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Windows 7: Show us your SSD performance

18 Dec 2011   #2381
Snakeyeskm

Win 7 64 bit professional
 
 

Thanks for the important clarification on Intel drives Hopalong X My Bad ! . I do love the Intel toolbox.


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18 Dec 2011   #2382
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Snakeyeskm View Post
Thanks for the important clarification on Intel drives Hopalong X My Bad ! . I do love the Intel toolbox.
It isn't your bad just mine.

My first SSD.
I was just pointing out why I have luckily avoided that particular problem.

Everything I have read on adding extra OP is confusing- to me anyway.

Your explanation at least helps it make some basic sense.
Some things I'm a slow learner.
Old phart syndrome I guess!
Mike
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18 Dec 2011   #2383
Britton30
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Snakeyeskm View Post
As Hopalong X mentioned, OP refers to over provisioning. A little explanation might help.

When you first get your SSD you will notice that the actual capacity shown in Windows is a little less than the stated size of the SSD. The difference (which puzzles some first-time SSD owners) is the part of the SSD drive allocated to OP by the manufacturer. The garbage collection and wear leveling algorithms built into SSD drives used this OP to assist in their processes.(if you need more information on how this OP is used, please post) They obviously try to achieve an optimal OP between efficiency in their algorithms and available capacity.

When the user is installing the OS on these SSD's they have the option to create a partition/partitions that do not fully utilize the available capacity. Any differences between the partition/partitions and the available capacity is referred to as the manual OP. By creating this manual OP, the efficiency of the garbage collection process can improve. Since very few users maximize the use of capacity, at least initially, leaving certain space unused is fairly easy. Recovering the space if and when needed is also easily accomplished by increasing the partition size within Windows. In raid setups, trim is not available to the SSD's and they have to depend on efficient garbage collection to maintain their speed and efficiency. Creating manual OP can greatly facilitate this process. It also helps in drives where trim is available, keeping in mind that trim is simply an instruction to the SSD and it is the garbage collection/wear leveling process that accepts the trim instruction.
I see now. I had read a bunch of <crap> on SSds before I bought one and read about provisioning...2-3 times before I understood it. I just don't know what capitol letters mean. You explanation was much simpler than the tech jargon I read though!
So in essence all I would have to do is create, say, a 2GB unallocated partition and the OP would use it automatically? Does it have to be created during install?
My SSD is a Crucial M4 64GB.

@Mike, and I live next to the state next to Missouri.
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18 Dec 2011   #2384
Snakeyeskm

Win 7 64 bit professional
 
 

Britton30 do not create an extra partition, just leave that portion unpartitioned. It is best created during installation, but can easily be created within Windows 7 by shrinking your existing partition. You can always recover that by expanding the very same partition, into the created manual OP.
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18 Dec 2011   #2385
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Snakeyeskm View Post
Britton30 do not create an extra partition, just leave that portion unpartitioned. It is best created during installation, but can easily be created within Windows 7 by shrinking your existing partition. You can always recover that by expanding the very same partition, into the created manual OP.
Now you have me confused again.

I don't need OP now so this is for future reference.
How else are you going to over provision without making a partition and leaving the space empty?

Now I'm lost again.

I just thought the extra OP was free space in a seperate partition.
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18 Dec 2011   #2386
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

The way I understood it you need real "free space" - or unallocated space. A partition is "occupied space" - even if it i empty.
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18 Dec 2011   #2387
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
The way I understood it you need real "free space". A partition is "occupied space" - even if it i empty.
Well the factory sets the "Free space".
You can't add to that.
Firmware determines set aside on each NAND chip and what is held in reserve for Bad block/ RAS replacement. Not Windows.
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18 Dec 2011   #2388
Snakeyeskm

Win 7 64 bit professional
 
 

Sorry about that. I will try to be more clear using an example. If you have a new SSD or a secure erased SSD of 100 GB, and create the partition of 90 GB, the balance of 10 GB will be ignored by your OS and be available as manual OP. Thus when you open My Computer in Windows it would show a drive with 90 GB capacity. Alternatively, if you went into Windows and shrank your existing partition and did not format/partition the new space created, it would qualify as manual OP.


At the risk of boring the heck out of you, and with some technical liberties I will try to outline a little more about the value of increasing manual OP. This does not mean that the following applies to all SSD's in exactly the same manner.

SSD's in spite of their blinding speed have a confluence of two different issues that require the OP.

Firstly, to back up manufacturers life projections for their SSD they have to recognize that unlike spinners (traditional hard drives) nand life in SSD's is reduced by successive writes. If any one group of nand's sees more activity than others, it's relative life is reduced. Therefore if the SSD allows indiscriminate writing to some nand's, they will wear out faster than others on the SSD. The wear leveling algorithms try to map each nand's level of activity and try to spread their use evenly across the SSD.

The second issue SSD's face is how they write information to each block. If a block is empty the SSD can write to it at blazing speeds. If a block is partially used and the SSD attempts to add information to it, it now has to read what information is already on the block, store this information in a different location and then write the new information and the old information on to the block. You can see how this read, save much process can be so time-consuming. Incidentally, SSD's that have been overwhelmed by over capacity and excessive writes, suffer from major slowdowns and this state is referred to as "hammered".

To avoid this process and facilitate wear leveling the SSD uses the OP similar to a scratch file. During periods of low CPU and disk activity, the internal algorithms within the SSD start to move information around to create totally clean blocks so that write speeds are maintained. However the wear leveling constraints will force the SSD to ensure all nand's are used evenly. This process requires an even more selective cleaning of blocks. This in turn is facilitated by the size of the scratchpad namely the OP. Trim instructions help the SSD to identify blocks that are ready for "cleaning" this obviously facilitates the process. Lacking trim, the garbage collection process has to do its own thing to identify, prioritize and clean blocks within the constraints of wear leveling.

This is why, SSD's really operate in three different modes in their lifetime.

The "fresh" mode, where all unused blocks are available for writing. Best speeds.

The "mapped" mode, where all blocks have been used at least once and the SSD wear leveling algorithms now selectively prioritize the use of blocks to ensure all that all blocks within the SSD experience the same amount of usage. This is also known as the steady state. Many users run benches complaining about the decline in SSD speeds not realizing that their SSD has now stabilized at the mapped mode. Manufacturers, obviously advertise fresh speeds.

The "hammered" mode occurs when the garbage collection/trim process cannot build clean blocks and additional writing to the SSD forces use of blocks that already contain data. In this case the SSD has to read this data, store this data, clean the block/blocks, and rewrite all the data (old and new) to the now clean block/blocks. You can see how complicated and slow the write operation now becomes. Here again the size of the OP can help in deferring this stage.

A secure erase to the drive in any one of the above states, allows a fresh start with all clean blocks. At regular but distant intervals, this is an excellent way to freshen up the SSD and while it will impact the overall SSD life by bypassing the wear leveling approach, it is not believed to be significant.
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18 Dec 2011   #2389
Hopalong X

Windows7 Pro 64bit SP-1; Windows XP Pro 32bit
 
 

Let me see if I got your point.

Start fresh with a 100GB make partition 90GB. I now have Windows showing the 10GB as unformated and "Unallocated" this way.
Then it will use it as added OP.

If this is correct I got the difference now.

The SSD firmware will use it since Windows has not designated it for usage.

Now I understand what they were doing on xtremeforums testing thread with their set ups.

I told you I was dense sometimes. LOL
Just ask Essenbe!!!!
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18 Dec 2011   #2390
Snakeyeskm

Win 7 64 bit professional
 
 

Yup. Sorry for being so verbose.
If you are dense, having seen your posts, I am pure lead
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