Hi, I'm new to the building scene, and I'm currently working on an i7 build. I have a 1TB Caviar Black, and I was wondering if it would be smart to buy a 74GB Raptor to install the OS on? Would there be any significant increase in performance? And where would I put the program files at?
If you are going to build an expensive system, you probably want it to be fast.
In my opinion (and its an opinion) a fast system like Core i7 should have an SSD as system disk, instead of an HDD. Because SSDs like Intel X25-M G2 80GB are so much faster than HDDs for this task; its pretty much a must-have in my eyes. I would rather have a cheaper dual core cpu and micro-atx motherboard + SSD than to have a fast cpu and memory but be stuck with a slow mechanical drive.
If SSDs are no option however, the velociraptors are decent second choices; especially because they provide more capacity for less money. But you loose alot in terms of responsiveness to user input and 'instant-response' experience.
SSD = excellent for system disk (applications/OS/Games)
HDD = excellent for data storage (large files; AVI, MP3, ISO, etc.)
The best consumer-class SSD you can buy right now is without a doubt the Intel X25-M G2 (2nd generation). The lowest capacity of these is 80GB. I would try to go for the Intel SSD and not some cheaper SSD because the intel one really is better.
Ok, I don't know if you would know the answer to this or not, but I was also considering a RAID0 configuration. Now I don't really know all the specifications of what exactly RAID is, but from what I've read it would greatly increase read and write times. Any takes?
Ok well I've come to the conclusion that I can't really fit that into my budget right now. So let me ask you. Could I get two 74gb raptors and use them in a RAID0 configuration, with my OS and program files on that? Or is that too risky?
No, not too risky. HD don't fail very often - but with two you are more likely to have a failure than with one - but the risk is still small. Still the key is you don't store anything on them. If one fails, which is unlikely, you simply replace it and reload your OS and applications. Naturally you still want to backup all your data on the other drive, but should be no need to backup the RAID drives if only have OS and applications you can reload. Just make sure the mobo has a good RAID controller, which most do in the range you should be considering for a new i7 build.
Are you sure two RAPTORS will be that much cheaper than one SSD?
By the way - when you use two 74GB Raptors in RAID0, your OS and applications are split between the two drives - so you have 148GB of capacity to use for OS and applications - one advantage of going with RAID. Also have you compared RAID Raptors to a single Velociraptor?