, you could get two drives, and put the OS on one and Apps/games on the other. This would also let you put a page file on both drives, and let the OS decide which page file to use, which might help a little. But overall, one drive is fine.

If you really want fast, you could get the 300gig Vraptor (it's $300), but I'd go with the more reasonable choise of the WD 640gig or Samsung F1 1tb, both of which are within ~10% of the Vraptor, but less expensive. (~$90 for the 640gig, $180 for the 1tb)

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What I wonder is with drive indexing coming enabled as standard on Vista (and being very helpful), is a separation of user data onto its own drive something that could offer a performance boost?

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The leaderboard suggests the Hitachi 7K1000, is this incorrect (though this comparison seems to show the Samsung aherad??)? I note that it talks about a 1TB version, but all I could find is the A7K1000, is this the device in question?

I suppose my only concern would be the noise of the drive. Is this something caddies could fix?

Edited by Quitch

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A7K1000 is the nearline storage version of the 7K1000.

I would grab the Samsung F1 1TB if you need 1TB of storage, the WD6400AAKS if you don't.

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I would grab the Samsung F1 1TB if you need 1TB of storage, the WD6400AAKS if you don't.

What he said......both are faster then the Hitachi drives.

This Techreport link has all of these drives in their review of the VRaptor. They also include noise and power draw for all these drives.

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I'll probably go with a single 1TB drive then, I tend to find I need more space than I expect, but with a TB I should be well covered and the Samsung looks to have good performance too.

Thanks chaps.

I note that it has NCQ, is disabling NCQ for a desktop still the best move?

Edited by Quitch

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