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It's said that Solid State Drive is much better than SATA one as there is no spinning head or os. So, there won't be hard disk crash problem?

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Most SSD's have a SATA interface. Other non-revolving media has SATA interfaces. –  kmarsh Apr 15 '10 at 12:46
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5 Answers 5

There is not enough data to be certain of the reliability of SSDs... There have been several examples of bad firmware destroying data. There is also wear problems and other issues. Data recovery from SSD disks is less well developed than the process of extracting from crashed hard disks. But they are far less sensitive to to vibrations and shocks, as there is no spinning parts or head to crash.

I strongly recommend that you read the articles on Anandtech about SSDs to get a good overview of all the pro and cons. You can find them at

http://www.anandtech.com/show/2738 and http://www.anandtech.com/show/2829

They cover most of what you need to know as a layman about SSD disks.

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Second this. We have started using SSDs in some machines but it is NOT for reliability reasons, purely for speed. They ARE better suited for users who tend to drop their machines however :) –  Ryaner Apr 15 '10 at 10:21
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I've been researching this for a project. In the end, the price was too high for us to get them.

To answer your question, if you mean a head crash, no they can't have a head crash since they don't have a disk head. They're like USB thumb drives, only much faster. Hugely faster in most cases, usually random read/writes. Writing large files in one pass seems to make them slightly drop in performance.

Pros-FAST. Check youtube for a large number of "bootup tests" with ssd drives compared to normal disks.

heat-less heat to dissipate because they're not mechanical.

power-they draw less power so make battery life last longer.

stability-shaking, vibration, dropping...these drives should have a far better chance of surviving road warrior abuse.

cons-the technology isn't as developed. TRIM isn't necessarily supported on all of them, OS's are just beginning to support them properly (i.e., you need to find out if a Mac will support the drive or not, leading me to wonder how many BIOS issues PC's may run into or strange quirks). Modern drives are far better supported and retrieving data if there's problems are more mature.

price-As can be seen on countless sites, the space offered by a traditional drive for a few hundred bucks can cost thousands on an SSD disk.

wear levelling. The cells in the drive have a certain number of read/write cycles before "dying". The drive's electronics are supposed to compensate for this (google SSD TRIM). The lifetime of the drive overall is still supposed to exceed estimated lifetimes on traditional drives, though. Again, the data collected on drive reliability is sketchy and internal to manufacturing companies for the most part since this isn't anywhere near as mature a technology in the market as traditional drives.

If you are a heavy notebook user with moderate space requirements, SSD drives are worth looking into (if you have the $$). If not, these drives probably aren't much benefit to you.

I really think that in the next three years the technology will be at a level where a large number of notebooks will be using them as a standard drive instead of an option. Data collection on performance is increasing as manufacturers are releasing them to market and more companies are testing them.

Google Anandtech and their SSD articles for better, more in-depth information on specs and benchmarks.

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Caveat on the 'less power' thing: The larger an SSD's capacity, the higher the power draw. So an Intel 40Gb X25-M draws proportionally less power than the 80Gb model. –  Chris Thorpe Apr 15 '10 at 11:14
    
I should probably point out that we replace more and more of high speed 10k/15k drives in our servers with SSD here. So they are certainly not only for the notebooks. –  pehrs Apr 15 '10 at 13:21
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@pehrs-Oh, no, I didn't mean to say that they're only for use in notebooks. I just think that market-wise, you're going to see them used more in the notebook market in the near future. Large capacities for servers are just too expensive for most businesses right now. Notebooks take advantage of the durability and power savings over traditional drives, so once they're less expensive they'll move move more into desktop and server markets, but notebooks are the biggest boon right now. –  Bart Silverstrim Apr 15 '10 at 22:26
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"Much Better"...Hmmm, faster at random reads certainly, no heads to crash either, but they have their own problems too - price/GB, wear etc. so much better for some things, less so for others.

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Not all the drives are faster at random reads, especially when random writes are thrown in, like say a normal desktop user. –  Ryaner Apr 15 '10 at 10:20
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They are very good for many small files which are being read constantly, but rarely written.

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The majority of SSD controllers need to come a long way before I would consider them reliable. The exception I've had experience with is Intel. Two of my users have an Intel and have had zero problems. I, on the other hand, have an OCZ, and I have had numerous problems, all with the controller.

If you get an SSD, have a good backup solution. You should have a good backup solution anyway, but even more so with an SSD.

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