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SATA and Raptors rule

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December 14, 2003 5:31:12 AM

I just got a 74 GB SATA raptor (was gonna go 36, but they were out, I was anxious, and I got a discount), and a 120 GB WD SATA drive as well. Damn are these things fast. The raptor just bleeds speed. I couldn't imagine things loading this fast before. Sandra scores it above a 2x 80 GB ATA 100 7200 rpm RAID 0 array. It's a bit noisy, but definitely manageable.

The 120 GB drive is no slouch either. My old 80 GB special edition WD drive served up files on my LAN and the max speed I could get was 7400 KB/s transferring, with an average of just under 6000 KB/s. Now I'm serving some files up from this drive and I'm pegged at 9600 KB/s constant. The drive is whisper quiet to boot.

I HIGHLY recommend Western Digital's serial ata drives. Now if only I could get gentoo linux to work on them properly :) 

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.

More about : sata raptors rule

December 14, 2003 9:51:49 PM

I'm looking at those Raptors... I would like to get the 74 gb version, but it is just so expensive... the 36 gb one is like 170 dollars less.

Anxiously awaiting prescott....is it here yet?
December 14, 2003 9:57:01 PM

Perhaps you should change your title to "Raptor's Rule" as we both no SATA has nothing to do with it.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
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December 15, 2003 6:32:22 AM

Can't have a raptor without SATA, so it does seem to have something to do with it :p 

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.
December 15, 2003 12:55:50 PM

I think Maxtor has a patent on the 133 transfer and any competitor can use it but they must licence it from maxtor. I don't think any hardrive company wants to pay their competitor royalties. Especialy since there is little to no benifit to the consumer. It's kinda like AGP 8X more of a marketing thing than a nessasary thing at this time. So most companies (other than Maxtor) will by pass ultra133 and go straight for SATA.

Just a guess here but I'd suspect the raptor at 10000 rpm might benefit a little over the ultra 100 as its a big improvment over any 7200 drive. but then again we may never know cause I don't think they make a 10000 raptor using ultra 100 but I could be wrong there.

If I glanced at a spilt box of tooth picks on the floor, could I tell you how many are in the pile. Not a chance, But then again I don't have to buy my underware at Kmart.
December 15, 2003 3:52:37 PM

As has been the case in "ALL MY POSTS" regarding the Raptors I have to fully agree.

Pleased to hear the good reviews regarding the Raptor 74gb Drives.

My first batch of 7 Raptor 74gb drives should be arriving Tuesday/Wednesday of this week. I look forward to seeing if there is much of a performance benifit over the Raptor 36gb drives I currently have installed. (According to Western Digital, there can be up to a 30% benefit. I rarely trust the sales hype though!)

I don't know what Crashman has against SATA, but it will be the "low/mid" standard of the future! There does not appear to be anything else on the horizon that looks to challenge that future at this time.
December 15, 2003 3:59:54 PM

Hey Silverpig,

You can't get linux to run on SATA properly?
What do you mean?

I have successfully installed, and ran, Linux onto SATA drives and have had no issues.

All worked, well, but I was just testing. I don't really use Linux per se, I just install it and play around with it once in awhile.

Although, that being said, I am very anxious to get a hold of a production Linux build using the v2.6 kernel. If that works well I may install Linux in a production environment.
December 15, 2003 4:29:47 PM

Peak for Raptor is 101MB/s. I don't think anyone would notice the extra 1%.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 15, 2003 4:30:22 PM

LOL, cause and effect, don't credit the reverse.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 15, 2003 4:39:52 PM

Those benchies you got there were they based on the 37 or 74 gig version because I heard somwhere the 74gig is a little faster than the 37. I'm guessing cause it's a denser plater, if it is faster.

If I glanced at a spilt box of tooth picks on the floor, could I tell you how many are in the pile. Not a chance, But then again I don't have to buy my underware at Kmart.
December 15, 2003 5:07:37 PM

It's actually faster because it has two platters and Command Queuing (like SCSI).

Damn Rambus.
December 15, 2003 5:38:15 PM

Crashman,

I think that you are not following what goes on in the scheme of things.

On the hard drive subsystem you essentially have a series of store and forward elements.

(For writing)
Programs Create/Prepare Data in memory
.
The disk controller transfers data from memory to the hard drive.
.
The hard drive writes the data onto the platter
.

Then of course the hard drive mechanism itself has additional overhead involved. (Track-to-track seek times, rotational latency, etc.)

The faster the controller works the lower the latency on that part of the transfer.

So of course, the mechanical characteristics of the Raptor series has the most significant affect on their performance, but the SATA controller contributes as well since it if nothing else reduces latency in the entire process.

Also, as silverpig pointed out, it is rather mute anyway since RAPTOR drives are by definition SATA!

So as long as they stay ONLY SATA you HAVE TO HAVE SATA to get any advantage from them at all!

According to the Western Digital website:
Transfer from Buffer to host (SATA) is 1,200 mbits/sec
Transfer from Buffer to Disk is 816 mbits/sec

These measurements are the same for either the 36gb drive or the 74gb drive.

So I am not sure where you are coming up to the 101mb/s? (Which I am assuming bytes.)

Generally dividing bits by 10 is the common way to come up with an approximate byte through-put.

So the 1,200 mbits/sec is 120 m bytes/sec.

This is through the controller.

Physical writing to the hard drive itself is 816 mbits/sec so that should be about 81.6 m bytes/sec.

So I am not sure where your number comes from?

Unless you are refering to throughput on the chipset level?
(Which I just conveniently ignored.....

In the final analysis of things for my servers, switching from IDE to SATA with 7200RPM IDE Drives with 2mb Buffers to the Raptor 36gb drives more than doubled my boot-up speed. (Everyting else being the same aside from SATA drives and controllers.)

My copy times of files was hugely increased as well.

And when SATA-II is available there will be even greater benefits.

The most easily quantifiable, I think, will be the ability to queue commands and perform out of order execution of them.
December 15, 2003 6:25:56 PM

You proved his point exactly:

Quote:
According to the Western Digital website:
Transfer from Buffer to host (SATA) is 1,200 mbits/sec
Transfer from Buffer to Disk is 816 mbits/sec

1200/8=150MB/s
816/8=102MB/s (not too far off from his 101MB/s).

As for latency in the controller, shouldn't make too much of a difference since the bottleneck is in the actual read/write process.

Damn Rambus.
December 15, 2003 8:41:48 PM

1200/8=150mb/s
and
816/8=102mb/s

Does come out to the predicted values, so I suppose that is where the numbers came from.

I was under the "incorrect" assumption that serial transfer speeds are rated by the actual amount of data transfered, excluding control bits.

That, appearently is not true.

In the SATA standard 10 bits are transfered for each byte of actual data. Then, of course, there is the additional overhead for the actual command/acknowledgement structures on top of that. That is what I was rating it at.

Since the system is a store and forward type of arrangement anytime latency can be removed in the process it is a help, and SATA does a better job than ATA-100 at this.

Much depends on what you are using it for, but it is still helpful.

Besides, maybe next year a drive will be available that can transfer data to/from the disk at the higher speed. Anyone with SATA NOW is already setup to take advantage of that.

I just received 3 of my Raptor 74gb drives moments ago.

It is likely two of them will be in operation tomorrow.
December 15, 2003 10:05:03 PM

OK children, what is 37+37 equal to?

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 15, 2003 10:05:44 PM

I don't have a 36 GB version to compare against, but SANDRA benches this disk well above the 36 gig version and just slightly above 2x 80 GB 7200 rpm ATA100 in raid 0.

I saw a bench on storage review of two of these things putting out an STR of 100 MB/s over the entire disk (over that on the outer rings, a bit lower on the inner rings).

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.
December 15, 2003 10:08:07 PM

Oh I'm sure I could get it to run properly, but I'm trying to use gentoo. I have to get a custom liveCD to boot off of first and I just haven't done that. The release 1.4 live cd smp kernel detects the drive as hde on boot but I get an IRQ error after a few minutes. I hear one of the 2.6.0-test kernel live cds will detect it under /dev/sda and use it properly.

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.
December 15, 2003 10:16:07 PM

Quote:
Raptors implement a SATA to ATA100 bridge

Wow, I had no clue. If Raptors don't use true SATA, what drive(s), if any, do(es)?

Damn Rambus.
December 15, 2003 10:16:16 PM

OMG, this is like one of those SodoMiteHawk post. OK, you have your theoretical transfer rates, all I have is reports from actual testing, which showed a peak transfer of 101MB/s on the last review I read. I think it was max continuous of 72MB/s as well.

It works great in reality, but how about in theory? LOL!

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 15, 2003 10:23:04 PM

101 vs 102, the original assesment was that had it used ATA it would be at worst 1% slower, but that would make it 2% slower. Such a mistake would be an error of 100%, since 2 is 100% greater than 1! I'm befuddled!

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 15, 2003 10:43:30 PM

Hahaha, I guess 2 is just a really crappy number.

Damn Rambus.
December 15, 2003 10:45:06 PM

ROFLMAO!!!!! Good ol' SoD.

Damn Rambus.
December 15, 2003 11:21:05 PM

Interesting since they are the lowest performing of the bunch...but the quietness sure is nice!

Damn Rambus.
December 15, 2003 11:28:43 PM

What makes me giggle is that everyone rages about continuous read/write performance as though that was even an important benchmark. When infact do you actually need a continuous read of 100MB/s? If you need mega-high continuous reads you would be better off buying el-cheapo DiamondMax Plus 8 drives with a starting transfer rate of 60.2MB/s you can pick these up for $60 each. So why the hell pay $300 for a 74GB raptor when you can just get 4 DiamondMax Plus 8s in a RAID0 and a controller and still have change left over? What's even funnier is getting 2 Raptors and [-peep-] up their performance by putting them in a RAID0 just so you can say I have a continuous read of 100MB+ LOL!

<A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/myanandtech.html?member=114979" target="_new">My PCs</A> :cool:
December 16, 2003 12:28:47 AM

Re: OK children, what is 37+37 equal to?

I think 74 but looks like the original raptor is 36.7 gig thats why I round up it's closer to 37 which means the bigger drive if it's using 2 identical platters is 73.4 gig and (using my therory) should be rounded down to 73 gig.
Go figure.


If I glanced at a spilt box of tooth picks on the floor, could I tell you how many are in the pile. Not a chance, But then again I don't have to buy my underware at Kmart.
December 16, 2003 1:09:47 AM

Drive manufacturers already cheat when they use 1000 instead of 1024 to count Gigabytes, Megabytes, etc. You think they'd be honest enough to round down? The only number I've seen them round down was .01.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 16, 2003 1:11:09 AM

It's important to mention, just so people who already own 2008 erra systems don't come down on you (lol), that SATA WILL offer an improvement in the future.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 16, 2003 1:15:51 AM

Continuous transfer rates around 20MB are handy in applications as minor as Games. High continuous transfer rates are also hand for things such as manipulating files or moving them. Seek times are also critical for some applications to run perfectly smoothly. Oh, and don't file scans such as virus scans actually scan entire file structures? It would be handy to have all that data read very quickly, no?

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 16, 2003 1:51:00 AM

You can't have it both ways...
since as you said all manufacturers use 1000 instead of 1024 (I was aware of this but it's not relevant, at least I don't see how) If one drive is 36 how can the other be 74? If using identical platters. unless they are rounding properly for one and not the other..

Anyone else see where i'm going here..

If I glanced at a spilt box of tooth picks on the floor, could I tell you how many are in the pile. Not a chance, But then again I don't have to buy my underware at Kmart.
December 16, 2003 2:54:18 AM

Sorry, I just noticed they called it a 36. That is odd. It would be more likely for them to call it a 37. Maybe they thought 36 sounded better?

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 16, 2003 2:55:14 AM

Well here's the bottom line from what I've noticed:

My 74 GB raptor completely blows away my 80 GB WD special edition ATA 100 drive. My 120 GB WD SATA 7200 rpm drive also smokes the old 80 GB one.

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.
December 16, 2003 3:07:16 AM

Hehe, and my 20GB 7200RPM Maxtor ATA66 drive blew away my 80GB Seagate 5400RPM ATA100 drive.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 16, 2003 3:43:21 PM

Hmm, any 7200rpm disk should be capable of 20MB/s continuous transfer. Of course if you are moving Gigabytes of data around then faster transfer speeds are handy, but how often do you do that? Video editing, movies, sure, RAID0 can be extremely usefull for some specific uses. I agree seek times are critical, but RAID0 doesn't do anything for your seek time, in fact it often reduces it. <A HREF="http://www.hardwaretech.info/guides/configure_bench_rai..." target="_new">Jim Tripp</A> over at hardwaretech had some interesting stuff to say about hard disk setup and RAID0. Never thought about that within partition seek time, might have to get Partition Magic and do something about it..


<A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/myanandtech.html?member=114979" target="_new">My PCs</A> :cool:
December 16, 2003 6:13:00 PM

What else then would blow away an 80 GB special edition without going raid?

Some day I'll be rich and famous for inventing a device that allows you to stab people in the face over the internet.
December 16, 2003 10:27:12 PM

Sorry, I wrote that poorly. I meant to say, HIGH SPEED continuous transfer rates for FILES of around 20MB in size is handy for a lot of applications. The reason I mentioned it is because there are a lot of files fetched in applications such as games which exceed even an 8MB buffer's capacity. The faster you can load the entire file to RAM, the more smoothly the program will run.

Imagine loading a map in 5 seconds instead of 15, for example, on a racing game.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 16, 2003 10:32:37 PM

A 74GB Raptor would, but that's because it's a 10,000RPM drive.

<font color=blue>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to a hero as big as Crashman!</font color=blue>
<font color=red>Only a place as big as the internet could be home to an ego as large as Crashman's!</font color=red>
December 17, 2003 6:06:55 PM

yeah but what about the new 15k rpm hard drives.
*drools*


AMD RULEZ!
!