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Community Manager

Using SSD in production environment...yes or NO???


For some months I must buy 30 PCs for DTP studio. Because HDD is slowest point in today computing I look at SSDs. But, I can read very often about DATA CORRUPTION which is unacceptable in my case. Even backup is not solution because here wil be coruppted data again.

What I have in mind is (per pc): 120Gb SSD 520 for system and data and one 1TB for full backups 5 days in week.

I am afraid with reason or not?


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Community Manager

I've used consumer level SSDs for about two years now, starting with the Intel X-25M G2 SSDs, which I still use and they function perfectly and always have. I don't consider SSDs to be a risky or questionable product at all, and I am not forgiving them for any problems, or using them with a delicate touch or special care, besides that which is just different between SSDs and HDDs, such as not defragmenting SSDs, and setting them up appropriately. I expect SSDs to function as perfectly as any HDD can, and they certainly do that. I can honestly say that I have never had a SSD fail, or cause me to lose data. I actually have two PCs that each have three SSDs combined into RAID 0 volumes for the system drive, and they have worked fine for quite a while.

Data corruption is a rather general term, if you mean the data in any file becoming corrupted, and the file becoming useless, that is what I would consider data corruption. Or are you referring to a SSD simply failing completely, thus loosing any new data since the last backup?

I own and use 14 consumer type (retail) SSDs, made by four different manufactures, and have never had any data corruption issues. I can't think of one file that I lost due to data corruption on a SSD. Some SSDs have issues with simply failing or "disappearing" from a PC, or causing the Windows Blue Screen error. I have never experienced those issues, by carefully purchasing SSDs from manufactures that actually make the components used in SSDs, and that have the best history regarding problems. Even excellent SSDs may need a firmware update to fix an issue found later by users, which IMO does not immediately exclude that SSD from consideration, but you may not agree.

In the consumer world of SSDs, it is generally agreed that the most reliable SSDs are made by Intel and Samsung. I own SSDs by both of those companies, and I agree they are very reliable. IMO, Crucial/Micron SSDs are also very reliable. Intel and Micron are business partners in the manufacturing of the NAND chips used in most SSDs sold today. Samsung also manufactures NAND chips which are sold to SSD manufactures, and makes their own SSD controller. Intel has designed and uses their own SSD controllers, but now also use controllers made by other manufactures, Marvell and most recently, SandForce. Intel and Samsung provide free SSD support programs for their products, which makes system optimization and any maintenance task very simple, and allow those tasks to be run automatically on a schedule. At this time, no other SSD manufactures have programs like this, which makes maintenance much more difficult.

I use two Intel 520 SSDs, and they have been flawless in my usage. They have only been on the market for a few months now, so don't have a reliability history built up yet. Otherwise, the Intel 320 series SSDs have been in use for a long time now, but some of them had a firmware problem about a year ago that caused them to basically fail. That problem was fixed and is now just history. The Intel 510 SSDs have a basically flawless history, but will be discontinued in the fall of 2012, replaced by the 520.

I have avoided SSD manufactures that simply buy all the components from other companies, and use the "reference" circuit board design provided by one of the major SSD controller manufactures, with it's standard firmware. IMO, those companies are not invested enough in the design and support of those products, and are also the ones that have the most issues. Many people use their products successfully, and those products are not automatically poor, but they simply don't have the same record of reliability that the others do.

Have you ever considered enterprise oriented SSDs? They are more expensive than consumer SSDs, but will be even more reliable over long term, heavy use with little to no maintenance. The Intel 710 SSD is an easy recommendation, but is over twice the price of an Intel 520 SSD of about the same capacity.

If a SSD you are putting into a system for the first time does not start right up fine and function as you expect it to, do not spend days trying to figure out the issue. Try another one of the same type, and if it is bad too, forget that brand and get a different one. There is no reason to spend much time "getting it to work", I know that good SSDs will work just fine and there is no reason for anyone to do anything special just so they will work. If you've never used them before, you really should study their installation needs such as SATA mode and appropriate SATA drivers before you install them. You must do your homework first on those few things, which will solve most issues before they happen.

I would also suggest that you not focus on using the "fastest", SATA 6Gb/s SSDs, instead of SATA 3Gb/s SSDs, as the difference in speed a PC user would experience between the two will usually be counted only in seconds. The true advantage of SSDs is their ability to perform multiple I/O operations very quickly or even concurrently, with consistently fast access times. If your customers are not familiar with them, they will be very impressed with their speed, but will soon become accustomed to it, and demand that performance in the future.

Also, it would help to know what type of PCs you will be providing, desktops, laptops, servers, in general what CPU and mother boards you will be using, and what OS you will provide?

Community Manager

thanks for "big" experience..

"Also, it would help to know what type of PCs you will be providing, desktops, laptops, servers,"...

Read again my first topic. This will be workstations in dtp studio. cpu intel core i5 2500, 8gb ram, win 7 64bit,,,