Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

SSD on a Dell Studio 1535

Last response: in Storage
Share
August 22, 2012 4:19:45 PM

I just installed a Crucial M4 128gb ssd in my Dell Studio 1535 laptop. Now I know the Sata interface is only SATA II and not III, however I was expecting a little better results. I benchmarked the drive at an average of 100mbps. Better than a HDD but still not near as good as my desktop running the same drive at 300-350mbps, although SATA III. AHCI is set in the bios and installed Windows 7 in AHCI mode. SSD is on the latest firmware.


Is there anything I can do to get better results, drivers of some sort?

Thanks guys for your help! :) 

More about : ssd dell studio 1535

August 22, 2012 4:40:58 PM

Hmm. I agree that you should be seeing better speeds (Even sata II shouldn't saturate that easily). Is this the exact same device you were using on your desktop or a different device? Could it be the device itself has a malfunction?

Either way i'll be keeping an eye on this thread, as I install SSD's in older laptops all the time. The performance always seems to scale quickly and easily though.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 4:49:20 PM

internetlad said:
Hmm. I agree that you should be seeing better speeds (Even sata II shouldn't saturate that easily). Is this the exact same device you were using on your desktop or a different device? Could it be the device itself has a malfunction?

Either way i'll be keeping an eye on this thread, as I install SSD's in older laptops all the time. The performance always seems to scale quickly and easily though.


Thanks for the response. It isn't the exact physical device, but the same exact drive/model, if that makes sense (both Crucial M4 128gb ssd on same firmware version).
I did buy the drive used vs. new, but it was fully formatted, running AHCI when I installed Windows 7..
What do you think the speed SHOULD be per your knowledge? So I can shoot for something.. Perhaps it's not even SATA II, but SATA I? The PC was built and sold in 2008 so I would assume SATA II and have read it is SATA II, but no concrete spec from Dell that I can find..
m
0
l
Related resources
August 22, 2012 5:02:02 PM

Theoretically, SATA I shouldn't be saturated even by an SSD, (at 1.5 Gbits/s) and I know that, while being no slouch, the 128 M4s aren't setting the speed records either.

I wouldn't be surprised to see a slight performance drop, maybe 50 MB/S but 200 is rather worrisome.

I've used several crucial M4s in older laptops (both 128 and 256 flavours) and had few issues.

Sorry I can't offer more specifics. I'd dig around in the BIOS if you're not afraid of getting your hands dirty, play with some of the settings. Maybe even try IDE over AHCI. Theoretically it should lower performance but hell, it can't get much worse.

In my mind, it either has to be a setting/hardware quirk we aren't seeing, or the drive has issues. Keep me posted.

EDIT: Plop your service tag in here http://www.dell.com/support/troubleshooting/us/en/19/In... and see if you can find out any info from the specs.

Very intrusive, but if we could fit the other SSD into this laptop and run benchmarks like that (maybe with a linux/boot disc to avoid the reinstall) we would get a definitive answer on whether it's the drive/laptop.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 5:19:04 PM

internetlad said:
Theoretically, SATA I shouldn't be saturated even by an SSD, (at 1.5 Gbits/s) and I know that, while being no slouch, the 128 M4s aren't setting the speed records either.

I wouldn't be surprised to see a slight performance drop, maybe 50 MB/S but 200 is rather worrisome.

I've used several crucial M4s in older laptops (both 128 and 256 flavours) and had few issues.

Sorry I can't offer more specifics. I'd dig around in the BIOS if you're not afraid of getting your hands dirty, play with some of the settings. Maybe even try IDE over AHCI. Theoretically it should lower performance but hell, it can't get much worse.

In my mind, it either has to be a setting/hardware quirk we aren't seeing, or the drive has issues. Keep me posted.

EDIT: Plop your service tag in here http://www.dell.com/support/troubleshooting/us/en/19/In... and see if you can find out any info from the specs.

Very intrusive, but if we could fit the other SSD into this laptop and run benchmarks like that (maybe with a linux/boot disc to avoid the reinstall) we would get a definitive answer on whether it's the drive/laptop.


What kind of problems do you usually run into? So I should see closer to 300mbps, even on SATA II?
I work in tech support so I'm pretty comfortable and very familiar w/ working in the BIOS, maybe I'll tinker around there a bit.

I will check my service tag and see if I can find any info, thanks for the suggestion! I might wind up just switching the HDD's between my laptop and desktop, just to confirm if the drive is having issues, worst case though, as obviouslly takes time to backup/reinstall windows on two machines.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 5:24:38 PM

Service Tag: JSWY6H1
Dell's specs are weird to read..
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 5:45:00 PM

Did you make sure the partition is aligned properly?
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 5:46:44 PM

I have an M4 in my Vostro 1520, and it's quite fast...close to 200MB/s if I recall. I know that is took a week or two and then things seemed to speed up. Did you empty out the prefetch/superfetch?
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 5:56:52 PM

singingigo said:
I have an M4 in my Vostro 1520, and it's quite fast...close to 200MB/s if I recall. I know that is took a week or two and then things seemed to speed up. Did you empty out the prefetch/superfetch?


What do you mean by partition aligned properly? I'm a bit new to ssd's.

I would love to see 200mbps, so I might just have to wait until Windows figures itself out, I'll try and empty the prefetch files..
m
0
l
a c 353 G Storage
August 22, 2012 6:07:38 PM

1) Do Not run to many benchmarks back to back, need to let Trim & CG work their magic.

2) Run As SSD, Initially do not rum bench mark, just open it up. Look in the upper left and it should show:
.. Firmware version. Need to have the latest installed. Th 09 was a speed bump, I think 15 fix the 5000 hour bug.
.. Driver. Should at least be msahci (for Intel Chipsets, recomment the latest RST driver.
.. Partition alignment, should show "OK"

I did Not see HOW you installed win 7, My recommendation is always, if Possible do a "Clean" instal vs a migration from HDD -> SSD.

As to performance AS SSD should come up with a overall score close to 500. The Agility III (really a SATA II SSD dressed as a Sata III SSD) scores 400 -> 450.

@ internetlad "the 128 M4s aren't setting the speed records either." May not be a speed demon per benchmarks, But I dought you will see much differece between it and other High end SSDs in REA LIFE Day-to-day usage.
I do have M4 and 830 and can not tell the difference.
Have the M4 in a SB laptop (Sata III) and it scores mid 700 using as ssd. Also have the M4 installed on Wife's low end System Sata II, but do not remember score. Also have a pair of Agility III's which score the same on sata II as it does on sata III.

Sata II should only crimp the Sequencial reads/writes, which is the LEAST Important parameter for a OS + Program SSD

Added: as internetlad pointed out, YES should use the Latest Bios Rev as that has been the problem on a few SSDs in older systems.
On benchmarks - The ONLY value of running benchmarks that use Highly compressable data (Such as ATTO) is to verify the INFLATED Performance advertised by manuf. Have limited value in assertaining REAL life performance. ATTO is a HDD benchmark and uses Highly compressable data - Ugh.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 6:13:25 PM

internetlad said:
Any chance you flashed the BIOS for the mobo?

EDIT: Check out the thread listed here

http://forum.notebookreview.com/dell-inspiron-dell-stud...

it seems it might be the notebook.


It is running the latest bios (from 2008 go figure) A06

RetiredChief said:
1) Do Not run to many benchmarks back to back, need to let Trim & CG work their magic.

2) Run As SSD, Initially do not rum bench mark, just open it up. Look in the upper left and it should show:
.. Firmware version. Need to have the latest installed. Th 09 was a speed bump, I think 15 fix the 5000 hour bug.
.. Driver. Should at least be msahci (for Intel Chipsets, recomment the latest RST driver.
.. Partition alignment, should show "OK"

I did Not see HOW you installed win 7, My recommendation is always, if Possible do a "Clean" instal vs a migration from HDD -> SSD.

As to performance AS SSD should come up with a overall score close to 500. The Agility III (really a SATA II SSD dressed as a Sata III SSD) scores 400 -> 450.

@ internetlad "the 128 M4s aren't setting the speed records either." May not be a speed demon per benchmarks, But I dought you will see much differece between it and other High end SSDs in REA LIFE Day-to-day usage.
I do have M4 and 830 and can not tell the difference.
Have the M4 in a SB laptop (Sata III) and it scores mid 700 using as ssd. Also have the M4 installed on Wife's low end System Sata II, but do not remember score. Also have a pair of Agility III's which score the same on sata II as it does on sata III.

Sata II should only crimp the Sequencial reads/writes, which is the LEAST Important parameter for a OS + Program SSD

Added: as internetlad pointed out, YES should use the Latest Bios Rev as that has been the problem on a few SSDs in older systems.
On benchmarks - The ONLY value of running benchmarks that use Highly compressable data (Such as ATTO) is to verify the INFLATED Performance advertised by manuf. Have limited value in assertaining REAL life performance. ATTO is a HDD benchmark and uses Highly compressable data - Ugh.


"2) Run As SSD, Initially do not rum bench mark, just open it up. Look in the upper left and it should show:"
I'm confused here, is there something I should look for within Windows to test this, or a 3rd party utility?

Thanks!
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 6:19:33 PM

internetlad said:
Theoretically, SATA I shouldn't be saturated even by an SSD, (at 1.5 Gbits/s) and I know that, while being no slouch, the 128 M4s aren't setting the speed records either.


Have to disagree here. THeoretically, modern SSDs appear to be capable of 550-600 MB/s when unlimited by the controller. 1.5Gb/s = ~190MB/s. So on SATA I, I'd fully expect to be controller bound. On SATA II, double that- 3.0Gb/s = ~380MB/s which is about the upper bound for SATA II capable SSDs, so the device could potentially be faster but the controller appears to be the bottleneck here too. SATA III is double again, 6.0Gb/s = ~760MB/s which SSDs are not currently achieving so the 550MB/s speeds we usually see at the upper end is likely the unconstrained speed of the device.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 6:26:30 PM

I'd have to retract my original idea that SATA I wouldn't be saturated, after looking around a bit and seeing what bliq wrote i'd agree that it probably would, but either way, in the prior link i put forth it DOES seem that it should have a SATA II controller, but for some reason seems to be bottlenecked.
m
0
l
a c 353 G Storage
August 22, 2012 7:22:09 PM

A little more insight on Sata II vs Sata III ports for Sata III SSDs.
1) SF ssxx based SSDs such as vertex III ONLY obtain above 500 for Sequencial reads and writes using ATTO. They do NOT obtain that performance using data that is NOT compressable such as AS SSD. The marvel based and Samsung, and newever OCZ Ver 4 SSD do Not suffer this big drop.

2) Everbody seems to look at the Sequencial reads and Writes. Tyhis s NOT representative of the Files on a OS + Program drive. Ove Half of the files on a OS + Program drive are under 32 KB. What is important is the 4K random performance. NOTE: High Sequencial performance is IMPORTANT for a storage drive that contains LARGE file structures such as Video 1 Gig for DVDs, 10->40 Gigs for a single Blue Ray video file, large CAD/CAM drawings, Large spreadsheets, and if You have a BUNCH of the 10 meg Photoes and often work with them.

My 128 gig M4 performance using As SSD:
Sequencial Read/writes ......... 502 MB/s ... 194 MB/s
4K ........................................ 22.3 MB/s .. 49.2 MB/s
4K 64 Thrd ........................... 297 MB/s ... 156 MB/s
Acess time ........................... 0.09 mSec .. 0.20 mSec
Score................................... 369............. 224
Over all score ...................................774

As you can see sata II would only cap Sequencial reads and the 4K -> 64 K Thrd performance. ALL other performance is Under the BW of Sata II.

Infact if you take a Agility III SSD, you will get almost Identical benchmarks using SATA II vs on SATA III. This was documented in a review and I have verified on my i5-2500K Sata III nd on My Wifes older i3 system w/SATA II. The Agility III is a por example ut does show that the diff may not be as big as some think when it comes to overall REAL performance. (Agility III uses Lower end Async NAND).


NOW Sata I is a Whole new ballpark as 4 out of the 6 parameters would be hamstrung.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 8:03:25 PM

Thanks for your info RetiredChief.

I don't understand most of what you wrote, but I got the idea that it isn't just a base benchmark to refrence, but different values that effect the system.
Do you believe it is operating correctly as it should on the SATA II?

I did check the driver, and it is 'msahci', and the partition alignment is also good.

Here is another benchmark test from CrystalMark, before I have done any changes to the system:
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 10:02:18 PM

I now see what RetiredChief was referring to. AS SSD Benchmark Utility.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 10:20:31 PM

you might want to research this but I remember seeing something about the MS ahci driver causing a performance drop compared to the intel ahci driver. I wish I remembered where I saw that. I'll see if I can dig that reference up. it was a comparison of AMD and Intel chipsets and Intel and MS drivers.
m
0
l
August 22, 2012 10:28:58 PM

I'd grab the latest chipset and storage drivers off dell or intel's site.
m
0
l
a c 353 G Storage
August 23, 2012 1:42:13 AM

Might need to give it a break, then run your benchmark. ie let it sit idle for a fair amount of time. While I like the m4, one of it's week point is Garbage collector.

Most reviews do a secure erease between passes.
m
0
l
August 23, 2012 2:10:16 AM

well isn't that odd.
m
0
l
August 24, 2012 2:20:51 AM

I'm pretty happy w/ my new results and I appriciate all the help from you guys. I know now the seq mark is not quite as important as I thought it needed to be, just a cap in the SATA II vs. SATA II, but the other scores are quite decent.
m
0
l
a c 353 G Storage
August 24, 2012 11:58:08 AM

First, The primary "Pleased" is when comparing the SSD to the HDD, Should be CONSDERABLY faster Boot time. have to ignore the Post as the SSD does not play a role in this time, But the time from "start loading the Operating system to the point that you can load a program - Typically around 20 +/- 5 sec (depends on how many programs are included in the start. Also programs should open more quickly, ie on My Sata II system when I click on a spreadsheet, excel will load and the spreadsheet is there in about 0.1 sec.

Glad you understand that High Sequencial performance has little impact on both boot time and program load. In My example on program load w/data (ie the spreadsheet), if the "working" data (ie such as a Large spreedsheet, or viedeo file, or Jpeg Photo)required by the program is on the HDD then that will be a bottleneck as it will be at the speed of the HDD.

That said, Your AS SD preformance is Low as your performance is Lower than a Agillity III On Sata II, but could be a result of:
1) Trim and CG have not had enough time to return the SSD to near factory specs.
2) May be at the mercy of Dell and their lack of updating th Bios. Unfornatunatly for older laptops many manuf Just stop doing Updates past a given point in time (Sad but a fact of life). NO work around.

PS. The agility III AS SSD overall score is around 400->450. for Sata II (Basically identical to score on Sata III). Reason the M4 should be Higher is that: (1) use sync NAND vs Async NAND cells which are slower, and (2) the Agility III uses the SF22xx controller which takes a hit when data used in the benchmark is already compressed - The marvel based Controllers (ie M4) do NOT have this Hit.
m
0
l
!