24 Replies Latest reply on Dec 23, 2012 6:18 PM by Alex - DV411

    How to optimize my disk setup?

    Arokki_ Level 1

      On my editing system I have 5 disks: 2 x 1 TB 7200rpm, 1 x 500GB 7200rpm, 2 x 256 GB SSD. How should I spread my data on to them optimizing performance? The way I currently use them is: 1 x 256 GB SSD for Windows 7 64bit, programs and system files, 2 x 1 TB 7200rpm as RAID0 for media files, 1 x 256 GB SSD for the "ongoing editing project" and all its files and 1 x 500GB 7200rpm for file storage.

       

      I am using Premiere CS5 and After Effects CS5 on an Intel quad-core system with 8GB of RAM.

       

      I have checked the forums but was unable to find anything for my exact setup; most of the guidelines go through the systems with only 1 SSD drive.

        • 1. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
          Harm Millaard Level 7

          Looks good, given the variety of disks you have. But be careful you make regular backups of your raid0, they contain your precious media!

          • 2. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
            Biggles Lamb Level 3

            You look to have an optimal setup

             

            As Harm advied do make regular backups

             

            I have a boot disc with only operating system and all programs, nothing else

             

            RAID 0 with all live media files and it is also set up as the scratch disc for all project files

             

            A large media storage drive where I keep backup copies of all the original media files and this is where I also backup the RAID to

             

            Additionally I have an external NAS system where the Media storeage disc is fully backup up to

             

            So for backups I have two copies just in case of failure

            • 3. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
              Arokki_ Level 1

              Thanks guys for taking the time, I really appreciate it!

               

              How about disck cache, pagefile and video/audio previews and such? How should I spread them on my disks in this particular setup? The disk now used for file storage (500GB 7200rpm) can be formatted and reassigned if needed.

              • 4. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                Harm Millaard Level 7

                Pagefile on the C: drive SSD. Media cache & previews on the second SSD would be my suggestion.

                1 person found this helpful
                • 5. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                  Arokki_ Level 1

                  Should I then use the second SSD for nothing else than cache & previews and move the media projects from it to my RAID0-unit?

                  • 6. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                    Harm Millaard Level 7

                    The second SSD is fast enough to not be downgraded in performance by the combination of media cache, previews and projects, so I do not see a reason to change the projects folder to another drive. Moving projects to the raid0 will not entail any significant gain or loss, since the raid0 and the SSD are about equally fast, maybe the SSD is even faster, but the raid0 entails the doubled risk of data loss.

                    • 7. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                      Arokki_ Level 1

                      Thanks again. I will do as you suggested.

                      • 8. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                        Jim_Simon Level 9

                        Here's how I'd set it up.

                         

                        C: 256 GB SSD - System drive (Windows and programs)

                        D: 256 GB SSD - Projects (project files, audio files, stills, etc.)

                        E: 500GB - Scratch/Cache

                        F: 1TB - Media

                        G: 1TB - Exports

                         

                        The above will minimize the risk inherent in a RAID 0 (by not using it), as well as spread the load out for optimal speed.

                         

                        (You do still need a media backup solution if you're primarilly tapeless.)

                        • 9. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                          Arokki_ Level 1

                          Jim,

                           

                          What kind of media would you set to F: 1TB - Media when projects, project files and such are on D? And why are exports on a different disk?

                           

                          I'm only looking for optimal speed at the moment, backups are done regularly.

                          • 10. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                            Harm Millaard Level 7

                            Jim,

                             

                            Just curious, why would you put the audio, stills and projects on the fastest disk and put the media cache and previews on the slowest disk? If anything, I would reverse them. The files most accessed like media cache and previews ought to be located on the  fastest disk, not the slowest. Audio and stills, with their relatively small file sizes and infrequent access can easily be put on a slower disk.

                            • 11. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                              Jim_Simon Level 9

                              In my listed scenario, Media refers to video files only.  The load (including Exports) is spread out to avoid reading from and writing to the same disk at the same time.

                               

                              I suggested Projects on the smaller disk thinking the cache files would require more space.  If the sizes worked out, switching D: and E: would also be viable (Cache on the SSD and Projects on the 500GB).

                              • 12. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                Arokki_ Level 1

                                Ok,

                                 

                                I have to check one thing: What is a "Project" in your scenario? Just the .prproj-file? Project file and all source media?

                                 

                                I also can't understand why exports are spread out to another disk and how it would prevent simultaneous reading and writing? You never use the exports in your project, you just play them back in a media player, right? Or am I missing something or doing it all wrong?

                                 

                                Or do you mean that the time used for exporting reduces when the exported file is being written to a dedicated disk? My main objective right now is to enhance the speed of editing, color correcting and so on, not rendering the final output, allthough I wouldn't mind if it comes as a side effect

                                 

                                Message was edited by: Arokki_

                                • 13. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                  Jim_Simon Level 9

                                  Projects is just that - Premiere Pro and After Effects project files.  I do keep audio and still images in the same folder, as they're fairly small by comparison to video files.  But video clips should go on their own dedicated drive.

                                   

                                  Creating an export requires a write cycle, you write the new file.  But you have to write it with something - the clips in your sequence.  Those clips are tied to actual video and audio files on a hard drive.  So when you export, you're reading the source media, and creating a new file from it.  Thus, reading and writing at the same time.  Ideally, you don't want to be doing that from a single drive.  That's what slows things down.  You want to read from one (or more) drives, and write to a different drive.  This keep things moving along at a good speed.  What you do with the exported file is not relevant to this situation, it's the act of creating that export I'm talking about.

                                   

                                  The things you want to speed up are primarily enhanced with a new CPU.  The hard drive config will have a much smaller effect on those things.

                                  1 person found this helpful
                                  • 14. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                    Arokki_ Level 1

                                    Thank you so much Jim. I know new hardware is always a good thing, just want to make sure nothing in the hard drive config will cause bottle necks now or later. This is what I am going to do (a combination of Jim's and Harm's tips):

                                     

                                    C: 256 GB SSD - Windows, programs and pagefile

                                    D: 256 GB SSD - Project files, audio files, and scratch & cache

                                    E: 2 TB RAID0 - All media (not uninstalling RAID0 for to keep media drive faster)

                                    F: 500 GB - Exports

                                     

                                    One more SSD drive for only scracth & cache would be nice.

                                    • 15. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                      Harm Millaard Level 7

                                      Anokki,

                                       

                                      Make sure you connect the two SSD's to the SATA 6G ports on the Intel controller and the two media disks in raid0 to the Marvell ports. And make sure you have a solid backup plan for your precious media.

                                      • 16. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                        Arokki_ Level 1

                                        Harm,

                                         

                                        How to tell the difference? Atm they are all connected with SATA cabling onto the motherboard.

                                        • 17. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                          Harm Millaard Level 7

                                          Look at the Motherboard overview and Layout contents and the different ports are clearly described in the Motherboard User Guide and are probably color coded differently. In my case the Intel SATA 6G ports are grey, the 4 SATA 3G ports are blue and the 2 Marvell SATA 6G ports are offset a tiny bit from the other ports physically and are navy blue.

                                          • 18. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                            Arokki_ Level 1

                                            Thank you Harm, I will check this.

                                            • 19. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                              Jim_Simon Level 9

                                              This is what I am going to do

                                               

                                              Not a terrible arrangement.  (Just make sure your media is backed up.)

                                              • 20. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                                Biggles Lamb Level 3

                                                On my motherboard the 6Gb/s SATA ports are color coded differently to the remainder

                                                 

                                                If you are unsure please post the make and model number of the motherboard

                                                 

                                                One point about using the SSD for cache, and that is the size of the drive, I have a lot of projects on the go and my present cache folder size is in excess of 200Gb despite having a clear out of older completed projects

                                                 

                                                This is one of the limitations of Premiere that needs fixing as the files are all in the same folder, I also use Edius and their files are in a seperate folder and hence very easy to clear

                                                • 21. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                                  Arokki_ Level 1

                                                  Thanks for the replys.

                                                   

                                                  This is what I have for the motherboard: http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_775/P5Q_PRO/

                                                  A copy&paste from the link above:

                                                   

                                                  Southbridge

                                                  - 6x SATA 3Gb/s

                                                  - Intel® Matrix Storage Technology with RAID 0, 1, 5 10 support

                                                  Marvell 88SE6111

                                                  - 1 x UltraDMA 133/100/66 for up to 2 PATA devices

                                                  Silicon Image Sil5723 (Drive Xpert technology)

                                                  - 2 x SATA 3Gb/s

                                                  - Supports EZ Backup and Super Speed functions

                                                  *Drive Xpert function is available only when the hard disk drives are set as data drives.

                                                   

                                                  First 6 SATA ports are coloured RED and the other two are ORANGE and WHITE. Right now I have the SSD for projects connected to the ORANGE port, everything else in a RED port.

                                                   

                                                  Any ideas or opinions?

                                                  • 22. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                                    Jeff Bellune Level 6

                                                    [moved to hardware forum]

                                                    • 23. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                                      Bill Gehrke Most Valuable Participant

                                                      Unfortunately your motherboard came out before SATA III (6 Gb/s) were available, the only way you could go for the faster interfaces is with a third party PCIe card and you might want to think about a RAID controller card.

                                                      • 24. Re: How to optimize my disk setup?
                                                        Alex - DV411 Level 2

                                                        Thus, reading and writing at the same time.  Ideally, you don't want to be doing that from a single drive.  That's what slows things down.

                                                        Wouldn't that depend just on how much exporting is being done?

                                                         

                                                        Sure, walking forward and backward at the same time (this is a really bad analogy, by the way) is not going to get you anywhere fast - but if you only do it 1 minute a day - who cares?

                                                         

                                                        From another angle - is there much of a difference between reading and writing, performance-wise?  Quite a few editors out there work with multiple video layers, either multicam shoots, PiP training videos, or multi-layer compositions. These could be much more performance-demanding than exporting to low-bandwidth YouTube videos - but nobody seems to be advising a separate disk for each video layer.  Yet so much time spent on advocating a dedicated export disk. Why?