19 Replies Latest reply on Sep 21, 2011 10:36 AM by Jim_Simon

    SSD Reliability

    Jim_Simon Level 9

      After updating my edit and personal computers with fairly modern CPUs, it's finally time to update my office computer.  Nothing too fancy, I'll be going with an i3-2100.  Seems more than adequate for basic office computing needs.

       

      I'm also considering moving to SSDs for the office computer.  My current drive is 60GB and there's plenty of space left over, so that capacity is sufficient.  I know it's much more expensive to go this route, but I'm willing to bite that bullet, to a degree, for the considerable speed increase.  It really sucks keeping clients waiting on the phone as my computer dawdles with boot up and application opening.

       

      There are several candidates out there in the under $125 category, some even highly favored by professional reviewers.  But there seems to be an inordinate number of drive failures for SSDs compared to normal hard drives when looking at actual user reviews.  20% to 30% of buyers of any particular model (at Newegg) report their SSD failing in only weeks or months, some with complete data loss.  Man, that scares the crap out of me!  I will be buying two drives and using them in RAID 1, which somewhat mitigates the fear, but not entirely.

       

      I'd like to hear from SSD users here what their impressions are regarding drive reliability with the model you're using.  System builders like Scott and Eric, who have experience with multiple rigs, are especially welcome to post.

        • 1. Re: SSD Reliability
          JEShort01 Level 4

          I am currently using 9 in various PCs and have not had so much as even I minor glitch in about a year's time:

           

          (5) Crucial C300 64GB - 5xRAID 0 blazing reads

          (3) Intel X-25M - one in a laptop, two in a RAID 0 boot/OS

          (1) Samsung 256GB - factory drive in a Dell e6410 laptop

           

          Jim

          • 2. Re: SSD Reliability
            John T Smith Adobe Community Professional & MVP

            >complete data loss.  Man, that scares the crap out of me!

             

            Hardware crashes or virus infections happen, so you should buy AND USE software to make a full backup of your hard drive to an external USB hard drive... plus, making step-by-step backups during a new install or major program addition makes it easy to go back a step if something doesn't work
            .
            This backup and then restore is, of course, only to the same computer with a new drive (or the same drive as long as you don't mind writing over everything) since doing a restore to a new computer won't work due to Windows and many programs having activation information that is keyed to your hardware (which is why Windows will force you to RE-Activate if you change very much hardware)
            .
            The product I use is at http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/image-for-linux.htm
            .
            Image runs off of a bootable CD via Linux (the Zip you download includes a program to make the bootable CD) and it reads EVERYTHING on the drive, even the hidden registration information, so everything is restored when needed... and you may restore the image to a brand new drive in case of a crash, and not have to re-install anything
            .
            Please note that I own no part of Image, and I don't get a referral fee (that is just a plain web link) but I use the program and it has saved me a LOT of trouble when I had a hard drive die... and I was able to restore everything and not have to re-install or re-activate a single program, from Windows on up

            • 3. Re: SSD Reliability
              Bill Gehrke Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              Jim,

               

              This not an answer to your question of the day, but I have just finished my first tests on the newest (I believe they are referred to as 3rd generation) SSD with the SandForce SF-2281 SATA III controller.  It is the Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe MKNSSDCR240GB-DX.  This not your under $125 catagory but then I did not intend it for that.  I just completed 10 runs of PPBM5 on it as the project drive and WOW!  It is just as fast as my 8 SAS disk drive 15,000 rpm RAID 0 array.  Of course it does not have the same storage capacity as any of the hard disk arrays meaning slight changes in workflow but quiet and much less power/heat..

               

              Mushkin is the SSD vendor ADK uses and that is good enough for me--Thanks Eric and Scott.

              • 4. Re: SSD Reliability
                Scott Chichelli Level 3

                Hey Jim,

                 

                i would not touch an OCZ. (however my first was an OCZ and its still working)

                Intel would be the most reliable (even with the odd bug in the 320 series)

                Mushkin and Micron as well take 2nd place for me..

                 

                as much as i hate to link to big review sites this was not a bad article.

                http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ssd-solid-state-nand-reliability,2998.html

                 

                 

                if it were me i would not put an SSD in an office system..

                 

                Scott

                • 5. Re: SSD Reliability
                  Jim_Simon Level 9

                  "Obviously, we know that SSDs still fail, though. All it takes is 10 minutes of flipping through customer reviews on Newegg's listings."

                   

                  That's exactly what brought me here.

                  • 6. Re: SSD Reliability
                    Jim_Simon Level 9

                    Here's one with a very high rate of positive reviews.  Comments?

                     

                    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148441

                    • 7. Re: SSD Reliability
                      tfi productions 44 Level 1

                      hello,

                       

                      here looks like a nice quality ssd by mushkin

                      kinda like the one you mentioned earlier but not

                      as big or as expensive but gets nice reviews

                       

                      http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820226206

                       

                      also, only a sata2

                       

                       

                      i would like to get 2 for my desktop rig

                      and use 1 for os/programs/media cache database

                      and trying to figure out the best place for the 2nd one:

                       

                      as a final export drive, or as the media cache files themselves

                       

                      the computer has 24gb of ram and an i7 930 at 2.8ghz

                       

                      any suggestions for the best placement of the 2nd ssd?

                       

                      thanks,

                       

                      jeffrey

                      • 8. Re: SSD Reliability
                        Jim_Simon Level 9

                        Yeah, two of those would definitely break my budget.

                        • 9. Re: SSD Reliability
                          FelixUnderwood Level 2

                          Jim,

                          I bought my first SSD, a Corsair 256Gb over 3 years ago and it worked great right out of the box. I actually bought it to ease my concerns about storage failure, contrary to Scott suggesting to avoid using an SSD on an office computer. I feel a lot more confindent since then whenever I push the power button to power up my editing rig. Since then, I built a new editing rig last Fall and bought a Crucial SATA III drive and noticed a significant speed improvement over the SATAII Corsair. I sold that rig and recently built one with a 2nd gen Crucial SATAIII drive and couldn't be happier. I find it absurd to be talked out of this technology because of reliability concerns. Check the reviews online and you'll get a pretty good idea of the more reliable brands. In our high tech, speed is everything industry, why wait on a technology that's been around 4 years now and will eventually replace the hard drive, which has been around since the 80s? The prices are finally falling, though that didn't stop me from migrating to this wonderful technology 3 years ago.

                          Being talked out of an SSD because of reliability concerns is as absurd to me as avoiding today's video cameras, because they, too, record to solid state media. I can't imagine going from P2 back to video tape because of reliability concerns! If you do get talked into staying in the past, I've got CS3 Production Premium I'm no longer using that I'll sell to you cheap!

                          And finally, to illustrate my price drop point: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820227707

                          • 10. Re: SSD Reliability
                            Jim_Simon Level 9

                            I wasn't necessarily talked out of buying an SSD.  I was simply concerned because of the seemingly higher than normal fail rate of SSDs reported by actual users on Newegg.

                             

                            The model linked to in post 6 is getting pretty good reviews from both professionals and users, and it's at a good price point for me to buy 2 for use in a RAID 1.

                            • 11. Re: SSD Reliability
                              Jim_Simon Level 9

                              Well, I took the plunge and bought 2 Crucial M4s.  (Just it time, too.  They're now sold out.)  We'll see how things go...

                              • 12. Re: SSD Reliability
                                Scott Chichelli Level 3

                                Well that’s one of the best ones you can buy!

                                • 13. Re: SSD Reliability
                                  Jim_Simon Level 9

                                  Good to know.  It got high marks from both reviewers and real world users.

                                  • 14. Re: SSD Reliability
                                    FelixUnderwood Level 2

                                    Jim,

                                       Make sure you have the latest firmware, which is 009. It was released August 25th, so there's a good chance you won't have this revision. I just flashed my drive and the neat thing is that you can now do firmware updates with SSDs, at least the Crucial M4 line, without losing your data! Also, the directions say to make sure your SSD is on SATA Port 0-3 and not on a 6Gbs SATAIII port. Well, I flashed mine with it in Port 6, which is SATAIII and it was successful. The one thing they tell you to do which is a must is to make sure you don't have AHCI engaged, otherwise the flashing software won't find your drive. To get the latest firmware: http://www.crucial.com/support/firmware.aspx

                                    • 15. Re: SSD Reliability
                                      Jim_Simon Level 9

                                      Thanks for the tips, Felix.  My drives came in today.  They have firmware 0001, so an update was planned before any data installation.

                                      • 16. Re: SSD Reliability
                                        Jim_Simon Level 9

                                        OK, the new Crucial M4s are up and running as a RAID 1 in the new office computer, from which I now type this post.

                                         

                                        Damn things are fast!

                                        • 17. Re: SSD Reliability
                                          Jim_Simon Level 9

                                          So far, the new drives are performing very nicely.  I updated the firmware on both to 0009 and then installed the two in a RAID 1 on my Asus P8P67LE on the 6 GB/s SATA ports.  I haven't measured their performance yet, but I'm booted up to the login screen in 30 seconds.  I'd probably reach the full desktop in 35 if I didn't have a User and Password to type in.

                                           

                                          Application opening is lighting fast.  Word docs used to take 30 to 45 secodns or more to open up.  Now it's nearly instantaneous.  It's very nice having that kind of quick access to information when talking to a customer on the phone.

                                          • 18. Re: SSD Reliability
                                            AdobeHasIssues

                                            Jim, you didn't say what OS and how much RAM you have. There are a ton of tweaks for Win XP to keep your SSD's maintained. I've been using an OCZ Vertex for well over a year on XP 32 and it WAS a handful to get prepared and to get Windows tweaked but it was worth it. By default XP can trash an SSD over time. I also just bought the Crucial M4 for my new Win7 64bit Pro install.

                                             

                                            Last thing I wanted to mention... Don't rely on RAID1 to be your backup! A virus, power failure, write error or countless other corruptions will defeat both drives and you'll have no backup. RAID1 is strictly for redundancy, for systems that cannot afford to go down for a drive HARDWARE failure. You MUST still backup your system onto other media, there is no getting around that fact.

                                            • 19. Re: SSD Reliability
                                              Jim_Simon Level 9

                                              I'm using Win 7 64 with 8 GB DDR3-1600 RAM.

                                               

                                              I've looked through the necessary tweaks.  Windows 7 had most of them on by default (since it was installed to the SDDs).  I only had to make a couple extra minor ones.

                                               

                                              The RAID is strictly for redundancy, in the case of a drive failure.  Critical files are backed up to another location.