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JJMack 6,057 posts
Jan 9, 2006
Currently Being Moderated

Noel some advice please

Mar 21, 2013 1:57 PM

Noel I booted my new dell today installed the widows update but not the video driver for the Nivida Quadro 4000 offered by windows update.  Don't know which driver is best for it.

 

I also installed the Dell updates they had on their site for my system.  None were for the Nividia Quadro 4000

 

Windows backup failed with I/o error on the cheap 4TB external usb3 seagate drive I just got.  I need to test the drive. Do you know of a good free drive test program?

So I did a backup on to the internal hard drive which worked. I also created a recovery DVD.

 

I see  some applications installed on the system I don't know:

 

1.) Dell Backup and Recovery Manager is installed.  What is that about? Do you use it? Does it involve a cloud server and a subscription and a cost?

 

2.) Dell Client System Update application installed. When I  ran that it found a recommended Dell update for Quadro 600??? did not install it. It also found a optional BIOS update. I may install that.

 

3.) Dell Data Protection | Access     what is that about???  Looks like it may be a tool a corporation IT department might use...

 

4.) Dell System Detect which was installed when I had Dell's web site detect my service tag.

 

5.) Lastly it looks like Dell installed a trial "Trend Micro Client/Server Security Agent... Though on the task bar the up triangle seem to indicate activation for  the Trend Micro security agent is required.

The windows Control Panel, System and Security, Action Center  shows

1.) Windows firewall on and Trend Personal Firewall off

2.) Virus protection  Trend Micro Client/Server Security Agent Antivirus reports that it is up to date and virus scanning is on

3:) Windows Defender and Trend Micro Client/Server Agent Anti-spyw both report they are turned on

Note:Running two on more can cause you computer to run slow....

What do you use for Antivirous and Firewall.   Lately I have given up on Norton Internet Security and have uninstalled it from my windows systems and I just use the  Windows Firewall and install Microsoft Security Essentials. Don't know if this is any good.

 

Advice Please.

 
Replies
  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 21, 2013 2:31 PM   in reply to JJMack

    JJMack wrote:

     

    cheap 4TB external usb3 seagate drive I just got.  I need to test the drive.

     

    These cheap Seagate drives have only a 1 year manufacturer's warranty. Shows how little faith Seagate has in the reliability. Return it and buy an enterprise drive with a five year warranty.

     
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    Mar 21, 2013 2:56 PM   in reply to JJMack

    Well, two years is only half as crap as one year.

     

    I guess you got an external cased drive. If you buy Seagate's consumer-level bare desktop 4TB drive, it's a one year warranty.

     
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  • Noel Carboni
    23,534 posts
    Dec 23, 2006
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    Mar 21, 2013 3:14 PM   in reply to JJMack

    Hi JJ,

     

    I'm deep into software development today, but I will get back to you with more detail soon.

     

    I'd update the BIOS from Dell's site, then go to nVidia.com for their latest driver for your card.  I haven't heard of anything wrong with it.

     

    I don't use any Dell pre-installed software; I installed my system fresh from a retail Windows 7 disc.  No frills (I have all the config changes etc. I've done written up in my Configure Windows "To Work" books).  I've not found any Dell "value add" software I felt was worth having.

     

    Windows Backup is plenty good for making and restoring backups.  I have it scheduled to run every night.

     

    I prefer SSDs, but for spinning HDDs I prefer Western Digital enterprise class drives.  I have RE4 models.  For external USB I swear by Western Digital MyBook drives (I have 3GB and 2GB models)

     

    My advice:  Remove all Dell-supplied anti-malware and go get Avast! free antivirus.  Their version 8 software is excellent, and it even lets you know if you have critical applications that are falling out of date.  You only need the free version - don't accidentally hit one of the bigger, more colorful "upgrade to pro" type buttons during installation.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
    23,534 posts
    Dec 23, 2006
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    Mar 21, 2013 5:31 PM   in reply to JJMack

    Okay, I've come up for air...  I'll answer these one step at a time in more detail.

    JJMack wrote:

     


    Windows backup failed with I/o error on the cheap 4TB external usb3 seagate drive I just got.

     

    I suggest you probably want to format the drive.  You'll want to format it to NTFS and use Windows 7 cluster sizing, as Windows XP cluster sizing will limit you to 2 TB.  In my case, after formatting my big backup drive, I set the permissions to wide open as I don't want to be fooling around trying to work around the drive protecting its data from me when it's crunch time and I'm trying to restore data.

     

    Specifically, I made Administrators owner of the root folder, then gave Authenticated Users, SYSTEM, Administrators, and Users Full Control permissions,  which will propagate to subfolders.   I maintain physical 9 mm security over the hardware.

     

     

    Hm, on re-reading it looks like I've covered everything else.

     

     

    I'm interested in seeing your Passmark benchmark score on that system when you get the dust settled.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 21, 2013 7:16 PM   in reply to JJMack

    Consider re-formatting the external drive anyway after you check it.  I wouldn't trust my data to something formatted en masse by a manufacturer.  Better to format it with the OS that's going to use it.

     

    Whether or not you format it, try the following:  Scare up 100 GB or so of really big files (videos, etc.), copy them to the drive, then compare the copies with the originals using the COMP command.  I've read where some people get occasional data errors on external drives, and I'm not sure anyone's ever nailed down why.  I've done the test myself (as well as actually restoring data from a backup when upgrading from one machine to another, then again when I upgraded to my SSD array).  Never had a data error, and I hope that's the same performance you'll see. 

     

    I suspect your Windows Backup error had to do with permissions.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 22, 2013 11:58 AM   in reply to JJMack

    FYI, I use a larger sector size and Windows Backup works just fine with my 3TB drive.  Did you try formatting it yourself?

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 22, 2013 4:03 PM   in reply to JJMack

    Get a Western Digital MyBook then.  I can say with authority that they work.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 24, 2013 11:33 PM   in reply to JJMack

    What kind of SSD is it?

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 25, 2013 7:22 AM   in reply to JJMack

    I would suggest never using any of the power-saving sleep states.  Just leave it on all the time (it's built for continuous duty).  Windows has never been rock solid in resuming from sleep states.

     

    Did you look at the drive inside?  I don't believe Dell makes their own drives.  Most modern drives (made from 2012 on) can yield FAR better performance than what you measured.  Generally speaking they can saturate a SATA link.  I don't know what port you've plugged it into, but I'm guessing it's in one of the SATA III ports, which means it literally should give you 500 megabytes/second transfer speeds.

     

    Because it's a refurb, I hope Dell isn't populating these systems with old tech drives...  That would not be nice.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 25, 2013 4:41 PM   in reply to JJMack

    If the SSD is getting a 7.9 then it definitely has more throughput than your spinning hard drives; perhaps that other benchmark didn't do a good job of measuring it.  When you get the additional stuff going try Passmark.

     

    I'm surprised that it's not getting a 7.9 on the RAM access...  I would have thought your RAM would test better than mine (which reads 7.8), not worse, since you have the option of running the RAM faster than I do.  You mentioned a 1333 vs. 1600 disparity above - did you get to the bottom of that?  Perhaps you don't know that Precisions have recommended ways to populate the RAM sockets.  It may kick up to multi-channel access and the higher speed if you populate the DIMM sockets in groups of 3 - e.g., 3 on the motherboard and 3 DIMMs on the riser, which is how I'm set up.  That may say you should have opted for 24 GB or 48 GB though, instead of 32.  That's why I got 48 GB.

     

    EDIT:  I see that your system has quad channel capability.  That probably says you'll get the best performance if you populate all 4 slots per processor with identical DIMMs.

     

    Do you have a setting in your BIOS for "Non-Uniform Memory Addressing"?  I do in mine, and as far as I know the concept is still valid in the newest processors.  Windows alters its process allocation slightly to try to run threads from a process in a processor that is nearer its memory.  Enabling NUMA actually netted me some measurable additional performance.  With the BIOS setting disabled your memory blocks are interleaved.

     

    I'd be doing benchmarks every step of the way if I were you, so you know when changes help or hinder performance.  I do understand if you don't want to publish them publicly until you have everything just so.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 31, 2013 6:56 AM   in reply to JJMack

    Wow, so the 1600MHz RAM is only a benefit when you have the really high-end Xeons, then.  Anyhow, 1333MHz isn't bad - you're going to love the way Photoshop runs with 40GB of RAM on tap.  I think nothing of working on 50 or 100 megapixel files at 16 bits/channel any more.

     

    I hadn't heard of Novabench before, but the ones where you can compare with others online and see how your system is doing are good.  I like the Passmark PerformanceTest benchmark suite for that myself.  As it turns out I downloaded a new BIOS last night for my Precision T5500, and it actually made a positive difference in my performance (my Passmark RAM and disk scores gained a little).  Notably this BIOS claims better management of RAM allocation with multiple processors - I'm not sure what that means, but it sounds pertinent, and I'll take every bit of additional performance.    The latest Catalyst 13.3 beta 3 driver recently added a bit of display performance as well.  All good!

     

    Some Photoshop benchmarks to try:

     

    Radial Blur benchmark by Keith Simonian: 

    http://ksimonian.com/Blog/2010/02/24/improved-photoshop-benchmark-cpu- speed-test-for-both-mac-pc-free-radial-blur-filter-test/

    (mine's the 3rd highest score there at 9.7 seconds)

     

    ClubOfOne Photoshop Speed test:

    http://clubofone.com/speedtest/

    (I got 11.2 seconds with that one - you might want to disable the steps that change your color working space settings)

     

    I'm also curious how quickly Photoshop opens your raw files now - though of course that will depend also a lot on the settings you choose.  I'm betting you're going to love that workstation.  Congratulations on a fine purchase.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 31, 2013 9:20 AM   in reply to JJMack

    I was thinking more along the lines of after you press the [Open Image] box in Camera Raw and the file opening into Photoshop, which will have essentially nothing to do with your disk speed.  That's about how well the multi-threaded raw conversion uses your CPUs.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Mar 31, 2013 10:16 AM   in reply to JJMack

    Your performance sounds really good.  Thumbs up!  Enjoy that beast.

     

    -Noel

     
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  • Noel Carboni
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    Apr 1, 2013 8:30 AM   in reply to JJMack

    P.S., JJ, what did the 32 GB of ECC RAM cost?  Just curious.

     

    Passmark provides a latency measurement, which was just reduced from 40ns to 39ns on my system by a Dell BIOS upgrade (so far, it's still stable).  I'm curious what latency you're seeing with the T5600 design.  Have you run any benchmarks that measure latency?

     

    -Noel

     
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