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With faster HDs is OS on C: & Data on D: needed?

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September 16, 2009 8:52:47 PM

Hello all,

since i am into DAW (digital A/V recording & editing) applications: with HDs getting faster and faster, is the practice of putting the OS on C:\ and data on D:\ a worthy practice?

with this in mind, is only the OS placed on C: or are the appz also put on C: OR the appz are installed on D:? the details of this practice has always bother me some.

also is it key to use a 2nd physical HD for D:?

would this practice carry over to Hardware RAID cards (RR4320) that has 2 ports with 4 HDs per port? in the DAW world, say port 1 with OS & appz in RAID5 and Port 2 with the actual digital recording and editing duties in a faster RAID like RAID1+0/10?

i have a RR4320 that is not in use yet so i am trying to determine the best way to implement it.

thanks for your input & suggestions.

billy

More about : faster hds data needed

a c 415 G Storage
September 16, 2009 10:09:21 PM

Modern hard drives are only faster than their predecessors in terms of raw sequential transfer rates - for the most part access times haven't really moved very much for several years (drives like the Velociraptors have faster access times, but even they haven't improved much over their high-performance counterparts from several years ago).

SSDs are an exception. These have been around in one form or another for quite some time, but what's new is the availablility of drives priced for the consumer market. These really do make a big difference since their access times are on the order of 100 times faster than a hard drive.

But the general strategy of trying to spread your load over as many physical drives as possible still holds. The more drives you can spread your load over, the better the performance will be. Ideally, you want to spread your files over different drives so that the drives are roughly equally busy - that way no one drive is a bottleneck.

One of the beauties of RAID is that that levelling of load is done pretty much automatically. For example in RAID 0 half the blocks are on one drive and half are on the other, so both drives will normally be equally busy.

Without RAID, it's up to you to guesstimate which folders will be the busy ones and distribute them between the drives. The OS is usually the big hitter, and putting anything else on another drive will usually be beneficial.

But you have to understand what your workload is and configure your system accordingly. For example if you're heavily into video editing, then it may be that the work files used by the software are a bigger concern. You might find, for example, that you get better performance (once the software is loaded) by putting the work files on a drive of their own, even if it means everything else has to go onto the OS drive.
September 17, 2009 12:01:05 PM

sminlal,

when said maybe put the work files on a separate HD, are you referring to the actual data files themselves?

that is what i have done in the past but i always wondered if i should also put the application on the same data HD also?

with this concept in mind, how should i configure my Hardware RAID card since it has 2 ports, i.e. should i put the data files on a separate port or am i am wasting the port? would i be better off building w 2 RAID systems?

let me ask this also, with a good hardware RAID card, are the faster SAS worth the extra cost? Raptor II? with this type appz, would a smaller disk size (74Gb for example) be a better performer (if all else is equal)?

what HD setup lends itself to fast I/O operations as seen in real time data collection like high definition audio recording especially if high quality sampling is your thing?

i have trouble determining where to stop spending $$! the choice of which HD has gotten harder to make due to drops in pricing plus the cheaper HDs have closed in the faster upper level HDs in terms of performance.

thanks for your suggestions.

any other suggestions from others?

thanks,
billy
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a c 353 G Storage
September 17, 2009 4:43:23 PM

The best option is to get a SSD, preferably the Intel 80 gig. Alternate (Cost and or size) is the patriot Troqx 128 gig - I use in a laptop, or the OCZ Vortex 120 Gig and install operating system and programs. As Sminlal stated acess time is only 0.1 mSec, BUT also the important random 4 K reads/writes are Much faster than mechanical HDDs (Win 7 WEI - HDDs typically 5.9, "good" SSDs rate approx 7.3 THIS IS only a reference).
Place all your work/data on a mechanical HDD.

If using 2 HDDs, follow Sminlil's approach. Myself I use two pairs of Raid0. Both Have Operating system on "C" (Vista on 1 and Win 7 on 2nd) and Data on "D" (and E) and I can use Drive 1 to back up drive 2 and Visa versa.

With one HDD, I still prefer C = system Plus programs and D for Data. More a question of backing up data - IT's easier and Operating system and programs can always be reinstalled.
a c 415 G Storage
September 17, 2009 5:55:18 PM

when said maybe put the work files on a separate HD, are you referring to the actual data files themselves?
that is what i have done in the past but i always wondered if i should also put the application on the same data HD also?


I'm not familiar with whatever software you're using, so I can only offer general advice (and even if I knew the software I don't know what kind of files you'd be using with it and how you'd be using it...). I'd expect video editing software to use some work files for visualiziation of pre-rendered material, etc. Whether those work files would be the bottleneck or whether the raw or rendered files would be is the question - whichever files are getting the most IO are the ones you'd want to put onto a separate disk.


what HD setup lends itself to fast I/O operations as seen in real time data collection like high definition audio recording especially if high quality sampling is your thing?

Audio, even lossless high definition audio has a very low data rate in computer terms. I don't think you need to be particularly concerned about HD performance for it.


i have trouble determining where to stop spending $$! the choice of which HD has gotten harder to make due to drops in pricing plus the cheaper HDs have closed in the faster upper level HDs in terms of performance.

Have you actually built your system yet or are you just spec'ing it out? I agree with RetiredChief that an SSD for the OS and the software is probably your best bang for the buck. If I were you I'd start out with that plus a single standard hard drive (something along the lines of a WD Black) to put all your data and work files on. With that you can start out and see how well the system performs and where the bottlenecks, if any, are. If you find a bottleneck, then you can add hardware where it's most needed.
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