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Windows 7: use eSATA for external drive?

12 Apr 2013   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64bit
 
 
use eSATA for external drive?

I'm trying to vet my research results before shopping for a purchase. (I'm pretty new at deciphering specs.) The question here is in reference to the tutorial Portable OS - Carry your OS on an External Drive found here: Portable OS - Carry your OS on an External Drive

Requirements in the tutorial suggest an external SSD utilizing a USB 3 port. Unfortunately my laptop does not have USB 3. However, I do have an eSata port in addition to the USB 2 ports.

If my research returned me the correct information, these are the maximum speeds for the ports:
  • USB 2.0: 480Mbps
  • USB 3.0: 4.8GBPS
  • eSATA: 5Gbps
If I am connecting the dots right as referenced in the tutorial, using an external SSD w/ eSATA connection would provide me with the best choice for running an OS from an external drive.

Am I missing anything?

Thanks for your guidance.

drpepper





My System SpecsSystem Spec
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12 Apr 2013   #2

Windows 7 64 bit SP1
 
 

Yes, with USB overheads you will not get 60 MB/s (480 Mbps). You will get 35 MB/s best. These days I would not even consider it for an exernal hard drive.

eSATA, in princple and practice will give you the full bandwidth an external hard drive can deliver. A good eSATA chipset will deliver up to about 250 MB/s in practice - this is limited by SATA 2.0. For a hard drive you should get the maximum rate the hard drive can deliver. If you have an SSD that can do more than 250 MB/s, it will be limited to about 250 MB/s.

It is the best you can do in any case.

You will have to get an external eSATA drive or an eSATA external enclosure to put a drive in.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2013   #3
whs

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

I am the author of the tutorial you are referring to. Unfortunately this will not work on eSata because VMware Player does not support eSata. That's why eSata is not mentioned in the tutorial. BHut I just now made a Note in the tutorial to make that clear.

You could investigate whether Virtual Box would work, but I have not tried that.

If you are trying that setup, make sure your external disk is an SSD. With the performance of an external HDD you would not be happy. It works, but that is all. And for an SSD, the USB2 port works pretty well too. The mystery is the fast access time of the SSD, NOT the data transfer rate. The OS does relatively few and small I/O operations. So you are not too much bound by the data traffic.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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12 Apr 2013   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64bit
 
 

Thanks to both of you for the replies.

I'll research VirtualBox support (or lack of) for eSATA. I guess that OS updates and other large downloads to the virtual OS would be the major areas where data transfer speeds would be a consideration.

drpepper
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2013   #5
whs

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by drpepper View Post
Thanks to both of you for the replies.

I'll research VirtualBox support (or lack of) for eSATA. I guess that OS updates and other large downloads to the virtual OS would be the major areas where data transfer speeds would be a consideration.

drpepper
Yeah right. But I would not worry about that. If something takes a long time in the virtual system, I just minimize it and do things on the host.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2013   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64bit
 
 

Thanks for the confirmation. Trying to think beyond step one is one of my learning tools. That is one of the reasons why I am going to begin using virtual machines. I can discover benefits and consequences of changes in a safe environment. Terminal errors can be recovered from more quickly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Apr 2013   #7

W7 X-64 RTM,SUSE 11.1, XP PRO SP3 as a VM, VMware ESXi
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
I am the author of the tutorial you are referring to. Unfortunately this will not work on eSata because VMware Player does not support eSata. That's why eSata is not mentioned in the tutorial. BHut I just now made a Note in the tutorial to make that clear.

You could investigate whether Virtual Box would work, but I have not tried that.

If you are trying that setup, make sure your external disk is an SSD. With the performance of an external HDD you would not be happy. It works, but that is all. And for an SSD, the USB2 port works pretty well too. The mystery is the fast access time of the SSD, NOT the data transfer rate. The OS does relatively few and small I/O operations. So you are not too much bound by the data traffic.
Hi there
VMware workstation release 9 latest build -- I "Think" it supports eSATA now -- I'm not sure as I don't have an eSATA port to test it on -- can you confirm that it DOES or DOES NOT work as I want to start using one of these devices soon.

I have a colleague who seems to think that after installing latest JMicron drivers he could get eSATA working on VMware workstation rel 9.

ftp://driver.jmicron.com.tw/SATA_Contro ... _eSATA.zip



USB3 DOES work BTW (I know the OP doesn't have a USB3 port but just giving this information) however the small self powered USB3 portable disks don't give anything like the speed of a Powered external USB3 drive although a lot better than USB2 disks.

These externally powered USB3 external drives are actually eSata drives with a bit of electronics so they can work through a USB3 port.

BTW I'm running a test W2K3 SERVER VM from a small self powered USB3 drive with the "MiniSAP" test system on it -- Once the system has booted the response time is actually quite acceptable on the USB3 drive. The boot time and starting the SAP system probably takes the majority of the time -- once its up and running its fine.

enc screenshot -- Virtual W2K3 server running SAP test system ("MiniSAP") on USB3 portable self powered pocket sized passport external HDD.

Cheers
jimbo


Attached Thumbnails
use eSATA for external drive?-sap.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Apr 2013   #8
whs

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Problem is that I am using VMware Player which is free. The VMware workstation release 9 costs $249.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Apr 2013   #9

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

Reading through the whs Tutorial again I have the understanding that the software mentioned are free and legal.
Do I have the proper understanding?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Apr 2013   #10
whs

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
Reading through the whs Tutorial again I have the understanding that the software mentioned are free and legal.
Do I have the proper understanding?
Absolutely. I would never use illegal stuff and if it costs money, I mention it. But all that software is free and legal (Mint Mate and VMware Player)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 use eSATA for external drive?





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