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  1. #1
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    TERRIBLE performance on a SSD (Solid-State Hard Drive)

    I moved my OS to a Corsair Nova SATA-2 Solid State Hard Drive (SSD). The packaging advertises 270 MB/sec read, and 240 write.

    I ran the "Windows Experience" performance analysis tool. Every subsystem scored 7.1 or higher, EXCEPT my SSD - which finished an abysmal 5.9. This should be the BEST subsystem in my kit.

    I ran the PassMark suite. The "disk" performed at less than HALF of its advertised performance. This is in a proper benchmark environment - a fully-patched Win7 system, freshly booted with nothing else running. The drive is attached to a SATA-3 capable motherboard.

    Has anyone had such pathetic performance from a SSD?

  2. #2
    WS Lounge VIP Browni's Avatar
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    Check your BIOS settings and ensure that the drive is running in AHCI mode, it sounds to me that you have IDE mode enabled for your SATA devices.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Browni View Post
    Check your BIOS settings and ensure that the drive is running in AHCI mode, it sounds to me that you have IDE mode enabled for your SATA devices.
    Thanks for your suggestion. I am not a n00b. I was the guy that everyone asked how to resolve their IRQ and DMA conflicts 20 years ago. I remember when RLL hard drive technology was brand new - and people still clung to MFM.

    SATA is superior to IDE, which is superior to RLL (I'm skipping a bit here) which is superior to MFM. This brand-new top-rated SSD ought to be the best of the best. But it is mediocre. Win7 says it is my system's bottleneck, and implies a substantial performance penalty for my otherwise highly-rated system. Other benchmarks support this conclusion.

    I'm asking if anyone here has provisioned a SSD as the primary boot volume on Win7 (64-bit) and run benchmarks. My system's performance has degraded to a VERY noticeable extent since I have switched to a SSD primary drive.

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    Have you looked at the performance stats on Toms Hardware?

    cheers, Paul

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    First, I would be cautious about the precise Windows Experience Score, there can be variations in system performance during those tests and the Experience Score presents a layer on top of the real data that you are looking for - the I/O performance of the drive itself. That said, it does seem a low score for an SSD.

    As you know, even a modest an SSD should outperform the highest performing mechanical drives, which taken on face value suggests either the SSD is faulty or the installation is sub-optimal.

    Take hard copies of the I/O benchmarks on your main rig, then install the drive on a different machine following manufacturers guidelines to the letter (that's important if it turns out to be faulty and you need to RMA it). Re-run the benchmark read/writes tests on the second machine. If they are as bad as you find on your main rig the drive is faulty and you have a discussion with your vendor. Having the hard copies of the test results allows you to document the problem and makes it easier to argue your case.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Your not the only one with complaints about this drives performance.
    It takes a dump on Newegg too, if this is your drive.

  7. #7
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    Moving your OS (cloning?) is not the best thing to do when migrating to an SSD, a fresh install will make W7 install specifically for SSD.

    Proper alignment can make or break the performance. have you checked the alignment of the drive?

    Does the drive support TRIM? I ask because it feels like an older model.

    The reviews linked by Clint don't look good for this drive

  8. #8
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    Nobody said you were a noob (whatever that means) They were only trying to help and Browni was quite right in his suggestion to check the bios is set to AHCI. This may not be the only thing to cause the problem but is worth a check.
    I have all my comps on SSD's with no problems at all. My laptop on sata2 is giving me benchmarks of of 280 read 235 write. My Desk top over 530 read 280 write. They are both Crucial M4 sata 3 (6GBs) SSD's but only my desktop has 6GBs sata connections.
    You could try Corsairs site to see if there is any firmware updates available as this sometimes improves things.
    Clive

    All typing errors are my own work and subject to patents pending. Except errors by the spell checker. And that has its own patients.

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    @Satrow
    You say cloning is not a good idea. What about restoring an image backup from a HDD to an SSD ?
    Clive

    All typing errors are my own work and subject to patents pending. Except errors by the spell checker. And that has its own patients.

  10. #10
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Actually cloning would be better than imaging [from a HDD to a SSD], but clean install is the prefered way to go.

  11. #11
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    The difference lies in the W7 install process, if it recognizes that it's being installed to an SSD, it modifies the install to reduce the number of writes, turn off ReadyBoost, Defrag, modify prefetch/superfetch parameters etc. If the SSD is cloned, or restored, from an HDD, then it isn't optimized.


    Bad alignment may give a much bigger performance hit though. Simple alignment check the AU way.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by CLiNT View Post
    Your not the only one with complaints about this drives performance.
    It takes a dump on Newegg too, if this is your drive.
    It is exactly my drive. I thought the Corsair brand was above reproach. It seems I was mistaken. Apparently this device is crap.

    I checked the alignment - the drive is properly aligned on 4096-byte boundaries.

    For the benefit of other responders - I did a clean (bare-metal) install of Win7 onto this SSD - my previous (mechanical) drive had failed completely. It was my intention to transfer only my license, not an actual copy of the original OS from the failed drive.

  13. #13
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I would be rather hesitant to spend 80 dollars on a SSD. I would consider that to be too cheap to be reliable, even without looking fully at the specs. If you could find an excuse to RMA the drive, I would do so.
    I would rather spend 400 dollars on a decent drive than 80 dollars on a cheap one.
    In most instances the old saying, "you get what you pay for", is true.
    Last edited by CLiNT; 2012-02-02 at 22:04.

  14. #14
    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    Regardless, of brand failures, the SSD is still so new, that I'm sure we're going to see all sorts of complaints popping up as time goes on.
    So far, we're only seeing the tip of the Ice-Burg.

    My good friend, Guru and webmaster brought an HP netbook with an SSD in it, over to my shop today to get my input on why it would all of a sudden be wiped clean.
    I must admit I know more about worm holes than I do about SSD's.

    So together we did a little basic troubleshooting on the little Netbook. I booted it up with my Ghost boot Flash Drive and Ghost was able to see the HD with no problems, even got the size correct. Then we booted it up with a "Memtest86+" CD and it booted up and ran the memtest, again with no problem. Everything seemed to be working, but the HD was clean.

    So the next step was to boot up with my Windows 7 DVD and start a re-install of Win-7.
    Everything went according to plan and Win-7 loaded up and ran with no problems.

    So what happened to the OS on the SSD? Good Question! Another SSD mystery.

    I don't know, if there's a command or something that can do a Master Reset on an SSD, but something sure as heck Erased it.
    I doubt that we've seen the last of that problem.

    I think for the next few years, I'll stick with the SATA III drives. Running at twice the speed of a SATA II drive, it promises to be a real barn burner and it's a technology that has long proven itself. I already have a Seagate 500 gig, SATA III drive but no way to push it to full speed.
    My mobo will only accommodate a SATA II drive. It's sure purring along nicely at SATA II speed, running the Windows 8/DP.

    Cheers Mates!
    The Doctor
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    Backup! Backup! Backup! GHOST Rocks!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by CLiNT View Post
    Actually cloning would be better than imaging [from a HDD to a SSD], but clean install is the prefered way to go.
    Hi Clint
    Thanks for info. As I have already restored my old OS using an image from the old HDD your quite right it did turn out to be mis-aligned. As I did not want to do a clean install and then take days to get all my software installed again I looked around for a solution and found one.

    I found Paragon Alignment Tool 3.0 which is not free but it aligned my SSD without losing anything at all. All my data and programs intact and when checked with your alignment checker as well as the built-in one and checks out as aligned. Was well worth the money for time saved although it did take two hours to complete. Also had to untick the options for integrity checks to get it to do the SSD but went and completed without issue (a bit risky according to their help line but as I had an image anyway had nothing to lose except be back to where I started).

    It also aligned all my external HDDs which they say improves performance but I do not understand what this does for a spinning disk drive which normally uses 63 sectors sizes if I got that right. But they still work fine but cannot vouch for any improvement in their performance (Have read the comments from Tinto on a previous post of mine re alignment of HDDs when I first mentioned the Paragon Alignment tool but thought it might be helpful to you also).
    It definitely improved the SSD which now has stopped the stuttering issue it occasionally had which is another reason I think money was well spent (even though only likely to use it once)
    Last edited by curiousclive; 2012-02-12 at 08:37.
    Clive

    All typing errors are my own work and subject to patents pending. Except errors by the spell checker. And that has its own patients.

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