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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: poochie2 on Dec 17, '09 05:41:53PM

I see the point of the trouble free install (changing a HD is nothing that hard by the way), but I do know something about SSDs and what really matters to measure the improvements are random read and write values (xbench isn't great but gives an idea about that), sequential results are meaningful only for file transfers, not for loading and saving stuff in a multi tasking environment. I would be afraid that those "SSDs" suffer in random writes as the first Jmicron based SSD did, with terrible performance and caused random pauses in the OS usage due to this problem.



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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: poochie2 on Dec 17, '09 06:03:50PM

OK, I found a test made on this disk, but it's a bit sad: X25-M 80 GB with latest firmware (note that this drive is the best random read-write performer and one of the worst sequential write performers):

Sequential Read : 247.890 MB/s
Sequential Write : 84.426 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 173.893 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 73.066 MB/s
Random Read 4KB : 23.410 MB/s
Random Write 4KB : 59.855 MB/s

Test Size : 1000 MB
Date : 2009/12/02 11:14:18

FileMate SolidGO 48GB: http://www.pro-clockers.com/storage/192-wintec-filemate-solidgo-48gb-expresscard-34-ultra-ssd.html?start=3
Sequential Read : 120 MB/s
Sequential Write : 67 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 114 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 54 MB/s
Random Read 4KB : 11 MB/s
Random Write 4KB : 2 MB/s

Test Size : 1000 MB



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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: robg on Dec 17, '09 07:09:32PM

I have no doubt at all that an internal SSD is faster than an ExpressCard SSD. But it's also a heck of a lot more money, especially for a fast SSD like that one -- $300 vs. $165.

If someone has the time, money, and inclination to rip into their Mac and replace the hard drive, I'm all for it. But in the end, you wind up with 80GB of very fast storage for $300, plus the labor involved in the swap.

With an ExpressCard SSD, I get 248GB of storage, with 48GB of it being very fast compared to the 200GB I had before, all for $165 (or $125 in my case, thanks to the sale) and roughly zero install labor.

Two very good solutions, two very different solutions.

-rob.



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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: poochie2 on Dec 18, '09 01:46:26AM

It's surely nice (most ExpressCard SSDs are a lot worse than that, but good 3.5 HDs have a similar performance to the one I got for that SSD), but given the price per GB I'd absolutely go for the internal one. The labor required to install it depends on the machine, I am a lucky owner of a Late 2008 MBP Unibody so it takes me extactly 4-5 minutes to swap HD (pull one lever, loosen one screw and move 4 "pins" from the old the new hd, screw back, close), so I'd say the major advantage of using the ExpressCard is actually not having to sacrifice the other HD or DVD Writer. On other machines a lot of work is required, but in my experience is just the first time that il may look scary, otherwise it's a 10m job.



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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: Hes Nikke on Dec 19, '09 04:43:02PM
For comparison, here is my Kingston SSD Now! 128 GB according to X-Bench:
Disk Test	72.81	
	Sequential	101.32	
		Uncached Write	115.53	70.93 MB/sec [4K blocks]
		Uncached Write	138.55	78.39 MB/sec [256K blocks]
		Uncached Read	52.34	15.32 MB/sec [4K blocks]
		Uncached Read	222.21	111.68 MB/sec [256K blocks]
	Random	56.83	
		Uncached Write	16.50	1.75 MB/sec [4K blocks]
		Uncached Write	135.07	43.24 MB/sec [256K blocks]
		Uncached Read	1819.53	12.89 MB/sec [4K blocks]
		Uncached Read	551.78	102.39 MB/sec [256K blocks]
---
vacuums do not suck. they merely provide an absence that allows other objects to take the place of what becomes absent.


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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: robg on Dec 17, '09 07:10:47PM

As for the possibility of "OS pauses," I've been using this one now for 48 hours, pretty much constantly, and it hasn't hiccuped a single time. Time will tell, of course, but I'm thrilled with the performance to date.

Having a very cool left palmrest is also a very nice side benefit :)

-rob.



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Boot some MacBook Pros via an ExpressCard solid state drive
Authored by: poochie2 on Dec 18, '09 01:50:51AM

I'm almost sure that if you use all the space on that SSD there may be performance problems in time, but I'd like to use that in my MBP for secondary virtual machines and maybe as secondary SSD, but most ExpressCArd SSDs I can find here in Italy are really terrible performers.



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