File Copy Performance with Microsoft Robocopy
Microsoft's Robocopy, a command line directory replication command, gradually replaced the older xcopy. It rocks a whole host of features that make is the logical choice for transferring a large number of files. It's multi-threaded, has a ton of options, and generally outperforms vanilla Windows copy operations. Best of all, it's built right in to Redmond's operating system. Especially useful for network copy operations and backups, Robocopy doesn't stop to ask you one hundred questions while it copies over your music collection, either.
The reality of benchmarking file copy performance is that you need something fast to copy from and something fast to copy to. This is most important with SSDs. It doesn't matter if your drive can write sequentially at 500 MB/s if the source files are hosted on a USB 2.0-attached external hard drive. We're copying our test files from an Intel SSD DC S3700 to the drives in the chart below, taking source speed out of the equation.
There are 9065 files comprising the 16.2 GB payload. Some of the files are huge (up to 2 GB), while others are best described as tiny. On average, that's around 1.8 MB per file. The files are a mix of music, program, pictures, and random file types.
It's fair to say that this chart would look much different if we were copying from a hard drive to a SSD. Even if the disk drive's sequential throughput wasn't a bottleneck, it'd still choke on the smaller files.
The Ultra Plus 64, 128, and 256 GB drives are grouped fairly closely at the end of our chart. And the fastest SSDs aren't necessarily the ones you'd expect, though that's largely a consequence of the workload we're throwing at them. The LAMD-based Neutron GTX takes home the blue ribbon, but only 10 seconds separate the most elite 240+ GB models. The GTX copies 168 files per second on average, generating 308 MB/s of throughput. The 30 GB SSD 525 is at the opposite end of the spectrum; it only gets a prize for participating. It takes a scale-busting 324 seconds. In contrast, SanDisk's 64 GB Ultra Plus is almost 3x faster.
- SanDisk's Ultra Plus: Ballin' On A Budget
- Dissecting SanDisk's Ultra Plus SSD
- Test Setup And Benchmarks
- Results: 128 KB Sequential Performance
- Results: 4 KB Random Performance
- Results: Tom's Hardware Storage Bench v1.0
- Results: PCMark 7 And PCMark Vantage
- Results: Robocopy File Transfer Performance
- Results: Power Consumption
- SanDisk Shows Us That Average Can Be Interesting