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 Post subject: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:03 am 
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Of course they are perfectly silent and super fast but you can't get anywhere without seeing someone commenting on their high-failure rate, defragmentation issues, firmware data loss etc.etc.

Is this really the case, is it still untested technology?

Because I would rather prefer reliability over silence and performance any day.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:18 am 
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The hard data shows that Intel SSD failure rates seem to compare well with that of all comers, HDDs and SSDs... by a large margin.
http://www.macobserver.com/tmo/article/ ... ure_rates/
See Also:
viewtopic.php?p=555692#p555692

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 12:25 am 
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Another article of interest, this one regarding return rates: http://www.behardware.com/articles/862- ... tes-6.html

In no particular order, for best reliability: Samsung 830 Series, Intel 330/520 Series, Crucial M4, SanDisk Extreme. I simply wouldn't bother with anything else.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 1:31 am 
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flemeister wrote:
Another article of interest, this one regarding return rates: http://www.behardware.com/articles/862- ... tes-6.html

In no particular order, for best reliability: Samsung 830 Series, Intel 330/520 Series, Crucial M4, SanDisk Extreme. I simply wouldn't bother with anything else.


I agree with the list you've mentioned, though I don't know anything about the SanDisk Extreme. Also, I simply believe all Intel drives are reliable because I believe Intel tests the SSD's much more thoroughly than other SSD brands.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 2:01 am 
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Mettyx wrote:
Of course they are perfectly silent and super fast but you can't get anywhere without seeing someone commenting on their high-failure rate, defragmentation issues, firmware data loss etc.etc.

Is this really the case, is it still untested technology?

Because I would rather prefer reliability over silence and performance any day.


If you use a ssd or not, this won't spare you from doing your backup. I haven't found a way to predict exactly when a HDD or a SSD is about to fail, so i just can advice you on doing your backup.

Besides i agree that intel and samsung seem to care most about reliability when designing their business-ssd.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 3:22 am 
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So the SSD failure is higher than HDD!

I knew that people who talked about no moving parts=more reliability were talking a bunch of bollocks.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 4:07 am 
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If you want reliable SSD, get an intel 320, 520 or a samsung 830.

Defragmention issues? they dont exist in the classical way of the HDD. TRIM works on most modern OSes, and even without it, performance doesnt suffer much unless you fill your SSD to the brim. Something you shouldn't do anyhow - not on HDDs, not on SSDs.

Firmware dataloss was (is?) a thing with OCZ and a few other brands, and was more endemic with early sandforce-based drives.

It's not untested technology, but it is still immature technology, so backups are your friend in case something goes wrong.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 7:00 am 
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Mettyx wrote:
So the SSD failure is higher than HDD!

I knew that people who talked about no moving parts=more reliability were talking a bunch of bollocks.

Well, no. If you stick with one of the top SSDs, their reliability is on par/better than the top 3 HDDs. Just flip back one page on the listed review.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 6:19 pm 
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the problem with that is the top cost double for a third less capacity


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 7:13 pm 
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Seems like you have a conclusion and are trying to find reasons to make it fit...it's your choice to use or not use any particular tech. I've been very happy with my Crucial SSD for OS and apps. YMMV.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 9:45 pm 
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I don't know, medium price point for 180GB seems awfully inadequate, you would be able to fit windows, software suits and a couple of games on that. Btw, does anyone know if it is possible to transfer Steam games from one drive to another so you don't have to download them again?


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2012 10:46 pm 
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Steam Mover should do nicely. :)

http://www.traynier.com/software/steammover/


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 4:49 pm 
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Quote:
I don't know, medium price point for 180GB seems awfully inadequate, you would be able to fit windows, software suits and a couple of games on that.


My PC with W7 x64 (which uses more storage space than x86) the following folders use 23GB, "C:\Windows" "C:\Program Files" "C:\Program Files (x64)".

There is no need for a page file or Hibernation file. I have excluded the size of the "C:\Users" folder as that is an unknown variable and can very easily be placed on another drive, also note that I never install any game to the stupid folders the games makes want me to use, they are all installed to "C:\Games", which FYI includes Alan Wake, BF2, Diablo 3, Dragon Age + Awakenings, Far cry 1, GRID, Heroes 6, Pirates, Skyrim, The Settlers - Rise of an Empire - this lot accounts for 66GB.

Also my "C:\Users folder" is 11.6GB and I have 12.5GB free on my 120GB SSD (remember you only actually see 111GB).

So if a 120GB drive is more than enough for a standard install + 66GB of games with spare space, then a 180GB SSD will be more than adequate.

As far as reliability is concerned, I was quite picky about both of my SSD's, the Force 3 was a lot more reliable (when it came onto the market) than other SSD's with the same controller chip. If I wanted to be extra careful I would choose an Intel Drive or a Vertex 4 (it has a 5-year warranty) or a Samsung 830 as they also seem to be very reliable.

I have a second HDD in my PC, a 500GB 5,400rpm laptop drive, I have setup Windows backup to do what it does at noon every day so I don't care if the SSD dies, I will get it swapped under warranty.

FYI. My "old" SSD, is the one that I use for work, it gets Windows, apps and utilities installed onto it, updated and then imaged to my customers drive, then wiped and re-used. Since I have been using it for that purpose it has gone through that process at least 80 times in the last 2-years and still works flawlessly - if that was a HDD it would be dead and buried by now just with physical wear and tear - consider the amount of laptops this ahs been in, or the amount of SATA cables this has hung from in peoples desktops, I dont need to worry about mis-handling it, touching the top or bottom surfaces, I can move it around when its installing 400MB of windows updates and I don't have to worry about airflow at all. This drive has paid for itself many times over in time saved alone.

I have also supplied 6 SSD's of various types over the last 2-years - they all work perfectly still and 2 of them are in servers, and I am perfectly happy with them and will continue to supply SSD's wherever I possibly can, but just as I do with HDD's I will suggest or sell a backup solution.


Andy

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Last edited by andyb on Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:00 pm 
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I don't know how fast this drive is, or how reliable, but its very cheap for a 256GB drive £105 including VAT.

http://www.ebuyer.com/394450-kingston-2 ... 200s3-256g

Regardless of how fast it is compared to other SSD's it will still be much faster than any HDD and unlike a lot of HDD's it has a 3-year warranty, add a HDD for storage and you get the best of both worlds without spending lots of money on something like a 1TB Velociraptor.

Although if I was to buy a new SSD now I would be looking at the 256GB Samsung 830 for £150 including VAT because its very fast and is known to be reliable and if far cheaper than a 256GB Intel drive.

http://www.ebuyer.com/318423-samsung-25 ... 7pc256n-eu


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 11:26 pm 
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SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 12:20 am 
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johnniecache7 wrote:
SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.


I have a different view, i gladly take the jump in system speed and accept the premium price.

As fas as that reliability thing is concerned: You have to have a backup. And you have to backup regularly. No matter if SSD or HDD inside.


Bottom line: If you don't backup, don't come crying, because men made technique will break. Just a question of "when".


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 1:05 am 
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johnniecache7 wrote:
SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.

SSDs may not be what you want for your use case, but saying that they "are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously" is completely ridiculous. It's like saying that a Ferrari cannot be taken seriously because a van will carry more people for cheaper... :roll:

Also: +1 to Pappnaas about backups. HDDs should be treated as disposable by anyone who cares about their data, and there's no reason why it should be any different with SSDs.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2012 5:11 am 
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Quote:
SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.


To give you a bit of perspective of performance of a general use PC (i.e. not one with a £300 graphics card), and keeping all common components the same. e.g. RAM, motherboard, main storage etc.

Corsair Force 3 120GB = £80
i3-2120 = £90

£170 Total, that's £15 cheaper than the faster CPU below.

No SSD
i5-2550K = £185

What would I buy, the system with the SSD in it, I would forgo the faster CPU as I have no need for its extra speed, and I would gain a much faster drive as well as a backup hard drive.

If you cant stretch to the exta £80 and your already spending loads of money on a super-fast CPU then I suggest that you save up for the SSD and image your system over when you get it - and as mentioned in my post above, even a "slow" SSD is faster than any hard drive, so you could get that 256GB one for £105 so that you don't have to worry about the lack of space, you still get a much faster drive and a backup drive as well.

Quote:
Also: +1 to Pappnaas about backups. HDDs should be treated as disposable by anyone who cares about their data, and there's no reason why it should be any different with SSDs.


Thats what I have been telling everyone for years, this is what I say. "All Hard Drives (and SSD's) die, its just a matter of when and how, some will work perfectly for 10-years, some a few days, some will start to become faulty and still work for 5-years, some will not show any signs of fault and then die with no warning in such a bad way you will need to spend hundreds of pounds to recover the data. Everyone needs a backup solution of some kind".


Andy

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 9:29 am 
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johnniecache7 wrote:
SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.


You're the smart guy who doesn't buy stuff into any hype, aren't you?
Did you ever bother trying a SSD and see how it performs in terms of load times of applications and/or games (not to speak of the OS load time and the noise/heat generated by a 7200/10000rpm HDD) in real life tests?
You can live with an 80/120gb model and store the less used/bigger apps on a HDD partition (which will probably be used as storage/personal data secondary HDD). The difference will be noticeable for an average user, believe me.
Nowadays it's probably the best upgrade you can perform on your computer.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 10:05 am 
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johnniecache7 wrote:
SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.

You're trolling, but here goes. :)
Cost and capacity is not all that matters. Long before SSDs came along we did all we could to shave the seek time of the HDDs down as much as possible. Low seek times on a OS/application disk is very important for responsiveness. I got a 74GB Raptor and was pleased. Then I got a 150GB Raptor and was more happy still.
Then the SSDs came.. I jumped on the bandwagon quickly, got myself a 16GB Mtron MOBI. Cost an arm and a leg back in the day, but I never once regretted getting even that small, expensive (and today mediocre, no trim etc) SSD. It's still alive and well, sits in my all solid state netbook.
Speaking of solid state. It's now very possible and not even that hard to build a fairly powerful system with no moving parts. That is almost the Holy Grail of silent computing. Now all we have to worry about is coil whine, buzzing TFTs and the like - the battle is never over. ;)

HDDs? Yeah, got my NAS full of them but they have no place in any of my other systems.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 12:36 pm 
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Vicotnik wrote:
johnniecache7 wrote:
SSD are to expensive and small to even be taking seriously. I don't buy into the hype about how wonderful they are. When they cost the same and provide that same capacity as traditional harddrives then I'll take them seriously. There just not worth it.

You're trolling, but here goes. :)
Cost and capacity is not all that matters. Long before SSDs came along we did all we could to shave the seek time of the HDDs down as much as possible. Low seek times on a OS/application disk is very important for responsiveness. I got a 74GB Raptor and was pleased. Then I got a 150GB Raptor and was more happy still.
Then the SSDs came.. I jumped on the bandwagon quickly, got myself a 16GB Mtron MOBI. Cost an arm and a leg back in the day, but I never once regretted getting even that small, expensive (and today mediocre, no trim etc) SSD. It's still alive and well, sits in my all solid state netbook.
Speaking of solid state. It's now very possible and not even that hard to build a fairly powerful system with no moving parts. That is almost the Holy Grail of silent computing. Now all we have to worry about is coil whine, buzzing TFTs and the like - the battle is never over. ;)

HDDs? Yeah, got my NAS full of them but they have no place in any of my other systems.


Well said, I have my system full of SSDs now, never had a single ounce of trouble with them, 2 years and counting. Like you, the only place for HDDs is my NAS three rooms away.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:59 am 
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Oh and by the way my 1 years old storage (used 1 time a month or so) Seagate Portable 500GB has just failed. I lost my data (no, it wasn't backup-worthy stuff, but you know, I'm somewhat pi... off) and I have to pay for sending the damaged disk to Seagate.
No, it's not the failure rate of SSD disks that worries me...

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 1:36 am 
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Something I've read on another forum-

Quote:
The degradation with both(Samsung 830 256GB or the Crucial M4 256GB) is VERY low if you are using TRIM supported OS and TRIM is properly enabled.

Basically if you use either of these two SSD's, you have Windows 7, you have your SATA ports set to AHCI and you have all the chipset (and SATA) drivers properly installed you should be fine.


What do the bolded lines mean exactly, is this some extra stuff you have to do in BIOS or Windows 7?
You can't just plug in SSD and it works as best it can?


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 5:40 am 
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If the SATA interface is already in AHCI mode (BIOS setting, more likely to be default on newer motherboards) and the drivers for that interface is installed(mostly for Intel side, with AMD motherboards the Microsoft standard driver tends to work fine as well even if getting the "right" driver is always a good idea), it's as easy as plugging in the SSD drive. ;)

TRIM is a command coming from the operating system and bad or incorrect drivers have blocked that in the past. Generally AHCI has been the only SATA mode that allows the command to get through, but with the very latest version of Intel's driver RAID works as well.

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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 5:12 am 
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Mettyx wrote:
Of course they are perfectly silent and super fast but you can't get anywhere without seeing someone commenting on their high-failure rate, defragmentation issues, firmware data loss etc.etc.

Is this really the case, is it still untested technology?

Because I would rather prefer reliability over silence and performance any day.


OK, in order of your questions.

Failure rate...
A HD Normally fails do to mechanical issues. ei, the head breaks from an arm, 1 of the 2 motors dies, etc. You almost never have a failure in the media. (yes you always have issues in the media, but the HD itself corrects this, but not a true failure) You can also loose the electronics in the controller, but this is not that common.

A SSD is the other way around. The media (flash) in the SSD will fail almost always before anything else! BUT before you say anything, the SSD manufacturer know this too, and just like the media on the HD, have put in place ways to keep this from causing issues. First, most SSD's are "over provisioned" These means there are extra blocks of flash the YOU can't see, just waiting for a write failure to happen. When the controller sees a write error, it maps the extra block in where the old one was, and marks the block as unusable. Second they do what is called wear leveling. This means that you use each block the same amount. You will write ever block once, then every block twice, etc. (not followed absolutely but close enough)

There are some OS things that helps this. One of those is the trim command. Until SSD became popular, when the OS was done with a file, it just marked the data as not used, and the OS just overwrote the area. It never "erased" the data, unless you used one of those secure erase programs/addons. The problem with this, is the drive did not know the area was unused, just the OS did. Because of that, the SSD controller can't do wear leveling, as it didn't know that area of the flash was unused. The trim command tells the drive that an area is no longer in use, and so the controller on the SSD can now erase that block, making it ready to write. (oh, skipped a note, a SSD has to erase a block to write to it) This does 2 things, speeds up the write to that block, and lets the controller do wear leveling. Trim did not effect reads at all, but they aren't effected by this, just writes.

Defragmentation ...
First see TRIM above. Without trim, you don't truly get fragmentation, but a longer write cycle cause by non-blank flash blocks. Without trim, you have to read all the data in a block, then add your data, erase the block, then write the data. With trim, you just write the data to a pre-erased block. Second, fragmentation on an SSD (within reason) doesn't cause much slowdown to the drive. To "move" from one block to a random block location on a SSD has no extra overhead. The only fragmentation you will see, is inside blocks. So if a small file is in 2 blocks of the flash, you'll need 2 block reads, were if the file is in a single block, there is only 1 read. On a large file, that covers lets say 20 blocks, there are 20 reads, and the locations don't matter, as the controller can access any block in the same time.

Firmware data loss ....
Some of the early sandforce firmware was buggy, but it's just like motherboards. The first thing you should do, is flash to the current release BIOS before use. From what I understand, most of the firmware data lost, was really SATA driver bugs, as an updates to latest drivers (April 2012?) seems to have fixed all the issues. I've been using SSD for systems drives since for about 3 years, and have never seen and issues. Saying that, I just started using a sandforce based SSD.

ect., ect. ....
Again, I've had zero issues with SSD system drives. I have went out of my way to minimize writes to them, but I started with first gen SSD, and they needed help. Most "experts" say that a normal person, running windows will not have SSD issues in the normal life of the PC with the current gen SSD.


So, back up your system about once a month, backup you data as often as you can (I do mine Monthly/daily) no matter what you use, and you'll be fine with either system.

Hope I didn't put anyone to sleep.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 11:56 am 
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Location: UK
andyb wrote:
Although if I was to buy a new SSD now I would be looking at the 256GB Samsung 830 for £150 including VAT because its very fast and is known to be reliable and if far cheaper than a 256GB Intel drive.
Andy

It's even cheaper with the £20 Samsung cash back offer. And to think I paid nearly £300 for mine, ugh...

http://www.dabs.com/products/samsung-25 ... -819P.html


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 1:26 pm 
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Location: Chicago, IL
And with the Windows 7 "library" system, you can always use a smaller system drive, then a big rotating one for stuff that doesn't need the speed.


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 4:28 pm 
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Location: UK/Eire
I share the view that SSD's are good, but need to mature more and prices need to come down too.
Give it a few more years they might be worth a look. And they will get more reliable too.

I hate to tell the HDD hate crowd this but I have a lot more confidence in magnetic storage than I do chips. I have HDD's over 10 years old still working just fine.
I would put money down right now that on average a HDD will outlast an SSD easily. That may change down the road, but right now that's my view of things.
Of course a back up is always a good idea, but data recovery on a HDD is quite good in my experience, you're in a bad place with an SSD though.

Folks like us back up our data, average Joe does not!


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 6:02 pm 
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Location: UK
Mr Spocko wrote:
I would put money down right now that on average a HDD will outlast an SSD easily. That may change down the road, but right now that's my view of things.

Just curious, but how much money are you willing to put down?


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 Post subject: Re: Are SSDs really that bad?
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 11:20 pm 
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Mr Spocko wrote:
I hate to tell the HDD hate crowd this but I have a lot more confidence in magnetic storage than I do chips. I have HDD's over 10 years old still working just fine.
I would put money down right now that on average a HDD will outlast an SSD easily. That may change down the road, but right now that's my view of things.
Of course a back up is always a good idea, but data recovery on a HDD is quite good in my experience, you're in a bad place with an SSD though.

Folks like us back up our data, average Joe does not!

The difference in reliability between a HDD and a SSD is negligible. None of them are safe and should be treated like they can drop dead at any time, taking all data with it.
Average Joe often doesn't have that much critical data, and will soon use the Cloud for storage I think, giving up control completely.

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