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What is Raid, Sata, Ultra ATA? Newbie question, need advice

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July 23, 2006 3:03:24 PM

I'm building a system for online stock trading. Multi monitors, mostly 2D charts, no gaming.

Please explain what Raid, SATA and Ultra ATA is and what I need or don't need for this system and use.

ASUS A8N5X mobo, AMD X2-3800, PNY Quadro NVS 440 PCIEX=16.


What's a good hard drive for this? I'm thinking Seagate or Maxtor 160 or 250 Gig. I'm biased against WD because of an old failure of one of their drives.

Thanks.
July 23, 2006 4:04:16 PM

http://www.pcguide.com/ref/hdd/perf/raid/index.htm

There is a run down of basic RAID.

Serial ATA (SATA) is just a diffrent connection between the motherboard and the hard drive.

Ultra ATA is the legacy connection with the big fat ribbon cables.

If you are going to be a day trader there is 0 need for RAID unless you want to go RAID 1 (which is data mirroring).

Assuming your only doing stock trading you don't need a big hard drive at all unless you plan on storing financial data on the hard drives such as portfolio analysis, trend analysis, 10-ks, 10-q's, and the like. If you plan to keep alot of documents on there I would shoot for a 250Gb hard drive. I personaly just bought a Samsung SP2504C for under $80 and its marvelous. It is a SATA type hard drive.

Seagate hard drives are known to be a tad on the slow side and not the best value. WD all in all is a solid brand these days. I have had 2 Raptor hard drives from them along with 2 others and none have failed. I will advise against Maxtor, they have issues with many of their hard drives.
July 23, 2006 4:52:12 PM

Thanks.

The price difference between 160 and 250 G's is almost miniscule, I may as well get a 250.

"Seagate hard drives are known to be a tad on the slow side and not the best value. WD all in all is a solid brand these days. I have had 2 Raptor hard drives from them along with 2 others and none have failed. I will advise against Maxtor, they have issues with many of their hard drives."

Funny how ratings on drives changes. At one time Maxtor was considered bullet proof and WD was not so hot. I've heard that Samsung's were always good. As well as the IBM drives.

When you say Seagate's are "slow", how slow is slow these days? Enough to notice?

Maybe I read too many newegg reviews.

Me, I'd prefer reliability over small increments of speed. I'm not gaming.

A data recovery service I used a few years ago told me that most of the crashed drives they got in for data recovery were WD's. But that was a few years ago. Computer components and companies change so rapidly now.

Doesn't Seagate own Maxtor now?

I'm in Texas (FW) also. Hot enough?
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July 23, 2006 5:14:32 PM

Yeah Texas is F'in hot this summer. Damn car temp read 116 one day... that isn't right.

If your concerned with WD then don't buy one, no big deal. I have 2 maxtors and they have given me nothing but problems. The firmware on the Diamondmax 10/11 have been known to react badly to newer nForce boards and some other random ones, so I just advise people to avoid them.

Seagates aren't noticeably slow, its just when you do a side by side comparison of what else you could get in the same category you see a slight performance degradation.

I have recently started buying Samsung products not just for my computer but also my DVD player, montitor and possibly my new TV. They are doing some really nice things these days. I haven't had a single complaint about any products of thiers. I acctually just told a friend to buy the same Samsung HDD I bought. It runs quieter and cooler than my previous Maxtors. Seagates (IF i remember correctly) ran a tad bit warm. There was a review on THG about them and it caused a slight bit of concern among the THG guys. Nothing a simple $3 fan couldn't cure but still worth noting.

You have to be careful about newegg people. There are alot of legitimate reviewers, but there are many people who need to be back handed for being so ignorant and stupid.

Edit: I don't know if Seagate owns Maxtor.
July 23, 2006 5:28:50 PM

Seagate does own maxtor.

I own 2 seagate hard drives, 1 is a 3 year old 80gig Pata drive and the other is a 1.5 year old sata. They have both worked perfectly fine and certainly seem speedy enough.

But onto your questions.

Since you are doing mostly finacial stuff just get yourself a good size SATA hard drive so that you will have plenty of space and wont have to worry about routing those big ribbon cables.

BTW if you are doing mostly finacial stuff why are you getting such an expensive graphics card like a Quadro?
July 23, 2006 5:29:35 PM

Quote:
I'm biased against WD because of an old failure of one of their drives.


Shame, they are the most reliable on the market. I have an 8 year old 40GB that I'm using to have a play with Windows Vista Beta 2 on it in dual boot with XP and it has never once had a problem.
July 23, 2006 5:33:03 PM

Multiple display management. Assuming the OP is goin hard core, stock traders typicly use 2+ screens. I've seen a few setups boasting 5 or 6 monitors.
July 23, 2006 7:01:21 PM

Thanks for the reply.

The PNY Quadro NVS 440 is for running multiple (4) monitors. It has 2 GPU's and fast dual Ramdacs. It's for running multiple screens with frequent chart refreshing and more memory than most of the other 2D cards. I'm willing to research other cards if you have any suggestions.
July 23, 2006 7:04:26 PM

Quote:
I'm biased against WD because of an old failure of one of their drives.


Shame, they are the most reliable on the market. I have an 8 year old 40GB that I'm using to have a play with Windows Vista Beta 2 on it in dual boot with XP and it has never once had a problem.

Thanks. No, I'm certainly willing to consider WD. I realize my past WD failure was a while ago and that things and quality has changed or gotten better. I know WD has gotten good reviews lately.
July 23, 2006 7:10:33 PM

"If your concerned with WD then don't buy one, no big deal. I have 2 maxtors and they have given me nothing but problems. The firmware on the Diamondmax 10/11 have been known to react badly to newer nForce boards and some other random ones, so I just advise people to avoid them. "

I'll certainly take a look at WD drives. I'm open to anything that's reliable and functional.

"You have to be careful about newegg people. There are alot of legitimate reviewers, but there are many people who need to be back handed for being so ignorant and stupid. "

I know. There are some dumb, illiterate reviews on newegg that deserve to be taken with a grain of salt. I don't believe everything I read without checking out other reviews and opinions. That's one of the reasons i come here to read more informed opinions.
July 23, 2006 7:22:07 PM

Thanks. I did a lot of research on various financial workstation and online trading video cards, which are different than gaming cards, and this is what I came up with.

There were basically 3 groups of cards for good 2D video, which is what most financial trading is. I think some 2D cards might actually be faster than some 3D cards for this type of stuff.

They are the various Matrox cards, the ATI Fire MV 2200 series and the PNY Quadro cards.

Yes, this card is more expensive than some other cards, but it's ready for 4 monitors and seems powerful and easy to set up.

Besides, with the trading money involved, it doesn't seem that expensive on a cost benefit ratio.
July 23, 2006 9:00:07 PM

Quote:
Thanks. I did a lot of research on various financial workstation and online trading video cards, which are different than gaming cards, and this is what I came up with.

There were basically 3 groups of cards for good 2D video, which is what most financial trading is. I think some 2D cards might actually be faster than some 3D cards for this type of stuff.

They are the various Matrox cards, the ATI Fire MV 2200 series and the PNY Quadro cards.

Yes, this card is more expensive than some other cards, but it's ready for 4 monitors and seems powerful and easy to set up.

Besides, with the trading money involved, it doesn't seem that expensive on a cost benefit ratio.


Yup. I'm on board with all that. What some people may not think of is its not that the card may cost $1000, its that you can make that back in under 30 seconds if your stock goes the right way. Then if you get into options, you can make some crazy money. Hmmm making money when the stock market falls, now there a seemingly contradictary term, but we both know its possible.

Oh well, best of luck to ya.
July 23, 2006 10:38:43 PM

My next 2 drives will be WD Raptor 150Gig drives, My first ever Drive that i bought (outside of buying a whole system from a place like Dell/Gateway) was a WD, oh the good ol days. lol

I doubt youc an go wrong with a WD drive.
July 24, 2006 2:32:06 AM

Thanks for the info on WD.

I guess I got my, probably out of date, bias about WD from a WD drive that failed on me 5 years or more ago. I think there was a whole batch of them that failed because of a bad controller board. Couldn't get it to read.

Maybe it's time for me to move on.

Thanks again.
July 24, 2006 2:43:56 AM

"Yup. I'm on board with all that. What some people may not think of is its not that the card may cost $1000, its that you can make that back in under 30 seconds if your stock goes the right way. Then if you get into options, you can make some crazy money. Hmmm making money when the stock market falls, now there a seemingly contradictary term, but we both know its possible. "

The PNY Quadro NVS 440 sells for about $430 on newegg, but it's set up to run 4 monitors right out of the box.

You know the old cliche', stocks go down faster than they go up. If you have a margin account and can short, there's money to be made in both directions.

And yes, you can make it back very quickly if you're astute and move with alacrity.
July 24, 2006 3:12:15 AM

Hey well i am teenager so forgive me for not knowing to much about stock and stuff like that. In any event i wouldnt worry about going western digital. They are a good company.
July 24, 2006 3:56:05 AM

That's OK, I appreciate your reply and information. From what I've read here, I'll certainly consider WD drives.

You're a teenager, I'm a so called "senior citizen" and we both love computers. That's cool.
July 24, 2006 3:59:48 AM

Yeah. For me there really isnt anywhere else to focus your energy when you lack a social life.
July 24, 2006 4:10:01 AM

Quote:
Yeah. For me there really isnt anywhere else to focus your energy when you lack a social life.


I focus my lack of social life on computers, accounting and finance. Some how I keep busy lol.

Yeah shorting stock is one of the coolest little inventions of the finacial world. I mean think about it, selling stock you don't own? Thats awesome. Anyways..... lol.
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