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Solid State Flash Drive Pros & Cons?

By Savage1701
Jun 9, 2008
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  1. I want to try a solid state, flash-based drive for my primary c: drive. I do not need more than 32GB of space, as it is mostly for business use. Before doing so, I wanted to post to this forum to see if my thinking on the pros and cons is correct, so here goes:

    Pros:

    1. Low power consumption and heat generation.
    2. Relatively fast read speeds, and no wear accrues to flash memory when read from. I can get some better look-ahead caching with SuperSpeed RAM cache utility and let the pages sit dirty in the cache.
    3. Bottom line: Windows XP can load significantly faster than off of a Raptor drive, which I presently use for the c: drive.

    So-So's:

    1. Mediocre write speeds. I can obviate this to a large extent with SuperSpeed RAM cache utility, again, especially if I let the pages sit dirty in the cache.

    Cons:

    1. Lousy I/O performance, and of course lowers life expectancy of flash medium even with the presence of wear levelling algorithims. I can get around this through the use of i-RAM solid-state DRAM drives which function as holders for the pagefiles, temp files, FF and IE caches, etc, so I don't keep those sorts of things on the flash-based c: drive.
    2. Need to make sure that one is getting truly fast flash, preferrably SLC and not MLC.

    Does it sound like my thinking is correct on the above points? Or am I missing something? Most people seem to say they get a fast boot, but other things lag for them, including writes, etc. This makes me think my reasoning is correct, but I've sure been wrong plenty of other times.

    Thanks to all for any thoughts.
     
  2. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    We have been testing laptop hard drive replacement flash drives from Samsung, Seagate, and Fujitsu for 11 weeks now.
    The costs are astonishingly high, but that will change until they are less expensive than other laptop drives.
    We see no big differences on I/O, but write speeds are noticeably slower.
    Reliable, which flash drives are not.

    One thing for sure, prepare for the future because it is coming. I'll bet nobody makes motor-driven "hard drives" five years from now.
     
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