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 Post subject: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:36 pm 
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I have never given much thought to SSD endurance. I had read that they will last for years and years even if you write 20G a day to them. I thought I would never approach that.

I just tried a software program called ssdlife that tally's that information up. I was shocked to discover that I was writing 20G of information per day and that after 9 months of use, I was only at "60% Health" meaning I have something less then a year of usage left. By one of its measures I have less than 2 months of usage left.

I don't write 20G per day. Not even close. And I keep my data files on a traditional mechanical hard drive. The operating system is doing this. I am just starting to experiment, but it seems that keeping open a fair number of MS word files is contributing to this. I am going to do more experimentation.

But one of the attributes of my next SSD that I am going to more closely consider is durability. It seems like the new Crucial c400 SSDs at claim more durability (writes) than the Intels.

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Sun Apr 10, 2011 9:54 pm 
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Is it possible to check the "usage" on an Intel SSD?
viewtopic.php?f=7&t=62028

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 12:33 am 
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I think you should ask yourself if you have noticed any performance loss?
Running benchmarks won't always make things better, it might actually cause the degradation you're worried about.

I find this thread very useful, it covers pretty much everything you should know about a SSD.

http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/forum ... post567574


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 12:45 am 
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ces wrote:
I just tried a software program called ssdlife that tally's that information up. I was shocked to discover that I was writing 20G of information per day and that after 9 months of use, I was only at "60% Health" meaning I have something less then a year of usage left. By one of its measures I have less than 2 months of usage left.
I don't trust this ssdlife's metrics. SSDs don't instantly become read-only at some point, rather their write speed gradually decreases. If this "health" means anything at all, the rate of its decrease should slow down.

I'll believe it when you report that your drive has become unusable.
ces wrote:
But one of the attributes of my next SSD that I am going to more closely consider is durability. It seems like the new Crucial c400 SSDs at claim more durability (writes) than the Intels.
I think it's the other way around, for their 25nm products Micron claims 3000 cycles while Intel claims 5000. Naturally, they both use the same IMFT chips, so the discrepancy is due to differences in validation methodology. See also Anand's C400 review.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:11 am 
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SSDs are indeed somewhat hindered by the limited erase cycles, but this shouldn't be a problem under normal (i.e. non-server) usage if:
a) You don't write significant amounts of unnecessary data.
b) Give it a bit of breathing space.

To address these two issues (that for me seemed the most important among the dozens of tweaks that you could do) what I did was:
a) Disable the pagefile. I never came across a situation where I would run out of memory with 3 GB or more (and only once with 2 GB). The swapping that Windows does is not very predictable and most of the times it's done unnecessarily. I have the feeling that that is where most writes go to and it's not something you can control.
b) I only use 130 GiB of the total 160 GiB. This gives almost ~19% over-provisioning which should improve endurance considerably (a 20% over-provisioning more than triples the lifetime). Have a look at this Intel document: http://cache-www.intel.com/cd/00/00/45/ ... 459555.pdf

Other than that I don't bother. I use my SSD for everything but media files (everything includes everyday work, documents, virtual machines, etc). Every now and then I write a few tens of GB per day, other times much less, but basically everything goes to the SSD.
Oh, and sometimes I defragment the partitions on it and every now and then I run benchmarks just to make sure the performance is still in the expected range.
After ~16 months I have ~5.4 TB of host writes with a reported 98% health.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:17 am 
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The info I'd take from this program is the amount of data written and try to minimise writing behavior a bit if it seems high. 20GB/day shouldn't be a problem but can probably be improved. Have a look at what programs stores temporary files or downloads files to the system drive and redirect some of it, for instance. Also I just noticed on my machine that Windows had turned its defragmentation schedule back on for some reason, possibly when Win7 SP1 was installed. Anyway my about 7 months old SSD has been writing less than 10GB/day so far, with only recently having moved Windows own Downloads folder to another drive and still keep the "temporary internet files" folder on C:. (3 months 21 days "work time")


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:14 am 
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Mats wrote:
I think you should ask yourself if you have noticed any performance loss?
Running benchmarks won't always make things better, it might actually cause the degradation you're worried about.
I haven't noticed any performance loss... but it was always faster than my hard drives so maybe I wouldn't notice if it occurred.

SSDlife isn't a benchmarking program if that is what you are referring to. It just reads the hard drive Smart Data.

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:44 am 
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I don't think you should worry, just leave it as it is. :wink:

Certain ads on the net says my computer is full of viruses, I don't believe that either.

Not that SSDlife is that unreliable, but the results seems very strange.

When I mentioned benchmarking, I meant "don't continue with benchmarks just because SSDlife got you worried".

Have you turned off indexing?


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:50 am 
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Holy-Fire wrote:
I think it's the other way around, for their 25nm products Micron claims 3000 cycles while Intel claims 5000. Naturally, they both use the same IMFT chips, so the discrepancy is due to differences in validation methodology. See also Anand's C400 review.
That is what I thought. But look at the c400 endurance numbers here:
http://www.legitreviews.com/article/1583/1/

They are talking about 40G per day for 5 years. Right now with my 25-40G per day that is looking very appealing :) I don't remember seeing anyone publish numbers like that before. What do you make of it?

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 6:52 am 
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Mats wrote:
Have you turned off indexing?
YES!!!!!!!!!!! I looked and it was turned on! I don't know how that happened. Wow! Just what I needed indexing on an SSD boot drive. How the heck did that get turned on?

I also just moved my swap file to another SSD drive to see what that does.

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 7:01 am 
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I find this thread very useful, lots of info. Info for beginners, and info for tweaking and optimizing. Even though it's for OCZ, most of it makes sense for any brand.

http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/forum ... or-OCZ-SSD


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - Over Provisioning
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 8:47 pm 
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It seems that if you take a 64G SSD and a 128G version of that same SSD, and use them identically, the 128G should last twice as long as the 64G version.

So where does over provisioning fit into this? If you over provision that 128G SSD an extra 10%, will it last 2.2 times longer than the 64G version? If so why?

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - Over Provisioning
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 2:11 am 
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ces wrote:
It seems that if you take a 64G SSD and a 128G version of that same SSD, and use them identically, the 128G should last twice as long as the 64G version.

So where does over provisioning fit into this? If you over provision that 128G SSD an extra 10%, will it last 2.2 times longer than the 64G version? If so why?

I guess overprovisioning allows making more efficient writes, thus reducing write amplification.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 3:57 am 
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What drive is virtual memory set to use?

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:07 am 
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NeilBlanchard wrote:
What drive is virtual memory set to use?
You mean the swap file? It was on the c drive. I have moved the swap file to another SSD (my "o" drive). According to SSDLife I am still doing doing over 20G of writes per day????

As I have no data on my C Drive. This is all the operating system going merely on its way... totally out of my control.

Interestingly, for the first 7 hours of today, while my system was idling, I had 1.2G of writes (and 1G of reads).

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:44 am 
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ces wrote:
Interestingly, for the first 7 hours of today, while my system was idling, I had 1.2G of writes (and 1G of reads).
Windows does a lot of I/O in the background relating to indexing service and backup/recovery (fall-back). Maybe you can configure this to at least do most of writes to another drive (I have no idea myself)?


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 4:51 am 
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ces wrote:
At your prompting of this issue, I am going to go through all my drives and turn off all indexing anywhere on the system.
I found a hard drive (old fashioned mechanical HDD) with about 500G of never accessed files that was set to index. Turning that drive off of indexing. That seems to have substantially diminished the C drive writing by the operating system.

I am about to turn off prefetching (I have XP, so it has prefetching but does not have super prefetching as Windows 7 does). I will see what that does. I had to go into the register to do that. I really don't like doing that but I think I have to.

I still have the MS automatic backup turned on. I am just unwilling to turn it off.

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Last edited by ces on Tue Apr 12, 2011 9:57 am, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 9:10 am 
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Here are some tweeks for Crucial SSDs

CA_Steve wrote:
I wouldn't disable System Restore - perhaps limiting the space used. The other suggestions are great.

Here's a link from the Crucial forum.
tweaks for Vista and Win 7

Also, seems like the forum consensus is to use the Microsoft supplied AHCI driver over the Intel one for the C300.

I've got the 128GB drive sitting on my desk..haven't gotten around to my rebuilt, yet :D


Corrected link:
http://forum.crucial.com/t5/Solid-State ... /td-p/4514

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 9:12 pm 
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DISCOVERY: other drives, even traditional mechanical hard drives, if set with the indexing option on... will cause your boot drive to churn gigabytes of useless writes.

My instance may have been extreme, but a western Digital black drive with about 500G of never accessed files was generating about 15G of writes per day on the SSD boot drive. As soon as I unchecked the indexing option of that hard drive, the 15G of writes per day on the SSD boot drives disappeared.

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:54 am 
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That is quite something.
I disable the Windows Search service since all it really does relates to indexing, although the system then nags you about it being off every time you search. I can take that knowing it's quiet, even if clearing out the settings inside "Indexing Options" should limit its actions to near nothing. I've had the system put things in to be indexed by itself though in the past, so disabling the service feels safer.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 11:00 am 
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mkk wrote:
That is quite something.
MS Windows, the operating system that just keeps giving. Thank you Mr. Gates, may I have another.

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 4:06 pm 
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Those numbers are strange ces...
My SSD (160GB X25-m) has 5.8TB of writes over 6254 hours (261 days), which converts to 22GB of writes per day, and health is 98% in SSDLife.
BTW, this value comes from the SSD itself, not from the software. For intel, it's called "media wearout indicator".

EDIT : that's on Windows 7

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 4:40 pm 
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frenchie wrote:
Those numbers are strange ces...
My SSD (160GB X25-m) has 5.8TB of writes over 6254 hours (261 days), which converts to 22GB of writes per day, and health is 98% in SSDLife.
BTW, this value comes from the SSD itself, not from the software. For intel, it's called "media wearout indicator".
EDIT : that's on Windows 7
1. Maybe I need to replace my Vertx with a 60GB X25-m.

2. Once I turned off indexing on the western digital drive the writes to the SSD boot drive dropped to about 7G per day from about 25G per day. 7G isn't that different your what you getting.

3. SSDlife indicates
a) 7249 hours,
b) 60% health (seems like they are talking about remaining write capacity),
c) total lifetime writes of 3457G (maybe 40% of a lifetime of 1T of writes?)
d) "Estimated Lifetime 1 year 0 month 14 days (with each day of monitoring by SSDLife this number is increasing, it started out at 1 month)

4) Did I say maybe I need to replace my Vertx with a In Intel X25-m?

Questions.

I should expect a 120G Intel to last twice as long as a 60G Intel correct?

And that is because of the wear leveling correct?

Does my 64G Vertex have wear leveling?

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:43 am 
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frenchie wrote:
Those numbers are strange ces...
My SSD (160GB X25-m) has 5.8TB of writes over 6254 hours (261 days), which converts to 22GB of writes per day, and health is 98% in SSDLife.
BTW, this value comes from the SSD itself, not from the software. For intel, it's called "media wearout indicator".
EDIT : that's on Windows 7
Does anyone else have any similar experience with the Intel x25?

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 Post subject: Intel SSD Durability
PostPosted: Thu Apr 14, 2011 7:32 pm 
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Can anyone confirm that a 160G Intel x25 will last exactly twice as long as an 80G Intel x25... assuming identical usage?

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 Post subject: Re: Intel SSD Durability
PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:14 am 
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ces wrote:
Can anyone confirm that a 160G Intel x25 will last exactly twice as long as an 80G Intel x25... assuming identical usage?


No, unless the drive is only used for caching purposes or something.

Typical OS and programs installations will take up a finite amount of capacity, and it is the remaining capacity as well as the all-important unallocated space that will determine how effective wear levelling will be.

Say both drives have 30 GB worth of OS/programs.
That means that the 80GB will have 50 GB for wear levelling (simplistic figures I know), while the 160 will have 130. This points to the 160 GB lasting far more than twice as long in terms of writes, though I am open to correction if anyone disagrees.


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 9:18 am 
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ces: I get the impression that you want to replace your SSD all of a sudden?


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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:17 am 
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Mats wrote:
ces: I get the impression that you want to replace your SSD all of a sudden?
Where on earth did you get that idea? :)

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 Post subject: Re: Intel SSD Durability
PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 10:19 am 
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ces wrote:
Say both drives have 30 GB worth of OS/programs. That means that the 80GB will have 50 GB for wear levelling (simplistic figures I know), while the 160 will have 130. This points to the 160 GB lasting far more than twice as long in terms of writes, though I am open to correction if anyone disagrees.
So it is the ratio of spare space to used space that controls. That makes sense.

Does anyone know if the pre-sandforce OCZ vertex's had or did not have, wear leveling?

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 Post subject: Re: SSD Endurance - My Personal Surprise
PostPosted: Fri Apr 15, 2011 5:27 pm 
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I believe everything has wear levelling, even SD cards and such.


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