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Sean1

SSD Reviews?

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Anandtech has done a really good SSD review lately including the Samsung MLC, SLC and the new Intel MLC drives. They show why you should avoid the myriad of Samsung MLC/JMicron SSD drives.

This is THE Anandtech "SSD versus Enterprise SAS and SATA disks" review referred to above by "Sean1"

I pointed out the "Testing in the readl world" chapter but reading this review helped me to define some major points about next storage platform:

  • 5x X25-E SSD on a single hw raid card with an IOP 348 @ 1200 Mhz is a maximum to support the SSD sequential throughput (3x X25-E SSD on a IOP 348 @ 800 Mhz)...but having 8x SSD per card should be ok for most usage
  • 13x 15krpm SAS drives can be replaced by 1x Intel X25-E SSD
  • Keeping about 20% free space on a SSD is a good practice
  • One should define yearly (or more frequent) procedures to re-format and restore each SSD (and avoid performance degradation)

Although, in the desktop storage market, they were the first I read to point out the JMicron controller write latency problem.

Their latest review are "The SSD Anthology: Understanding SSDs and New Drives from OCZ" and "The SSD Update: Vertex Gets Faster, New Indilinx Drives and Intel/MacBook Problems Resolved" where you may compare some other SSD.

My current reading of this SSD market:

  • X25-E : Smallest latency (0.2ms), 30MB/s random write io, too expensive for Desktop usage ($800 for 32GB, $1600 for the 64GB edition)
  • X25-M : Smallest latency (0.2ms), 20MB/s random write io, expensive for Desktop usage ($400 for 80GB)
  • OCZ Vertex : 6MB/s random write io, my current favorite for desktop usage and some Enterprise platform
  • Samsung SLC : Not as good as a classic drive at write but can provide stable write performance and is really faster at random read io
  • Others using JMicron JMF602B or JMF602Bx2 controller : No go...with more than 500ms write latency sometimes

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If you want / have to use database stuff with significant write operation, you need no reviews at the moment because there is just one real SSD solution: the "little E".

Regardless what you throw on that little monster. B)

But, yes, some new reviews on SR would be welcome of course.

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  • One should define yearly (or more frequent) procedures to re-format and restore each SSD (and avoid performance degradation)

That depends. Formatting alone won't force an SSD to erase all its blocks, it'll just clear the FAT. You'd have to use an SSD specific secure erase utility or something to actually erase all the blocks, rather than write them with zeros or whatever. Or if your OS, drivers, controller, SSD and SSD firmware support trim, then you shouldn't need to do this at all, because it will be able to erase blocks marked by the OS as deleted.

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