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Is the Crucial m4 256GB a good boot drive?

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January 25, 2013 2:01:28 AM

I'm looking at the Crucial m4 256GB for my gaming build and it's a lot cheaper than other SSDs of the same size. The write speed is a lot slower but for boot and loading games I'm thinking read speed is more important so is it ok to get this for my OS, games, and programs?
a b G Storage
January 25, 2013 2:07:03 AM

I'd rather go with a faster, more reliable 128GB drive, myself, such as the Vertex 4.

Yes, it won't have the same sort of space, but it uses newer tech, which is huge in a market that's been around such a short time, and, well...

Think about the OS and programs; they're going to be about 40-50GB, maximum.
Now think about the games you have. How many of them will get a benefit from being on the SSD? Certainly shooters won't; it's mostly MMOs and some single player games. So do you need that much space?
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January 25, 2013 2:16:11 AM

The way I understand it, SSD can only be written to a certain number of times so if I were to get the drive you said would that last longer than the one I was considering?
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January 25, 2013 2:20:06 AM

DarkSable said:
I'd rather go with a faster, more reliable 128GB drive, myself, such as the Vertex 4.

Yes, it won't have the same sort of space, but it uses newer tech, which is huge in a market that's been around such a short time, and, well...

Think about the OS and programs; they're going to be about 40-50GB, maximum.
Now think about the games you have. How many of them will get a benefit from being on the SSD? Certainly shooters won't; it's mostly MMOs and some single player games. So do you need that much space?


Right now, my games and programs take up about 150 GB, wouldn't I be better off getting a 256?
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a b G Storage
January 25, 2013 2:25:01 AM

I use the Crucial m4 256GB myself, so I'd say it's a good boot drive, though possibly not the best. I wouldn't go by the rewrite cycles, though, because even a 64GB ssd probably has enough rewrite cycles to last until you upgrade your computer again, at which point cheaper ssds or some other better storage technology may be available.

Edit: I looked up some numbers, and according to http://techreport.com/review/20646/crucial-m4-solid-sta... the Crucial M4 has a "total bytes written" (TBW) rating of 72 TB for the 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB models (only 36 TB for the 64GB model), but at 40 gigabytes a day, that would still take about 5 years to reach, and I doubt a gaming rig averages anywhere near that much per day (a file server would get a lot more)
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January 25, 2013 2:47:51 AM

MauveCloud said:
I use the Crucial m4 256GB myself, so I'd say it's a good boot drive, though possibly not the best. I wouldn't go by the rewrite cycles, though, because even a 64GB ssd probably has enough rewrite cycles to last until you upgrade your computer again, at which point cheaper ssds or some other better storage technology may be available.

Edit: I looked up some numbers, and according to http://techreport.com/review/20646/crucial-m4-solid-sta... the Crucial M4 has a "total bytes written" (TBW) rating of 72 TB for the 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB models (only 36 TB for the 64GB model), but at 40 gigabytes a day, that would still take about 5 years to reach, and I doubt a gaming rig averages anywhere near that much per day (a file server would get a lot more)


You explained that really well, thanks for the example. You said your drive is good but not the best so would you recommend it or should I get the 256 GB version of what the person above suggested?
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a b G Storage
January 25, 2013 3:02:40 AM

skyline4727 said:
You explained that really well, thanks for the example. You said your drive is good but not the best so would you recommend it or should I get the 256 GB version of what the person above suggested?


"Best" can be very subjective, depending on things like whether you want more reliability or more speed (and possibly other factors that I haven't thought of).
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January 25, 2013 3:05:14 AM

MauveCloud said:
"Best" can be very subjective, depending on things like whether you want more reliability or more speed (and possibly other factors that I haven't thought of).


I want more reliability but I would also like fast load times for games and to be able to boot up in around 20 seconds. The main thing that attracted me to Crucial was the price so if this one is reliable I'm probably gonna get it since I don't need crazy fast speeds, just faster loading for everyday use and gaming.
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a b G Storage
January 25, 2013 3:18:41 AM

I'm not sure either one will get you all the way down to 20 second boot time, if you're talking about a cold boot (no hibernation) counting from pressing the power button to fully loaded Win7. You might get a 20 second boot time with an Intel SSD 910, but I doubt that would be worth the money for a gaming rig.

The latest "best ssds for the money" review included the Crucial M4 256GB, and indicated it had a good track record for reliability. I think the OCZ Vertex 4 might be more recent, which would mean it doesn't have as much of a track record.
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January 25, 2013 4:52:20 AM

MauveCloud said:
I'm not sure either one will get you all the way down to 20 second boot time, if you're talking about a cold boot (no hibernation) counting from pressing the power button to fully loaded Win7. You might get a 20 second boot time with an Intel SSD 910, but I doubt that would be worth the money for a gaming rig.

The latest "best ssds for the money" review included the Crucial M4 256GB, and indicated it had a good track record for reliability. I think the OCZ Vertex 4 might be more recent, which would mean it doesn't have as much of a track record.


Alright, I think I'm gonna go with the Crucial 256 then. thanks for all your help.
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January 25, 2013 4:52:28 AM

Best answer selected by Skyline4727.
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a b G Storage
January 25, 2013 11:32:31 AM

FWIW, I timed my startup this morning (my full computer specs are in my profile):
at about 12 seconds, the POST finished and I saw the windows loading screen
at about 23 seconds, the desktop was showing
at about 60 seconds total, my auto-start programs were all up (including antivirus, a vpn client (though it doesn't auto-connect), two IM clients, Steam, and a control center for my network printer)
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January 25, 2013 1:48:47 PM

I would recommend the Crucial m4. Although I'm biased because I have one myself. I do think it is very reliable although it is not the fastest nor does it have the best price for what your getting. If I was on a budget I would get the Samsung 840 or the Kingston HyperX 3K. I own the Kingston 3K and I can say that Windows loads before the 4 colorfull balls even form on the loading screen while the crucial m4 lets them form and then takes a few more seconds. So I would get the 3K or the Samsung 840 (not the pro). I do think I'm too late on this post to do any good though.
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January 25, 2013 5:46:16 PM

ericjohn004 said:
I would recommend the Crucial m4. Although I'm biased because I have one myself. I do think it is very reliable although it is not the fastest nor does it have the best price for what your getting. If I was on a budget I would get the Samsung 840 or the Kingston HyperX 3K. I own the Kingston 3K and I can say that Windows loads before the 4 colorfull balls even form on the loading screen while the crucial m4 lets them form and then takes a few more seconds. So I would get the 3K or the Samsung 840 (not the pro). I do think I'm too late on this post to do any good though.


No, not too late at all. I was going to buy it today or tomorrow so I'm going to compare all three of them because they're separated by about $10. Thanks for your input.
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