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SSD vs HDD

#1
SSD are small, fast and expensive (120gb SSD run for about $30). HDD are big, slow, and cheap (500gb for $25 to $50). What are your experiences, pros and cons, with either? Is it better to use only one, the other, or a combination of both? Other storage options (cloud, hybrid, external, etc)?
#2
(10-16-2018, 09:20 PM)beluga Wrote: SSD are small, fast and expensive (120gb SSD run for about $30). HDD are big, slow, and cheap (500gb for $25 to $50). What are your experiences, pros and cons, with either? Is it better to use only one, the other, or a combination of both? Other storage options (cloud, hybrid, external, etc)?

SSD's are faster, but not suitable for a large amount of data. If you get one and use it for the OS, your system will reboot faster. If you get one and use it for a swap area, your system will hibernate/unhibernate faster. If you can afford the $30 and an extra slot for it in your computer and don't mind a little extra effort to install a multi-disk system, then I recommend you get one.

You probably should always have an HDD, unless you're willing to spend a lot for big SSD's, which is questionable value for the money in my opinion. The 120 gb should be enough for the OS, swap, and room left over for whatever files you like that a) aren't too big and b) are used frequently and c) cause a noticeable slowdown when working.

If you do a lot of gaming, video editing, or other tasks that use big files, it may be to your advantage to have a much larger SSD. I can't imagine a use case where you wouldn't want an HHD for your archived files, though (probably 2 TB or so).
[-] The following 2 users Like SonLight's post:
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#3
That sounds pretty reasonable to have the OS on its own SSD. An HDD is an economical choice for archiving.

My guess is SSD don't heat up as much as an HDD so it's best for anything that is used frequently or needs working on. So ideally, SSD's for boot swap and /home, and an HDD for extra storage :D
#4
Hi,
As you already know, there are two versions and subversions of the SSDs. There is standard SSD with Sata 3.0 (6Gb/s) interface with maximum R/W speeds of about 500Mb/s and there is also M.2 format that can allow use of PCIe bus and allow speeds up to 31.5 Gb/s , which is much faster than SSD on SATA 3.0.
So for new PC, idealy is to use one M.2 for OS and put huge HDD for regular data and maybe one standard SSD with 512GB for often used applications or games.
#5
(11-15-2018, 01:26 PM)zkranjcec Wrote: Hi,
As you already know, there are two versions and subversions of the SSDs. There is standard SSD with Sata 3.0 (6Gb/s) interface with maximum R/W speeds of about 500Mb/s and there is also M.2 format that can allow use of PCIe bus and allow speeds up to 31.5 Gb/s , which is much faster than SSD on SATA 3.0.
So for new PC, idealy is to use one M.2 for OS and put huge HDD for regular data and maybe one standard SSD with 512GB for often used applications or games.

The M.2 SSDs look interesting, but also quite pricey for the average computer user. I did notice the Intel Optane which uses that technology, and it looks like systems are (or soon will be) sold using that as a cache for a regular HDD. If that works out well, it may be a good alternative to a larger SSD. According to https://www.pcmag.com/review/360897/inte...emory-32gb that substantially reduced both boot time and many application task times.

One thing they didn't mention was hibernation, which I don't think it will help much unless special provisions are made for it in the controller and the OS using it. I can imagine being an Optane system developer, and wanting the OS to inform me when it is preparing to hibernate. Then I would consider keeping a list of what was cached earlier, but overwriting most of it with the hibernation image. After restart, the controller could discard the just-read hibernation image as soon as the system is restored, and during idle time it could replace the originally cached pages.
#6
So far I have only been using HDD and are quite happy with them except for the rare failure every now and then.

Some things that I've read about SSD makes me a little vary of starting to use them. Things like only a limited number of writes, and losing data if being out of power for too long. I don't know how much of a problem this really is, or if only some SSD are really affected.

Something that I would like to know is if anyone has experience with SSD failure and how it differs from HDD failure. In my experience with HDD is that I first start noticing that my system is unstable, because my system files get corrupted I guess, but most files are usually fine so I buy a new HDD and start using that one and then I put the old  half-broken HDD somewhere in case I realize there was some files that I forgot to transfer. Does SSD usually fail in the same way or it tends to go dead with no of recovering the files?
#7
@Peter The SSDs do not lose data just by being out of power for too long. This link debunks that myth. As for limited writes, that is a thing, but you won't even come close to it with normal usage nowadays.

Usually, the SSD would have a buffer for failed cells. Once the controller detects that it's way past the writes that can be done, it will set the drive in read-only mode, allowing you to quickly save all the files inside before the drive does indeed die.
#8
I've mostly used HDD and maybe I've just been lucky, but so far only one external hard disk failed at work and that was a complete disaster as we could not read the content - I probably could have taken it to a specialist and get them to extract the data - but on my level I was unable to do so. I haven't experienced failure with SSD that I know off - but apparently SSD is not as good with power surges than HDD and one doesn't really notice when SSD problems happen with a power surge as the drive may still be working. Data can get corrupted on SSH that one doesn't know about. Also SSD has limited read/write cycles - particularly with flash memory so quality does make a difference - usually the cycles are created to last for years, but there may be low quality SSD that is cheap - and that may have less read/write cycles and may last shorter.

Both have their pros and cons - SSD seems to be new technology and works better and faster depending on how well they have been manufactured - but maybe I'm just old fashioned as I keep with HDD. Wonder whether HDD will be phased out one day?

#9
(11-17-2018, 03:51 AM)CHT Wrote: The SSDs do not lose data just by being out of power for too long. This link debunks that myth. As for limited writes, that is a thing, but you won't even come close to it with normal usage nowadays.
Sounds good, but Wikipedia says SSD are not suitable for "archival purposes". Are they wrong?
 
Wikipedia Wrote:However, all SSDs still store data in electrical charges, which slowly leak over time if left without power. This causes worn out drives (that have exceeded their endurance rating) to start losing data typically after one (if stored at 30 °C) to two (at 25 °C) years in storage; for new drives it takes longer.[5] Therefore, SSDs are not suited for archival purposes.

[...]

If left without power, worn out SSDs typically start to lose data after about one to two years in storage, depending on temperature. New drives are supposed to retain data for about ten years.[5] MLC and TLC based devices tend to lose data earlier than SLC-based devices. SSDs are not suited for archival use.
 
(11-17-2018, 05:55 AM)Genesis Wrote: SSD seems to be new technology and works better and faster depending on how well they have been manufactured - but maybe I'm just old fashioned as I keep with HDD. Wonder whether HDD will be phased out one day?
I expect HDD to be around until SSD can actually compete with the cost per byte.
#10
(11-17-2018, 04:01 PM)Peter Wrote: Sounds good, but Wikipedia says SSD are not suitable for "archival purposes". Are they wrong?
 
Wikipedia Wrote:However, all SSDs still store data in electrical charges, which slowly leak over time if left without power. This causes worn out drives (that have exceeded their endurance rating) to start losing data typically after one (if stored at 30 °C) to two (at 25 °C) years in storage; for new drives it takes longer.[5] Therefore, SSDs are not suited for archival purposes.

[...]

If left without power, worn out SSDs typically start to lose data after about one to two years in storage, depending on temperature. New drives are supposed to retain data for about ten years.[5] MLC and TLC based devices tend to lose data earlier than SLC-based devices. SSDs are not suited for archival use.
(11-17-2018, 05:55 AM)Genesis Wrote: SSD seems to be new technology and works better and faster depending on how well they have been manufactured - but maybe I'm just old fashioned as I keep with HDD. Wonder whether HDD will be phased out one day?
I expect HDD to be around until SSD can actually compete with the cost per byte.  

For the first part, what "archival purposes" are you referring to here? If it's taking the drive out and never using it again until required, tape is the best choice here. If you're talking about just storing it while being accessible most of the time, then SSDs are the way to go. In no way will a HDD ever get used here, unless the company is cheaping out.

As for your second part, SSDs will never compete with the cost per GB of a HDD, unless the material cost required for a HDD goes way beyond what a SSD requires. Currently, SSDs are affordable, to allow most to own one.
#11
HI. I don't think SSD are fast, at least for writing. They are just a big flash memory using buffer tricks. The real nature of SSD is their former grandparent "Read Only Memory". They evolved into EEPROM wich was mainly for reading and you ocassionaly wrote on it (BIOS integrated circuits). Finally you get FLash Memory wich is a EEPROM that can be written by big chunks isntead of single bits which led t faster write speeds.

If you compare an HDD write speed agains SSD you will see the writing deficiency within SSD nature. On the other hand reading SSD is blazing fast.
#12
Ok I just happen to have a real life scenario for this question. The follow is an except from a recommendation I did for a not for profit organization. The businesses name had been removed. The recommendation was accepted and implemented. This was partly to reduce the business environmental foot print by extend the life of the current computers.

"The failing 80GB SATA HDD (hard drive drives) in the 12 Dell dual-core desktop computers at "Name removed for private issues" will be replaced with equivalent size refurbished SSD (solid state drives). This solution fits within current budget constraints, will extend the use of the desktop computers and improve overall performance.

After the update we asked the users for their opinion.

"Volunteers have remarked on not having to go get a coffee while waiting for their computer to start up. Administration staff in the main office have guesstimated a time saving of 10% in their daily activities."
#13
(03-20-2019, 07:28 AM)buzzawak Wrote: [size=medium][font=Calibri,sans-serif]"The failing 80GB SATA HDD (hard drive drives) in the 12 Dell dual-core desktop computers at "Name removed for private issues" will be replaced with equivalent size refurbished SSD (solid state drives). This solution fits within current budget constraints, will extend the use of the desktop computers and improve overall performance.
I'd love to know what "the failing 80GB SATA HDD" means? Does it mean Dell HDD specifically, or the HDD technology in general? I seem to be still doing OK - hopefully - with my Dell HDD and have had it since 2014. I'm also not sure whether just the hardware alone is responsible for any slow down if there is one with the old Dell's, if it's a Dell there are many other more serious factors such as BIOS updates, and similar software on the system and operating side that haven't been updated or have been updated in a way they're conflicting. How does one know it's specifically the HDD hardware slowing things down?

#14
The drives (mix of Seagate and WD) in the machines (Windows Vista) were starting to present with bad blocks plus a 80GB drive does have much space left after win7 is installed. It is more than likely the machines were donate by a local technical school so has a hard life before we got them.
#15
(03-20-2019, 11:26 AM)buzzawak Wrote: The drives (mix of Seagate and WD) in the machines (Windows Vista) were starting to present with bad blocks plus a 80GB drive does have much space left after win7 is installed. It is more than likely the machines were donate by a local technical school so has a hard life before we got them.
OK I get it thanks @buzzawak. My Dell is a Dell Optiplex 9020 Intel i7 with 500GB hard drive and 8GB RAM that I upgraded to 16GB RAM. Doesn't feel much faster after the memory upgrade, but I'm still happy with the computer. I bought it in 2014 and usually hardware lasts three to four years for me before I need to replace it. I think my Windows 7 Professional is beginning to feel dated, but for the rest may be able to make the Dell last for a bit longer.

#16
I prefer to have a combination of both as it significantly improves performance. Keep windows and exe files on SSD and rest of big guns on HDD
#17
Setting up my system on a SSD was one of my best decisions I ever made.
In use is a 500GB Samsung SSD for the system and programs and a 1TB HDD for mp3, videos and so on.

On a visit at friends I'm getting nervous and wondering if the system takes much more time than at home.
#18
For external use, I recommend ssd for portability and hhd for home/office used to keep cost down, so use both.

hhd has been very reliable except I accidently dropped one once, it was a total disaster. so unless you bulk it up with a lot of cushioning, you should not consider them to be very portable.

In any case, putting all your eggs in one basket/location is straight idiotic, external storage is a must for every self respect digital life these days lol

Cloud is good, there is higher chance for data loss on a home/work computer than in the cloud. You can always get some free space here and there. Most paid storage (google drive, one drive, drop box) are quite reasonably priced, well worth the investment. For privacy, it's a good idea to have your essential data encrypted before storing them in the cloud.
  




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