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SCSI DRIVE FOR GAMING

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August 1, 2006 4:03:30 PM

A friend just turned me on to an ultra 320 36 gb scsi drive and controller. I thought that I would continue to use my current hard drive for storage and system files (ie booting up), and I thought that I would install my current game (BF2) on the scsi drive and just change the shortcut on my desktop to point to the scsi drive.

Does this sound feasible or is there a problem because of the scsi bios not loading up during the booting of the computer?

Is there a way to make this work?

hball

More about : scsi drive gaming

August 2, 2006 5:35:39 AM

u don't need to mess w/ shortcuts. when u get into the BF2 install wizard, just tell it to install on the SCSI drive. it'll take care of the shortcuts for you.

quick question: the controller u want to use, is it PCI? if so... i would reconsider your idea. i'm assuming u want to go w/ SCSI for faster load and spawn times. good idea. but doing so thru a PCI SCSI controller ain't gonna work all that well. you're better of grabbing a SATA or IDE WD Raptor 10K drive and using that. the data thoroughput on a PCI based SCSI card sucks.

if you've got a PCI-X or PCI-E SCSI controller card- you're fine.
August 2, 2006 1:02:44 PM

Quote:
u don't need to mess w/ shortcuts. when u get into the BF2 install wizard, just tell it to install on the SCSI drive. it'll take care of the shortcuts for you.

quick question: the controller u want to use, is it PCI? if so... i would reconsider your idea. i'm assuming u want to go w/ SCSI for faster load and spawn times. good idea. but doing so thru a PCI SCSI controller ain't gonna work all that well. you're better of grabbing a SATA or IDE WD Raptor 10K drive and using that. the data thoroughput on a PCI based SCSI card sucks.

if you've got a PCI-X or PCI-E SCSI controller card- you're fine.


The internal calculation of the u320 SCSI drive is still much, much faster than IDE, and depending on the cache twice that on boot that some stat drive offer. So his advice is good but don't let his recommendation make you think your missing out on something.
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August 2, 2006 2:35:44 PM

Thanks, both of you, and yes the controller is PCI . . . probably why he was willing to part with it.

I was already using a 74 gb raptor drive and was only going to consider this since it was free, but if a PCI controller won't give me the throughput compared to SATA, I'll just stick to the SATA for my gaming. I've already partitioned the SATA drive and placed BF2 in the first partition so I can maintain fast access times . . . that should be good enough.

hball
August 2, 2006 4:52:45 PM

Quote:
Thanks, both of you, and yes the controller is PCI . . . probably why he was willing to part with it.

I was already using a 74 gb raptor drive and was only going to consider this since it was free, but if a PCI controller won't give me the throughput compared to SATA, I'll just stick to the SATA for my gaming. I've already partitioned the SATA drive and placed BF2 in the first partition so I can maintain fast access times . . . that should be good enough.

hball


Just keep this fact in mind... the maximum thoroughput of PCI is 133MB/s (that's IF the device has 100% of the bus to use, which is never the case). Respectively, SATA does 150MB/s and 300MB/s. (Though admittedly, no drive has even come close to surpassing the 150MB mark... yet). Your average Ultra320 36GB Seagate drive can pump out close to 80MB/s max. And if this is a 15K drive, you're looking at ~95MB/s.

That's cutting it awfully close to the maximum theoretical bandwidth of PCI's 133MB/s. And as I already stated, actual bandwidth is almost never 133MB/s because other devices are hogging bus bandwidth and cycles. Also, PCI has very high latency compared to a SATA port connected directly to the PCI-E bus or southbridge.

PCcashcow is right, U320 controllers do a lot work and do accelerate the drives... (especially in RAID) but when you're working with a maximum bandwidth of 133MB/s... there's only so much you can do.

Now... if this were a PCI-X or even a PCI 64bit controller, I'd definitely recommend it. My advice is you stick to SATA Raptor's... they're cheaper and perform very well compared to SCSI drives.
August 2, 2006 5:24:07 PM

Just to add on to what you said I'm just curious if he has an available PCI-E slot. It may be a little too expensive for him but a SCSI PCI-E controller card might just do it. The only problem is that I can only find one on newegg and it's about $630. Anyways, a SCSI drive or two in RAID should give him some nice load times even on a PCI slot given he doesn't have too much going on.
August 2, 2006 5:54:13 PM

I have two 36GB Cheetah 10k's in my system and one is for the OS and one is for games. Both are significantly faster than my SATA 7200.9 300GB and my IDE 200GB Maxtor Diamondmax 10. My controller is a PCI-X Adaptec card in PCI mode. Benchmarks my SATA drive kicks the crap out of my two SCSI's but windows boots much faster than it did on the SATA, games and apps load faster too. My setup was free like yours. Just go for it! Although the Cheetah drives are a lil noisy. I dunno how much noiser than a raptor tho. I'm about to find out as I have to sack my 2 Cheetahs in order to put another X1900 in my system for crossfire so I ordered 2 74Gb raptors :) 
August 2, 2006 7:19:50 PM

SCSI - FTW.
I use 36gb 15k scsi drives, and i tell you what. The speed is tremendous.
SATA ide, does not matter. the Physical restrictions of the drive prevent the hughe performance difference.

7200 rpm drives, IE it doest not go any faster than that
10k makes for huge improvement
15k well that is 2x the sata / ide.
Now with cache on the drives, 16mb, that is cool, but you hardly work with any data now adays with that amount or lower.

IE battle field 2, still needs to load the map, etc....
Scsi has the advantage of having, (with the right controller), a Intel, IO processor, that offloads from the CPU, to the CARD cpu. i use a $100 raid card off of ebay, a u320 w\ 128mb ram on a pci-x slot. Litteraly destroys anything.
Disks are funny, people brag about having 80mbs transfer rate. WELL that is good on paper, but if you have 1 drive, and you are copying 800mb file, from 1 directory to another, then you cut that in half, and add cpu overhead. the raid controller on most mother boards utilizes soft raid. Meaning that there is no processor onboard, to preform the disk io, so it uses a small slice of cpu processing. myself, i saturate my 320 MBs buss, easily, but i use files in the 20-60GB size all the time, hence my profile machine in my sig..
For a ultimate gaming machine, 15k cheetahs, x2 in a striped array, simply blow away many of the hard drives avaliable. Dont get started on 3-4 drive arrays. It is RARE that i am ever the second person loaded on ANY map in BF2. i am usually in a tank, or helo, ON THE WAY, before the 2nd or 3rd person even loads in. and i dont have a MEGA game machine, ---yet...

It is all about SPEED when it cmoes to drives. i rather have 14- 9gb 15k drives, as my main os drive, than 1-300 gb sata.. Simple math, more spindles=faster transfer rate. more spindles=Much higher Disk I/o which = faster to preform a specific function, and release disk to preform next job.
!