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Ssd and workstation

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November 8, 2011 10:41:37 AM

Hello,

It seems to me the digital world is occupied by gamers only. But I found out the real world is scary or game-like enough with young ladies walking around as they are, without them being heavily armed and scarcely dressed.
I use my desktop pc as a workstation, and at this moment I am working at several projects using PhotoModeler.
The desktop-configuration I am going to replace is nearly 5 years old and consists of an Intel Core(TM)2 Quad CPU @ 2.4 GHz., 8 GB RAM, Asus P5W DH Deluxe mobo, nVidia quad NVS 440 graphic card, and Vista Bus. 64 bit OS. (Vista always worked fine)
Rendering quality textures in some projects takes about 4 hours, and even as I hope to become 100 years old, and interested third party's can easily wait half a day to see results, this is a bit of a nuisance.
Now in the mean time engineers and developers did their utmost best, and I plan to plug the following into an Asus P8Z68-V Pro mobo:
IC i7-2600K, 8GB kit DDR3, OCZ RevoDrive 3 120GB raid0 and a 1TB WD Caviar blue sata3 HDD. RevoDrive for OS and programs only. HDD for data.
I hope this will speed up things, but if someone says it does not, because I am not a gamer, I will happily take that as an answer.
It is somewhat frustrating to find that all advice about graphic cards boils down to advice for gamers(e.g. GeForce-like heavyweights) and not for workstation users ( = Quadro cards).
This is why perhaps I intend to stick to my old Quad NVS440 (256 MB).
1)Would it speed up rendering even more after installation of a nVidia Quadro 2000 (1 TB)?
2)Does making a 30 GB cache-partition in the SSD improve things in terms of speed? I hate to partition in SSD.

Remember; after rendering, the PhotoModeler-result hardly moves in the display like in World at War etc. Think of AutoCad etc.

More about : ssd workstation

November 8, 2011 2:03:05 PM

Did you already buy the Quadro card? Do you know that Quadro cards are normal geforce consumer cards just clocked slower because they are used for precision.
The people at the Adobe forums don't even bother with them as most of them use the consumer cards.
If you didn't buy the card already look if you can find a Gtx 480 or a Gtx 570 if its in your price range. The Quadro you mentioned is the same as the 450Gts if I'm not mistaken.

For your scratch drives you will be better with a couple of mechanical hdd on a raid controller. There's lots of cheap x8 ones out there which will releave lots of traffic.

You can use one ssd for your boot drive. No need to raid. It won't speed up conversions or anything because the data is in the ram that you work with so make sure you have bundles of it. 12 to 16gb minimum.

You must go to ppbm5.com and check the benchmarks and the explanation of it. It describes what parts of your pc gets a work out and they give some good advice with it
November 11, 2011 9:19:44 PM

Thanks Gnomio for your advise.
I did not buy the card yet. One thing is I really need 3 monitors, so I must buy two cards, or use the onboard HDMI or DVi output as well. Otherwise it becomes a costly expedition. (LucidLogix Virtu?)
Using the onboard video output as extra can easily introduce new problems also.

I always thought the higher amount of graphic card memory was used to give more frames per second, and I am not interested in many fps. But perhaps it helps in rendering speed too? I get not many answers on that out of gaming country.

I understand from your answer, as I learned as well from other forums, that an external raid controller is far better than the onboard one. What kind of raid would you advise for a scratch drive? And does it have to be partitioned as is? Kept away from the data so to say.
Or does the controller takes care of that? And must it be tweaked in the BIOS before installing the OS?

I will try 16 GBs RAM.
Related resources
November 11, 2011 11:00:50 PM

My rendering setup consists of
CPU: AMD 1055T OC @ 3.8ghz
Ram: 16gb ddr3
Graphics: GTX460Main & GTX265Secondary;
Drives -Main: SSD, Data: Raid0 2@1TB drives, Scratch: Raid0 2@320Gb HDD.

I only render my home videos whcih reminds me I have my grandsons football playoff game to do.
November 12, 2011 4:34:54 PM

Looks impressive popatim. Great thing to put your scratch on 2 X 320 Gb.
I yet have to learn how to handle. Perhaps I make a partition on my main HHD's.
All respondants use it in a Photoshop context. I have to find my own way, which is not far off the main road I hope. Do you look at two monitors through your two graphic cards? Or are they cross fired?
Who won the playoffs?
November 12, 2011 4:57:19 PM

solidbrick said:
Thanks Gnomio for your advise.
I did not buy the card yet. One thing is I really need 3 monitors, so I must buy two cards, or use the onboard HDMI or DVi output as well. Otherwise it becomes a costly expedition. (LucidLogix Virtu?)
Using the onboard video output as extra can easily introduce new problems also.

I always thought the higher amount of graphic card memory was used to give more frames per second, and I am not interested in many fps. But perhaps it helps in rendering speed too? I get not many answers on that out of gaming country.

I understand from your answer, as I learned as well from other forums, that an external raid controller is far better than the onboard one. What kind of raid would you advise for a scratch drive? And does it have to be partitioned as is? Kept away from the data so to say.
Or does the controller takes care of that? And must it be tweaked in the BIOS before installing the OS?

I will try 16 GBs RAM.


Read this
http://ppbm5.com/Background.html and this http://ppbm5.com/Test.html

These are all workstation like yours that did that benchmark
http://ppbm5.com/DB-PPBM5-1.php

Pay attention to the configs and the price per performance.

This is performance of the CUDA/MPE capable video cards


The ssd you can use as your boot drive. Dont worry about partitions as when you add them in raid they are created.
Whats your budget you have for the controller cause they price from 150usd to 1500usd
November 12, 2011 6:36:41 PM

My budget nears to zero if things go as they are going now. Next week learns more about that. For the moment I am puzzled more than somewhat because of respondents talking about extra or not extra scratch drives or disks. The only scratch disks I know of are used in Photoshop and perhaps in video or TV surroundings.
No Photoshop or TV for me though, and it seems you are the only one who realises that. Can you throw light on scratch disks and how they come in in my case?
Thanks for your help so far.
November 13, 2011 5:18:00 AM

solidbrick said:
My budget nears to zero if things go as they are going now. Next week learns more about that. For the moment I am puzzled more than somewhat because of respondents talking about extra or not extra scratch drives or disks. The only scratch disks I know of are used in Photoshop and perhaps in video or TV surroundings.
No Photoshop or TV for me though, and it seems you are the only one who realises that. Can you throw light on scratch disks and how they come in in my case?
Thanks for your help so far.

Oh its photomodeler not shop but it doesnt matter. The same rules apply. Clips will be loaded into the memory. Then another clip and so on and so on. That fills the ram up pretty quickly so somewhere some memory needs to free up. So what will happen the data will be written to disk. Now the path between your ram and hdd is already a highway in peak traffic and now some data have to be saved on the disk which means a drop in performance as the road can only handle so much.
But what a raid controller do is that you basically open up another road to the other disks. So data coming from your ssd to ram and from ram to your raid set up. See two different paths and ease the traffic up to get things speeding along.

Your cpu is fine
2600k
16GB ram you can always add more when needed
G.SKILL Ripjaws 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3 1600MHz
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Corsair Force 3 180GB SATA III SSD or your revo drive your choice
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

HighPoint RocketRAID 2711 PCI-E x8
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

The hdd is a bit difficult. You know the prices went up a big way and I cant advise anyone a Seagate Baracuda. So you got to decide if your going to wit till the prices drop but a pair of Samsung Spinpoint F3 1Tb will do. 10000rpm drives will do better but theyre bit expensive

Does it support nvidia geforce cards?

The quadro 2000 ->Stream Processors 192

GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB -->480 Processor Cores
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

More ram, double the cores and cheaper $289.99 after mail-in rebate
November 13, 2011 3:29:01 PM

I take this answers implicitly my question about scratch volumes.

Found back your answer with a little help from aford1 in forum feedback.
As said, I mentioned PhotoModeler on the first alinea of my very first thread on 11/08.
That is why I do not care about fps, and I still do not know if the 4 or 5 times bigger memory of GTX 570 compared to NVS440 + the many cores is meant to make more fps or for quicker rendering. Also rendering in Photomodeler happens at another stage in the process I believe, but I can be wrong there.
It took me some time to realise that making scratch volumes on a disk only can be done in Photoshop, and from that time on I began to believe that respondents thought I was a Shopper or a (video)gamer, despite my warnings.

Now I take your advises very serious were they come to data transport to and from HDD. I will buy an extra Corsair XMS3 Kit of 8GB for symmetry.
The extra HDD and controller will cost a few extra Bolivar or Rupiah, but that is my problem.

Something else is the following.
After downloading the OCZ RevoDrive3 driver from their site, saving it on a usb-stick etc., OCZ asks at the end to make sure in BIOS that the SSDrive is the primary boot device.
This seems silly as now one is not able to boot-up from an image-CD in case of a fatal crash repair. Or is there a possibility to override the SSD in that case?
I always make an optical drive 1st boot as a standard in BIOS. And I see no harm in doing the same now.
I realise it is a question for OCZ, but perhaps you know more about this then I do.

November 13, 2011 4:08:43 PM

solidbrick said:
I take this answers implicitly my question about scratch volumes.

Found back your answer with a little help from aford1 in forum feedback.
As said, I mentioned PhotoModeler on the first alinea of my very first thread on 11/08.
That is why I do not care about fps, and I still do not know if the 4 or 5 times bigger memory of GTX 570 compared to NVS440 + the many cores is meant to make more fps or for quicker rendering. Also rendering in Photomodeler happens at another stage in the process I believe, but I can be wrong there.
It took me some time to realise that making scratch volumes on a disk only can be done in Photoshop, and from that time on I began to believe that respondents thought I was a Shopper or a (video)gamer, despite my warnings.

Now I take your advises very serious were they come to data transport to and from HDD. I will buy an extra Corsair XMS3 Kit of 8GB for symmetry.
The extra HDD and controller will cost a few extra Bolivar or Rupiah, but that is my problem.

Something else is the following.
After downloading the OCZ RevoDrive3 driver from their site, saving it on a usb-stick etc., OCZ asks at the end to make sure in BIOS that the SSDrive is the primary boot device.
This seems silly as now one is not able to boot-up from an image-CD in case of a fatal crash repair. Or is there a possibility to override the SSD in that case?
I always make an optical drive 1st boot as a standard in BIOS. And I see no harm in doing the same now.
I realise it is a question for OCZ, but perhaps you know more about this then I do.

no they call it scratch disks sorry. But in reality its just disks where you store your data on that you worked with. That will relieve a lot of traffic on dmi as its bandwith limited and once you start rendering it become a bottleneck and slow your system down. So dont think as the disks as scratch disks think of it as the disks where you are going to store your data on. It will be retrieved from the ssd and stored on the raid drives. That add some more roads and relief traffick on the dmi. Is it clear to you now?
The ram do not go and buy some primo gold rated expensive ram. Get a pair cheap ones from G-skill like I posted up there. The cpu got a big enough cache to nulify the speed difference between the ram. That g-skill is cheap. Save your money and spend that on something else.

The GTx 570 altough a consumer card its the same architecture as the workstation cards. When I'm referring to the geforce do not think about fps. I'm not. Two things very important with rendering big workloads

1. Total amount of Vram
2. Total amount of cuda cores

Whats going to happen when your gpu runs out of vram its going to render artifact artifact and the wil stop to render as it run out of vram.
The cuda cores are like mini cpu's. Think of them as cpu cores.
Now the Gtx 570 got 480 cuda cores. Thats equal to 32 cores more or less. Now think that you have a 32 core processor to do the rendering for you at faster pace. Plus it can take more ram onboard so it wont hickup as quick as the quadro card. Quadro cards are basically geforce cards thats just lower clocked where you pay that amount difference just for the drivers.
Thats just a suggestion. If you feel comfortable with the quadro then get one but pleaase read this before you make a choice.

http://www.realworldtech.com/page.cfm?ArticleID=RWT1214...
http://www.realworldtech.com/page.cfm?ArticleID=RWT0426...

http://www.beyond3d.com/content/reviews/55
http://www.beyond3d.com/content/reviews/53

Thats how a gpu work to the bone.
If you dont have a ssd as a boot drive get the Corsair or even a smaller one of 125GB or a Intel 80Gb. That will do. Its a boot drive thats it.

November 14, 2011 8:57:41 AM


I unintendedly introduced some misunderstanding in the discussion. At the moment I wrote my very first thread I stated that I planned to plug the mentioned ingredients on my ASUS-mobo. In reality I had bought this hardware already, I had only to plug them in. That was the plan. I should not have used the verb to plan at all. In court I would loose my case straightaway. Sorry for that.

So an extra pair of Corsair RAM, the same as I have already on my mobo, costs EURO 42,98, about USD 56.- . I had better bought a 16 Gb kit from the start, but the difference in money is peanuts compared to the rest I have to buy yet.

Also the RevoDrive3 is already on my board, and I intend to use it as a boot drive.
I only was amazed to see that OCZ, in their manual, advised to make it 1st bootable, while I learned an optical drive should be 1st bootable as a rule.
To avoid misunderstanding I better start a new thread with this amazement as an item.

I did not intend to buy a quadro gpu. The questions were theoretical. You have made your point in several answers very clearly. Especially about them being equal to gamer cards in the first place and about the price-comparison.
First I have to clear the raid problem. A financial problem mostly and not a theory-problem.
It boils down to buy an extra HDD and a good controller. USD180.- for the controller should do the job, as you advised. Same for the HDD. (By the way: what is the backside-plug on the controller for?) And the HDD must be a WD caviar blue, the same as I have already. The price could go down this month, but could go up even more as well. A small problem compared to what happens to the people in Thailand.

Once these things are plugged in and tweaked in the BIOS, together with the SSD, and after installing the OS, I can easily swap my old NVS440 for a suitable Gforce GTX xxx later, after printing some extra money. The GTXxxx will also feed my three monitors I hope. 1 X HDMI, 2 X DVi.
You did not comment on that yet.
And also perhaps submitting the setup to ppbm5 with NVS440 on the board, and later with a more sophisticated GPU. Thanks for the link.

Your comments helped a lot. I thougt the heavy calculation in PhotoModeler was done in the pipelines from the program file via the CPU and chipset, the data in HDD and several times to and fro. And that the GPU came in in a later stage when these calculations were done. But now I will consider the GPU as an integrated part in the calculation.

Looking for the term scratch disk in Google automatically brought me to Photoshop. (I use CS3 for snapshots, hobby, HDR and e-mail only). In this program you can choose a scratch disk (in preferences) for their temporary files, in order to relief the C-drive. This playing with words is a bit confusing. In general and theoretical they are right of course, but do not try to allocate a scratch disk in PhotoModeler. This is done by the raid controller x-times better, as you correctly state.



November 14, 2011 11:36:20 AM

solidbrick said:
I unintendedly introduced some misunderstanding in the discussion. At the moment I wrote my very first thread I stated that I planned to plug the mentioned ingredients on my ASUS-mobo. In reality I had bought this hardware already, I had only to plug them in. That was the plan. I should not have used the verb to plan at all. In court I would loose my case straightaway. Sorry for that.

So an extra pair of Corsair RAM, the same as I have already on my mobo, costs EURO 42,98, about USD 56.- . I had better bought a 16 Gb kit from the start, but the difference in money is peanuts compared to the rest I have to buy yet.

Also the RevoDrive3 is already on my board, and I intend to use it as a boot drive.
I only was amazed to see that OCZ, in their manual, advised to make it 1st bootable, while I learned an optical drive should be 1st bootable as a rule.
To avoid misunderstanding I better start a new thread with this amazement as an item.

I did not intend to buy a quadro gpu. The questions were theoretical. You have made your point in several answers very clearly. Especially about them being equal to gamer cards in the first place and about the price-comparison.
First I have to clear the raid problem. A financial problem mostly and not a theory-problem.
It boils down to buy an extra HDD and a good controller. USD180.- for the controller should do the job, as you advised. Same for the HDD. (By the way: what is the backside-plug on the controller for?) And the HDD must be a WD caviar blue, the same as I have already. The price could go down this month, but could go up even more as well. A small problem compared to what happens to the people in Thailand.

Once these things are plugged in and tweaked in the BIOS, together with the SSD, and after installing the OS, I can easily swap my old NVS440 for a suitable Gforce GTX xxx later, after printing some extra money. The GTXxxx will also feed my three monitors I hope. 1 X HDMI, 2 X DVi.
You did not comment on that yet.
And also perhaps submitting the setup to ppbm5 with NVS440 on the board, and later with a more sophisticated GPU. Thanks for the link.

Your comments helped a lot. I thougt the heavy calculation in PhotoModeler was done in the pipelines from the program file via the CPU and chipset, the data in HDD and several times to and fro. And that the GPU came in in a later stage when these calculations were done. But now I will consider the GPU as an integrated part in the calculation.

Looking for the term scratch disk in Google automatically brought me to Photoshop. (I use CS3 for snapshots, hobby, HDR and e-mail only). In this program you can choose a scratch disk (in preferences) for their temporary files, in order to relief the C-drive. This playing with words is a bit confusing. In general and theoretical they are right of course, but do not try to allocate a scratch disk in PhotoModeler. This is done by the raid controller x-times better, as you correctly state.

You dont have to get a raid controller. You can always add one later on when you see fit. Same with a gpu. Buy the best balanced system that can fit in your budget. You do not have to get expensive Corsair ram nor a extra expensive ssd. Just get 2 mechanical hhd and use the onboard raid controller of your mobo. If you dont have the ram yet I linked a cheap kit in my earlier post.
Before buying any gpu first go and look the list of cards supported by it. You can always get a cheap Geforce card like GTS 450 and upgrade later on if you see fit. The important factor is that you have a balanced system

I said scratch disk cause I thought you said Photoshop but realized its PhotoModeler. Forget about the word scratch disks and just think of it as your data disks. You are going to store your data on there.
November 14, 2011 2:20:22 PM

I am not getting tired to explain that I already have the 8 Gb expensive Corsair RAM on my board. Buying the same Kit again is 5,19 USD cheaper than buying a new 16 Gb kit, however cheaper per Gb the latter is. A pity.
Also I have already a WD hdd. I have only to buy a second one.

I learned from the internet that a raid controller card is to be prefered above onboard raid because the card has its own CPU.
The 180/200 USD cards I saw always say in their specs that they can be used with Vista. Windows 7 is not mentioned, and while I believe they can be used on W7 as well, it makes one wonder how old their design is. Tests of controllers are also 5 years old sometimes.

Are the cards perhaps to be fased out except the expensive ones? I mean, is the mobo-on board-quality catching up with the cards? Perhaps the onboard set on my Asus P8 is good enough for the moment, since I only go for raid 0. As long as I use the gray SATA ports of course and not the Marvell ones.

I mixed up the terms GPU and videocard. Sorry.
November 14, 2011 11:15:31 PM

Actually photomodeler wont use any more than 4gbs of ram, so 8gbs would be more than enough for your system. Its a 32 bit program.

It also is single threaded so get the fasted spped processor you can find. Its not going to use more than 1 core or hyperthreading. I suggest an i5 2600k that you can overclock to near 5ghz.

It does not use GPU acceleration. Get any videocard you wish. if you dont game alot can be saved.

It does not appear to use a scratch disk, but with an SSD you are propbably better off having than not.

They are working on a 64bit version so you may want to contact them about the features they will be implimenting that you could built towards.
November 15, 2011 5:41:29 AM

Hello popatim,
I am working with the 64-bit beta version for some time, waiting for the real thing.
So far it works fine.
Never in my lifetime I will be a gamer. I think I will go for raid 0 and leave it with that.
Thanks.
!