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AnandTech explores the virtues and woes of today's SSD

Tim Stevens

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If you're interested in SSD, chances are you've been paying attention to the allegations of performance degradation in Intel's X25-M drives. AnandTech dives into the issue (and many, many more topics) in 31 page exploration of the state of solid state. It's a spine-tingling read, in part explaining how write-speed degradation is largely thanks to partially used pages containing portions of deleted files. We all know deleted files typically aren't really gone until they're overwritten, a problem in SSDs because to clear a section of a page the entire page needs to be cleared. That entails moving anything you want to keep to the cache, wiping the whole page, then re-writing that good data from cache. The hope is that a new delete command dubbed TRIM (set to find support in Windows 7) will speed up writes by forcing the system to perform this work during deletes, but ahead of that the article still recommends Intel's drives; even at their worst they're still generally faster than the comparably priced competition when it comes to average use -- not to mention faster than your platters.

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