Wednesday, March 31 2010, 09:54 pm

SSDs Speed Up Anything and Everything

Computer storage technology was running out of innovation a couple of years ago until the next step, in many steps to come, arrived: the Solid State Drive. Quick summary: Traditional hard drives are spinning discs of a magnetic substance that hold all your precious junk. An SSD is a collection of flash memory modules similar to those found in SD cards for your handheld camera. The end result is RAM-like performance without the con of losing everything when you turn off the power. It's hard to grasp this concept until you've seen the difference first hand.

First up I decided to install Fedora 12 x86_64 and perform a package update. This involves hundreds of packages ranging in all shapes and sizes. On a traditional hard drive I would be dreading the thought of performing this operation as it would most likely take about 15 minutes of my precious time. My mind can now rest at ease with the speed of an SSD:


The target device my SSD was going into was the Sony Playstation 3 as I noticed the multitasking introduced in previous updates caused excessive hard drive usage, most likely by usage of lots of swap space. It's slightly visible in the video below that the performance delta between boot times is different:


In other important news, my Grand Theft Auto 4 boot times were reduced by 20 seconds to 1 minute 37 seconds. A new GTA4 patch reduced that by another 4 seconds. I can also tell that there is some intentional latency programmed into the multi-tasking option. Was the $200 upgrade worth it? Yes ma'am!

Problem: Taking out the trash takes a long time to do.
Solution: Install an SSD!