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System disc with 2 SSD RAID0 + 1 USB stick as system cache?

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November 26, 2009 4:09:16 PM

Wonder if and how I can build a XP PRO system (system disc) based on 2 SSD disc in a RAID 0 array and use 1 USB stick as an extended system cache to boost performance and help the integrated disc-cache and so the viritual memory? What installation software are needed, what hardware is recommended? Do I need a specific motherboard who is supporting this kind of modding? I also wonder how much DRAM XP support, is it 4 GB RAM or? My uppcoming computer will be based on a Intel processor (around 3 GHZ)and a high-end motherboard (mayby GIGABYTE) with 2x2 dual channel DDR3 slots and one PCI-E mid-end graphic card. Think I choose small system discs (2x40 GB SSD) so the defragg, virus and spyware-scans dont take hours (small=fast?). What I need to buy is the processor, motherboard, PCI-E graphic card, 4 DDR3, 2 SSD and 1 fast USB stick. My budget lays around 5000 SEK (650 USD). What hardwares/brands do you recommend for me? Own experiences? Is my 350W AC enought or should I get a more powerful one? Hope you out there can help me, keep on screaming at your laptop :-)
November 26, 2009 9:13:41 PM

Ok first off, the 40GB SSDs are cr@p. Second, doing RAID with an SSD gets rid of support for TRIM. Third, you can't build a good PC with a good SSD for $650. Forth, you CAN'T get a 3Ghz current gen Intel CPU for anything less than $500 unless you are overclocking.

Exactly WHAT are you planing on doing? Your terms and ideas don't quite make sense to me.
November 27, 2009 1:07:24 AM

lol op doesn't research before posting
Related resources
November 27, 2009 9:52:55 AM

Well, did´nt now those SSD was crapy. Found a new Kingstone SSDnow V 40GB SATA 3 Gbit/s (Read=189Mb/s / Write=44Mb/s), 2 discs costs 262$. Is this bad/crapy? A Intel CPU Core2DUO E7400 2.8 GHZ 1066/M S775 BOX cost 131$ Will be back later with more info. Thanks for answers!
November 27, 2009 10:14:18 AM

i don't really understand most of your post. usb stick as extended system cache?

- xp can support 4gb ram only if you have the 64bit version.
- defrag doesn't take hours, and even if it does - what's wrong with doing it overnight - are you paying a technician by the hour to come around and defrag your system for you?
- you want 4gb ram but a 3ghz cpu and mid graphics card, eh.
- 350w isn't enough to power a dinky car these days.

why do you want SSD?

there are very conditional systems that would require SSD in raid... it's so expensive and 99% of people won't care for the extra write speed...

imo any SSD is crappy when you can get 7200rpm 32bit cache 1TB drive for <$100...
November 27, 2009 1:10:24 PM

^Agreed.

@OP: The Kingston V(aka Value) series drives are cr@p. One your drive starts to fill up, your read will drop to about 90Mb/s and write will be MUCH lower. And 44 Mb/s is SLOW, slower than a HDD. That's why good SSDs cost so much: they have high write speeds.

A Samsun F3 PWNEs that drive: http://www.insidehw.com/Reviews/Storage/Samsung-Spinpoi... in read speeds.
November 27, 2009 1:14:04 PM

DarthTengil said:
Well, did´nt now those SSD was crapy. Found a new Kingstone SSDnow V 40GB SATA 3 Gbit/s (Read=189Mb/s / Write=44Mb/s), 2 discs costs 262$. Is this bad/crapy?

Hell yeah, you can get a 80 GB X25-M G2 for about the same price or a little more.
http://www.tankguys.com/intel-x-25m-80gb-solid-state-di...

@OP: You need to do MUCH more research.
November 27, 2009 11:35:15 PM

Will write more later. Sat and wrote for 3 hours tonight but when I almost was dun the damned ati2dvag.dll (blue screen of death) once again jamned in a ethernal loop and rebooted my computer ), everything I carefull had written was lost :-( The ati2dvag.dll have nothing to do with the graphic card or its drivers but is a bugg in Windows XP that nobody have fixed permanently. I´ll be back soon!
November 28, 2009 2:17:37 PM

Hi again. To get back to my first question I read on IDG.SE, MikroDatorn [MicroComputer in english] or TechWorld (swedish PC magazins united portal) that they in a test had build a Windows 7 system based on two SSD discs in RAID 0 mood and used a high quality USB stick to extend the integrated cache both on the CPU and the discs and somewhat used the USB as an extended viritual memory/kernel memory (or whats its name), and they got a really boosted system that helped and increased the CPU and RAM performance booth in heavy gameing and in heavy calculating programs like 3D Mark and other benchmarks. They wrote
something like this would compensate the fact that a CPU only have 1, 2 or 4 cores and is dependent to the graphic card which have much more cores and overall works in a higher speed and can do more calculations/s then a CPU. They also wrote that using the USB stick would be a cheap way to get more out of the CPU when it have more cache memory to work with. My question is if this can be done on a regular homebuild PC with XP PRO 32-bit? What possible software and hardware is then required? I may have missunderstood some of all the technical words and data terms they were talking about but thought the idea is great if it works.

Is two WD Raptor WD360ADFD 36GB 10000 RPM 16 MB Cache SATA better than the SSD discs I was thinking about? What is the reading/writing speed on those, is they SATA or SATA2? Have seeked but not found such info myself. The WD VelociRaptor is of course way better then the Raptor but to expensive for me. The whole idea with SSD was that I thought they were newer, better and faster than SATA discs, and that I would get a really big boost running them in RAID 0 toghether with the USB solution above. Why is the SSD a bad choise besides that the speed fails when its getting filld up? As I thought a SSD system disc which
continusly "overwriting" more than the block zize a SSD "saves before it can be overwrite" so to speak (dont know exactly the numbers but have a hum about this SSD problem), I thought there was no problem. Excuse my non-existing correctness in technical words, terms and insufficient of consistency in this topic, but I´m trying to tell you the point of how I think in my own words and what I thought was best :-)

Thanks for letting me know I only can run 3 GB RAM on my computer! That makes a whole new perspective on which motherboard I shall choose. Then maybe it´s a bad idea to get a 2x2 dual channel RAM solution when I only can use 3 slots if I buy 3x1 GB DDR2/DDR3? That would get the system instable if one channel uses dual RAM but the other does´nt, or? Was suprised when I looked at my computer store homepage and discovered that it still remains a lot of motherboards who uses DDR2 and only a few who use DDR3. Noticed that almost all of their DDR3 RAMs are sold in a pack of 3 pieces (3x1 GB, 3x2 GB and so on). Still the DDR2 is sold in all imaginable pieces and packs. Are most of the newer motherboards whos uses DDR3 constructed with 3 RAM slots or? Is there a connection between 3-packs and DDR3 motherboards or is it just a chance i react on?

Why not have 3 GB RAM, a high-end motherboard, a quite good processor and a mid-end graphic card? Am a mid-end gamer and cant afford a super graphic card. Beside the motherboard, RAM is the most important part of the computer. My idea/experience is that having plenty of RAM somehow compensate a good bit what the graphic card does´nt have capacity of doing, and the more RAM you have the less strain is over your CPU. So insted of buying a super graphic card I can´t afford I save money and use it on a hi-end motherboard (187$) that is fast and have a lot of highttech possibillitys, get a quite fast processor ( Intel Core Duo 2.93
GHz 1066 socket 775 =141$ for ex.) and buy 3 GB middlefast (1066) RAMs. On that I get a 512 MB PCI-E graphic card with fast DDR3 memory. That computer would rock a long way playing Need For Speed and Unreal Tournament, surfing the net and last for at least 5 years!

The reason I want small system discs is that I before had a big 600 GB RAID 0 system (was big in 2006) filld with 600 GB audio, video, photo and program files. Took forever to mantage, defragg, do adware/spyware scans (no I do it myself). A RAID 0 system IS somewhat instable and WILL crash soner or later, much becouse of Microsoft and Windows, but also the fact that when one disc crash or a crappy windows uppdate installed, the system cant be restarted in fale safe mood and there you stand with 600 GB media files forever lost. Happend to me in april 2009. Lucky me who always save important files on another disc! As a system disc I have the theory of - Smaller disc = faster and more stabil. Better to have windows, programs, games and drivers an a small system disc and have all other stuff like media on another but big disc.

Hope you now understand what I´m looking for and how I think about building my next computer. Please keep on answering, asking, arguing, showing me what is right or wrong with my ideas, explain your own experiences and give me a tip of how the professionals do things. Keep on rocking everyone!
November 28, 2009 11:42:29 PM

TO THE MODERATOR:
Is it possible to change the threads name to only "Use USB stick as an extended CPU/system cache", so it becomes more in line how my thread has developt?
November 29, 2009 2:16:43 PM

Quote:
The whole idea with SSD was that I thought they were newer, better and faster than SATA discs

Not true. It all depends on the controller,etc. The best controller for SSds right now are Indylinx and the Intel ones. The 40GB Kingstons use JMicron controllers which are pretty bad. As for the 36GB Raptor, no, the current gen 7200 rpm drives like the Samsung F3 beat it in pretty much every thing.

Quote:
Smaller disc = faster and more stabil

Again, not true.

As for RAM, any current gen board supports 8GB or more. The 3GB limitation is there only if you are running 32 bit Windows. Even then, you can still install up to 8GB or more but Windows will only see 3.5GB or so.

Also what site are you referring to? On Newegg DDR3 and DDR3 prices are almost the same.

As for RAID, you should NEVER run RAID 0 as a storage solution. Most run RAID 0 on their OS drives only. Do RAID10/5 if you want speed and redundancy.

Also, I highly recommend you not building a PC on LGA775. LGA775 is dead. Go AM3 if you are on a budget.

One more note: If you get SSDs you don't need to run defragg. Also, what program are you using for defragging? If it's the Windows's built in defragg, you better download Defraggler.
November 29, 2009 8:15:31 PM

Thank you so much Shadow for answering so many times and spreading your knowledge, your a real cliff! :hello: 

Heres a link to my swedish retailer about my reflection that it seams to be few DDR3 motherboards yet (Prize in SEK, 1$=8 SEK roughly counted) :


OK, so you think I can put in 4x1 GB RAM in XP 32-bit. But I have heard in several cases that for an example people with dual channel RAM motherboards and XP have had many troubles with system instabillity and slow performance, but when they took out the fourth RAM their problems dissapered. How do you explain that? Do you think its better to choose a non dual channel board and run 3-4 RAMs with a zize of 1 GB each? Do you mean that I cannot use more than around 3.5 GB RAM in just 32 bit XP or in all later verisions of Windows? Or can I use all 8 GB RAM in Windows 7 32-bit?

As I wrote I DID´NT use my 600 GB RAID 0 system for storage but as a system disc with my OS AND all other files on. Thats why I think its better, safer and faster to have my OS on a small RAID 0 configuration with small discs. It must be both more stabil, faster and survive longer to have say a 40 GB disc containing 2 magnethical internal discs and 2 reading/writing arms than using a 1.5 TB disc containing 5 magnethical internal discs and 5 reading/writing arms! Notice I´m only speaking in symbolic terms in this comparison and not correct technological words and terms please.

I know the socket 775 is old but is it really that dead? And is it so bad just because its an older construction than the newer that have come a year ago so to speak? I am going to get a computer to use for say 5-6 years, when its time to uppgrade after that non of the now newer and better components will exist and then I´ll be back in the same square: should I choose an older but trusted and cheaper board and CPU who is "dead" or buy a new expensive thing? Thats the never ending circle when buying computer parts. The reason I whant an Intel is that I always have had AMD and I´m sick and tired of their stupid and pathetic 0000+ marketing instead of showing the real speed of the CPU
November 29, 2009 10:54:50 PM

Could not of some reason re-edit my last post so here comes the rest:

The link whent totaly wrong, here it is again:
http://www.eis.nu/cgi-bin/eis/eis.cgi?383923086932352=1...

... so now I´m choosing Intel, mostly becouse of that my present CPU (AMD Athlon 64 2800+) always gets spikes when gaming and the CPU will stuck at 100% and not answer to ctrl-alt-delete. When my CPU budget lays around 150$ and I whant a speed of 2.8-3 GHz I cant afford Core i5 or i7 so my only choise is to get a Core 2 Duo socket 775. Well, getting a quite fast CPU, much RAM and a high-end motherboard cant be that bad even if its construktion is somewhat old!

Hope you and some other in this world can help me with my ideas of using an extended CPU cache/system cache on a USB stick. Do you have own ideas of how it might can be solved? What software can Windows need to perform like I whish it to do? Have anyone heard or read about somthing like this on the net, papers or from friends? What do the MODERATOR and other experts working at THG think about this? Admitt that if this "extended USB cache" making hugely more system cache and virtual memory and boost up your system like a Ferrari, it would be a worldblowing success! Imagen having 16 GB chache thats not occupied from your HDD! If there is sombody out there who knows a scientist or expert data-specialist, please show them the things I wrote aboute the USB-cache test article I read!

Now I´m very :sleep: 
Take care and keep on rocking everybody out there!
November 29, 2009 11:17:43 PM

Quote:
OK, so you think I can put in 4x1 GB RAM in XP 32-bit

Yes. You can do it fine.
Quote:
I´m choosing Intel, mostly becouse of that my present CPU (AMD Athlon 64 2800+) always gets spikes when gaming and the CPU will stuck at 100% and not answer to ctrl-alt-delete.

That's because that CPUs OLD :lol: 

Quote:
I know the socket 775 is old but is it really that dead? And is it so bad just because its an older construction than the newer that have come a year ago so to speak? I

Don't know about you guys over there, but here a i5 750 is about the same price as a Q9550. Same goes for DDR2 prices. So my point is, why not pay a little more for the newer tech?
Quote:

As I wrote I DID´NT use my 600 GB RAID 0 system for storage but as a system disc with my OS AND all other files on. Thats why I think its better, safer and faster to have my OS on a small RAID 0 configuration with small discs. It must be both more stabil, faster and survive longer to have say a 40 GB disc containing 2 magnethical internal discs and 2 reading/writing arms than using a 1.5 TB disc containing 5 magnethical internal discs and 5 reading/writing arms! Notice I´m only speaking in symbolic terms in this comparison and not correct technological words and terms please.

I see what you mean, but there is just way too many variations when it comes to softare RAID. For example, I have a linux system running a file server(2x 640GB WD Blacks) in RAID0 and it's got almost 8 months of 24/7 up time now. Gotta shut it down soon to upgrade to Fedora 12 and recompile kernel.

Quote:
Hope you and some other in this world can help me with my ideas of using an extended CPU cache/system cache on a USB stick

Are you talking about ReadyBoost/SuperFetch?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ReadyBoost
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Vista_I/O_technolo...

I do not see any advantage of such a system. Having more RAM would be MUCH more beneficial, in the order of 10x or more. The main problem I see with a system like ReadyBoost is that USB 2.0 is SLOWWWWW compared to RAM and even a HDD.

Oh,btw, your link is broken. Just past the link (make sure there is a space at the biginning and the end of the URL), there is not need to use BBCode for links.
November 30, 2009 12:02:07 AM

Damn... any other sites? Not much choices there....
December 2, 2009 3:12:00 PM

Think you have solved this problem :bounce:  Both the info of ReadyBoost AND ReadyDrive seams to be what I have read and is looking for. If using Firewire (1394) instead of the slower USB 2.0, ReadyBoost should boost up the system quite well. What kind of cards/hardware is used for Firewire? USB sticks and M2 mobile phone flash cards (with a transformer) I know you stick in one of the I/O USB slots, and I also have 2 Firewire slots, but what is the difference between USB 2.0 and Firewire?

Can I use ReadyBoost and/or ReadyDrive on my XP PRO 32-bit, is there some drivers to download and in that case where? Or do I have to uppgrade to Windows 7 to be able to use those features? What removable media hardware for Firewire and ReadyBoost is the fastest and most reliable on the market today? Is it comming even better types in the beginning of the next year?

Found out that WD does´nt make Raptor any longer but the 36, 74, 150 and 300 GB discs thats out to buy all is WD VelociRaptor. Have choosen to get two WD VelociRaptor ICE 74 GB 10000 RPM 16 MB Cache SATA2 3 Gb/s [Seek time Read=4.6ms, Write=5.2ms. Track-to-track seek Read=0.3ms, Write=0.4ms]. Their warranty and MTBF is whole 1.200.000 hours (5 years), so I guess this is way more reliable than their older Raptors. Price for two is $330 (expensive yes but what a monster!), should beat the Sumsung F3 with horselengths :D  What I dont understand is that the retailer use the interface of the disc as SATA-300, what can they possible mean with that? Is it like SATA2.5 or maybe SATA3 :pt1cable: 

One more thing I dont get hold on is: What the heck is the difference between flash memory, flash drive, flash card and SSD (which I tought was a giant flash memory) and was develved from those flash memorys who is used in mobile phones. Explain please :o 

The link that does´nt work, just do like this: Print www.eis.nu , click on the word "Moderkort" and "Socket 775" in the left column, their you will find a list with (unfortunately) only ASUS motherboards except one from GIGABYTE. Only 2-3 of them support DDR3. The price is like following: $1=8 SEK, 1000 SEK=$125.

Why does´nt the motherboard manufactures integrate say a 16 GB extended cache flash memory with a firewire-like speed on the nortbridghe circuit that works with the CPU and RAM to speed up the system like an integrated ReadyBoost? Should´nt be that hard to do when they already have all other components integraded as standard. What do you think?

Have a nice day you all :sol: 
December 2, 2009 7:23:49 PM

Imo, spend more money on RAM instead of spending money on SD,etc cards for ReadyBoost.

Quote:

Why does´nt the motherboard manufactures integrate say a 16 GB extended cache flash memory with a firewire-like speed on the nortbridghe circuit that works with the CPU and RAM to speed up the system like an integrated ReadyBoost?

They are starting to integrate RAM for Integrated Graphics. They are also integrating Flash RAM for Instant ON OSes based on Linux.
December 3, 2009 1:17:10 PM

What brand of RAM is best for use in dual channel and have good cooling flanges? Question is for both DDR2 and DDR3.
December 3, 2009 1:33:42 PM

I use GSkill, OCZ, Corsair, and Patriot. Which ever has the price vs performance when I buy.
December 4, 2009 1:03:48 PM

Thanks so much :-)

This thread is now solved! How do I end it so everyone knows it? Tried to unflag but dont understand. Best regardings
/ D
December 4, 2009 2:25:45 PM

Click on the "Select Best Answer" for the post that solved your problem.
!