Well, I have an interesting desicision to make! What do you think?
At the moment, I have 2 x Seagate 500GB Momentus XT Hybrid drives in RAID 0 on my laptop.
Now I have a spare OCZ Vertex 3, I dont know weather to go through the process of installing the Vertex 3? Will I actually get much improvement over my 2 XT's in RAID 0? The proposed config would be the SSD for boot, and the XT for Data. I dont have a lot of data, so 500GB data drive would be more than enough!
You will get massive improvements putting your OS on an SSD. The seek times become miniscule. Just remember a few key things:
1) Do an external backup of the data on your laptop first. Otherwise, you may never see that data again. Replacing one drive with the SSD will make the old data unreadable.
2) When you do the install, have only the SSD attached. Win7 has an odd habit of putting the boot sector on a drive other than the install drive that you specify. More useful information can be found at http://www.computing.net/howtos/show/solid-state-drive-... , and at the stickied thread at the top of this forum.
3) You will have to repartition and reformat the HDD, then copy the data from the external backup (step 1) to it.
Come to think of it, if you don't have much data, put the data that you use most on the SSD too. Then let the HDD spin down and stay spun down most of the time. Remember, back up early and back up often.
In real worls do seek times make much of a difference? I have no experience on this one. I know on purely on read / write MB/s the 2 configs are quite similar (well the SSD pulls ahead a little on reads, and the XTs pull ahead on the writes)
Seek times are important as all data read must first be found (the seek time) and ssd seek times are massively quicker (like less than .1ms vs. 8ms).
You also need to look at the various types of reads and writes -- sequential v. random and file sizes. Generally an ssd will be faster in most areas, although my big RAID 6 array with 8 3Tb drives has large sequential writes with incompressible data that exceeds my Vertex 3 240.
Also: HERE is a good guide to optimizing your SSD for speed and space. I totally agree on keeping frequently used data on your SSD -- I keep music, documents, pictures that I access often as they are read fast and don't really take much space. I put my paging file on a HDD at a fixed size that never gets used but is there "just in case." I also image my SSD periodically so I do not use system restore.
I managed to get around a 20-40% improvement all round with the Vertex 3 vs the 2xHybrids in RAID 0 (Im wondering if my limitations were the Hybrids or the RAID controller in the RAID 0 array).
Any - performance is fantastic. Just sequential writes were a TINY quicker on the Hybrid RAID 0 array.
Also im impressed with the Hybrid drives... while the SSD is quicker, the Hybrids put up a fight... I heard the Hybrids perform well in a RAID 0 array. And they do. I really dont see any reason for having any other mechanical disk other than those Hybrids unless you need 1+ tb drives, NO OTHER mechanical disk I tried could match them (RAID or no RAID...) Im kind of sad to take one out and 'retire' the other one to 'just drive d:' the Data Drive).
I suppose SSD is the way... and Hybrids are a stepping stone. (Really, there is no point in buying any other mechanical disk other than a Hybrid unless you need more than the largest 750gb option)
Well, after some real worl usage, some time and benchmarking, I though I would follow up this 'old' thread.... [Old in technology terms!]
Basically, the SSD option is fantastic, I can see why it blow peoples minds out, going from HDD to SSD, its a new level. A new 'era' of computing. Think going from walking to driving. Yes, it takes it that big step further.
So its fantastic.... Well, untill the Hybrid showed up....
Short and sweet, you dont get the capacity on an SSD, and if you go for SSD + HDD, then you dont get ALL your information on that same level of performance, which means yor going to have to compromise somwehere... and thats why the Hybird comes in. 2 of these were JUST AS GOOD, yes, JUST AS GOOD as an SSD.
I never tried one on its own, just 2 in RAID0, but lets face it, even on a good laptop controller RAID 0 will only give you 30 - 60% advantages, so I can easily say these little XTs are amazing.
Will I go back to 2 x XT's in RAID 0? Well... No, but thats only because I dont have that much data, if I did... I would... You have to admire these Hybrids, there 'low' cost vs and SSD [considering they give all but the same performance]. and they just are 2nd to none in storage.
Have Hybrid, and rest happy that every one else is throwing away data to catgh up woith you, take the data with you and stay fast!