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Best use for a 120GB SSD in notebook running SolidWorks 2011


I've bought a 120BG Intel 320 Series SSD for use as a second drive (using a drive caddy in place of my DVD drive) for my notebook running SolidWorks 2011:

Dell M4400
Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Intel Core 2 Duo T9900, 3.06GHz
320GB 7200RPM Hard Drive, 223 GB used
512MB NVIDIA Quadro FX 770M

My question is: What's the best use of this second drive? I'm thinking there are a few options:

(A) Move Windows 7 and swap files to the SSD (about 48 GB)
(B) Move Windows 7, swap files and all programs to the SSD (about 80GB)
(C) Move my CAD files to the SSD (about 100 GB)

Where does the SSD add performance? Loading the OS and programs or loading the CAD files? With 8GB of RAM, do I still need the swap file?

Thanks in advance for the advice.
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  1. I would do a FRESH install of Windows 7 with Solidworks on the SSD. This should increase performance and speed. Don't worry about your Solidworks files, You shouldn't be using those soo much that it would make it worth putting them on the SSD. If you have any projects the you spend most of your time working with, You may want those on the SSD too, just to keep it moving quick!

    Good Luck! Nice little laptop you have there.
  2. I was sorta expecting the fresh install solution. Is there a way with Win 7 that I can do a clean install without having to reinstall all my applications? It's the reinstalling that is the biggest pain...
  3. Best answer
    Depending on how large your CAD files are, having your ACAD and the files on the SSD will dramatically help you speed up your use.

    When dealing with large CAD files that have 100's or 1000's of XREF's, MODELS, etc... they can take minutes to load. Not to mention minutes to save (which I'm sure you do as often as I do). Having all of the files on the SSD will cut down on this a lot. If you are running into issues where you are running out of space, you can always move a project over to a storage drive once it has been completed.

    I purchased a 60GB SSD awhile back and noticed a huge difference in performance when I was using all of my CAD files off of it. I just wish I would have purchased a large one at the time.
  4. Best answer selected by Snoopy_WG.
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