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Raptor painfully slow

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January 25, 2007 12:40:18 AM

so i just got a raptor and tried installing windows onto it. took a good hour to format the drive and do the install. now, thats how long it would take with a regular sata drive :?

is there something wrong with my raptor? maybe theres some jumper i need to set, or something i didnt plug in?

More about : raptor painfully slow

January 25, 2007 3:47:15 AM

well... even a single 36GB raptor will install windows xp x86 in under 10 minutes, and a quick format in under 5 seconds

are you sure you didnt [accidently] perform a low level format, instead of a quick format?

it 'could' be the drive, i would run scandisk on the drive though, telling it to look for bad sectors on it too (that can take a decent amount of time to complete, but it will tell you if something is indeed wrong with the raptor, or not)
January 25, 2007 4:14:01 AM

oh i didnt do the quick format, i did the regular one, didnt know there was much of a difference

but still, the installation time was nowhere near 10minutes, it was way longer

is there any way i can actually test the drive to see if its functioning ok?
Related resources
January 25, 2007 4:34:22 AM

from within windows is the easiest way i can think of... so after installing windows on it... right click on the raptor partition from within my computer, going to properties>tools>error checking, and telling it to 'scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors'... and it will ask you to reboot so it can scan

the other way i was thinking was running scandisk from a bootable floppy disk, but that only works on FAT partitions, not NTFS

as far as checking performance on the raptor, you should run a few different benchmark programs that test the hdd, and compare the results to THG hard drive charts, and if its functioning okay in regard to performance, it should come close to what they have, with a marginal difference at most

i suppose installation times do vary from system to system, but i wouldnt expect it to be much longer than 10 minutes either way
January 25, 2007 5:14:29 AM

Quote:
well... even a single 36GB raptor will install windows xp x86 in under 10 minutes, and a quick format in under 5 seconds

are you sure you didnt [accidently] perform a low level format, instead of a quick format?

it 'could' be the drive, i would run scandisk on the drive though, telling it to look for bad sectors on it too (that can take a decent amount of time to complete, but it will tell you if something is indeed wrong with the raptor, or not)


Ahh, instead of offering valuable advice to the newbie, you offer the old preamble of the off Broadway hit "Mr. aXXhole".
"I'll dent your car and kick your dog and hit on your wife,
AaaaaaXXXXXXXhole
Mr.aX Mr.aXhole"

You could have said that running a low level format is a slow, but safe option.
You could have said that his OS install speed was bound by his optical drive.
Unfortunately, only disinformation can take your mind away from your chronic jock itch.

Have you tried washing once and a while?
January 25, 2007 5:26:11 AM

WTF? Are you flaming him? I don't catch your sarcasm or humor... choirbass wrote a great response 8)
January 25, 2007 5:27:38 AM

it could very well be that his optical drive is not current/fast enough to deliver the installation to the drive in close to that amount of time, it could very well be that a low level format may resolve a standing issue that someone is dealing with, to check for physical issues with the disk, reducing lifespan of the drive at the same time each time a low level format used, being overkill most times, but most often a quick format is all thats necessary to prepare a drive to have windows installed on it
January 25, 2007 5:30:30 AM

thank you :)  lol
January 25, 2007 6:22:43 AM

You should do a low level format the first time you use your hard drive, but after that a quick format is fine.
January 25, 2007 6:24:39 AM

yeah, i can see how that would make sense
January 26, 2007 12:55:40 AM

well im quite confused now

when i use HDtach, the numbers tell me my raptor is performing fine, if a little above average in some tests

pcmark05 tells me im slightly below average

and winbench99 puts me WAY below average. i mean, business disk winmark is in the region of 10,000, and high-end disk winmark at 33,000

compared to this site: http://www.pcstats.com/articleview.cfm?articleid=1746&p...

my raptor is even slower than regular SATA drivers 8O

so whats going on? some benches tell me im ok, others tell me its far from ok
January 26, 2007 3:08:36 AM

well... the thing about benchmarks, is theyre just that, only benchmarks, and not always indicative of realworld performance... you should take them with a grain of salt, if one benchmark is out of whack, and the rest are fairly similar in their results, throw the one out that doesnt fit at all and seems like a fluke...

as far as winbench99... my guess is that its a fairly old benchmark anyhow, and there could be several outdated things causing it not to bench correctly, giving you possibly inaccurate results

a few benchmarks though that you can try, are Sisoft Sandra 2007, PerformanceTest 6.1, HDTach 3.0.1.0

heres a link to several downloadable hdd benchmark programs http://www.benchmarkhq.ru/english.html?/be_hdd.html

theres also http://www.pcpitstop.com/ that will be able to test your system as a whole, and give you information, about what things are performing okay, and if anything in particular is lagging at all, and what you can do to improve it, if it is
January 26, 2007 3:36:49 AM

well i realise that benchmarks dont really tell you too much about realworld performance, but what other methods are there of telling whether the raptor is ok or not?

i did try using HDtach, what numbers should i be getting on that benchmark with a raptor?

i got
burst speed: 135.9
average read: 78.1
random access 8ms

are they normal?
January 26, 2007 4:18:35 AM

Quote:
well... even a single 36GB raptor will install windows xp x86 in under 10 minutes, and a quick format in under 5 seconds

are you sure you didnt [accidently] perform a low level format, instead of a quick format?

it 'could' be the drive, i would run scandisk on the drive though, telling it to look for bad sectors on it too (that can take a decent amount of time to complete, but it will tell you if something is indeed wrong with the raptor, or not)


Ahh, instead of offering valuable advice to the newbie, you offer the old preamble of the off Broadway hit "Mr. aXXhole".
"I'll dent your car and kick your dog and hit on your wife,
AaaaaaXXXXXXXhole
Mr.aX Mr.aXhole"

You could have said that running a low level format is a slow, but safe option.
You could have said that his OS install speed was bound by his optical drive.
Unfortunately, only disinformation can take your mind away from your chronic jock itch.

Have you tried washing once and a while?

Could you please explain your comments? They seem quite incorrect, and in parts quite offensive to me. And I am just a casual observer.
January 26, 2007 4:26:27 AM

Physical Specifications
Formatted Capacity: 74,356 MB
Capacity: 74 GB
Interface: SATA 150 MB/s
User Sectors Per Drive: 145,226,112

Performance Specifications
Rotational Speed: 10,000 RPM (nominal)
Buffer Size: 16 MB
Average Latency: 2.99 ms (nominal)
Contact Start/Stop Cycles: 20,000 minimum
Seek Times
- Read Seek Time: 4.6 ms
- Write Seek Time: 5.2 ms (average)
- Track-To-Track Seek Time: 0.4 ms (average)
- Full Stroke Seek: 10.2 ms (average)
Transfer Rates
- Buffer To Host (Serial ATA): 1.5 Gb/s (Max)
- Buffer To Disk: 84 MB/s (Sustained)


That is about where it should perform at. Given that the raptors are rated to last MTBF: 1,200,000 hours, and they are pared up to server standards, it seems very very unlikely that its defective.

Is there a noticable performance hit? You've installed windows now, so how fast does everything load? After all, there are a number of variables that can slow down an install (nobody mentioned your cpu/ram/mobo...). My question is, since the raptor is working, what indicators show you that it is not working properly?




Installing windows 2000 on a p1-133mhz took hours, so cpu is a limiting factor along with cd-rom, ram, and mobo.
January 26, 2007 4:32:25 AM

Quote:
well i realise that benchmarks dont really tell you too much about realworld performance, but what other methods are there of telling whether the raptor is ok or not?

i did try using HDtach, what numbers should i be getting on that benchmark with a raptor?

i got
burst speed: 135.9
average read: 78.1
random access 8ms

are they normal?


yes, those results look perfectly normal for a raptor

now, if your burst speed was 100, average read 45, and random access times 18ms, you would definetly have a problem... but the results you have are perfectly normal... as far as raptor access times, they typically range anywhere from high 7s to high 8s... with normal 7200rpm hdds being around 14-16ms
January 26, 2007 5:18:12 AM

I agree.. I was using two 36GB Raptors in RAID 0 a couple years ago, and I was shocked at how long the full format was.. about as long as any regular 120GB drive at the time. However, installing Windows XP from a 52X CD Drive completed in around 15 minutes.. that was a noticeable difference from using 1 7200rpm drive..
I was usually always the first player in the server for at least a 2-3 seconds after a mapchange in Counterstrike - and it definitely wasn't my Athlon64/1GB DDR400/6800GT doing that work.. that was the striped Raptors.
January 26, 2007 6:03:24 AM

Quote:


well... even a single 36GB raptor will install windows xp x86 in under 10 minutes, and a quick format in under 5 seconds

are you sure you didnt [accidently] perform a low level format, instead of a quick format?

it 'could' be the drive, i would run scandisk on the drive though, telling it to look for bad sectors on it too (that can take a decent amount of time to complete, but it will tell you if something is indeed wrong with the raptor, or not)


Ahh, instead of offering valuable advice to the newbie, you offer the old preamble of the off Broadway hit "Mr. aXXhole".
"I'll dent your car and kick your dog and hit on your wife,
AaaaaaXXXXXXXhole
Mr.aX Mr.aXhole"

You could have said that running a low level format is a slow, but safe option.
You could have said that his OS install speed was bound by his optical drive.
Unfortunately, only disinformation can take your mind away from your chronic jock itch.

Have you tried washing once and a while?


Could you please explain your comments? They seem quite incorrect, and in parts quite offensive to me. And I am just a casual observer.
he was being abrasive likely because he thought he had a point that he could milk for all it was worth.... choirbass's post wasn't perfect as few are but he did correctly identify the issue.
January 26, 2007 7:16:32 AM

downlaod and run WD diagostics from there website. theyv got a windows based tool that can check the SMART, and a bootable dos low level tester as well
January 26, 2007 3:23:22 PM

WD diag says its ok

just reinstalled windows and the install time was 18minutes...does that sound more reasonable? still not quite 10minutes though...

cpu is a c2d e6600
mem 2gb corsair 6400C4

not sure if those components affect the install or not though
January 26, 2007 3:48:32 PM

Quote:

Ahh, instead of offering valuable advice to the newbie, you offer the old preamble of the off Broadway hit "Mr. aXXhole".
"I'll dent your car and kick your dog and hit on your wife,
AaaaaaXXXXXXXhole
Mr.aX Mr.aXhole"

You could have said that running a low level format is a slow, but safe option.
You could have said that his OS install speed was bound by his optical drive.
Unfortunately, only disinformation can take your mind away from your chronic jock itch.

Have you tried washing once and a while?


Does anyone else see the irony in this statement? As in, he called choirbass the ass**** yet he's the one being the ass****. Oh yeah, and that he doesn't offer any valuable information himself. I don't get where the "long format is a safe option" part comes in as that is actually bad for a drive. Maybe he's just that attention starved :( 


Back on topic, in my experience, Raptors take just as long to install windows on as a normal SATA drive, I don't know what these 10minute installs are all about. Also, I have a lot of experience in the hard drive department and I can tell you under normal usage/gaming a Raptor won't make a noticable difference.
January 26, 2007 4:12:28 PM

As some of the others mentioned it does depend on the speed of the media you are installing from such as CDROM, Network or from another hard drive.

In my opinion any Windows 2000 or XP install that is completed in less than 30 minutes is very fast from a CDROM drive. A 10 minute install could be achieved by installing from a network share over Gigabit Ethernet or directly from another hard drive attached to the system.

I believe your drive is fine and of course other factors can come into play with the performance such as whether or not you are using a built in controller VS a card plugged into the motherboard. And besides boot up time is the thing to brag about in my opinion :wink: , it takes my PC about 30 seconds from power-on to usable. If yours takes less than a minute you should be very happy with it!

Hope this helps.
January 26, 2007 9:57:10 PM

That sounds very reasonable. my WD caviar SE16's take abt the same time though. as others have said, the main bottleneck is the optical drive, not ram or processor unless you were usin a P4 2.4Ghz w/ 512MB ram
January 27, 2007 3:23:20 AM

yeah, i can definetly agree with that... as far as the 10 minutes i was saying, that was just from my win xp install experiences... found out that even with 4 36GB raptors (in raid 0), that an install went virtually no faster, than compared to a single 36GB raptor (which ive also installed on plenty of times)... from a standard 52x cdrom drive... ...but (for fun awhile back), i timed the OS install from the initial blue screen where its copying all the files over from the cd, ending with a timed restart... to where its usable with a mouse on the desktop, but, it finished in about 9 minutes 40 seconds

i wasnt meaning to sound like i was exaggerating at all, was just saying from my experiences whats possible
February 2, 2007 4:08:14 AM

I am also having trouble with a Raptor.
Can you recommend a low-level-format program that's good at blocking out bad sectors and formatting all the rest with "0"s ?
I think this will need to boot to DOS from a CD-ROM.
Thanks!!
February 2, 2007 5:09:01 AM

hmm... offhand i really cant think of a program that would do those things specifically, at least that ive used... the only program that comes to mind that 'might' do that, from within windows even, is partition magic

you should also start a new thread asking that, so you have a greater chance of getting a larger variety of suggestions :) 
February 2, 2007 5:52:56 AM

Quote:
oh i didnt do the quick format, i did the regular one, didnt know there was much of a difference

but still, the installation time was nowhere near 10minutes, it was way longer

is there any way i can actually test the drive to see if its functioning ok?

www.pcpitstop.com

Do a full test. It will tell you if there's a problem. Your Raptor should have a transfer rate of about 60 mb/s.
February 2, 2007 12:46:10 PM

Greetings, my friend,
I agree with many of the other comments here. A quick format on a Raptor takes 5 to 10 seconds. A low-level format will take a while.

After the format, however, installing XP on a Raptor a like a 10 minute task, if that.

If you are running into significantly longer install times, you have a hardware issue. I'd be thinking of the following: bad Raptor, mobo problem, optical drive problem. If it was memory, better experts here than me could say with more certainty, but I would not expect longer install time as much as I would expect errors.

By the way, don't be offended by this question, but I think we are all assuming that since you are putting in a Raptor that you are a performance person, and that the rest of your system is up to date. Is it? An old processor/mb could mean lengthy install times even with a Raptor.

best wishes,
mike
February 3, 2007 4:26:24 PM

Quote:
hmm... offhand i really cant think of a program that would do those things specifically, at least that ive used... the only program that comes to mind that 'might' do that, from within windows even, is partition magic

you should also start a new thread asking that, so you have a greater chance of getting a larger variety of suggestions :) 


Thanks for the reply.
I actually found a low-level format program at westerndigital.com
Got the drive all cleaned up with "0" and running like new again. I also have a Seagate, which was not reconized. so I think the utility detects and only works on WD drives.
February 3, 2007 5:41:53 PM

Quote:
I am also having trouble with a Raptor.
Can you recommend a low-level-format program that's good at blocking out bad sectors and formatting all the rest with "0"s ?
I think this will need to boot to DOS from a CD-ROM.
Thanks!!


If you do a low level format you will probably damage the drive. Chkdsk will do a check for bad sectors. I saw a few posts in this thread that were calling the XP full format a low level format. This is misinformation. The XP regular (full) format does the quick format along with chkdsk to check for bad sectors. When ever I install a drive for the first time I always do a regular format. Sure it takes time but it's worth the piece of mind. Link to M$ for your perusal.

Differences between a Quick format and a regular format during a "clean" installation of Windows XP
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/302686
February 3, 2007 5:45:08 PM

Quote:
hmm... offhand i really cant think of a program that would do those things specifically, at least that ive used... the only program that comes to mind that 'might' do that, from within windows even, is partition magic

you should also start a new thread asking that, so you have a greater chance of getting a larger variety of suggestions :) 


Thanks for the reply.
I actually found a low-level format program at westerndigital.com
Got the drive all cleaned up with "0" and running like new again. I also have a Seagate, which was not reconized. so I think the utility detects and only works on WD drives.

Can you post a link to that program. I was of the understanding that WD frowned on low level formating.
February 3, 2007 10:33:53 PM

No program can do a true low-level format on any drive anymore. Drives are low-level formatted at the factory, and cannot be re-low-leveled by any software.

There are basically 3 types of formats you can do these days:

1. Write new MBR/Partition table and file system structures. This is equivalent to the Windows "Quick Format".
2. Read every sector on the drive to make sure it can be read, and then write a new MBR/Partition table and file system structures. This is equivalent to the Windows "Full Format".
3. Write 00's (or some other data) to every sector on the drive, reading each sector back in to make sure it was erased and that the sector is good, and then write a new MBR/partition table and file system structures. This takes 2 programs, one that 00s the drive, followed by a Windows "Full Format".

Nothing out there can re-write the synchronization bytes and sector header bytes on each cylinder/head of the drive (a real low-level format).
February 3, 2007 11:08:27 PM

Quote:
hmm... offhand i really cant think of a program that would do those things specifically, at least that ive used... the only program that comes to mind that 'might' do that, from within windows even, is partition magic

you should also start a new thread asking that, so you have a greater chance of getting a larger variety of suggestions :) 


Thanks for the reply.
I actually found a low-level format program at westerndigital.com
Got the drive all cleaned up with "0" and running like new again. I also have a Seagate, which was not reconized. so I think the utility detects and only works on WD drives.

Can you post a link to that program. I was of the understanding that WD frowned on low level formating.


Here it is:
The Data Lifeguard Diagnostic for DOS, CD boot.

It's low-level, but don't expect it to re-write the synchronization bytes and sector header bytes.
February 4, 2007 1:08:14 PM

Quote:
No program can do a true low-level format on any drive anymore. Drives are low-level formatted at the factory, and cannot be re-low-leveled by any software.

There are basically 3 types of formats you can do these days:

1. Write new MBR/Partition table and file system structures. This is equivalent to the Windows "Quick Format".
2. Read every sector on the drive to make sure it can be read, and then write a new MBR/Partition table and file system structures. This is equivalent to the Windows "Full Format".
3. Write 00's (or some other data) to every sector on the drive, reading each sector back in to make sure it was erased and that the sector is good, and then write a new MBR/partition table and file system structures. This takes 2 programs, one that 00s the drive, followed by a Windows "Full Format".

Nothing out there can re-write the synchronization bytes and sector header bytes on each cylinder/head of the drive (a real low-level format).


That's what I thought.
February 4, 2007 1:12:26 PM

Quote:
hmm... offhand i really cant think of a program that would do those things specifically, at least that ive used... the only program that comes to mind that 'might' do that, from within windows even, is partition magic

you should also start a new thread asking that, so you have a greater chance of getting a larger variety of suggestions :) 


Thanks for the reply.
I actually found a low-level format program at westerndigital.com
Got the drive all cleaned up with "0" and running like new again. I also have a Seagate, which was not reconized. so I think the utility detects and only works on WD drives.

Can you post a link to that program. I was of the understanding that WD frowned on low level formating.


Here it is:
The Data Lifeguard Diagnostic for DOS, CD boot.

It's low-level, but don't expect it to re-write the synchronization bytes and sector header bytes.

I haven't spoken with WD but I'm almost positive that that Data Lifeguard doesn't do a low level format. I have a Raptor, so I'll call them on Monday to confirm.
February 4, 2007 3:33:57 PM

Quote:
I haven't spoken with WD but I'm almost positive that that Data Lifeguard doesn't do a low level format. I have a Raptor, so I'll call them on Monday to confirm.


Even if the utility is not a true low-level format, I am sure it will work well at things like removing stubburn viruses. I wish though I knew how well thus utility can block out bad sectors (before scanned by chkdsk.)
February 6, 2007 1:14:35 PM

Quote:
I haven't spoken with WD but I'm almost positive that that Data Lifeguard doesn't do a low level format. I have a Raptor, so I'll call them on Monday to confirm.


Even if the utility is not a true low-level format, I am sure it will work well at things like removing stubburn viruses. I wish though I knew how well thus utility can block out bad sectors (before scanned by chkdsk.)

I just got off the phone with WD. As I suspected the Data Lifeguard does not do low level formating. You can do a regular format, check for errors and write all zeros, but no low level format. Low level formatting, on new drives, is done at the factory. If you do find a program that will allow you to do a low level format don't use it, because you will probably destroy your drive, for no reason.
February 6, 2007 1:20:34 PM

Quote:
I haven't spoken with WD but I'm almost positive that that Data Lifeguard doesn't do a low level format. I have a Raptor, so I'll call them on Monday to confirm.


Even if the utility is not a true low-level format, I am sure it will work well at things like removing stubburn viruses. I wish though I knew how well thus utility can block out bad sectors (before scanned by chkdsk.)

Also, any format will work well at removing stubborn viruses, because a format wipes the drive completely. I haven't seen a virus, or any other file for that matter, survive a format. They are still there but you can't get at them without WinHex or similar program.
February 6, 2007 2:46:24 PM

Quote:
I haven't spoken with WD but I'm almost positive that that Data Lifeguard doesn't do a low level format. I have a Raptor, so I'll call them on Monday to confirm.


Even if the utility is not a true low-level format, I am sure it will work well at things like removing stubburn viruses. I wish though I knew how well thus utility can block out bad sectors (before scanned by chkdsk.)

Also, any format will work well at removing stubborn viruses, because a format wipes the drive completely. I haven't seen a virus, or any other file for that matter, survive a format. They are still there but you can't get at them without WinHex or similar program.

I've had some viruses in the past that required an all "00"s format. The normal NTFS format wasn't enough. Unlikely, but possible.
February 6, 2007 2:49:29 PM

I have a Raptor and what everyone is saying, I can confirm. The initial install is a little quicker, but not amazingly faster. The biggest gains are seen during bootup and loading games. :)  Seriously though, I really don't know why that guy had to go and be like that...everyone here is an adult (or should at least act like it) and if you know there is incorrect information, politely state that AND provide the correct information as reference. There is no reason to bash someone just because they were slightly off the mark in any case. Choirbass had some very good points made and I would have offered the same information. BTW...I always use quickformat on a new drive, and never had a problem. I always make an image for reinstall purposes, and that only takes 10min with a Raptor. :) 
February 6, 2007 2:59:39 PM

Quote:
Take a look at SpinRite

http://www.grc.com/spinrite.htm

I have used it on WD drives and it has corrected my issues, but I do not have a Raptor.


Thanks for the link.
I was reading about Spin Rite, but I can't find anyplace if this can block out bad sectors. It mostly was about recovering data.
February 6, 2007 3:01:49 PM

Raptors are like bad girls; fast and fun, but at a cost. :twisted:
February 6, 2007 3:14:19 PM

Quote:
Take a look at SpinRite

http://www.grc.com/spinrite.htm

I have used it on WD drives and it has corrected my issues, but I do not have a Raptor.


Thanks for the link.
I was reading about Spin Rite, but I can't find anyplace if this can block out bad sectors. It mostly was about recovering data.

Probably because people start looking at their disks when something goes bad and need data recovery. SpinRite can do a good job of recovering data but I use it to periodically check on the health of the disk.

Edit: It will identify bad sectors and flag them.
February 6, 2007 4:25:54 PM

Quote:
so i just got a raptor and tried installing windows onto it. took a good hour to format the drive and do the install. now, thats how long it would take with a regular sata drive :?

Nothing wrong with what you're experiencing. Installing Windows consists of several phases where the installer and base drivers get loaded, you select an installation partition and perform the format, then the bulk of the CD's contents get loaded along with the basic GUI, then the final part where Windows puts itself together and reboots to start the installed Windows for the first time. A drive like the Raptor will show an improvement only in the phases that aren't bottlenecked by the CD drive, such as that last phase after you put in the product key and before the reboot.

-Brad
February 6, 2007 4:29:12 PM

Yeah, optical drives suck. They are the worst piece of crap in my system but they are also the cheapest and quickest way to move moderate volumes of data. How else would we get games? Micro hard drives.... meh, that would drive up the price of games probably. What is their seek times? 180ms? Yeah, wth man. lol.

That's my rant on optical. Just felt I should share :wink:

keep up the good work chior :) 
!