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Poll: Are you going to upgrade to a solid state drive in the near future?

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) CNET staff/forum admin / March 8, 2013 7:53 AM PST

Are you going to upgrade to a solid state drive in the near future?

-- Yes. (What will you be going with?)
-- Not until they are offered with larger capacity. (And what capacity
would that be?)
-- I would, but the prices are still a bit steep for me. (What price
mark would that be?)
-- I'm still contemplating it. (What's holding you back?)
-- No. (Why not?)
-- I'm already using them.


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No plans - waiting for hybird drive

When a good deal on a 3.5" hybird drive comes along, I might consider it. However I just upgraded to a new Dell Inspiron 660, and I'm mighty happy with it. I have so many USB devices, I had to install a PCIe card with 4 more USB2 ports, but other than that, it's just fine and dandy straight out of the box. Once I've booted up I really don't do anything that disk intensive. The only game I play is spider solitaire.

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hybrids are not best
by lxgoldsmith1 / March 8, 2013 9:33 AM PST

hybrid drives seem useful for people who want both speed and storage, but they are very limited and are not popular enough for mass manufacturers to put the effort in. the best way to go is one of each. if you don't like managing files, use intel's rapid storage technology to automatically put your most-used files and programs on the ssd, with all files available on the hhd.

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SSD Upgrade

Unfortunately Microsoft has not made it very easy to update. You have to make a bunch of Registry edits, and never got around to trying that out. I have a SSD in my system, but not my C drive yet. I would not buy a ew computer without a SSD. That is why Android and i OS systems are enjoyable to use since they use SSDs rather than mechanical HDs. There is so much conflicting information out there on changing over to a SSD, that it is frustrating trying to see what may apply in your case. Will stick with W7 though. There is no W8s in my future at least anytime soon.I wouldn't want to install it on any of my computers even if it was free.

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change is simple with OS disc
by lxgoldsmith1 / March 10, 2013 4:09 AM PDT
In reply to: SSD Upgrade

when re-installing windows or installing a new version of windows, there are no registry changes that need to be made. windows 7 and 8 integrate ssd automatically

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Of COURSE I am... right.

No surprise you'd be sold on solid state hard drives. After all you're sold on Windows 8, basically every piece of junk that's come down the pipe lately. CNET must have been bought out by aliens.

Why in God's great name would I want to spend great gobs of money on a hard drive that's likely to fail soon when I can spend $60 on an old style hard drive that in my experience is almost certain to last me three years.

No, don't answer that, because you're space aliens.

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ssd reliability
by lxgoldsmith1 / March 10, 2013 4:06 AM PDT

sorry, but it pains me to read this sort of criticism of solid state technology

then again, it depends on what brand name ssd you choose. Samsung, Intel, and Crucial are, respectively, the top 3 in ssd reliability, and hdd quality has lowered in order to produce them at a lower cost and sell them at a lower price.

Speed, reliability, less heat, lower power requirements. OCZ's sketchy reliability stats ruin consumer perspective, and buying a pc that already has ssd might have a "cheap" ssd.

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Maybe not up to scratch.

I have two identical PC's with SSD boot drives both 120Gigs Extreme Max (guarantee is 3 years).

With the first one I had problems. I copied all my programs from a USB drive to the SSD drive to install them (for speed).

I found that several programs would run but not properly. I could only conclude that something had happened during copying and that they were not copied properly even thought the files were the same size. I reinstalled the OS and then the programs directly from the USB and all ran perfectly so it wasn't the USB or the files on it.

Since then I have used a copy program with CRC verification (TeraCopy which has a free version) and it's been okay.

The drive on the second PC lasted less than 40 hours and had a catastrophic failure resulting in all files lost, recovery impossible, throw the drive away . And it was only used to run a video player to run media from a server so activity of the drive was minimal. (That is a real concern.)

So, for me, whilst they are fast and I'm still using them, a backup is essential. I also would recommend, when copying to and from them, you use a copy verification program and get another program to back up your OS to another drive.

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I never upgrade anything. Every lap top I've ever had only last 4, maybe 5 years. I would suspect that in 2 years or fewer, this machine will be dead and I'll be stuck with some new M/S O/S that won't be compatible with much of my present software. I really wish MicroSoft had some real competition with an operating system that would be good for 5 years. I'll never figure out why they had to leave XP-Pro which was ROCK SOLID. Win7 isn't bad but not as good as XP.

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Are you going to upgrade to a solid state drive in the near

No...can somebody explain the real attraction please ?

I have a laptop which I use...the speed with which it works in any normal given situation is very fast...this applies to any programs I`m using which are mainly music production/editing...there is no benefit that I can see in paying large amounts of money for something that replicates what I already have...unless I`ve misunderstood what its all about...which wouldn`t be a first.

Just how much benefit is something that is a mili-micro-second faster (than what you already have) for the average user ?... I`m open to learning.

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SSD is a much faster alternative.

SSD as the system drive and drive where your windows (or mac) programs are installed will result in very fast bootup times, and near instant launches of your programs. I think that a 120GB minimum SSD drive is sufficient for any serious laptop (or desktop) user. 250GB or greater is recommended if you can afford it.

I also agree with some user's suggestion of using a hybrid setup for cost savings. The system drive should be SSD, and other files should be on the regular HDD.

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SSD is a much faster alternative
by stephennity / March 9, 2013 1:21 AM PST

Thanks for the info...I have to say I agree that boot times can be a hassle !

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Just got one - looking to upgrade.

For several months I put off buying the new laptop I wanted because they only offered a 128 GB SSD and I wanted a larger drive. I finally gave in and bought it with the 128 GB drive. Wow - Win 7 it is really faster booting up and shutting down now. I decided to go with the smaller drive for now and then replace it with a 512 GB drive in a year or so when the warranty on my laptop has run out.

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Boots Win 7 in 24 seconds...

...and renders a half-hour video that used to take 6-8 hours, in 15 minutes! I just use it for the OS and program software. The data files are on external USB drives.

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Samsung SSD

I'm thinking of upgrading to an 830 series SSD from Samsung, either 256GB or 512 GB. Right now, my Sony Vaio VPCS132GXB has a 320 GB cheap Hitachi HDD that was swapped out from the original Toshiba HDD.
Although I feel I'm still a novice, I have been using CCleaner and System Mechanic software to turn off unwanted programs during startup, since Media Player was the main cause of error messages and unresponsive behaviour in my pc. Bootup time has improved significantly, and this was from Sony's advice, tech friend's advice and my own personal usage.
I know certain changes have to be used after installing SSD; defragmentation is a big NO, but I wonder, with System Mechanic's software, whether or not I can still make my pc run better and smoother, and increase its performance with System Mechanic's software enhancements. It does have enchancements to help with SSD's, but I wonder whether or not it will recognize a newly installed SSD from the original HHD/

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SS drives-Try one and never again buy an HDD!

Got my first SSD in an Ultrabook and I will never look back! Ten seconds from power-on to full operation and that is when it is slow. Access, read and write times are at least ten times as fast as HDD on my system. We have known for years that the hard drive (even in a raid 0 configuration with two 10,000 rpm HD) was the bottleneck in systems. SSD resolved the problem. Maintenance is much less as is slowdown with use as there is no fragmentation. My 128 GB solid state drive has an estimated MTTF (mean time to failure) value of 1 million hours that resolves the reliability question permanently! Most HDD are 5% failure in three years with 9.75% mttf for the afore mentioned raid 1 configuration. The cost issue has been there but two companies are introducing one terabyte (1TB) SSD for less than $600 next month! Look for 500 MB SSD at $200 soon after and even bigger SSD at even lower prices in the next year as more manufacturers get on the band wagon.

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What companies?
by spadeskingtx / May 2, 2013 6:14 AM PDT

What companies are introducing 1 TB SSD drives?

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1 TB ssd
by lxgoldsmith1 / May 3, 2013 2:09 AM PDT
In reply to: What companies?

so far, Crucial is the only one to release a feasible terabyte class solid state drive:

keep in mind that all SSD are more expensive at comparative storage sizes. many people use a 120-256 GB ssd for their OS and programs and put their music, videos, and files on the larger HDD.

If you don't like micromanagement of files but love this idea, you should look into intel's rapid storage technology, which is less effective but makes it more user friendly. There's also people just using cache SSD.

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Cost effect ratio is still lagging on SSDs

They just aren't cost effective enough to start using en-mass. Flash drives sure, NP, I use plenty of those. SDD, back-up drive, yes, it's a must because you want the added protection on you back up drive. It's the only way I see SSD's to very at an advantage in the current market. It's it worth the cost for using in a PC on daily basis. NO, not until they start making media files smaller, and that's NOT the trend atm. You can easily spend WAY TOO much on an SDD product that doesn't yet have a track record on long term reliability, will likely fill-up before most people are ready to move on to a new system. Even with new 1Tb HD's being credited for shorter life spans, their capacity, and lower cost, has more than made up for that issue. Most people will not use their PC/lap top systems long enough to even notice this problem, since they would rather buy new because it is less expensive for them to do so, rather than pay a tech at future shop an arm and leg to service a legacy device with an old OS to boot! Only hard-core legacy junkies like myself can see a bonus in buying advanced components, but NOT if their limited capacity and high cost make them prohibitive for using in PCs for day to day practical applications. Most PC users don't even know the difference b/t the hard drives... lol

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Depends on your use and required speed
by dony / March 9, 2013 7:42 AM PST

For me, the SSD is perfect. Your use may differ. I do not download media files but access them online. I am a photographer. The speed of the SSD means more time taking photos and less time up/downloading files. Speed of uploading OS is a few seconds versus two minutes. Offload files as needed so more than half my SSD is not used. Can do plenty with 55-65 GB of super fast drive and forces me to keep the system free of crapware. I hate the 1 = 3 TB drives because they are 5500 rpm, take forever to do anything, to defrag or to run virus checks. I have these but only for backup and storage. Like I said, it depends on your use. Where we will disagree is on PC owners not knowing the difference. I have given my Ultrabook to friends and relatives to try out and every one of them was literally astounded by the difference in speed. In fact, one relative has already bought and I just set up specifications for a new one for a son in law this pm and he is buying the unit today. Like you, I have the patience for legacy and with 3 laptops, three desktops, two iPads, two iPhone 5s, three printers, two smart TVs, alarm systems, etc. in my home, I do not use Future Shop. I do all my own servicing, upgrading, etc. except for the iPads and iPhones which have not needed any to date. If/when they do, the local "Fix your Phone" shop will replace the parts at about 20% of usual cost and with a better warranty. BTW the speed of the iPad and iPhone memory is what ruined me for HDD.

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SSD is not for desktop gaming PC

As a gamer using Windows, my PC installed lots of games. You know Windows needs to restore to initiate state every 6 months for performance and stability. If you review tech forum often, you should know SSD will be freezed if you format SSD and restore system too often. The conclusion comes to SSD is not suitable for a gamer using desktop Windows.

SSD is deft and light weight. So let SSD stay in NB and tablet PC. Don't bother it on desktop PC especially for gaming.

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Agreed, SSD is NOT for PC gaming
by Demaclies / March 10, 2013 4:12 AM PDT

Totally agree. I use my PC's for gaming, that's what I built them for. As game content size expands beyond the reasonable limits of currently marketed SSDs, those cheap TB HDD's with better max capacity and legacy GPU comparability, let's you add more games to a system that was DESIGNED to work around the needs of an overclocked CPU catering to an excellerated graphics card, on a MB that's basically had most of it's functions relegated to designated chip set cards (sound, media, internet, wifi) so it can focus on the express needs of the CPU/GPU for running the games and tossing big exe. files at top speed, and you better have 2 sets properly paid RAM chips too (if you can help it). I don't know what the dony guy is talking about when he claims he can tell the difference between SDD, and HDD, reg/root rpm speeds... that might be a factor if your OS is so badly configured your processing speed is THAT slow compared to uploads (still logically impossible), or your start-up menu is full of huge foot print programs that are useless and basically suck the life out of you RAM and act like malware hosting private bot nets through your raped port 80? He's comments don't make ANY sense at all. How the hell can ANY PC shuffle files in house, slower than what he claims he can pull faster with huge media files over his internet connection? I can upload a video or media file to and from any PC with external media devices/other PCs on intranet HELLA faster than trying to upload 3 pictures to Facebook, or heaven forbid, attempting to upload a 3 minute video to Youtube that responds with a 3 hour processing time, over the 'internet'. Sounds like the fluff talk of an SSD marketing company employee to me.

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I'll say it again, depends on your use
by dony / March 10, 2013 9:30 AM PDT

I agree with you that SSDs are not great for gamers today. However, when the 1 TB SSD hits the market at $500 to $600 next month, I would build any new computer only with SSDs for many reasons beyond speed. For the record, I am self employed and have been a systems analyst/hardware specialist/IT senior manager for more than 20 years after both undergrad and grad studies in physics. I taught HW/SW at the college level. BTW, its accelerated, not excellerated. I do have two gaming machines, one desktop and one laptop. Both do what they were designed to do and do it very well. I built the desk top and upgraded/tuned both. Today, I would not even consider an SSD for these machines as both do exactly what they were designed to do and are midway through their life cycle. They are both very lean in terms of OS, start up programs, lack of bloatware, etc. and are virus free. Both are finely tuned and will play any game out there. However, if buying a gaming machine today, I would consider a hybrid drive or an SSD (in April).
Quoting directly from "Hub Pages"
"Speed is the main advantage of a solid-state drive. SSDs offer blazing-fast performance being 100 times faster than HDDs. This incredible speed difference is due to a much shorter access time (less than a millisecond for an SSD compared to 17 - 18ms). If you want a big performance gain, switch to an SSD."
Their tests were done in Feb 2013 and are not even totally correct as the technology is changing rapidly. According to Tom's Hardware, the newest and best 10K to 15K rpm HDD running SATA III are half as fast as the newest SSD also running SATA III. These HDD sell for $500 to $700 each though so the price is comparable to SSD. HDD is at the end of the product life cycle though and SSD the beginning, so I will tend to SSD.
For boot up on the Ultrabook, 10 seconds for SSD versus 2 minutes for the HDD. Clean systems but much software like Photoshop pro, color rendering, facial recognition, etc. Yes, I can see the difference and it is there for many of the things I do. Time is money and a half hour saved is many dollars in my bank account.
For photography and photo processing, the SSD is better. Shooting a wedding, I may have 200 raw photos at a time and a few minutes to download to the SSD and check each because I can reshoot parts of the wedding if something went wrong. Superfast card reader directly to SSD and then opening, testing, adjusting color or white balance, comparing, etc. is much faster with the SSD. Once the wedding is over, it is over and the money shots are gone. Then, while I am shooting again, the SSD downloads to two different 1 TB HDDs (via my assistant) because there is enough time for that and I need two backups plus the camera cards. I never mentioned the web as I get paid for my work and never upload to Facebook or YouTube. I do participate on seven or eight social networks and have uploaded photos to Pinterest but that has nothing to do with the speed of the hard drive as you well know. Even with my superfast internet connection, the limiting factors are the systems to which I am uploading, servers, routing, etc.
So you stay with HDD and I will stay with SSD. Just do not ever accuse me of working for any marketing company. Its not true and a bit unfair.

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Had one. I didn't consider it to be reliable.

Netbooks come with a SSD in them. I used a netbook for a year, then put it away when I felt that it was becoming unreliable. Don't think that I will go back to one until I am more confident of them.

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netbooks were a fad
by lxgoldsmith1 / March 10, 2013 4:28 AM PDT

netbooks were always unreliable, too small, too slow, not effective. since netbooks, ssd technology has advanced quite a bit. I'm running one right now, and I've had no problems relating to solid state quality and reliability. I'm not sure that netbooks were even using full ssd because development of good solid state was incomplete.

amazing speed, same or better reliability during average PC lifespan, less power usage, more durable, no defragmenting needed, low latency. I seriously recommend not defragmenting a solid state drive, it wrecks the drive.

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No, because...

1. Too small
2. Too expensive
3. Too risky
4. I use two different infinite cloud drives to backup my HD plus 2 external HDs. Yes, I have had my share of crashes, and have had to start all over again. Now I have learned my lesson.

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not necessarily
by lxgoldsmith1 / March 10, 2013 4:32 AM PDT
In reply to: No, because...

1. made for notebooks and tablets
2. yes, for good reason
3. better reliability with name-brand (samsung, intel) ssd than traditional hard drives
4. ssd + hdd for boot time and speed + storage

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I am planning on buying an SSD in the near future.

I'm still running Xp Pro but built this computer to be Win7 64 bit compatible. I will be buying Win7 Pro 64 bit very soon, while I can stoill get a copy. I then am thinking of buying an 80gb SSD for a boot drive. I'm planning to install the OS and my application programs on it and keep my 500gb Barracuda for data. My plan is to get a pair of 2gb Enterprise class HDDs (kudos to Lee for the HDD white vpaper) to run in a striped RAID behind the SSD for the data. There are over a TB of video I want to save and a month's subsdription to the website is $40 and I don't want to pay twice, lol. If needed I have room for another pair to run striped for data also. Before getting the 2nd pair I will be dropping a 3.0 Phenom Black quad-core chipset in and upping the RAM to 8gb. I'm thinking of moving the swap file to the SSD at that time. If I end up using the swap file very much I can add 8gb more if I think I need it. I will also be getting a better, ActiveX 11 video card with 1 or 2 gb RAM to take that load off the system RAM. That will be about as far as I can go with this computer. Then it will be time to begin acquiring the parts for my Mark II computer, lol.

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Just waiting for the brackets.
by mopscare42 / March 16, 2013 12:15 PM PDT

I tried installing a SSD in my Aurora R4 a few months ago, but do to the UEFI setup Dell uses there was no software I could find at the time where I could boot from the CD to do a clone from my hard drive to the new SSD. A clean install of Windows 7 was possible, but that's not the way I wanted to go.
Things have changed now and there has been software developed for what I want to do. Guess other people ran into the same problem I did.
I have a Kingston 200V+ 240 gig SSD that came with no adapter brackets so that's all I am waiting for to install the SSD.
I have friends that do pretty much what I do that have SSDs in their computers and the difference in speed is amazing to me.
As for the so called poor longevity of the SSD, that doesn't bother me that much. From what I have read, Windows 7, which I have, likes the SSDs much better than Vista or XP did.
Shall see in a week.

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SSD Installed.
by mopscare42 / April 29, 2013 9:13 AM PDT

Got the SSD in and everything cloned from the hard drive to the SSD... what a difference in speed!
I have it installed in a Alienware R4. Before when I would hit the start button with all the stuff like the Alien head, boot options etc. it would take over 2 minutes before I could get into my e-mail. now it's one fourth that time.
Everything seems to run much smoother now.
As far as the longevity? just have to wait and see, but since putting in the SSD I have read a lot of articles of how to tweak the computer and Windows 7 to get the most out of it.
As of now I will never go back to a plater type hard drive except for storage.

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