SSD for OS only: what is this going to give me?


I'm building a new system soon and am contemplating a Solid State Drive (SSD) for my operating system. Since I'd only consider getting a small 30GB what potential speed gains am I going to get with all my programs on the other drives? Am I spending $150 just to be able to boot up 15 seconds faster?

If I load my programs and games onto my storage drives does the fact that the OS is on a SSD make any difference?

I currently have ~ 350gigs used for all my programs, games and photos on my current PC.
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  1. I wouldnt buy an SSD yet. They are still improving very rapidly. Many older models are not nearly as good and the price/performance is rapidly improving.

    Yes the performance is mostly boot speed with just the OS on SSD.
  2. I dunno, the Anandtech article stickied at the top of this forum makes a convincing case:

    Why You Absolutely Need an SSD

    Compared to mechanical hard drives, SSDs continue to be a disruptive technology. These days it’s difficult to convince folks to spend more money, but I can’t stress the difference in user experience between a mechanical HDD and a good SSD

    A difference of 24 seconds hardly seems like much, until you actually think about it in terms of PC response time. We expect our computers to react immediately to input; even waiting 6.6 seconds is an eternity. Waiting 31 seconds is agony in the PC world. Worst of all? This is on a Core i7 system. To have the world’s fastest CPU and to have to wait half a minute for a couple of apps to launch is just wrong.

    It’s shocking to think that until last year, this is how all of my computer usage transpired. Everything took ages to launch and become useful, particularly the first time you boot up your PC. It was that more than anything else that drove me to put my PCs to sleep rather than shut them down. It was also the pain of starting applications from scratch and OS X’s ability to get in/out of sleep quickly that made me happier using OS X than XP and later Vista.

    It’s particularly interesting when you think of the ramifications of this. It’s the poor random read/write performance of the hard disk that makes some aspects of PC usage so painful. It’s the multi-minute boot times that make users more frustrated with their PCs. While the hard disk helped the PC succeed, it’s the very device that’s killing the PC in today’s instant-on, consumer electronics driven world. I challenge OEMs to stop viewing SSDs as a luxury item and to bite the bullet. Absorb the cost, work with Intel and Indilinx vendors to lower prices, offer bundles, do whatever it takes but get these drives into your systems.

    I don’t know how else to say this: it’s an order of magnitude faster than a hard drive. It’s the difference between a hang glider and the space shuttle; both will fly, it’s just that one takes you to space. And I don’t care that you can buy a super fast or high flying hang glider either
  3. Read reviews and get a good one if you get one. Older ones are not nearly as good as the new generation. Thats why I am saying to wait, next gen will likely be this spring/summer and bring the new high performance designs down in price quite a bit.
  4. dndhatcher is probably right, buying an SSD would be best if you put it off a few months (or a little more). That being said, they do seem to make a world of difference if you are intent on buying right now.

    You might want to put a little more than "just the OS" on the SSD if you can. An internet browser and a couple of other frequently used programs would be a good idea.

    If you're considering getting one, I recommend going to a store to see the difference in person. I just walked someone through purchasing a new Mac, and we compared SSD vs. traditional drives in-store (2 same-configuration Airs except for the hard drives). The difference was impressive to me, and it made the computer for her. With the frequently-used programs on the SSD, we were able to boot in about half the time and launch 10+ programs as fast as we could click the icons. The traditional drive started choking after the 3rd icon click.

    If you don't have an Apple store near you, try Best Buy or some similar retailer, ask if they have two similarly-configured computers with an SSD in one and see if you can play around with both.
  5. +1 ^ (dndhatcher )
    Wait a little longer until you can afford one that will hold both operating system and program. All your data and go onto a mechanical HDD. Need 60 gig min. AND Make sure it's a newer generation that supports windows 7 TRIM Cmd.

    Have a 128 gig Patriot for Laptop 2 for desktop - Definetly improved performance.
  6. I can put up with 30 seconds of load time until SSD's improve, and their price goes way, way down. They may be fast, but they have their problems, and my god look at what you pay for them. If I had money growing out my ears, I'd buy one. But since I don't, I'll make do just fine.
  7. Jit also has a good point, As the old saying goes - if you have to ask the price, you probably shouldn't buy it

    Jit, a 2nd plus for SSD in a laptop is power consumption/battery runtime. Not impressive, but still a Pluss
  8. SSD's aren't worth doing UNLESS you're going to do it right, and that involves spending some coin. Especially with the recent supply/demand issues that intel is having with their SSD's.

    Bottom line: Don't half-ass it.
  9. It is interesting how much time is spent on looking at the most detailed specs on most every aspect of PC performance. Benchmarks fly left and right. Most of the time nobody cares since their box just doesn't feel any faster.
    IF you want a NOTICEABLE increase in PC performance, a seat of the pants change, a slap across the face difference, then get an SSD for your OS.
    Many current SSD drives now support TRIM. Win7 supports TRIM. Today this is a no-brainer even for those with no brains. DO IT...
  10. There's measured speed and observed speed. What difference would an OS only SSD make to me, absolutely nothing. I arrive at my desk each morning, boot the PC, then go get a cup of coffee the time i get back, my desktop is waiting for me.

    PC Performance and User Performance are 2 different things. In a production environment, it's not how fast the PC does things, it's how fast the people using them get things done. If the PC does things faster, but you don't, the cost is not justifiable.

    I write a 28 page contract and send it to attorney for review. He sends back a redlined PDF with his comments. Let's go way out and say it takes 10 seconds to load the word processor .....with an SSD it takes 5 .... will that 5 seconds change how fast I get those edits done ? Pick one:

    1. Yes cause I am going to sit and stare at the screen until program loads.
    2. No, cause I am reading his edits as the program loads.
    3. No, cause I am getting him on phone to discuss as program loads.

    It's kinda like .... "I been late for work 3 times this week so maybe I oughta get a Porsche" .... really won't help you with rush hour traffic dragging along at 35 mph.

    I'll get some SSD's eventually but I gotta be able to see an ROI ... and I don't wanna feel like early SSD adopters holding on to Intel G1's .... stuck w/ outdated expensive technology. I'm gonna wait till spring by which time I expect there will be more competition, more kinks will be worked out, everybody supports trim and proces will drop to where I can fit all that I need on it, not just the OS.
  11. I kinda agree with you jack. I don't have enough for an SSD anyway atm. I got a raptor 1 not too long after it came out, and just now got a spinppoint f3 1 terabyte to replace it and my 160 gig raid 0. It just wasn't actually worth the money. It was cool when I first had it, and it did make a difference in how fast it would do things, but years later and I was still using it.
  12. Since i'm an out of work computer nerd and find myself on the computer a lot I was thinking the same thing. My computer has been running really slow lately and I was contemplating formating it and starting over. but if i'm going to do that, why not go ahead and get an ssd for my op system while i'm at it.

    My thoughts on the subject is this. I don't see a reason to get one unless you get one big enough to run your os and favorite programs. For me that would be, windows 7, cs4, photoshop premier, steam, left 4 dead, word and itunes and everything that goes with it.

    I think that if you where able to put you're 5 most used programs on there, then you'd get a significant boost in speed after you ad it all up.

    I wonder if google chrome would run faster if i had it installed on the ssd also, since I'll have like windows open with 10 tabs each when i'm researching something.

    Now if i could get all that on ONE ssd, for under 150 bucks, and use my 500g gig hd still to back it up...then I'd be all for it.

    What are you're thoughts?
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