hard drives MBS and Cache


i am building a new workstation... i need help specing it for value vs productivity... as it relates to internal hard drives.

my old WD800 which did fine..  shows  only a few  100MBps, however the newer ones are 3GBps.... what does this measure....

what is the vote for .. " will i see a difference in upgrading my older 7200 for the newer ones..( i know there are 10,000 spindle speed, but i wanted to limit the conversation's parameters.

also when it comes to cache.. what is respectible for my cash....

some have told me to buy only seagate, for they have a 5 yr warranty....

 any thoughts appreciated.

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The specification you are asking about is the rate that the data interface can talk between the device and the Controller chips.

The throughput ATA will fill the electronic buffer at 100MB/s
The throughput SATA will fill the cache/buffer at 3000MB/s

So small writes are much faster with the newer drives.

You still have rotational latency (Having to wait for the drive to spin around to the correct sector), as well as head/seek time.
so the faster spindle speed makes this much shorter of a wait.

I'd get a Seagate, I see fewer Seagate drives lately in for data recovery than I do Western digital or Samsung, or Toshiba.

Cache is used to buffer writes (for quicker write times) and Reads so if the computer is busy with another process while the disk is accessed, it's waiting and can transfer at 3GB/s in a burst until the cache is depleted.

If you want higher performance, you could look into SSD (Solid State Disks) They are coming down in price.
You could also consider a RAID 1 (2 Hard disks Mirroring each other) for redundancy, most newer motherboards support this mode and, in the event of a catastrophic failure on your hard disk, the second hard disk takes over and a warning is submitted alerting you to the issue with the failing drive.

Really for the $$, I'd buy 2 Seagate drives and RAID 1 them together, install your OS and run with that. Best bang for the buck because the $60-$100 you spend now saves you a lot in the long run.

Beyond that, I'd buy one level down from the latest model, the are more reliable, and have fewer "Out of the box within a month failures"  some of the cutting edge sizes in these drives I worry that the bugs have not been entirely eliminated from the firmware before they are launched in the field.

I also like the seagates, but I'm not sure the 5 year warranty is still true....maybe on some models, you'll have to check on the one you're buying.

The MB/s is simply the throughput....the amount of data the hard drive can move in that period of time.

If you can get a 10,000RPM drive for a good prce then why not, go for it, it will speed up your seek times which will speed up your throughput, which ultimately is what you care about. Same with cache, just get the most you can.

Sorry if that's too vague, but there's so many options, just look for the best throughput for your money and you'll be fine. Unless you are a movie maker or something working with huge files then you will be happy. :)
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