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M17x R3 SSD and HDD questions!

Discussion in 'Alienware 17 and M17x' started by Bartlett, Apr 22, 2011.

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  1. Bartlett

    Bartlett The Prophet

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    I am wondering if I should get an SSD and if I do, how I will balance that with a 750GB hard drive. My SSD will most likely be 120GB or 128GB. What files should be dedicated to the SSD? And what about TRIM and the decreased performance?

    Also, I will be getting a 320GB hard drive with my M17x, but will be using another hard drive (SSD or 750GB), so what is the best way to reinstall everything just as it was onto another hard drive? Copy the drive image?

    Thanks

    Mods if you feel this belongs in the SSD section, I guess it could go either way, please move it there.
     
  2. Tapakidney

    Tapakidney Notebook Evangelist

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    From what I have read, imaging onto a SSD is not recommended. Do a clean install and use this thread:

    http://forum.notebookreview.com/ali...ook-feel-after-clean-install-windows-7-a.html

    If you go with SSD, make sure you disable the paging file (maybe keep a paging file on the other hard drive), defragger, and hibernation (optional - saves space). Set your drive to AHCI in BIOS BEFORE installing Win7.

    The resource CD that comes with the system is missing some stuff, so you will need to hit the dell drivers page. Namely, my CD was missing the USB 3.0 drivers and AlienFX software.
     
  3. HSN21

    HSN21 Notebook Deity

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    1-Move all files to external HD
    2-Reinstall windows+All applications on the SSD
    3-Copy all Media (Videos/music/Games/etc to HD)
    4-Move Games you play to SSD and change their path (there are tools for that) once you finish the game move it back to the HD

    That way you will benefit from the SSD with every Game/app/OS.
    Trim issues almost don't exist with latest SSD

    120GB will be a plenty using the method i mentioned above, i usually have 5-6Games on the SSD at the time, the rest are applications and OS (and i still get 25GB left with my 120GB Drive)
     
  4. Bartlett

    Bartlett The Prophet

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    Ah I see, thanks for the link and the warning on the missing drivers.

    So you would suggest keeping all commonly used programs on the SSD. Then the games/videos/music/random files are kept on the HD and when used copy them to the SSD then change their path.

    What software do you recommend for changing their path?

    Also what about performance degradation over time?

    Thanks
     
  5. HSN21

    HSN21 Notebook Deity

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    Moving Pictures/music/videos to SSD is near useless because there is almost no load to reduce, i only move current played Games to the SSD, 99% of my games are from Steam so it's a matter of clicking a button to move games from one drive to the other, There is a program called "Steam Mover" which will do the job for you

    [​IMG]

    Degradation over time take Many years before it get noticeable with decent SSD with Trim and by that time i don't think you would care about 120GB SSD (they should be much bigger/faster/cheaper after few years)

    http://lifehacker.com/#!5626931/ste...ations-to-free-up-space-on-your-primary-drive

    Using such a setup even 60GB might be enough, but i wouldn't be comfortable with only 60GB, 120GB leave a room for you in the future.
     
  6. Bartlett

    Bartlett The Prophet

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    Ah that Steam app is great.

    I may go the route of an SSD and if so I will get the 120GB Intel 510.
    I'll put just programs and some games on it along with basic documents. Do you think that is worth the $300?

    I would put Videos/Photos/Music and various other things will go on the 750GB HD.


    Thanks
     
  7. zchay7e

    zchay7e Notebook Consultant

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    Dont worry about Windows 7 settings when you install the SSD. Win 7 will automatically detect the SSD and adjust itself accordingly (ie turn off defrag etc.) Also, the TRIM command will be issued automatically to the SSD, so you can just relax and sit back and do nothing. After all, this is 2011! Don't tinker with any Win 7 settings, its all done automatically.

    And yes, why not install the most played game on the SSD. No reason not to. Win 7 will take care of you and the SSD. Just relax.
     
  8. HSN21

    HSN21 Notebook Deity

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    Intel 510 120GB 299$ is a very solid choice, If i were to buy a new SSD today i would get it or go for C300 64GB (119$) if my budget was really low, Don't go with the Vertex Drives though, they are nice drives but have issues with the m17x
     
  9. zergslayer69

    zergslayer69 Notebook Deity

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    Hmm, I currently have the vertex 3 ordered but still have to wait a while before it ships. It was appealing since it claimed 500mb read/write. Intel has less read and half the write. You'd still recommend the intel 510 in that case for roughly the same price?

    Surely, somebody has gotten the vertex 3 to work somewhere.
     
  10. HSN21

    HSN21 Notebook Deity

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    Vertex 3 =
    - Average Speed much lower than maximum speed (in reality it's faster than intel by a little not much)
    - 120GB version is actually much slower than the 240GB Version

    Intel =
    -Average and max speed almost the same
    -More reliable, Vertex 3 already have issues with many other laptops not only m17x


    I don't know which you have ordered, if you ordered the 240GB version Vertex 3 you should keep it, the extra speed might be worth the little trouble you gotta go through to let it work but if you are buying the 120GB version I'd say cancel it and get the intel drive if i were you.

    From anantech Vertex 3 Review Conclusion:
    if you're going to be working with a lot of incompressible data (e.g. pictures, movies) on your drive then you'll want to either go for the 240GB version or perhaps consider a more traditional controller. The performance impact the 120GB sees when working with incompressible data just puts it below what I would consider the next-generation performance threshold.
     
  11. zergslayer69

    zergslayer69 Notebook Deity

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    Hmm, well thanks for the detailed response. The 120 was what I ordered, don't need THAT much space on SSD. Guess I'll go for the intel 510. Is the 510 the fastest 120 gig SSD?
     
  12. HSN21

    HSN21 Notebook Deity

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    It's not matter of faster/slower, think of it that way during use speed is

    Vertex 3 = 420MB-390MB-350MB-430MB-320MB-470MB-310MB
    Intel 510 = 370MB the whole time on average

    So sometimes it's faster than Vertex 3 but also sometimes Vertex 3 is faster
    But if you deal with compressed files the Vertex 3 will be even slower than listed, and Freeze sometimes for a second or so etc

    For pure speed and benchmarking Vertex 3 win because of the maximum speed it can reach (so it will look very appealing at charts seeing it at 500MB/s) but it does not keep that speed all the time, in reality both are more than fast enough so chose which one you think is more reliable, so far everyone is happy with intel SSD, few frustrated Vertex 3 users but the rest of them are happy with it too.
     
  13. zergslayer69

    zergslayer69 Notebook Deity

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    Alrighty, reliability is the way to go. Intel it is, plus I'll get it sooner!
     
  14. Tapakidney

    Tapakidney Notebook Evangelist

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    I had read this too, but upon doing a fresh install, I saw Windows did none of those things for me. If anything, best to double check after you install to see if those things did indeed happen.
     
  15. ruderthanyou

    ruderthanyou Notebook Geek

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  16. zergslayer69

    zergslayer69 Notebook Deity

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    If I understood the other thread correctly, it's just a one time thing to tinker with until you format the hd right?
     
  17. ruderthanyou

    ruderthanyou Notebook Geek

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    Yeah, you do this once during the installation of Windows. All these extra steps really only add less than a minute or two to the install time. The port 1 and hard drive boot order things needs to be done whether it's a Vertex or Intel 6 Gbps SSD. Also of note, the fix for my hangs was a problem originally reported on a Corsair C300. This isn't just a OCZ Vertex 3 problem.

    If you're thinking of getting the Vertex, wait until Azureal installs his and posts his experience. Its better if we can get some affirmation of my results.
     
  18. zergslayer69

    zergslayer69 Notebook Deity

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    Sounds good. I still have a few weeks before my laptop arrives.
     
  19. Azureal

    Azureal Notebook Consultant

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    Smooth sailing for me and my recent Vertex 3 install in my R3. Rebuilt windows and with ruderthanyou's guide, everything went great.

    I understand the differing opinions on various drives. We all want to justify spending a small fortune for a fast drive. I certainly looked at the Intel 510 series as well as the Crucial C300 drives.

    Despite the past issues, I read several reviews that lead me to believe that the Vertex 3 would be the fastest drive on the market for a while, so I bought it.

    I won't say "no regrets" until the drive has been installed and running for a few weeks, but I have had zero BSODs and minimal issues getting things running perfectly.
     
  20. Panamaniac

    Panamaniac Notebook Enthusiast

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    IMHO reading reviews by andatech and other, I kinda understood that the Vertex3 is fast only in compressed data...
    sortha like saying it is faster in rails, well oiled, no front wind, and lite baggage.

    The Intel 510 was having a better average speed. I think someone showed a picture onceof how the Vertex 3 fluctuates compared to the 510.
     
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