Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Looking at using SSD as boot drive with HDD as data drive

  1. #1


    San Diego, CA
    Posts : 178
    Windows 10 Tech Preview 10041 x64

    Looking at using SSD as boot drive with HDD as data drive


    So, I was thinking about buying a 128GB SSD and installing Windows 8 on it, but installing my programs and games to my secondary HDD drive. My question is, how much performance would I gain if I'm still launching my programs and games from the HDD instead of the SSD?

    Also, would it just be better to get more RAM (double from 8 to 16GB) instead?

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  2. #2


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Check to see how the Seagate hybrid is setup. You are thinking of doing something similar. See what Seagate claims for performance improvement. I don't think we can judge whether it would "be better to get more RAM (double from 8 to 16GB) instead." I'll say this, though, if you are serious about performance on demanding tasks, then more RAM is an absolute necessity. In this regard, I am assuming you are running 64 bit. I'll also mention that Apple is moving to hybrids so you can be sure there is a significant performance enhancement, other things equal. Do both, your drive setup and more RAM. You only live one or more times, after all.
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  3. #3


    San Diego, CA
    Posts : 178
    Windows 10 Tech Preview 10041 x64


    That hybrid drive is pretty interesting. I'm gonna do some more research on that. Thanks!
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  4. #4


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    Cool. Glad I could mention something that interests you. I like the hybrid idea too.
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  5. #5


    Tropical Island Pair a Dice
    Posts : 3,030
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64/ Windows 7 Ult x64


    I would get the SSD, the performance will be much better than a hybrid drive.
    Put all of your programs on the SSD, that will fit leaving 15% free space. Once you get a SSD you will never go back to a spinner.
    SSDs are the best performance upgrade you can do, unless you really need the RAM for VMs or something similar you will not see a performance increase going from 8GB to 16GB.

    SSDs are very durable and the performance is very noticeable, everything on the SSD will open very fast.
    You won't regret the move to a SSD.
    Last edited by Dave76; 17 Jan 2013 at 08:37.
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  6. #6


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    FWIW, he was talking about using both.
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  7. #7


    Hafnarfjörður IS
    Posts : 4,376
    Linux Centos 7, W8.1, W7, W2K3 Server W10


    Quote Originally Posted by znod View Post
    Check to see how the Seagate hybrid is setup. You are thinking of doing something similar. See what Seagate claims for performance improvement. I don't think we can judge whether it would "be better to get more RAM (double from 8 to 16GB) instead." I'll say this, though, if you are serious about performance on demanding tasks, then more RAM is an absolute necessity. In this regard, I am assuming you are running 64 bit. I'll also mention that Apple is moving to hybrids so you can be sure there is a significant performance enhancement, other things equal. Do both, your drive setup and more RAM. You only live one or more times, after all.
    Hi there
    More RAM ISN'T a pre-requisite for more "demanding" tasks -- that depends ENTIRELY on the nature of the task involved.
    For home computers once you get up to 8GB RAM increasing RAM size doesn't really buy you anything unless you want to run a load of Virtual Machines (These eat RAM for breakfast !!).

    I can't imagine any task that a home user would typically do that requires a lot of Ram (over 8GB). - Servers, multi-user systems, absolutely MEGA MEGA size databases with 100's of queries a sec would certainly benefit but for the average person it's overkill -- spend the extra money of BETTER and FASTER DISKS -- a DECENT SSD if you can.

    I don't like hybrids myself as it's a compromise between two different technologies --get a proper SSD and a good spinner --SATA2 preferably.

    (I'm running a Test user development SAP system quite nicely on a W7 Virtual machine defined with 4GB RAM -- no problem on performance and anybody who's ever worked with SAP will understand that these systems are fairly resource hogging).

    A choice between a proper SSD or another 8GB RAM -- I'd go for the SSD every time.

    Cheers
    jimbo
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  8. #8


    Posts : 2,156
    Win7 Ult on DIY; Win8 Pro on MBP/Parallels; Win7 Ult on MBP/Boot Camp; Win7 Ult/Win8 Pro on HP


    I think most of your comments are better directed to the OP--who says he wants to do an ssd/hd combo and that he likes the hybrid idea. So, I'll ignore those--except to say that I believe my comments on these matters are reasonable in the light of his first post.

    I could have been more careful about seconding his double the RAM idea--without knowing more about the heaviness of the tasks he has in mind. Still, there is no doubt that some "experts" will argue for 12 or more GB of RAM depending on the tasks to be performed. I will leave it to the experts. While a little loose, I don't think I am far off base in saying "if you are serious about performance on demanding tasks, then more RAM is an absolute necessity." The idea I was getting at is that one doesn't want to come up short in the RAM department when doing a demanding task--where performance matters to you. In this regard, you might choose to over-RAM to be on the safe side. Maybe I should have said "if you are serious about performance on demanding tasks, then having exactly the right amount of RAM is an absolute necessity." Unfortunately, posting, as we do, does not always result in manuscript quality narrations.
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  9. #9

    My SSD boot drive and data hd


    I have a 120GB Intel SSD to boot Win7 and it hold my main apps (Office, Visio, etc...) and I have a WD 2TB Caviar Black 64MB cache hard drive to hold my data. My board only supports SATA II, so the SSD is held back by that, but the difference in performance is simply amazing and is more obvious (to me) than the official benchmarks indicate.

    Here's the SSD and the Hard drive benchmarks...
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Art's SSD after tweaks.JPG   Art's System Hard drive #1 Capture.JPG  
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  10. #10


    Posts : 1,339
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64 bit


    Personally I can't speak as to hybrid drives, I have never used one, but I have been running SSDs now for about 3 years. The performance increase over a HDD is very significant. Right now, I am running my Windows installation and all my programs on a 128 Gb SSD and still have room to spare. The only thing I use a HDD for anymore is file storage. I won't say how I do things is the best way, because everyone has their own personal preferences.
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