Hybrid Drives worth it?

Discussion in 'SSDs & Data Storage' started by netbrad, Mar 22, 2019.

  1. netbrad

    netbrad Limp Gawd

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    So after pricing a 2TB Evo SSD I've realized that large SSD drives are way out of my budget. I have a couple of Seagate Barracuda 320GBs I use for storage that are about 13 years old and nearly full.

    Is it worth using a Hybrid drive for storage? If not what is a good brand of "spinner"? I will have a 970 Evo Plus Nvm drive for the OS and games.
     
  2. geok1ng

    geok1ng 2[H]4U

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    you may be pricing it wrong. 1TB SSDs are around the $110 mark now. look for Intel 660p drives, they are about as cheap as storage NVME drives can get.

    edit, if you want something with more value than a 660p, look this thread
     
  3. Brian_B

    Brian_B 2[H]4U

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    Not really worth any premium other either HDD or SSD

    You get the best of ... none of them really
     
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  4. netbrad

    netbrad Limp Gawd

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    I already have an NVMe drive for the OS and apps. I need at least 2 TB for storage and SSDs in those sizes are close to $300. Crucial 2TB SSD is $289 and the Evo 860 is $347.
     
  5. Spartacus09

    Spartacus09 Gawd

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    For general file storage regular HDD is still king on cost and long term, a hybrid drive is not likely to have any noticeable difference vs standard spinner.
     
  6. Tsumi

    Tsumi [H]ardForum Junkie

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    Hybrid drives only provide a performance boost to files that are accessed often. For general storage items, they won't provide any benefit.
     
  7. tedych

    tedych Limp Gawd

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    And even for files that are accessed often, the OS system cache (or Superfetch) does a great(er) job (being in RAM). Moreover hybrid drives are somehow less reliable, this is my observation.
    Years back when Superfetch was introduced (Vista), working with frequent apps and files has become a joy with even the then-slower spinners.
     
  8. geok1ng

    geok1ng 2[H]4U

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    intel 660p costs ~225. here and here .

    those can run on PCIE adapters.

    sata based sandisk ultra, 3d nand versions sits around ~250
     
  9. daglesj

    daglesj [H]ardness Supreme

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    Now maybe if they made a 2TB dual platter 10000rpm SSHD with 64GB of cache....

    Yeah I know but would be fun to play around with it.
     
  10. TheFlayedMan

    TheFlayedMan Limp Gawd

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    I think that there's a new storeMI tech that is better than hybrid drives that caches a spinner with a small ssd. Worth looking into.
     
  11. Nenu

    Nenu [H]ardened

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    I just looked up the claims made for storeMI on the ASRock site and something seem dodgy.
    From what I can tell, it uses your boot SSD to cache commonly used files from other drives.
    But they claim 2.83x boot time, with no proviso.
    If you are already booting from an SSD (you would at least use an SSD for booting unless you are nuts) how is booting going to be quicker?
    Doesnt make sense...
     
  12. kdh

    kdh Gawd

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    I have a couple of hybrid drives. I like them for my steam games that I don't play all the time. They all just seemed to work for me, and I was fine with the performance of them.
     
  13. westrock2000

    westrock2000 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    That claim should be for people booting off a HDD, which is still pretty common for pre-built budget computers. Normal people aren't going to settle for a 128GB SSD, when a 500GB HDD can be put in for the same price. Storage anxiety.
     
  14. Chas

    Chas [H]ardness Supreme

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    Honestly, just stick with an affordable SSD of decent size for your boot drive and an affordable HD for your bulk storage.
    Seagate Hybrid drives haven't really gone anywhere.
    And the software solution put forth by WDC is just flat-out inferior.

    The other problem is that the read-write issues with the small Solid State cache mean that this poortion of the drive can burn out rather quickly.
    And, depending on which type of SSHD you use, it could just mean loss of performance, or actually just brick the whole drive when that happens.
     
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  15. westrock2000

    westrock2000 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    The 2 biggest problems with SSHD's are:
    1. 8GB of NAND. It's not much. These systems all work by looking at the device at the block level. The cache has zero idea about the operating system or the files it's caching. It simply looks at which blocks are retrieved from the disk the most and caches 8GB of that. This is how most other systems work as well, but they are able to use a much larger size (32GB or more) which allows for many small files to be loaded.
    2. It's a single NAND chip, which means it's slow. NAND gets it's colossal speed from reading from several NAND chips at once. It's much faster than an HDD. But don't think your gonna see 200 or 500MB/s. I would guestimate you will see more like 20MB/s at 4K random....which is still very good for 4K random compared to the 1MB/s you would get from a HD.
    I still have a Seagate Momentus XT in service and it slightly better than a traditional HDD. The price premium isn't that much over a comparable HDD, so I think they are still good values. They wont HURT performance, I'll put it that way.

    I can relate to your special case. I wanted to speed up the shingled drive that I have on a music server. The drive is big and cheap, but it gets on it's knees when large writes are made and several people are also pulling files from it...like down to 10MB/s write speeds and 100% Active Time. The computer starts going in and out of responsiveness as the drive takes ...seconds... to respond.

    Specifically what I wanted was something that would buffer the incoming writes, so the harddrive doesn't get flooded with trying to keep up. I tried StoreMI, since the server is using a B450 motherboard. I found that StoreMI is purely for reading. It does not cache anything writing to the disk. Additionally, it functions just like the Seagate cache system, in that the most popular things get cached and are sped up.

    With StoreMI I saw no improvement on my situation of writing to the drive. Many of my writes include updating metadata/tags on songs and this is also a problem for HDD's. And with the random nature of pulling music files from the HDD (and the size of those files), the benefits of speeding up reads isn't that big of a deal to me.

    I started looking around some more and came across PrimoCache ($30) which allows you to use an SSD & Memory to cache a HDD. But it has 3 different (and selectable) ways of doing so.
    1. Read Cache: Cache the most popular blocks on the disk. This is what most other cache systems do. What's read the most, will be cached to the SSD and that will be used instead.
    2. Write Cache: When writes are made to the HDD, they are also mirrored to the SSD. This DOES NOT speed up the writes to the HDD. Instead what it does is so that if you transfer pictures, or a movie to the drive and shortly after load it an editor of somekind...it will instead read from the SSD which will make it read very fast. This is different, in that it's the newest blocks, not the most popular.
    3. Defer-Write: This makes all writes to the drive go to the SSD first (within capacity of the SSD+Memory). They are then dumped to the HDD after a determined amount of time or situation. So, to the user, the writes to the HDD are truly as fast as a SSD. Memory can also be used for this, so if you have 1 or 2GB dedicated to cache, writes will go to that memory and then get flushed to the drive. It also means when the writes eventually do go to the HDD, they can go as one big sequential write, which can help. It also means if you create a file and then immediately delete it, it doesn't actually get written to the HDD. But there is the risk of corruption in the event of sudden power failure. But for a media storage drive than doesn't write that often, I don't see much risk.
    4. All of these settings can be adjusted to your usage needs. It's also very linient with the drive selection. You can use a USB drive to cache a SATA drive. You can use a HDD to cache a HDD. You can cache an SATA SDD with an NVME SSD, or cache an NVME with memory only. I believe you can even cache a Microsoft Storage Space volume, which is interesting to me, since it's a pseudo-drive. StoreMI was very specific in what drives could be used (single drives, on the sata bus, SSD for fast, HDD for slow).
     
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  16. likeman

    likeman Gawd

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    $100 more because it has samsung printed on it

    The wd blue sata ssd is around $250 and has a Dram on it (currently, but at later date you might have to check the part number as seems they might be moving to a more or less dramless ssd, the controller has small amount of MB on there newer one)

    Intel SSD 660p is a QLC nvme ssd at sata price (but its QLC so upto you if you want to test it)
     
  17. MyNameIsAlex

    MyNameIsAlex Limp Gawd

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  18. ReaperX22

    ReaperX22 Gawd

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    My parents comp once had an older Momentus Hybrid, seemed like a good idea at the time. Didn't really help with the system snappiness on any noticeable scale.

    Save for an SSD or just get a standard spinner.

    Samsung tend to charge more for SSDs. Given it's a storage drive, just find a cheaper style drive. Something from adata, Crucial, Kingston, etc.
     
  19. westrock2000

    westrock2000 [H]ardForum Junkie

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    The one drive that was actually revolutionary, never really went anywhere. The WD Black 2 Dual Drive. 2.5" drive with 1TB HDD AND 120GB SSD. "Partitions" could be addressed separately. Only sold for a little while. And now they cost way too much if you want to just mess with one.

    WDBlack2DualDrive_%282%29.jpg
     
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