Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Less expensive Velociraptor Performance?

Last response: in Storage
Share
August 22, 2009 12:33:43 PM

I came across this and had a few questions.
http://www.techwarelabs.com/seagate_1-5tb-mod/

First, does WD have a tool to do this? I'm not a large capacity storage user, but if I can get a WD CB 640 and cut the capacity down to get big performance, I'd do it. The seagate 1.5tb has 4 platters at 375gb/platter density. That's better than the Caviar Black with 2 platters of 320gb each or 3 for the 1tb. How would I calculate correct capacity for these drives? Is it related to platters, density, a mix?

In the comments, the author said windows can't partition the disk to specific physical locations, but are there 3rd party partition tools that can so the rest of the drive could be used for rarely used media flies?

I game mostly and would put those on the primary partition. My wife would like faster boot times so she can get to her spam mail faster.

And how does this community feel about the spinpoint F3s vs Caviar blacks? At 500gb/platter, could this best the seagate performance?
August 22, 2009 2:08:01 PM

skora said:
I came across this and had a few questions.
http://www.techwarelabs.com/seagate_1-5tb-mod/

First, does WD have a tool to do this? I'm not a large capacity storage user, but if I can get a WD CB 640 and cut the capacity down to get big performance, I'd do it. The seagate 1.5tb has 4 platters at 375gb/platter density. That's better than the Caviar Black with 2 platters of 320gb each or 3 for the 1tb. How would I calculate correct capacity for these drives? Is it related to platters, density, a mix?

In the comments, the author said windows can't partition the disk to specific physical locations, but are there 3rd party partition tools that can so the rest of the drive could be used for rarely used media flies?

I game mostly and would put those on the primary partition. My wife would like faster boot times so she can get to her spam mail faster.

And how does this community feel about the spinpoint F3s vs Caviar blacks? At 500gb/platter, could this best the seagate performance?


From what I'm aware of WD doesn't have this tool, but the ICH10R RAID Utility should be able to short stroke your Hard Drive(s).
Related resources
August 23, 2009 6:50:42 PM

cool cool, too bad i own all WD drives (desktop and server are all 640 Blues (AAKS's))
a c 415 G Storage
August 24, 2009 4:45:34 AM

skora said:
I came across this and had a few questions.
http://www.techwarelabs.com/seagate_1-5tb-mod/

First, does WD have a tool to do this?
For the life of me I don't understand why anyone would modify their firmware to limit drive capacity when you can get exactly the same effect by just partitioning the drive. And you don't even need to partition the drive, all you really need to do is to avoid putting very much stuff on the disk and keep it defragmented so that all the files are at the smallest possible LSNs.

All of these techniques do exactly the same thing - they keep the active data at the outermost tracks of the disk. That has two effects: 1) the transfer rate is higher on the outermost tracks, and 2) since there's no data on the inner tracks it means the head never has to seek very far, which increases random I/O performance.

Modifying the firmware makes it really hard to use the rest of the disk in case you ever need, for example, some scratch space for some reason. Partitioning the disk is less drastic, but still requires you to go through some hoops if you end up having to store more stuff in the partition than you initially allowed for. Just keeping the disk defragged is the most flexible way to get the benefit, although it does require you to actually defrag the disk from time to time.
a b G Storage
August 24, 2009 6:39:03 AM

Partitioning definitely has benefits over simply reducing the amount of stuff you put on the disk. Whether or not you have the disk anywhere near full, Windows still puts some stuff at odd places on the disk, and if you haven't limited this through partitioning, it will significantly slow seeks compared to the potential of true short stroking. There's definitely no need for a firmware mod though.
a b G Storage
August 24, 2009 12:38:19 PM

I've used different defragmenters, 2 Velociraptors in RAID-0 for 600GB using less than 10% of the disk and I still have huge chunks of files at the middle of the disk. No matter what I do, they won't move up. So shortstroking could definitely reap some benefits.
a c 415 G Storage
August 24, 2009 5:48:48 PM

leo2kp said:
I've used different defragmenters, 2 Velociraptors in RAID-0 for 600GB using less than 10% of the disk and I still have huge chunks of files at the middle of the disk. No matter what I do, they won't move up. So shortstroking could definitely reap some benefits.
But you don't have to modify the drive's firmware to do it!!!!
August 25, 2009 6:33:40 AM

i would take a different approach... i would just buy another 1.5T drive and then RAID 0 them.. huge speed increase 3 TB of space and still cheaper then one (almost) Velocitraptor....
a c 102 G Storage
August 25, 2009 5:32:32 PM

Points:
1) do NOT mess around with firmware for hard drives. There's no benefit.

2) Constant defragging is not necessary. Nor are expensive programs

If you are really concerned with speed get an SSD. If you need a lot of space, consider putting Windows on an SSD and install your games to D: on a 1TB hard drive.

I still see people thinking there's some magical way to boost performance (people still get sucked into Memory defraggers).

For general Windows usage, seek times are most important which is why SSD's are awesome.

I'm not a big fan of RAID for speed. For the price of a good controller and a few hard drives you can now get a pretty good 120GB SSD. And again, just install the games to your second hard drive as D:. Load times should be a minor part of most games when designed properly; the games should mostly load into your RAM.

(4GB of RAM is ideal. There is a SMALL benefit over 3GB in some instances. More than 4GB is a waste for gamers. There are some programs that benenfit but that's rare. People who want the "best" gaming system and throw in 12GB are misinformed.)
a b G Storage
August 25, 2009 6:19:20 PM

> i would take a different approach... i would just buy another 1.5T drive and then RAID 0 them.. huge speed increase 3 TB of space and still cheaper then one (almost) Velocitraptor....

DITTO THAT!!

We just did this very thing, with 2 x WD7502ABYS
in RAID 0 on the ASUS P5Q Premium w/ ICH10R:

http://www.wdc.com/en/products/products.asp?driveid=504

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Our C: partition is 50GB, and we're seeing an average
of about 200 MB/second on that partition.

The rest is formatted as a single data partition,
and it's pretty fast too, considering that it starts
at cylinder boundaries closer to the platter centers.


MRFS

a b G Storage
August 25, 2009 6:31:47 PM

p.s. the VR cache is only 16MB and it does not use PMR (not yet, anyway):

http://www.wdc.com/en/products/products.asp?driveid=494


Thus, 2 cache @ 32MB = 64MB of HDD cache
+ perpendicular magnetic recording enables a
very fast raw data rate under the read/write heads.


MRFS
a b G Storage
August 25, 2009 9:00:15 PM

The Velociraptor has a higher raw data rate than the caviar black, and the cache matters less than you might think. Also, with 150GB platters at 10krpm and 2.5", I'd be pretty surprised if they didn't use PMR.
August 25, 2009 10:02:53 PM

IMO the V-Raptors are a waste of money....regardless of the 10k speed they only shed thier real performance when raided... My dual 640's in RAID0 are faster than a stock 300Gb raptor and I ended up with 1.14TB vs 300GB and saved some cash.... Raptors are overated and overpriced.....
a c 353 G Storage
August 25, 2009 10:12:29 PM

2 WD 640 Blacks. Raid 0 430 Gigs 64K strip size, 850 Gigs strip size 128K

HD Tune (I know not the best)
...........430 Gig....850 Gig.....Old pair of 320 gig, Raid 0)
Min......184.8.......102.8........72.4 MBs/S
Max.....226.4.......208.4......145.6 MBs/S
Avg.....209.4........168.6......119.2 MBs/S
Access....9.5..........11.4........12.9 mSec
Burst...137.2........136.9......149.4 MBs/S

Formating stinks, it took out all spaces - and to add dots.
a b G Storage
August 25, 2009 10:26:58 PM

OvrClkr said:
IMO the V-Raptors are a waste of money....regardless of the 10k speed they only shed thier real performance when raided... My dual 640's in RAID0 are faster than a stock 300Gb raptor and I ended up with 1.14TB vs 300GB and saved some cash.... Raptors are overated and overpriced.....

They probably aren't faster than a single vraptor on any sort of lightly queued random access (such as boot times or loading many apps). It isn't a bad setup, but raptors really do show advantages compared to standard drives.

Whether those advantages are worth the cost is up to you though - for many people, it probably isn't.
a b G Storage
August 26, 2009 12:25:58 AM
a c 353 G Storage
August 26, 2009 12:42:44 AM

Added info to my previous post
Both HDDs are Raid 0, The WD is short stroked SSD is in a cheap Laptop

Crystal Disk Mark
_____________________2x 320 Gig _____ 2 x 640 Gig ____Torqx 128 Gig
_____________________ Samsung _____WD 640 Blk______SSD
Seq Read_______________ 129.6_________192.4_______221.1
Random 512K Read________ 41.7_________ 60.6________147.7
Random 4K Read_________ 0.592_________0.992_______ 15.15
Seq Write_______________ 124.3_________200.5_______136.6
Random 512K Write________ 53.02________179.2_______154.6
Random 4K Write__________1.985_________3.585______11.43

Win 7 WEI __________________??_________ 6.0 _______ 7.3
!