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SSD/Mechanical Combo for my new system.

Last response: in Storage
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June 27, 2011 9:00:52 PM

Hi all,

I want to go ahead and jump on the ever so popular SSD band-wagon.

Since my new gigabyte motherboard features SATA6 connectivity, I figured it was time I got started with the SSD'ing as well.

However, I don't believe that I can run all the games I want to have installed from an SSD drive, nor am I sure that I'd want to.

As such, I'm considering the following:

Boot drive - primary. Will contain OS, F-Secure, Office, GIMP & anything else that I can't possibly install elsewhere.(Stuff that will need to be reinstalled after a format.): OCZ Vertex 3 Series MAX IOPS Edition 120 GB

Secondary drive which will contain my install files (Backed up images of operating system discs, game discs and plain install files, a tiny partition for tmp folders for windows/userprofile, my data-directory which contains my no-install-required applications, my documents location etc. Basically the stuff I use the most - and most importantly my Games. Partitioned like this; 5-700 GB for a games partition, 400 for installs, 400 for data, 10 for cache/temp, rest divvied out whereever I find the need when partitioning the drive.

All this currently fits on to a 1GB drive, but it's getting slightly cramped, particularly since I enjoy having a large selection of games to chose from installed at any given time.

The drive I am looking at for this purpose is the: WD Caviar Black WD2002FAEX
2 TB

These two new drives will replace a 1GB older Samsung drive(data), and a 300GB Seagate drive(storage/apps/games) I am using out of pure desperation, since for some reason my usual boot partition on aforementioned samsung disc wouldn't let me install Windows on my new system. (Never been an issue before.. it made clicking noises - of the bad variety, like large mechanical grinding sounds - has since vanished though..)

Finally they will join my 750 GB Samsung drive exclusively dedicated to downloads - and transient file-storage when need exists, and my 2TB FLAC drive, which contains my digitalized music library.

The two new drives will set me back about 550 $ US, and I am wondering if it is worth it.

In my opinion, while I can see the merit of running games on the SSD; I'd rather not have to reinstall them in case of system failure, and I worry that all that writing to disc when swapping out games will severely limit the lifetime of the drive.

Please let me know if I'm even remotely correct in any of my theories, as it's quite the jungle out there on google!

Thanks in advance!
June 27, 2011 9:33:39 PM

the way i have this set up (i think it is the best way to do it), get the SSD, and an extra drive of the same (or similar) size. Than install the os, and everything you want on the SSD, programs (dont install office on the SSD, it doesnt need the speed, i have it running off of my seconday HDD), games (they will benefit immensely from the speed), w/e needs the speed onto the SSD, than clone the SSD onto the second drive and unplug that drive from power and data. Than, if anything happens to ur SSD or OS, u can just clone the HDD back over to the SSD and ur good to go, much faster and will only add $50 or so to ur cost cause a 200GB drive is dam cheap
June 27, 2011 11:24:42 PM

Froberg said:

[...]and a 300GB Seagate drive(storage/apps/games) I am using out of pure desperation, since for some reason my usual boot partition on aforementioned samsung disc wouldn't let me install Windows on my new system. (Never been an issue before.. it made clicking noises - of the bad variety, like large mechanical grinding sounds - has since vanished though..)


Sounds like the drive might have faulty sectors. Have you tried running a thorough chkdsk using the /f /r /b switches?
June 28, 2011 5:12:45 AM

r3xx; my understanding is that it'll only improve load times? The reason for dumping office on the system drive is that it doesn't survive formatting. Other apps like mIRC, FileZilla, Trillian etc. etc. work fine from a secondary partition.
Reg. a secondary drive for backing up the SSD as a clone - it's kind-of a moot point, data on disc will change so fast so it'll be an endless cloning cycle.

I usually just focus on maintaining backups of my primary data, the system drive can always be reinstalled.

kralnor; I pulled it out, dumped it in to an external drive and made a full copy without issue. The drive works fine, and yes I've done a chkdsk on it as well.

I've no idea what caused the issue, as it's now spinning along nicely within my case.
It's overdue for a replacement at any rate, which is why I'm looking to replace it with the Caviar Black.
!