Questions on SSD Advantages and Disadvantages, usage, and durability.

Posted on 2013-01-20
Last Modified: 2013-01-30
I recently attended a seminar that threw a lot of information at us.  While at first glance, I was immensely grateful to have attended, when the number of items discussed began to mount, I slowly stopped thinking how glad I was to be here, and started thinking, yeah... I need to check on that.  I'm going to be posting several questions on here shortly concerning SSD, Raid, Raid Controllers, and setting up a Cache Drive.  

This post is on SSD usage and durability.

A few months ago, I had done some serious research into SSD drives.  I ended up getting:
Two Solid State Drives.  Intel SSD is 120GB, and OCZ is 240GB.

Everything that I had read said  Super Fast, Super Reliable.  Staples had for a few years an Imation SSD that claimed 1 Million Hours   Mean Time before failure.  While that sounded fantastic, I have trouble figuring out what time it will be 7 hours from now.  1 Million hours is a little over 114 years.  Again sounds fantastic.  So I did the research, found a few good ones (actually bought and tested a third ssd, Kingston:)

Now however, I am being presented with some new, starteling if true information, that I was hoping people could confirm or refute for me.


1.  What is the best use for an SSD?    C drive?  Cache drive?  Backup drive?  Secondary drive?  etc.

2.  When possible, I try not to come out and ask a question in such a way that will bias the people who will answer it, but I dont see how else to phrase this, other than to just blurt it out...   The most starteling thing I was told in this seminar, is that SSDs have notoriously bad reliability.  Expect that an SSD setup as your C drive will deliver lightning fast speeds, but will likely die in 9-18 months.  Is this true?   What happened to the 1 million hours mean time before failure?

Thanks guys.
Question by:FourthDownMage

Assisted Solution

by:Dilip Patidar
Dilip Patidar earned 50 total points
ID: 38798454

Advantage and disadvantage are:

SSD Advantages:

Many of the advantages SSD drives offer are directly related to the very thing that makes them different from traditional hard drives: no moving parts. Mechanical failure is the No. 1 reason traditional hard drives often "crash." Over time, the moving parts that make up a traditional hard drive wear out or simply fail.

Solid-state hard drives work more like the flash memory cards used in digital cameras and the thumb drives that have all but replaced CDs and floppy disks. They use no moving parts for data storage, so they have a lower failure rate.

Speed is another advantage of SSD hard drives. Start-up time and disk-read time is faster in SSD hard drives than in traditional hard drives, again because of no moving parts.

Traditional hard drives are literally "disk" drives; they must spin up at start-up and while processing data. With no disk to cue up, SSDs start and read data more quickly. Another plus to SSDs' lack of moving parts: They make little to no noise, compared with traditional hard drives.

SSD Disadvantages

Solid-state hard drives are a relatively new entry in the computing game. As with any new technology, the kinks are still being ironed out. Because SSDs are a new technology, they are more expensive than traditional hard drives.

Expect SSDs to remain a pricier option until they become more commonplace. Another drawback to SSD hard drives: They currently offer less storage space than traditional hard drives.

One reason SSDs have been slow to catch on is that most of the these new drives have slower write speeds and limited write-cycle lifetimes. In layman's terms, this means that although SSDs access data more quickly, it takes longer to save data to these drives. However, the limited number of write cycles is more troubling.

Traditional hard drives have almost-unlimited write cycles, meaning that data can be erased and written over and over, but SSDs write cycles are more limited.

For further reference you can use the belo URL:

Thanks & Regard's

Dilip Patel
LVL 48

Accepted Solution

dbrunton earned 200 total points
ID: 38798808
Best use of a SSD for a consumer is to use one in conjuction with a standard drive.

Make the SSD the c: and the standard one the d:

Then redirect the My Documents folder and the swap file to the d:

In this way the SSD is only used for reading files and no writing (or very little occurs).  Wear of a SSD occurs in writing.

Not all SSDs are the same and you can find various articles criticising some brands.  The Intel ones are regarded as the best (or were) for reliability.
LVL 47

Assisted Solution

noxcho earned 100 total points
ID: 38800593
Best use as system drive (C: drive)

The question #2 is valid only if the drive does not use TRIM. Otherwise it is the same even after 3 years.
LVL 92

Assisted Solution

nobus earned 150 total points
ID: 38800764
>>  is that SSDs have notoriously bad reliability.  Expect that an SSD setup as your C drive will deliver lightning fast speeds, but will likely die in 9-18 months   <<  that was maybe so for the earlier models, but the modern ones don't suffer from it, afaik.
i have an intel x-25 160 GB drive for more than 2 years, and am very happy with it

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