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JamesStewart
13-10-2004, 03:54 AM
Well I just had my Seagate 40gb hard drive fail after about 4 years of extensive use so I am in the market for a new drive. I will plan on getting a 120gb drive but have a few questions about todays drives.

Does the extra size (40~120gb) impact of the speed of the drive? Will a 40gb with only windows installed run the same speed as a 120gb with windows? (or any information for that matter).

And this SATA looks like a good option but brings up some questions. Obviously the size of the cable is a clear advantage but I don't understand the "cache" part of hard drives. I know they are usually 2~8mb but what does this mean? Because I can get a IDE Seagate 120gb 7,200rpm with 2mb or 8mb cache but can only get a 120gb SATA in 2mb cache. I don't understand what the cache is/does.

I also have been having some problems with Doom3. I have my old HDD (the Seagate 40gb 7,200rpm IDE) running as my master and have a 120gb Western Digital IDE drive as the slave on the same slot. The Seagate had windows installed (and a partition with images of cd's on it) but was not full and the 120gb WD housed all my programs/music/files. I found Doom3 to take increadibly load to load up (it isn't my graphics card, thats no problem for the game). Are alot of people finding this or have I done somthing wrong and now that I'm starting fresh, what is the best set up?

And finally my old HDD ... it suffered an impact and that is why it doesn't know now. Does work isn't completely true, I get loud, weird noises out of it and I could load windwos but that took about 10 minutes to do. Is there a way to get the information off that disc that isn't going to take years to do?

For the second to last question, my system spec are as follows:

2.6 p4
asus p4p800 MB
512mb ddr400 ram
ati 9800pro
windows xp pro sp2 with lastest update for doom3 (the 1.5 beta patch) and latest ATI drivers.

Thanks and hope some one can answer all the questions :D

drb1
13-10-2004, 05:00 AM
James,

unless your board is specked for SATA It can have some advantage for games and problems with adapters ect

Get advice from MR doominator/metla on this.

The write cache is just a cache bigger cache, helps in large write opperations all segate over 200 GB are 8m Cache.

Will your board support over 137 GB some have issues?

The other possible advantage of sata is that they can be larger simpler up in the 3-500gb range but you need to be able to justify the expence.

Over 200 you should consider a pci ide raid and multi drive if you want speed and size.

D.

Pete O\'Neil
13-10-2004, 08:40 AM
>Over 200 you should consider a pci ide raid and multi drive if you want speed and size
Bad idea, the PCI doesnt have enough bandwidth to allow you to fully ultilize your harddrive, especially if your running a RAID 0 array or have other PCI cards.

Because the original posters motherboard uses Intels 865P chipset along with the ICH5R southbridge, it would be a good idea to use the onboard SATA. The ICH5R offers some of the best SATA support you can get.

In theory the more cache the better, but it really does depend on the brand of harddrive and how well the manufactuer has coded the drives firmware. Seagate drives dont show much benefit from the extra cache where as Western Digitals do. At the moment the interface used to connect the harddrive to the rest of the system is considerably faster than the harddrive itself. Cache is alot faster than harddrives, but is also expensive (thus the reason we dont just have big cache drives), because the cache is capable of fully ultilizing the SATA/PATA so the data thats being read is stored in the cache in an attempt to make the drive faster.

DOOM3 takes along time to load, have a look on the internet for tweak guides.

160Gb drives currently offer the best bang for your buck, you get the most Gb's for each dollar.

BIFF
13-10-2004, 01:52 PM
> Bad idea, the PCI doesnt have enough bandwidth to
> allow you to fully ultilize your harddrive,
> especially if your running a RAID 0 array or have
> other PCI cards.

Even the latest drives wont give you an uncached read or write over 40MB per second, I wouldn't worry about bandwidth constraints with a simple RAID 0 configuration. Perhaps if you have a 7 disk array you might start worrying. A cached read at 132MB/s is going to still be pretty good.

Mercenary
13-10-2004, 03:36 PM
Yes this I would also like to know. If my HD is indeed dying, as I think it may be, I'll need to buy a new one. I don't have a floppy disk drive and the only way to install winxp with this travesty of a mobo is by taking the boot files from cd and putting them on a floppy disk. What advantage is there to SATA that i should go through that again?