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Hard Drive

Vista: Benchmarking or Benchmarketing?
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We have an invaluable resource for researching and learning about hard drive performance : our Interactive Hard Drive Charts. Here we already created a THG performance index, which is based on all the individual results.

We used four different hard drives to represent several year old 7,200 RPM hard drives, a state-of-the-art 7,200 RPM drive, and Western Digital’s fast Raptor drive at 10,000 RPM. As expected, the Raptor performs best and reaches an WEI of 5.9, while the Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 750 GB drive reaches 5.7. The two older drives - a Hitachi Deskstar 7K250 and a Seagate Barracuda 7200.7 - reach 5.3 and 5.2 index points respectively. Obviously, Microsoft doesn’t take access time into account, or alternately, puts little emphasis on it.

Test Setup

System Hardware
Socket 775 I Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800 (Conroe 65 nm, 2.93 GHz, 4 MB L2 Cache)
Socket 775 II Intel Core 2 Extreme X6700 (Kentsfield 65 nm, 2.66 GHz, 8 MB L2 Cache)
Socket 775 III Intel Pentium D 840 (Smithfield 90 nm, 3.2 GHz, 2 MB L2 Cache)
Socket 775 IV Intel Pentium 4 560 (Prescott 90 nm, 3.6 GHz, 1 MB L2 Cache)
Motherboard Asus Commando
Chipset : Intel P965, BIOS : 0803
Common Hardware
RAM 2x 1024 MB DDR2-8000 (CL 4.0-4-4-12)
Corsair CM2X1024-6400C3 XMS6403v1.1
Graphics Card I HIS X1900XTX IceQ3
GPU : ATI Radeon X1900XTX (650 MHz)
RAM : 512 MB GDDR3 (1550 MHz)
Graphics Card II ATI Radeon X850XT
GPU : ATI Radeon X850XT (520 MHz)
RAM : 256 MB GDDR3 (1080 MHz)
Graphics Card III ATI Radeon X700 Pro
GPU : ATI Radeon X1900XTX (425 MHz)
RAM : 256 MB GDDR3 (865 MHz)
Graphics Card IV Zotec GeForce 8800 GTS
GPU : GeForce 8800 GTS (500 MHz)
RAM : 320 MB GDDR3 (1200 MHz)
Graphics Card V Nvidia Geforce 6800GT
GPU : NVIDIA GeForce 6800 GT (350 MHz)
RAM : 256 MB GDDR3 (1000 MHz)
Hard Drive 150 GB 10,000 RPM, 8 MB Cache, SATA/150
Western Digital WD1500ADFD
DVD-ROM Gigabyte GO-D1600C (16x)
Software
Graphics Driver I ATI Catalyst Suite 7.2
Graphics Driver II Nvidia ForceWare 97.92
Platform Drivers Intel INF-Treiber 8.1.1.1010
DirectX Version : 9.0c (4.09.0000.0904)
OS Windows XP, Build 2600 SP2

We used an Asus Commando motherboard, which is based on the popular P965 chipset by Intel.

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