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Seagate's New SSHD Hybrids Have Dual-Mode Flash Caches

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the hybrid-like-a-jedi-mind-meld dept.

Data Storage 141

crookedvulture writes "Seagate's has revealed its next-generation hybrid drives, and for the first time, there's a 3.5" desktop model in the mix. The new family of so-called SSHDs includes standard and slim notebook variants with 500GB and 1TB capacities, plus 1TB and 2TB desktop versions. All of them combine mechanical platters with 8GB of NAND in a dual-mode SLC/MLC configuration. The SLC component is largely reserved to cache host writes, while the MLC portion is filled with frequently accessed data to speed read performance. Despite MLC NAND's lower write endurance, Seagate claims the SSHDs have more than enough headroom to last at least five years with typical client workloads. More impressively, the mobile SSHDs are supposed to be faster than the old Momentus XT hybrid even though they have slower 5,400-RPM spindle speeds. The mobile models are slated to start selling shortly at $79 for 500GB and $99 for 1TB, while the 1TB and 2TB desktop flavors are due in late April for $99 and $149, respectively. Unlike other NAND caching solutions, Seagate's tech requires no software or drivers, making it compatible with any OS."

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141 comments

What is the point? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090149)

Why is this better than having 1/2 boot SSDs and an HDD RAID for storage?

Re:What is the point? (5, Insightful)

adibe (2480114) | about a year ago | (#43090257)

1. Cheaper
2. Less headaches while configuring.


Bonus: All your data will be cached, not only what's on the SSD (OS + core programs). That includes the games you have installed on the HDD. (When you have a 120 GB SSD +1 TB HDD setup you typically do not install games on the SSD.)

Re:What is the point? (1)

Aranykai (1053846) | about a year ago | (#43090625)

Its unlikely that many of your games will end up on the cache seeing as its only 8 GB.

Re:What is the point? (4, Informative)

Knuckles (8964) | about a year ago | (#43090635)

Its unlikely that many of your games will end up on the cache seeing as its only 8 GB.

You don't know how this works. The firmware recognizes individual HD sectors that are frequently read, and transparently copies them to the SSD.

Re:What is the point? (2)

Aranykai (1053846) | about a year ago | (#43091435)

Given that the most read sectors probably contain parts of your OS and pagefile, and considering the size of a modern OS and the size of a modern game, you really expect there its likely with only 8GB that the sectors containing your game will end up on it? Its not impossible, but I know several games that have more than 8GB of content in and of themselves.

The write cache is probably a good thing, but I wouldn't expect gamers to see much performance on the read side of things with one of these. Much better off going with a discrete SSD or a more traditional hybrid setup.

Re:What is the point? (1)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about a year ago | (#43091513)

Given that the most read sectors probably contain parts of your OS and pagefile, and considering the size of a modern OS and the size of a modern game, you really expect there its likely with only 8GB that the sectors containing your game will end up on it? Its not impossible, but I know several games that have more than 8GB of content in and of themselves.

The write cache is probably a good thing, but I wouldn't expect gamers to see much performance on the read side of things with one of these. Much better off going with a discrete SSD or a more traditional hybrid setup.

Given the price, and the price of the 3rd gen crucial/micron ssd's due out this month I'd say this isn't a gamer product. This is a value/low end product.

Re:What is the point? (2)

Knuckles (8964) | about a year ago | (#43091549)

Obviously there are games having more than 8 GB content, and obviously they won't stream a level from the SSD. That's not what this is for. If you play it a lot, sectors that are read a lot may end up on the SSD. Which is kind of the point.

Re:What is the point? (4, Informative)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a year ago | (#43091725)

Given that the most read sectors probably contain parts of your OS and pagefile, and considering the size of a modern OS

If you're reading/writing to the pagefile more than just a very little, you're running the performance equivalent of a 200MHz Pentium 686. Not kidding. People seem to think swap is a thing that happens a lot; it isn't. You know how you have 16GB of RAM and you're like 1.2GB into swap somehow? That's 1.2GB of program initialization crap and other cruft that NEVER GETS TOUCHED and was paged out.

You know how you're only using 6GB of RAM, but somehow you have 1.2GB in swap? 10GB of that shit is pagecache so your OS doesn't have to re-read operating system files (among other shit) constantly. That stuff gets read at boot time.

Computers don't work by churning the hard disk a lot.

why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / older (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year ago | (#43092367)

why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / older ram on some kind of card / sata device? Just use it for temp stuff and it does not need a battery back up.

Re:why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / old (1)

isopropanol (1936936) | about a year ago | (#43092717)

Because it's faster and cheaper to just chuck more RAM in the machine. And you get about the same effect by using a USB stick for readyboost on windows or swap+logs on Linux.

USB is slower with high CPU overhead (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year ago | (#43093331)

USB is slower with high CPU overhead and that eats up USB bandwidth that you may need for other USB stuff.

Re:USB is slower with high CPU overhead (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#43094157)

USB is slower with high CPU overhead and that eats up USB bandwidth that you may need for other USB stuff.

USB 3.0 is about the same speed as SATA - 5 Gbit/sec versus 6 Gbit/sec

I can't imagine that CPU overhead is much worse than SATA on a modern CPU that's probably just hanging around waiting for the I/O to finish anyway.

I can stream audio to my USB audio player and my mouse/keyboard work fine while running a backup to a USB 3.0 hard drive, so I don't think I'm constrained by bus bandwidth.

That said, I've never really noticed much speed improvement with Readycache using a 16GB USB flash drive or 32GB SD card. (or both at the same time). But when I popped an mSATA SSD into the WWAN slot on my laptop and moved the operating system to it, I noticed a dramatic increase in speed and usability.

Re:why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / old (2)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#43093909)

I have never seen a situation where using a USB device was 'faster' than ANYTHING on a hard drive.

ReadyBoost has never made a USB 2.0 device faster than just pulling the original data off the hard drive.

Its a cute idea, but in practice it fails instantly.

Swap ... on USB? Are you fucking kidding? Do you have any idea how much that would suck absolute ass?

Your hard drive is orders of magnitude faster than your shitty USB device. My iron-oxide disk is at least 10 times faster than the USB3 key plugged into my machine, and thats ignoring my SSD boot drive speeds, which guess what they due to the speed graph?

USB* is slow, even at USB3 speeds its a dumb idea.

Re:why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / old (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43095507)

"iron oxide"? You're old. It's been cobalt based for years now.

Re:why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / old (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#43093961)

why not have a 2-4GB ram disk with slower / older ram on some kind of card / sata device? Just use it for temp stuff and it does not need a battery back up.

I remember having an ISA card that acted like a RAM disk back when computers had much more serious memory constraints, I think I had it on an 8086, which had a 1MB addressable space limit.

It was incredibly fast, I was using it to hold temporary files to help speed up a sort that wouldn't fit in memory - I think it had 128KB of RAM and it was incredibly fast - well, as fast as an 8 - 16MB/sec ISA bus could be.

But I can't imagine that there's much of a market for this type of accelerator these days since most people that want fast RAM disk performance just add more RAM to their computer and let the operating system manage it - getting a new motherboard with more RAM capacity if needed. I did find this card, which includes a backup battery so it's not just a RAM disk, the contents don't go away when you turn off your computer:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16815168001 [newegg.com]

It probably has lower latency than an SSD, but it acts as a 1.5 Gbit SATA interface, so transfer rate is limited to 150MB/sec.

I've also seen SSDs on a PCIe card, but that's not quite the same.

Re:What is the point? (2)

RicktheBrick (588466) | about a year ago | (#43092811)

I have two 6 core computers(amd) and I run world community grid software on both of them. I run them hard because the software will run each core at 100%. One of them has a ssd. The one with the ssd has more than double the results as the other for the last 30 days so that could be the point. I am sure that for most people making the computer faster will just mean more idle time for the computer.

Re:What is the point? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43094387)

Computers don't work by churning the hard disk a lot.

Back in MY day, our computers spun their reel to reel tapes back and forth, all day long, AND WE LIKED IT.

Heh!

Re:What is the point? (1)

DigitAl56K (805623) | about a year ago | (#43094853)

Given that the most read sectors probably contain parts of your OS and pagefile, and considering the size of a modern OS and the size of a modern game, you really expect there its likely with only 8GB that the sectors containing your game will end up on it? Its not impossible, but I know several games that have more than 8GB of content in and of themselves.

But you're missing the point. To maximize the benefit of the cache the stuff that's accessed most should be in the cache, whether it is the pagefile or something else. Otherwise, when your game is running and Windows is hitting the frequently accessed part of the page file, your game will run slow. Likewise, what is the point in putting 8GB of your game into the cache if only 5% of it is accessed frequently? Not only is that poor cache management, it also means that any other processes running that could be making use of cached data aren't because your game data is needlessly filling it up.

As more of these drives come out their cache management algorithm and cache size will be probed in performance reviews. If you want a drive to fully "cache" your game, buy an actual SSD and install it there. Meanwhile, this hybrid approach should provide an excellent cost trade-off for the general consumer, who should see a huge performance boost, despite not having 100% of data residing in the cache - but that's because it's less frequently accessed and thus contributes less to the perception of performance anyway.

Re:What is the point? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#43095851)

Or you could just have an OS boot drive that's SSD.

This is pretty trivial to setup in Unix. It should not be such a chore in Windows or MacOS. A hybrid device makes more sense in a laptop since you have severe space constraints. For anything else, a special purpose device seems like a bad hack to get around fragile system software.

Re:What is the point? (1)

Annirak (181684) | about a year ago | (#43090909)

Bonus: All your data will be cached, not only what's on the SSD (OS + core programs). That includes the games you have installed on the HDD. (When you have a 120 GB SSD +1 TB HDD setup you typically do not install games on the SSD.)

All this is true, but it ignores SSD-caching solutions, such as Intel SRT. In that case, you get the same deal as the hybrid hdd, but instead of an 8GB cache, you get a cache the size of an SSD. However, this does not mean that you get the reliability benefits for SLC+MLC. If you really want the SSD-caching solution, you should look for a SLC SSD, which is even more expensive.

Re:What is the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093817)

Bonus: All your data will be cached, not only what's on the SSD (OS + core programs). That includes the games you have installed on the HDD. (When you have a 120 GB SSD +1 TB HDD setup you typically do not install games on the SSD.)

Huh? I have a 120GB SSD - and no HDD at all. So of course games are installed on the SDD, there is no other place to have them. room enough too, the SSD is only 1/3 full so far. Who needs a terabyte? For what?

Re:What is the point? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090343)

It allows you to treat all your work equally, regardless of how often you access it. You can still have a dedicated SSD for the system if you want to but if you start to work on a smaller project frequently this disk will keep it in the faster memory and move your none-active projects to slow storage without you having to do so manually.

Every damn comment section is filled with people arguing that a product is completely useless for everyone just because it doesn't fit their immediate need. Is it really that hard to figure out a theoretical situation where something could be useful?

Re:What is the point? (1)

DJRumpy (1345787) | about a year ago | (#43091199)

I suspect the /. crowd hates the idea because they don't have total control over what data is stored on SSD. Face it, we're all a bit of a control freak when it comes to anything PC.

That said, I have no problem with the SSHD, but I find 8GB to be largely useless. I much prefer the Apple approach of melding separate platter and SSD volumes together. You get a much larger SSD that makes it more practical and likely that often used programs will remain on SSD, while allowing huge storage capacities. It also leaves the option open to allow tweaking as to the algorithm or ruleset used to determine where data is stored.

Re:What is the point? (1, Informative)

dfghjk (711126) | about a year ago | (#43091539)

"Face it, we're all a bit of a control freak when it comes to anything PC."

No, just many pretend to be. Those that do don't even know how storage works.

"It also leaves the option open to allow tweaking as to the algorithm or ruleset used to determine where data is stored."

Which will be done exactly never.

The Apple solution is limited to internal storage only as well as to their best attempt to keep it closed to their own hardware. It has the advantage of expanding capacity where block-oriented solutions do not plus the division of work is in a superior location. You cannot dual-boot the Apple solution. It is better only in applications that Apple envisions, precisely the opposite of what you suggest.

Re:What is the point? (4, Informative)

DJRumpy (1345787) | about a year ago | (#43091591)

Actually it's not. You can create a hybrid volume from any two drives easily via terminal. You can find the instructions to do so with a few seconds of Googling.

The restriction on dual boot is not related to the hybrid, but rather due to the EFI and limitations in Windows.

Windows can’t boot from drives larger than 2TB in the absence of an EFI or UEFI BIOS.

Re:What is the point? (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year ago | (#43092041)

No, just many pretend to be. Those that do don't even know how storage works.

oh bullshit.

The frequency of access of a sector on the disk is not a proxy measure of my wait time. Its a proxy measure of the OS wait time.

I wake up..
I walk over to the compute..
I turn it on..
I then go make coffee and maybe even take a shower.

So far, I have waited for nothing. Nothing the computer has done so far has been at all representative of my wait time. Yet all of these hybrid cache solutions have been factoring in all those reads (and writes) in its cache strategy.

The ultimate problem is that there are rapid diminishing returns on cache size at any level you care to consider, and that this sort of hybrid drive with 8GB of flash isn't orders of magnitude larger than the OS's ram cache right below it. Its not the sort of size change that can offer large benefits through the use of oblivious caching algorithms. If I want 8GB to give me large benefits that address my wait times, I've got to do it myself by making sure that only things I actually wait for are cached.

Re:What is the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093605)

When you're working during the day, do you normally hit return, get up, go get coffee, take a piss, and come back to see the next line? Your post is meaningless except for initial boot times, and assumes that any automatic caching algorithm simply sucks, when most do a decent job. That said, there are any number of apps you access semi-frequently, which will benefit from cached load times, not even considering loading the entire OS into SSD. Add any recent games which easily come in above 8GB (and that just for a single game), and you could easily fill 8GB with 'frequently' cached data. The benefit of a larger cache removes the need to micromanage your cache, and allows for some slop, as well as for 'infrequent' data caching. You may load a dev environment once a day, which an automated caching scheme wouldn't consider for cache simply due to lack of frequency. A larger cache removes that limitation.

I can't speak for the GP or the parent, but my new iMac boots in approximately 5 seconds from the Apple logo to a fully usable and responsive desktop. Contrast that with my 2009 which took approximately 30 seconds. Switching to dashboard and waiting for widgets to load to 5-10 seconds. It's instantaneous now. This is one of those things I may use once or twice a day. Doing mass updates in iTunes? The old machine with a classic spindle drive took 30-45 seconds to update a few thousand tags. The new one does it in a few seconds.

The simple fact is that all of these things add up, even though they aren't frequently used.

Re:What is the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43094439)

Why is this better than having 1/2 boot SSDs and an HDD RAID for storage?

Any DBMS is heavily limited by commits. Basically, every transaction requires waiting for the disk to spin once. An SSD write cache provides very fast commits, and allows the HD controller to reorder those writes anyway it pleases, while still maintaining the durability guarantees. It gets you good database performance and correct behavior.

Ah Crap! (1)

jbeaupre (752124) | about a year ago | (#43090221)

Ah crap! I just bought the Momentus XT 750 version a couple weeks ago. I'm pleased with it. Not as fast as SS drive, but roomier and cheaper. But crap, if I'd just waited ...

Then again, I was expecting the next version to have 16 or 32 gig of flash. And I did get a 7200 rpm drive. Handy for some of the huge files I process.

Re:Ah Crap! (1)

sethstorm (512897) | about a year ago | (#43090735)

It'll be faster than the hybrid drive when the flash fails, so you'll have something on these slower drives.

Re:Ah Crap! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091145)

I'm a long way from convinced that they've managed to improve performance far enough that a 5400 rpm drive can outperform a last-generation 7200 rpm drive even with the fanciest caching algorithms imaginable. Benchmarks will, of course, depend on workload, and I somehow doubt they tested with a large file/random access workload, which is of course the hardest for a better cache / slower disk combination to win on. So you've probably got the better drive for your application.

I am bootyass process (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090229)

I am bootyass process! I have my online degree in chemical mathematics again!

I invite you to become a file cabinet baby, sir.

FTFY (0)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#43090265)

Unlike other NAND caching solutions, Seagate's tech requires no software or drivers, making it compatible with any OS."

Yes, which means the drive is basically stupid-caching everything. There's a reason you want block-level access to devices. It's called performance. What's the point in having a SSD hung on the side that can't be independently accessed? Stupid-caching means it can't predict what I want next, and since it looks just like any other HDD, the OS' own cache optimization routines are going to be totally fucked because there's no way for the device to talk to the OS intelligently... or vice versa.

Fail.

Re:FTFY (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090349)

Stupid-caching means it can't predict what I want next, and since it looks just like any other HDD, the OS' own cache optimization routines are going to be totally fucked because there's no way for the device to talk to the OS intelligently... or vice versa.

The read ahead cache strategy is not very good for a cache storage that can store permanently, the OS RAM cache already does that better. What is needed is something that caches the blocks that are used most frequently over time, and this drive can do that very well. Too bad 8 GB is so obviously too little for my use.

Re:FTFY (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#43090377)

it wouldn't be too bad if the ssd side was like 80 gigs.

but it's not. it just couple of dollars worth of chips now and seagate acting as if it was something else.

8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on board? (5, Interesting)

NadMutter (631470) | about a year ago | (#43090573)

For a mere 8GB acting as cache in the drive, I'd rather spend $30 on RAM and let the OS use it for buffering/caching data (which Linux at least will do pretty intelligently for me even without changing /proc/sys/kernel/whatever).

I love my SSD but that's way more than 8GB. As an extra bonus, the RAM can be allocated as necessary, is faster, and there are no write/erase issues with it.

Now, come up with say 2TB on platters and 128GB flash and we're talking a different proposition.

8GB might be sufficient for those who care about how quickly they boot up (assuming the bulk of the kernel etc ends up in the flash cache and stays there until shutdown) but I only reboot about once a month at most.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#43090731)

8GB might be sufficient for those who care about how quickly they boot up (assuming the bulk of the kernel etc ends up in the flash cache and stays there until shutdown) but I only reboot about once a month at most.

you can buy a USB 3.0 stick and put your OS on it if you care about it that much. 8GB is nothing. Without any drivers so the OS can be aware, it's basically an HDD with one duct taped to it anyway...

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (3, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a year ago | (#43090925)

Flash makes little difference to read performance, but can make a huge different to write speeds. RAM, being non-volatile, means that if an application calls fsync, you block until all of the data has been flushed to the disk. With a flash write cache, you can buffer a load of writes and return almost immediately (writes into flash can easily go at 100+MB/s) and then write them out to disk when it is idle or less loaded.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090969)

Flash makes little difference to read performance, but can make a huge different to write speeds.

That depends on what you're reading. It makes a huge difference if it's not one large file read sequentially.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#43094263)

That depends on what you're reading. It makes a huge difference if it's not one large file read sequentially.

Oh, I see you've compiled a large project at some point.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

KingMotley (944240) | about a year ago | (#43093835)

Flash makes little difference to read performance

I totally got my system configured wrong then, because I get ~1,000MB/s reads off my flash with 0.1ms access time (RAID-0), and ~110-160MB/s reads off my HDDs with 9ms access time. Please tell me how to reconfigure my system so that I can get the same performance from my HDDs as I do my SSDs. And before you ask, I also have a hardware RAID of 8 3TB drives, and it still isn't as fast as reading my SSDs.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

dfghjk (711126) | about a year ago | (#43091471)

Disk storage contains filesystem metadata. Sooner or later writes *have* to go to disk regardless of how much RAM you have. Flash can accelerate that. RAM and flash are not interchangeable and 8GB can be enough for some applications.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

chrylis (262281) | about a year ago | (#43091739)

Besides the write performance Raven noted, the flash block cache has two additional advantages over more RAM: depending on your workload, it's entirely possible for a working set to take up most of the 16GB limit for many systems these days, and all the RAM in the world doesn't help you on system startup. I have the second-gen XT, and there's a noticeable difference in boot/launch times the second and third time a version is loaded over the first.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

gman003 (1693318) | about a year ago | (#43092157)

But pay attention to the price.

Flash is roughly $1/GB. 8GB of flash costs about $8, which is in line with the ~$10 price increase of an SSHD over a similar pure hard drive. At 128GB, though, you're spending as much or more on just the flash than the SSHDs here cost.

Not to mention the physical size. 128GB SSDs take up quite a bit of the space available in a 2.5" disk. You aren't likely to see a 2TB hard drive and a 128GB SSD in a single enclosure anytime soon, simply because that won't fit into a single drive bay.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43094223)

There's plenty of room in a 3.5 form-factor to included a large amount of NAND in a hard-drive. 2TB + 128GB seems both viable and very desirable.

Re:8 GB of flash in the disk vs 8GB of RAM on boar (1)

EmotionToilet (1083453) | about a year ago | (#43094931)

8GB isn't enough cache for those of us who want the OS and multiple large applications on the SSD. But 32GB or 64GB of cache might be. I frequently use Xcode, Eclipse, Photoshop, Logic, and another dozen applications on a daily or weekly basis, and if I don't want to wait 30 seconds for Photoshop to start, then I'm still looking at getting a main 128GB SSD and a regular HD and setting up a Fusion drive, or just going all SSD. I somehow doubt 8GB of cache will live up to any expectations I have about loading times compared to the SSD that I'm used to.

Re:FTFY (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090595)

The cache on your CPU is "stupid-caching" everything too, making it compatible with different OSes. Think about that.

You're stupider than you think.

Re:FTFY (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | about a year ago | (#43090645)

The cache on your CPU is "stupid-caching" everything too, making it compatible with different OSes. Think about that. You're stupider than you think.

*facepalm* One of the major design decisions in CPU architecture is cache optimization. Over half [bit-tech.net] of the silicon in your CPU chip is cache. Saying that CPU caching strategies are as optimized as the drive referenced above is so stupid that God probably had to kill a kitten.

Re:FTFY (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090899)

Over half of the silicon in your CPU chip is cache.

And how is this relevant? That's as relevant and stupid as saying over half the silicon in Seagate's SSHD is cache.

Saying that CPU caching strategies are as optimized as the drive referenced above is so stupid that God probably had to kill a kitten.

Where's your proof that CPU caching strategies are significantly more intelligent that Seagate's caching strategies?

Re:FTFY (1)

dfghjk (711126) | about a year ago | (#43091583)

Block level SSD can cache filesystem metadata that the "OS' own cache optimization routines" cannot.

It helps to actually understand what you are criticizing in such a juvenile manner. Catch up.

All caching is stupid caching until its behavior appears smart. Block caches are as capable of that as any.

Memory caches are useless because they are hung on the side, can't be independently accessed, and basically stupid-cache everything. Right, systems-architect?

Re:FTFY (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093683)

With that attitude, you might as well disable the L2/L3 caches on your CPU, because they use the exact same algorithm.

Oh yeah, those L2/L3 caches also have a 99%+ hit rate.

But hey - just keep wallowing in your ignorance while the rest of us reap the benefits.

Sure of course (2, Interesting)

Fri13 (963421) | about a year ago | (#43090315)

Seagate claims the SSHDs have more than enough headroom to last at least five years with typical client workloads.

The typical client workload is that user powers on own computer, windows starts and then user opens WWW browser and browse web and then does some files with MS Office and turns off the computer.

How about those typical client workloads where almost every day is needed to manage 16-30 gigabytes of new data, what gets edited and copied multiple times?

Re:Sure of course (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091121)

Hopefully the cache fails transparently so that the disk continues to work as a normal 5400 rpm disk after the flash writes are "up."

Re:Sure of course (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | about a year ago | (#43091213)

Yeah it's no problem. Once you buy and "Extended Lifetime Pass" online from Seagate (pricing TBA) the drive will be unlocked for "HD only mode".

Re:Sure of course (1)

fnj (64210) | about a year ago | (#43092399)

Hopefully the cache fails transparently so that the disk continues to work as a normal 5400 rpm disk after the flash writes are "up."

If you believe that, say hello to the tooth fairy and the easter bunny when you see them. Until somebody sacrifices one of these turkeys to science for rigorous testing, it would be wise to bank on the likelihood that this ill-conceived piece of garbage will just serve up disk errors when the flash goes tits up. Which it will do really fast, with all the throughput appropriate to a 1 TB disk drive being funneled through a microscopic 8 GB of flash. Doubtless the provisioning of spare blocks in the flash is ridiculously thin, and the controller is probably as slow and as dumb as fuck too.

Re:Sure of course (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43092723)

Which it will do really fast, with all the throughput appropriate to a 1 TB disk drive being funneled through a microscopic 8 GB of flash.

Most of the data you write to the disk will never see the flash. The disk will know what blocks are most-used and most-recently-used. Most of the data written to the flash will be written to the more durable flash, not the less durable flash. The objection about the disk failing when the flash fails might be true. The objection about all the data being written to the flash is not.

Re:Sure of course (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093295)

You did read that the SLC would be used for writes (SLC has a much longer life), while the delicate MLC would only be used for items that are written few times and read frequently, didn't you?

Re:Sure of course (4, Insightful)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | about a year ago | (#43092403)

>How about those typical client workloads where almost every day is needed to manage 16-30 gigabytes of new data,

That's not a typical client workload. Go buy a large SSD or some type of SSD accelerator. Quit bitching this product doesn't fill your needs when it's better then the previous product at the same price point. If you want fast speeds with large data sets, open your wallet not your mouth.

Re:Sure of course (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43092699)

How about those typical client workloads where almost every day is needed to manage 16-30 gigabytes of new data, what gets edited and copied multiple times?

A normal HDD (or a RAID) is already the fastest medium to which you might write your changes, so no SSD is going to help you there. And for large streaming reads, HDDs do very well. The hybrid part is going to help you with your boot times and application launch times. Or you could just buy a SSD and put your system on that, and then use HDD or RAID as necessary for your data set, like always.

SSD's only speed up the startup times (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090429)

My system has 8GB ram, most of it is used by the OS to cache files. Really all that SSD's do, is to speed up the start up times. Once the machine is running the common files are all in RAM anyway.

Writes are not done synchronously on most OS's these days. The write sits in RAM waiting to be flushed when the disk catches up.

Really the only thing you're speeding up is old disk based databases larger than your RAM size, and your first boot time. And 8GB of NAND FLash isn't enough to speed up the large databases.

Note also Windows has long preloaded commonly used files into the Ram cache making this NAND less than useful.

IMHO, if disk makers want to do anything, it should be to concentrate on integrity of data.

Re:SSD's only speed up the startup times (4, Insightful)

Aranykai (1053846) | about a year ago | (#43090655)

Spoken like someone who hasn't actually used a latest gen SSD yet. I used to be on your bandwagon, thinking my striped raid was good enough.

There is just no getting around the fact that essentially zero seek times and 400MB+ reads and writes are just so much better than platters can manage.

I will never build another computer without at least a small SSD for the OS and related software.

Re:SSD's only speed up the startup times (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43090857)

I will never build another computer without at least a small SSD for the OS and related software.

I'll do the opposite. I don't mind startup times as they are few and the stuff stays in RAM. I use SSD for the data I work with.

The disk is never accessed SSD or not (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091171)

There is zero gain to be had from sticking those files on a SSD, the disk is never accessed.

Once your RAM file cache is more than the files you load, file access is essential zero seek and 2GB+ reads and writes. Don't forget here we're talking about RAM. The disk is NEVER touched once its cached, there's no possibility for a disk that isn't being accessed to speed up a read from the RAM cache, and no benefit from speeding up a deferred write that's done in the background.

The trick is to have more RAM than you need to hold the files you access. So for me (Firefox, Open Office, Eclipse), the RAM file cache fits in 2GB of RAM, and the disk light never blinks except on a save. I still have some 4 GB of ram cache space unused on my system.

But worse still, this isn't even an SSD. It's an SSD cache on a hard disk, and a very small one at that.

Re:The disk is never accessed SSD or not (3, Insightful)

dfghjk (711126) | about a year ago | (#43091411)

"Once your RAM file cache is more than the files you load, file access is essential zero seek and 2GB+ reads and writes. Don't forget here we're talking about RAM. The disk is NEVER touched once its cached, there's no possibility for a disk that isn't being accessed to speed up a read from the RAM cache, and no benefit from speeding up a deferred write that's done in the background."

You don't know how writes in a filesystem work. It isn't just the data that gets written and not every write can be deferred.

If your "disk light never blinks" you aren't using your computer.

Pray tell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091487)

"You don't know how writes in a filesystem work"
Yes I do, if you care to explain why you believe that, I can point out where you're wrong, or accept your explanation. But I do know how the file cache on Windows works.

"If your "disk light never blinks" you aren't using your computer."
Yes I do, I compile large programs, and edit video. But realistically, editing a 100MB video with 6GB of ram cache, the file I copy to disk from SD card to the disk never leaves the RAM.

I suspect GP didn't put enough RAM on his PC. That's the worst thing you can possibly do, have loads of RAM used for a file cache but *not* quite enough. Then the disk spins down, and the first time it needs a file, it has to spin up again. Stick more RAM in if that's happening. Unfortunately with this product you can't stick in more SSD, so you'll get the disk spin up effect if 8GB SSD isn't enough.

Re:Pray tell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43092603)

You really do not get it...

And to top it off, you're one of those people who think they know more than they do, but in reality know too little to even realize how little they do know.

Or, in simpler words: You're too ignorant to understand just how ignorant you are.

Your arrogance doesn't help, either...

Re:Pray tell (1)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | about a year ago | (#43092627)

>Yes I do, I compile large programs,

Lets make a bet, we'll take the same computer spec wise, mine with an SSD and yours with a regular HDD and we'll compile a large program; gcc or the entire FreeBSD ports. And you can pay me a dollar for every minute longer yours takes.

> and edit video.
Video editing is a different ball game though. You don't do much random IO, its mostly a streaming workload with very few head repositions. This is something that regular hard drives are good at.

Like the band FOREIGNER? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43092869)

Your challenge fits this tune "Rev on the Redline" -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAZMBVzTYrw [youtube.com]

---

"2 in a row: Everybody knows, at the greenlight - You REV IT ON THE REDLINE! Been waitin' all week (to get my wheels on the street), get my hands on the wheel, & slide down in the seat! She's wearin' new colors (& runnin' pretty good) - I got 400 horses tucked under the hood! But there's no need to panic: It's under control. We're aerodynamic & ready-to-roll!"

---

Good luck (you won't need it - compiles speed up off SSD or ramdisks in software (especially here when the data fits inside the L1/L2 caches in the CPU & running from SYSTEM RAM (which is faster than SSD's can be)))...

APK

P.S.=> Lastly - Some ideas for you, you *MAY* like -> http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3519325&cid=43092067 [slashdot.org] that will gain you EVEN MORE performance (in surprising ways - some obvious, some more 'subtle', but there nonetheless...)...

... apk

I do software development (1)

Chirs (87576) | about a year ago | (#43093175)

Including building entire distros from source for embedded stuff. In my experience when compiling stuff the bottleneck is the CPU, not the disk. On the other hand, when trying to dig around in hundreds of megs of git repository it's a pain to wait for a spinning disk.

Re:I do software development (1)

jittles (1613415) | about a year ago | (#43093831)

I did some testing on this. Used the same machine to do the same build on a 7200RPM drive and an SSD. The mechanical drive would finish this particular build in 20 minutes. The SSD would do it in 18. Not a substantial difference. You are right that the CPU is doing way more work than the storage for a typical build. Now building an IPA for iOS, there could be a huge difference, depending on how many MB of resources you are throwing into the package. My current iOS project at work takes about 5 minutes on a mechanical drive (again 7200 RPM) versus just under 3 minutes on an SSD. That is substantial, and it is due to hundreds of megabytes worth of resources being shuffled around at build time.

Re:Pray tell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43092837)

"You don't know how writes in a filesystem work"
Yes I do, if you care to explain why you believe that, I can point out where you're wrong, or accept your explanation. But I do know how the file cache on Windows works.

"If your "disk light never blinks" you aren't using your computer."
Yes I do, I compile large programs, and edit video. But realistically, editing a 100MB video with 6GB of ram cache, the file I copy to disk from SD card to the disk never leaves the RAM.

I suspect GP didn't put enough RAM on his PC. That's the worst thing you can possibly do, have loads of RAM used for a file cache but *not* quite enough. Then the disk spins down, and the first time it needs a file, it has to spin up again. Stick more RAM in if that's happening. Unfortunately with this product you can't stick in more SSD, so you'll get the disk spin up effect if 8GB SSD isn't enough.

If you're NOT using Windows, what you typed makes some decent sense.

If you ARE using Windows, it's completely BS. Windows always wants to do performance metrics in the background, services want to touch the registry for no good reason, and paging is excessively used no matter what you have RAM-wise or what options you specify in the registry.

You ALWAYS have a deferred write waiting. If you can have a drive spin-down, you're lucky. No matter what, it will never stay calm. If you want calm, go to Linux. You lose the Windows functionality, though. Sucks.

Re:Pray tell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093681)

If you are using Windows XP or earlier you may wish to set NtfsDisableLastAccessUpdate to 1.
If you are using Linux you may wish to ensure that relatime is used or even noatime for certain filesystems.
I'm using XP and my disk light doesn't always keep blinking.

Re:Pray tell (1)

loneDreamer (1502073) | about a year ago | (#43095751)

Think of things like metadata. Even if you don't modify the file, things like "last access timestamp" is still altered, and need to be saved in persistent memory. So your HDD drive will blink at least a little.

Been doing it for decades now... apk (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43092067)

I've been doing the following with Ramdisks/Ramdrives below, & since 1992 or so, 1st by using separate HardDisks (slower seek/access by FAR)!

Then, later applying Software-Based Ramdrives to database work with EEC Systems/SuperSpeed.com on paid contract (which did me VERY WELL @ both Windows IT Pro magazine in reviews, & also MS TechEd 2000-2002 in its hardest category: SQLServer Performance Enhancement & SuperSpeed.com too - since I improved their wares efficacy by up to 40% via programmatic control & tuning programs for them) - which, only the past few years now it seems, OTHERS are finally "latching onto" for performance purposes in database work in industrial environs!

Then using software ramdisks (even one I wrote up based off the MS DDK template -> http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=%22APK+RamDisk%22&btnG=Submit&gbv=1&sei=Ak43UduzLYbk8gSauYCIDA [google.com] to do so (per the list below on how I apply them)

&

Now FINALLY using RamDisks/RamDrives in hardware:

---

A.) 2000-2005 using the CENATEK "RocketDrive" 2gb PC-133 SDRAM based on a PCI 2.2 bus

B.) 2005-present using the Gigabyte IRAM 4gb DDR2-RAM based on a PCI Express bus

---

Doing SOMETHING sort-of along the lines of what's being done in the "hybrid" caching scene, & that's using equipment/hardware like I do in the following ways:

For example - I do it this way (along with other things, & on a "TRUE SSD" (not based on FLASH ram & it's performance degrading life expectancy lessening "ways")):

---

1.) I move files around to different drives (1 being what I call a "TRUE SSD", that uses DDR RAM, the Gigabyte IRAM 4gb PCI-e 8x slot based SATA 150gb/sec. solidstate drive I have)

2.) A Promise Ex-8350 PCI-e 8x slot based 128mb ECC RAM Raid 6 capable Caching Controller (that controls 2 10,000 rpm Western Digital 16mb buffered "Velociraptor" HDDs)

---

(Both supplementing the existing caches noted above @ the Operating System filesystem level, AND, the block device level)

I also supplement my 10,000 rpm SATA II disks using a Promise Ex-8350 128mb ECC memory Caching Controller (keep it OFF hdd's as much as possible, & in RAM instead is the idea/game here).

I move the following things off of my WD Velociraptor 10,000 rpm 8mb buffered (which also lessens physical head movement on disks & THIS is where I am going to make it even FASTER, read on & reduces fragmentation as well in the same stroke - "BONUS"):

---

A.) Pagefile.sys
B.) OS & Application level logging (EventLogs + App Logging)
C.) ALL WebBrowser caches, histories, sessions & browsers too
D.) Print Spooling
E.) %Temp% ops (OS & user level temp ops)
F.) %Tmp% ops (OS & user level temp ops)
G.) %Comspec% (command interpreter location)
H.) I also place my custom hosts file onto it, via redirecting WHERE it's referenced by the OS, here in the registry (for performance AND security):

--

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\Tcpip\Parameters

And the "DataBasePath" parameter there...

---

Which also acts more-or-less, like a *NIX shadow password system also!

(That's good, vs. any malware that *might* attempt to 'mess with it since the original residing in %WinDir%\system32\drivers\etc is pretty much only a 'decoy' @ that point, lol!)

However, modern Windows uses UAC to protect it, & I also apply read-only rights to it to supplement that, & my hosts file import/deduplicate/favorites hardcoder mgt. system I wrote -> http://www.start64.com/index.php?option=com_content&id=5851:apk-hosts-file-engine-64bit-version&Itemid=74 [start64.com] [start64.com] does the rest!

Supplementing UAC, by doing that read-only write protection attribute applied every 1/2 second & NOTHING will 'blow past that' (it's essentially locked that way vs. malicious interlopers!)

Just for faster loading since the seek/access is in the ns range, rather than HardDisk ms ranges!

That's many orders of magnitude faster, for loading faster into RAM + I let the local kernelmode diskcaching subsystem cache it too, rather than the faulty-with-larger hosts files local DNS clientside cache service in Windows (known issue in it for ages, & MS doesn't fix it - so I said "hell with it" & opted to do it THAT way + I constantly am online, & that KEEPS it there, so the cache doesn't flush it out, by being online nigh constantly). That, in turn, allows me to TURN OFF the faulty local DNS ClientSide cache service in Windows, saving CPU cycles, RAM, & other forms of I/O it used also - BONUS!

* & more...

---

To quote the band FOREIGNER from the song "StarRider" here?

"I stole a ride on a passing star - not knowing where I was going (how near, or how far)... Speed increasing, all control is in the hands of THOSE WHO KNOW..."

APK

P.S.=> All of which LESSENS THE AMOUNT OF WORK my "main" OS & programs bearing disk have to do, and they're being done on a media that has NO heads to move, & thus, more mechanical latency + slower seek/access as you get on hard disks + reduced filesystem fragmentations... &, it works!

... apk

Re:Been doing it for decades now... apk (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43092913)

Wow, what kind of meds are you on? Duuuude.

Eddie Morra said in best in "LIMITLESS" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093113)

"Medication" -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THE_hhk1Gzc&feature=related [youtube.com] @ position 1:05 on the YouTube player control!

How's that suit you?

After all - The results are the same here, myself, vs. yourself (& your off-topic trolling b.s.)... & quoting him again here, since it fits:

"That's what it DOES Karl - it puts me 50 moves ahead of you!" @ position 2:11 on the YouTube player control (good film - I suggest you see it in fact).

That, & my use of SSD's does so, easily as well, by NOT having to MOVE hdd read/write heads either... (easily & @ THE VERY LEAST, it keeps me "50 moves ahead of you", all the time - especially avoiding disk head moves!)

APK

P.S.=> I suppose that the "meds" I am on (though I am not literally on ANY here) simply would be "PURE SPEED"!

All, per this post to another making a challenge to others here in this thread -> http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3519325&cid=43092869 [slashdot.org] & the tune I quoted in it!

Here's another that fits perfectly from that same excellent Foreigner tune:

---

"Don't think I'll ever learn to SLOW DOWN... you'll still be here, & I'LL BE GONE!" - Foreigner "Rev on the Redline"

---

(Especially since that tune's ALL about performance... & speed!)

However - it's NOT "pharmaceutically induced speed" on MY end, it's technology based in computing... In my using solid-state disks or ramdrives softwares for performance gains here, for ages!

( &, as to my using Mr. Morra from LIMITLESS above? Well - I just use that vs. "meds trolls" & their STALE old worn out off-topic trolling crap, like yours, since it fits here (lol))... apk

Re:SSD's only speed up the startup times (2)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year ago | (#43091359)

I'll agree that this may not be the drive we're looking for, but to expect that SSDs don't offer much benefit day to day because of RAM caching is false. Yes, initial startup is faster (in my case *minutes* faster), but even loading and unloading frequently used applications is markedly better. The performance increase on startup and access of local files was an order of magnitude - every time I switch applications or projects - and I have 24GB of RAM.

Speeding up access to my on-disc document library, or my current 20+/- project folders, would actually be a help if I couldn't afford a SSD. Still, 8GB is pretty paltry imho.

Hmmm... (1)

waspleg (316038) | about a year ago | (#43090543)

Considering Newegg has 3 TB for $140 on sales, and these look like they cost about 2x too much, AND given my personal experiences with Seagate 500 gb drives of all kinds. No thanks. I think I'll wait for the 1 TB flash drives Kingston supposedly demoed at CES already instead.

Re:Hmmm... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#43092745)

You can get 3TB goflexes at costco for that price all the time.

Then again, I'm buying externals, for convenience. I'm not building RAIDs.

All's good until the SSD parts fail. (1)

sethstorm (512897) | about a year ago | (#43090729)

Given the relative ease of failure for flash memory compared to mechanical, the Momentus XT 7200's will end up winning on the long term.

Re:All's good until the SSD parts fail. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091291)

What Seagate should do instead is open the drives to use an attached SSD for caching, so you can replace it if it fails. Wouldn't that be so much nicer?

Re:All's good until the SSD parts fail. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093001)

What Seagate should do instead is open the drives to use an attached SSD for caching, so you can replace it if it fails. Wouldn't that be so much nicer?

...and less profitable. Fail.

Re:All's good until the SSD parts fail. (1)

Unknown Lamer (78415) | about a year ago | (#43092657)

I think in a laptop, mechanical failure is far more likely than flash failing. Sure the drives are designed to handle being started/stopped all the time, but life for a laptop hard drive is still not a very gentle one. I can't imagine a use case for these hybrid drives outside of laptops.

It's also likely that the SLC cache at least would outlast the mechanical drive components under even ideal conditions anyway...

Windows Experience Index (1)

Guppy06 (410832) | about a year ago | (#43091049)

Will these drives finally break the 5.9 barrier? From what I've heard, the old XT's didn't.

Re:Windows Experience Index (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091205)

Will these drives finally break the 5.9 barrier? From what I've heard, the old XT's didn't.

Unlikely. A RAID0 configuration with 2 typical 7200s barely manages it, so a single drive + small cache is unlikely to get there. Unless there's a flaw in MS's benchmark process that the controller exploits.

Giant thumbs up (4, Informative)

Admiral Llama (2826) | about a year ago | (#43091169)

I have the first gen XT and I can say is that these things are everything they're cracked up to be. If you're not buying an SSD then you should be getting one of these. Generally if you strip away the SSD portion you're still left with one of the best mechanical drives on the market, but the SSD portion really and truly does make a solid and positive difference in everyday computing life.

Re:Giant thumbs up (1)

Doug Otto (2821601) | about a year ago | (#43093015)

Hopefully they've got the firmware figured out. I too had a first gen XT and it was flaky as all hell. It took 4 firmware revision upgrades before it started working right. I don't like paying to be someone's R&D.

Re:Giant thumbs up (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#43094351)

Agreed, I put one in a netbook a couple years back and it make a wonderful difference. Just this year has an SSD of the same size become cheaper than that netbook and it's still 4x as expensive as the hybrid drive.

That said, my current laptop [amazon.com] has a generic HD and I have an mSATA SSD [amazon.com] in it, with a partition for cache I've got assigned to Flashcache (and might be getting converted to ZFS when I figure out dkms) and that works really well too.

The big advantage I see on the Seagate solution is their use of SLC, which I always use in servers for write caches but on my laptop hasn't been a viable option.

Too similiar to SSD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091547)

I see this as an attempt from Seagate to gain marketshare from the technically clueless. The hybrid name was not working so they have to rename it SSHD, hoping that a lot of people will not see that H in the middle of the drive type. I see a lot of purchases by clueless people hearing the tech crowd talk about SSD. They will be misled by Seagate and purchase this device, and after running the device will wonder what all the fuss was about with Solid State Drives.
Granted they're faster than most peoples 5400rpm drive running in their laptops, but these are in no way comparable to a second gen SSD. I see a lot of tech calls from the clueless asking for installing an SSD, and I have to be the bearer of bad news that they were misled by Seagate that this is not an SSD, it is a SSHD (aka still a hard drive with platters).

Re:Too similiar to SSD (4, Informative)

PlusFiveTroll (754249) | about a year ago | (#43092741)

>Granted they're faster than most peoples 5400rpm drive running in their laptops,

Not just faster, way faster. I've upgraded a number of clients computers from the crap HP comes with by default to XTs with the 8GB cache. Unless they have a very large working set of data they commonly use, the user will not notice a significant difference between the SSHD and an SSD.

If you tell most consumers do you want a 500GB SSD for around $500 or a 500GB SSHD for $79 where the $79 drive makes most, but not all things faster, most people will go with the second option, and most people will have made the right choice going with the second option.

OS-visibility (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091641)

I really wish that drives could be optionally set (via a jumper?) to allow the OS to see these built-in SSDs, and not have them hidden behind the firmware.

There are more and more systems out there can configured to intelligently use flash: Linux has Bcache; FreeBSD, Solaris, and Mac OS X have ZFS. I'd love to be able to set up a home server to use these drivers for read (L2ARC) and write (ZIL) acceleration, and I'm sure a lot of OEMs would love to have distributed/striped flash in their storage offerings.

The bulk volume of spinning rust, and the IOps of flash, all in one convenient package.

If anyone at Seagate (or any other hard drive vendor) is listening: if you do this you will gain an immediate advantage over your competitors. (Until they copy you of course.)

I'm very happy with mine. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43091855)

Seagate Momentus XT 750GB in 2.5 inch form factor - perfect for an older laptop with a dedicated graphics card intended for both early generation games, temporary torrent storage and speed.

Re:I'm very happy with mine. (1)

Virtucon (127420) | about a year ago | (#43092113)

I've been happy with mine, both generations first the 500gb and now the 750gb. They're a good balance. I am concerned that the new SSHDs are a step backwards given the smaller amount of cache and slower spindle speeds. I'm going to wait for the tech reviews to come in. Presumably they'll also have offerings with larger cache available soon. I may still snag a couple of 750s while they're still available though. I have been thinking about SSDs as well especially for the laptops but I can't justify the price/performance costs in 750gb and up.

here's the problem (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#43092227)

Nobody ever said these weren't fast or cheap. What they did say was massive data corruption, nonstop blue screening, and completely inconsistent performance. Also, if the drives lose power, you're screwed even if it was idle because it wasn't idle. It was moving data between the cache and main storage based on usage counts. Those constant writes, by the way, kill the flash memory very quickly. Plus, you can have a mechanical failure. Forget any kind of data recovery too. These are a terrible idea. RAID arrays of SSDs for large storage of a 120GB boot drive with a 1TB secondary are both very cost effective solutions and are both much safer. 4x60GB Intel 330 drives in raid5 take up like 15 watts, cost under $300, and run at around 1GB/s read speed in real world tests. Even RAID0 2x60GB ones I've tested at 800MB/s read. 3x120GB drives in RAID5 is sometimes even cheaper and almost as fast.

Re:here's the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093357)

Love to see you put a raid array into a laptop.

Don't get me wrong, in a server I don't see the use case, but it still seems there is demand. However, for home users I definitely see why a hybrid would be desirable.

Full disclosure: I do actually work for Seagate.

Re:here's the problem (2)

dittbub (2425592) | about a year ago | (#43094469)

what is the price difference? the prices listed above look pretty close to current HDD prices anyway. so if you're going to get a 1tb hdd for a laptop why NOT get the one with an 8GB ssd flash in it?

Re:here's the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43093759)

You replying to the wrong story? It's kind of hard to fit 3x120GB drives in a laptop. It's not easy on many "typical user" desktops either.

There is no cheaper (1)

gelfling (6534) | about a year ago | (#43093029)

There is only your cheapness. Drives are the slowest part of your gear. Scrimping a few dollars to make them sort of faster is more expensive than spending all the money you need to make them as fast and as reliable as possible.

But .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43095145)

Can you access them on port 22 ? ;-)

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