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  1. Member
    Join Date: Jul 2002
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    Hi,

    I have 3 hard drives all together and my main C hard drive is the smallest. I would like to use 1 of my other 2 bigger hard drives for the main C drive instead. I was told speed with hard drives does make a difference. How would I help able to tell how fast the speed of my hard drivers are and how would I compare how fast they are so I am able to use the faster of the 2 hard drives for my main C drive instead? Please and thank you! After how fast the hard drive is found, how would I tell if the hard drives are even fast enough to be used for the main C hard drive instead? Thanks!
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  2. Mod Neophyte Super Moderator redwudz's Avatar
    Join Date: Sep 2002
    Location: AZ, USA
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    You can use a benchmarking program like SiSandra to check the transfer rate of a drive and compare it to some similar HDDs listed in the program. http://www.sisoftware.net/index.html?dir=dload&location=sware_dl_all&langx=en&a=
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  3. Yes, speed makes a difference. So does usage pattern.

    There is read speed, write speed, Sustained speeds for each, and seek time. Do you read, or write, a few, or lots, of small, or large, files? Do you capture video or play games? Is boot speed important to you, or performance while using the PC? What sector sizes did you use when formatting? Do you defrag on a regular basis?

    You may want the fastest, largest drive on C, or you may want the smallest with small sectors on C, with the larger and/or faster drive on D. Depending on your usage pattern, you may actually see a performance Decrease putting the faster drive as the boot drive.

    Are these drives SATA or PATA? If PATA, how they are paired on the cable may be important and could potentially eliminate any possible performance features.

    Lots of variables to consider.
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  4. Member
    Join Date: Nov 2007
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    An easy free program to benchmark hard drive speed is HDTach. It can also be wise to move the Windows swap file off of the OS drive and put it on a lesser used drive. You can even split it between the other two drives, or all 3 if you fancy.

    Cheers,
    Rick
    Rene: Could you not just wound him a little bit?
    Hans: Well now, with a 25 pound shell that is not easy.

    'Allo 'Allo
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  5. Member
    Join Date: Jul 2002
    Location: United States
    Search Comp PM
    Hi,

    Thanks for all the replies! I did not relize it would vary so much!

    I do use my computer to capture, however, I usually capture to a backup hard drive not the main C hard drive. I also use my computer to read and write large files to DVD and to my computer from downloading. I also my computer to play video games (I am a hudge multiplayer fan). I also love to stream, download/transfer also. I have mostly had a lot of trouble streaming video also would that be because of my hard drive/computer or internet speed/network?

    The main hard drive I am using now is 80 gb, however, with software getting bigger my capture/video editing takes up over 50% of my hard drive then the video games take a great hunk also and there is not much room for anything else.

    I usually do not split the hard drives because I usually will need the part that I spilt for later or is splitting the partitions better?

    I defrag next to never because I reformat a lot.

    What sector sizes did you use when formatting? When I reformat I use the whole thing if that is what you mean? The other 2 hard drives are 120 and 180 gb if that is what you mean? Does that mean something else?

    I would rather the computer have good performance while using the PC then boot speed. I did not relize depending on performance the faster hard drive might be worse, thanks for sharing! I am not sure now if I should use faster or not?

    Does this benchmarking software tell read speed, write speed, Sustained speeds for each, and seek time or is the tranfer speed good enough?

    I am not sure if hard drives are SATA or PATA? How would I tell? I think they are all Sata though.

    Thanks so much!
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  6. Mod Neophyte Super Moderator redwudz's Avatar
    Join Date: Sep 2002
    Location: AZ, USA
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    Ghtpua said:
    Does this benchmarking software tell read speed, write speed, Sustained speeds for each, and seek time or is the transfer speed good enough?
    Yes, all of the above most times. They are all important. But with that said, most any newer 7200 HDD is fast enough for most purposes. It looks like you just need a larger boot drive. I prefer SATA drives as they are easier to set up. No jumpers.

    You can tell what type of drives you have if you click the 'delete' key when first booting (Or whichever key your MB uses - It usually tells you which one at the first boot page) and that will take you to the BIOS page. The first page in BIOS generally lists the drives.

    If you do decide to get a larger drive, you might look into a program like Acronis True Image or similar to 'clone' your existing hard drive to the new larger drive. Then when it's working as boot, just remove the smaller HDD.

    Be aware that reformatting or defragging will be slower with a larger boot drive.

    I almost never use multiple partitions because you are still using the same controller and the same channel. Not really a benefit compared to a separate HDD, IMO. As far as sector sizes and the fine points of drive formatting, XP or most OSs do a fair job of that automatically. Most times I would let it.

    Finally, if a HDD is running slow, most often it needs a defrag. But XP and Vista do fairly well keeping on top of that. My Vista computers defrag when needed, without my intervention.

    You can get a 10 - 15K RPM boot drive and you may save some seconds on boot and maybe a few on program launch, but most of us wouldn't notice the difference. JMO, but my 7200 RPM HDDs are fast enough for everything I do.
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