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Is the WDD WD20EARX 6Gbps 2TB Caviar Green the right choice for media?

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February 18, 2012 6:42:18 AM

I am out of space on my drive for media and Windows programs and I have been considering a Western Digital 2TB SATA 6Gbps Power Saving Internal Hard Drive OEM - Caviar Green WD20EARX for £98.63/€118.757 delivered.

My current drive is displayed in GParted as a 298GB ATA ST3320620AS although googling that model number tells me it's a 320 GB Seagate Barracuda.

On this drive I have segmented the following partitions:

  1. Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System
  2. /dev/sda1 * 1 7273 58414048+ 7 HPFS/NTFS
  3. /dev/sda3 7273 38914 254154752 f W95 Ext'd (LBA)
  4. /dev/sda5 7273 9231 15727600 83 Linux
  5. /dev/sda6 9231 11030 14448640 83 Linux
  6. /dev/sda7 11030 38391 219781120 7 HPFS/NTFS
  7. /dev/sda8 38391 38913 4192256 82 Linux swap / Solaris


The largest partition is used for media storage and accessible from Windows and linux. The other two main partitions are for Windows XP and linux my primary OS.

I find this drive very slow for loading games like CoD4: MW1 and World of Warcraft but the most pressing problem is having to delete old and wanted media to download newer more wanted media.

I was thinking that once I have the new drive I can copy all my media to it, back up the OS partitions on it, format the old drive and then reinstall my backups of the old OS partitions to the old drive with a larger Windows partition. I could then replace the old drive with an SSD in 6 to 12 months when the prices have hopefully dropped for a decent size.

I like this drive because it's energy efficient but seems fast enough for media, but that is not to say that there's not a drive out there that does both of these better and/or possibly cheaper unbeknownst to me which is the reason for the thread.

What do you think?
a c 317 G Storage
February 18, 2012 8:29:42 AM

The green 2Tb is a great drive for storage, but it will not make a good OS drive as it is slow rpm and spins down a lot.

Get it for your media storage and lesser used programs.

Your ST3320620AS is a great OS drive as it is a 7200.10 model -- keep that with fewer partitions as your OS drive.
February 18, 2012 9:41:51 AM

RealBeast said:
The green 2Tb is a great drive for storage, but it will not make a good OS drive as it is slow rpm and spins down a lot.

Get it for your media storage and lesser used programs.


Yes, that is the plan!

RealBeast said:
Your ST3320620AS is a great OS drive as it is a 7200.10 model -- keep that with fewer partitions as your OS drive.


That is also the plan, but I only really know that the caviar green is the one to keep for media because it's surrounded by labels like 'green', 'energy efficient', and 'power-saving' etc. I would have thought that even with this it would be a better drive because it's 5/6 years newer and has a 65MB cache etc.

Are there any raw stats, data, or values I should keep in mind comparing HDD's performance and how much they spin down? I noticed that WD20EARX is not in the Tom's Hardware benchmarks for say power usage?
a c 317 G Storage
February 18, 2012 1:40:05 PM

I use crystal disk mark for drive comparisons: http://crystalmark.info/software/CrystalDiskMark/index-...

I have a number of WD Green drives and they seem to spin down pretty quick and park the heads after inactivity (less than a minute). AFAIK WDIDLE3 no longer works on WD drives to alter the parking time. They consume around 5W when active and less than 1W when idle from data sheets I've seen: http://www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/287...
April 7, 2012 10:59:11 AM

Quote:
Your ST3320620AS is a great OS drive as it is a 7200.10 model -- keep that with fewer partitions as your OS drive.

Can't agree with that. rpm isn't everything. You see: HDD's gain speed performance, when they grow in size, too. They either grow by additional plates (and heads) or a higher data density on the plates. More plates mean more data heads, that work parallel (not very unlike raid0). A higher data density with the same rpm in each HDD generation (5600prm, 7200rpm, 10000rpm seem to be the standards) also means a higher speed, as more data is actually moving under neigh the heads, that in turn have to perform better (faster) to read/write it.

As great as your ST3320620AS (7200rpm/320GB) might have been, it shouldn't be a match for a decent 2TB HDD, not even a 5400rpm one.

http://de.hardware-wiki.org/wiki/Datei:Hdtune_st3320620.... A transfer rate of 80MB/sec? Not to bad for a 320GB, but in comparison to nowadays models... Now, really.

As the first 10-50% of a HDD perform especially well speed wise, you should consider creating an OS-partition there again. (I know. It's over a month ago and to late by now.)

For people, who like to compare disk performances: http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/ and look for the newest charts.

Aah, this is interesting. http://www.tomshardware.com/charts/hdd-charts-2012/Desk...
The WD VelociRaptors WD6000HLHX and WD3000HLHX DO outperform even 3TB ones, even though they are only have got 600GB and 300GB. 10000rpm can't make such a difference. They must have been outfitted with some new tech/trick. But you can still see the size/speed difference quite well here. Both seem to be the same model, but with different capacities. My guess is the 600GB has two plates and the 300GB only one. The 300GB is quite a bit slower.
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