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Author Topic: Vector On My SSD  (Read 6602 times)

gacl

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Vector On My SSD
« on: January 07, 2008, 06:50:56 pm »
Hi, guys,

     I bought myself an SSD for my small portable ( Christmas present to myself ), the Samsung MCAQE16G8APR-0XA ( http://www.samsungssd.com ). I will put that one on my tiny Dell which will have absolutely no moving parts ( no noise! ). My question is: Should i take any steps to customize Vector so the drive lasts longer? ( because of the write cycles ) The data sheet does say 2 000 000 hours MTBF. So, should i be concerned? Thanks.

Gus
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

nightflier

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2008, 07:03:39 pm »
Nice! <wiping drool off keyboard>

I am running VL 5.8 off a CF card and an iRam. I use tmpfs for /tmp and a cheap USB stick for swap to minimize writes to the flash card.

Where did you buy this one?

gacl

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2008, 10:27:38 pm »
Heh, i tried a CF card with an adapter from Addonics about six months ago, but i can't remember why it didn't work out. . . i think i bought the wrong adapter and i couldn't find the correct one, or something like that.

I bought this one at Newegg for about 200 USD, but i think the 16 GB ones ( the one i have ) are discontinued. They have some as "open box", though ( returned? ): http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&Description=ssd%20samsung&bop=And&Order=PRICE

Gus
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

gacl

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2008, 12:59:42 pm »
What are the most likely sources for wear on the drive? The Firefox cache? Is there a default swap file in Vector?

Gus
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

nightflier

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2008, 03:04:54 pm »
Swap is usually set up on it's own partition, but I understand it's possible to use a file. The swap setup is usually done during install, but is easily changed later. You can also run without swap if you have enough RAM. I did that for months on a 1 GB machine and never had any problems.

I suspect that /tmp does some of the most frequent disc writes. That's why I put /tmp in RAM (tmpfs). Helps on speed too.

Browser caches also do a lot of writes. Not sure how you would put those in RAM, though.

gacl

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2008, 06:43:20 pm »
I've never used a swap partition or a swap file. But who needs one with Vector? And the maximum memory that i ever had has been ( is ) 768 MB.

I've done some reading and it seems that i'm worrying too much:

http://www.storagesearch.com/ssdmyths-endurance.html

http://www.embeddedstar.com/weblog/2007/05/21/ssd-longevity/

It's starting to look like SSDs are _more_ reliable than HDDs.

Gus
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

nightflier

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2008, 05:34:44 am »
Yeah, I'm sure there is a difference between a $200 SSD and a $10 keychain USB stick too.

I did a lot of experimenting and never managed to use the full gig of RAM. I tried hard:
http://cincibjj.com/temp/loaded.png

My initial plan was to just use the CF card as a regular drive and see if it would do the job. However, I like to play. ;) With a desktop machine you have more space and expansion slots to play with than in a portable. The decision to add an iRam was more about adding storage space, as the card is only 8 GB.

Final result (for now) is a box with 2 GB of RAM and liberal use of tmpfs. I threw in a cheap USB stick for swap, just in case. Spreading my storage across the devices seems to have increased speed too.

You should be fine with your SSD. If it fails a few years from now, how would that be different than a hard drive?

gacl

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2008, 07:39:39 am »
Quote
I did a lot of experimenting and never managed to use the full gig of RAM. I tried hard:
http://cincibjj.com/temp/loaded.png

Did you try OpenOffice.org? Or you could just run Vista on an emulator. I bet that'll be lots of fun. Just make sure you don't throw your chair at the computer, K?

I think i'll go for a double-boot: two 8 GB partitions. Probably 5.8 and 5.9. I really can't think of another distro to put in there. And most of my storage is external since i don't download music or videos or anything like that.

Gus
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

nightflier

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2008, 10:10:34 am »
It's hard to tell in the crowded task bar on that picture, but Open Office is running. I think I had all of the OO apps open. But you're right, it is a slug!  >:(  ...Vista? No thanks.

5.8 and 5.9 are very similar in function, you'd end up with much duplication there. Personally, I'd probably go with 5.9.

Please post your experiences with this, I would like to hear how it works out.

gacl

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #9 on: January 10, 2008, 09:35:37 pm »
I just installed 5.8 in hda1 on the SSD. I can tell right away that the computer is a little bit faster, not blindingly fast, but it certainly boots faster by a few seconds.

Aside from that, i assumed that the hard drive was the only source of noise left in the computer, but it wasn't so. There was a high-pitched sound coming from the computer. After googling around for a while i found that sometimes the highest power saving states of the CPU can produce these noises. The solution? Set the maximum state as such: echo 2 > /sys/module/processor/parameters/max_cstate. When i did this there was a profound reduction in the offending noise, but there was still some left. I googled around some more and found that a screen that has not been set at its full brightness can also make noise. I set mine in full and, sure enough, another drastic reduction of noise. The only noise left is a faint crackling which can be heard clearly if i put my ear close to the computer. This one partially goes away if i do: nice yes > /dev/null. Is this also related to ACPI? I don't know, i'm sleepy.

Gus
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

BlueMage

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2008, 03:11:11 am »
Quote
I did a lot of experimenting and never managed to use the full gig of RAM. I tried hard:
http://cincibjj.com/temp/loaded.png

Did you try OpenOffice.org? Or you could just run Vista on an emulator. I bet that'll be lots of fun. Just make sure you don't throw your chair at the computer, K?

I think i'll go for a double-boot: two 8 GB partitions. Probably 5.8 and 5.9. I really can't think of another distro to put in there. And most of my storage is external since i don't download music or videos or anything like that.

Gus

if you're going to run Vista on emulator, make sure you're running a few things outside the emulator as well.  otherwise you won't max out the RAM.  I use Vista Ultimate, with 2GB, and I'm rarely over 50% usage.  Except when playing Crysis :D
Acer Laptop:  Vector 5.8 SOHO Final & Windows XP Professional & USB (still alive!)
Compaq POS (almost dead): Vector 5.9 Light Beta 5
Quad-core BEAST: Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit & Vector 5.9 64-bit beta-2
Old 500MHz media box:  Vector 5.8 SOHO Final (dead)
701 EeePC:  Puppeee (based on Puppy 4.01)

nightflier

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2008, 05:39:02 am »
Other sounds: Yes, you have found the same thing I did. There are a lot of sound sources in a computer.

Slow a variable speed fan enough and you can hear the electrical motor. When I got the fan noise low enough, the hard drive became annoying. After removing the hard drive I noticed that even solid state devices make noise. The iRam makes a slight crackling sound during read/write. SiS on-board NIC's are downright annoying, letting out loud squeals with network activity (and poor performance too). You discovered even more issues (and solutions! :) ).

Eventually you reach a point of diminishing returns. I found that I prefer a low, steady hiss from a quiet fan over the other varying sounds. It blends into the background and is less noticeable.

However, for my Home Theater PC I did find another solution: It went behind the wall, in a closet. I cut holes in the wall for audio and video cables and use a wireless keyboard and mouse. There is custom wallplate with a power button, power and hdd LED, and a USB port. Above that is a slot-loading optical drive. Guests are usually bewildered when I feed my wall a DVD!   ;D

gacl

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2008, 07:25:52 am »
Yes, and the problem with portables is that they're right in your face. But, anyway, now i can hear the ringing in my ears just fine!

http://www.thinkwiki.org/wiki/Problem_with_high_pitch_noises#Solutions
“Our very lives depend on the ethics of strangers, and most of us are always strangers to other people.” -- Bill Moyers

nightflier

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Re: Vector On My SSD
« Reply #13 on: January 11, 2008, 07:59:59 am »
now i can hear the ringing in my ears just fine!

Ah, a fellow victim of tinnitus  :(