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OCZ Vertex SSD RAID-0 Performance E-mail
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Written by Olin Coles   
Friday, 03 April 2009
Table of Contents: Page Index
OCZ Vertex SSD RAID-0 Performance
Features and Specifications
First Look: OCZ Vertex SSD
Vertex SSD Internal Components
SSD Testing Methodology
Random Access Time Benchmark
Basic IOPS Performance
Linear Bandwidth Speed
I/O Response Time
Buffered Transaction Speed
Windows XP Startup Times
The Truth Behind Heat Output
Solid State Drive Final Thoughts
Vertex RAID-0 Conclusion

EVEREST Disk Benchmark

EDITORS NOTE 05/10/2009: Benchmark Reviews has re-tested the OCZ Vertex with the latest v1.10 firmware, which includes TRIM support, and the resulting performance was generally identical to the previous firmware. Please remember that TRIM is a Windows 7 supported feature, and does not improve performance on Windows XP or Vista Operating Systesm.

Many enthusiasts are familiar with the EVEREST benchmark suite by Lavalys, but very few are aware of the Disk Benchmark tool available inside the program. The EVEREST Disk Benchmark (version 2.06.37) performs linear read and write bandwidth tests on each drive, and can be configured to use file chunk sizes up to 1MB (which speeds up testing and minimizes jitter in the waveform). Because of the full sector-by-sector nature of linear testing, Benchmark Reviews endorses this method for testing SSD products, as detailed in our Solid State Drive Benchmark Performance Testing article.

The SSD products tested with EVEREST Disk Benchmark are connected to the Intel ICH10R SATA controller resident on the Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD4P motherboard. Using the 1MB block size, our read performance measured an average 247.3 MBps and forms a near-perfect line as it scans across all sectors. At some point in the waveform, maximum read performance peaked at 249.7 MBps, indicating how well the Indilinx 'Barefoot' controller has improved over the previous designs by other manufacturers (like JMicron).

Linear disk benchmarks are superior tools in my opinion, because they scan from the first physical sector to the last. A side effect of many linear write-performance test tools is that the data is erased as it writes to every sector on the drive. Normally this isn't an issue, but it has been shown that partition tables will occasionally play a role in overall performance. The large 64MB buffer helped our linear testing, as shown in the waveform chart below.

EVEREST_Disk_Benchmark_OCZSSD2-1VTX120G-ICH10-Linear-Read.png

EVEREST_Disk_Benchmark_OCZSSD2-1VTX120G-ICH10-Linear-Write.png

Although the chart makes the linear write performance appear unsteady, the results seen here are actually very good compared to other SSD products we've tested in the past. Read-from performance was a speedy 247.3 MBps on averate, with 249.7 MBps maximum. The OCZ Vertex easily outperforms the stated 160 MBps specification for write-to bandwidth, as our tests resulted in a 225.2 MBps average with a 242.7 MBps maximum peak write bandwidth. Let's move on to the RAID-0 Vertex results...

OCZ-120GB-SATA-SSD-Vertex-OCZSSD2-1VTX120G-v1275-ICH10-RAID-0-Linear-Read.png

OCZ-120GB-SATA-SSD-Vertex-OCZSSD2-1VTX120G-v1275-ICH10-RAID-0-Linear-Write.png

The single-SSD OCZ Vertex results were already impressive, with 247.3 MBps average read speed and 225.2 MBps write bandwidth. Putting two OCZ Vertex SSDs into a striped RAID-0 array really let the technology shine, as the bandwidth scores were as high as Benchmark Reviews has seen. The RAID-0 Vertex set performed at 504.9 MBps average read speed, while write performance was 437.2 MBps. That amounts to 104% read speed improvement, and 94% write performance.

The chart below shows the average linear read and write bandwidth for a cross-section of drives attached to the Intel ICH10 Southbridge. I personally consider this the single most important comparison of storage drive products, and although the Apex SSD is a bit crippled by the complex RAID-0 write-to performance, all of the others are spot-on.

EVEREST_Disk_Benchmark_ICH10_RAID0.png

Linear bandwidth certainly benefits the Solid State Drive, since there's very little fluctuation in transfer speed. Hard Disk Drive products decline in performance as the spindle reaches the inner-most sectors on the magnetic platter.

Drive Hardware

In the next section, Benchmark Reviews tests the buffered transaction performance for the OCZ Vertex SSD using HD-Tach, and compare the results to dozens of other products.



 

Comments 

 
# MRAnthony 2010-03-18 04:56
I'm always wary of Mbps(bits) and MB(bytes), too many people use them interchangably. The Ads on the same page for this product say "250MB" not bits, so what is the Atto 249 MBps maximum read bandwidth??? bizarre?
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# El Presidente'Marko 2010-11-27 01:09
Anthony, typically Mbps (Megabits) refers to a transfer speed whereas MBs refer to a capacity. Whether ignorant people use them interchangeably or not, using this guideline you should always be able to figure out which it is. :)
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# RE: El Presidente'Olin Coles 2010-11-27 07:51
I'm not exactly clear which side of the argument you're on here, Marko. Read up on the specifications for any SSD product, and you'll see their bandwidth speed represented as MB/s.
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# DKSGDKSG 2012-04-18 00:41
MB when used in advertised capacity is not Megabytes, it's Million Bytes. Bytes or Bits will be denoted by B or b respectively. When the vendor advertise 250MB, it means 250 Million Bytes which is approx to 244.14 Mega Bytes. This 244.14 is RAW Megabytes and have not included partitioning and other possible overhead used in the system which may yield lower capacity than 244.14 Megabytes.

When used on the bandwidth, make sure you fully understand what the bandwidth measures. In different network or cable setup, the bandwidth could be shared and a single device do not usually get that kind of bandwidth on average. On network, typically vendors means Megabytes when they denote MB unless otherwise denoted using fineprints, but the usual price is using Megabits which looks a lot better on paper.
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# RAID-0 Setuptypoknig 2010-05-10 09:52
How exactly did you have your RAID-0 setup during this test? For instance, were you using the Intel Matrix Storage Manager or some other method?
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# Intel ICH10Olin Coles 2010-05-10 15:11
RAID-0 was built using the motherboard's Intel ICH10 controller.
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# Stripe sizeJ Walsh 2010-05-12 08:46
What stripe size was used in the RAID 0 setup and why?
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# 128KB Stripe SizeOlin Coles 2010-05-12 08:49
This articles used a 128KB stripe size, which is the largest the Intel ICH10 controller allows for RAID-0 sets.
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# Benchmarking A Bigger RAID 0 Arraytypoknig 2010-06-08 22:06
Hi, I have been running the same benchmarks you ran on my RAID 0 array which has 3 120GB OCZ Vertex drives compared to the 2 used in this benchmark. My results have not even been close to what I thought I would be getting after reading this review. I have posted some info about my results here:

##overclock.net/benchmarking-software-discussion/750979-benchmarking-3-120gb-ocz-vertex-ssds.html

Maybe you can take a look at my stuff and tell me why my linear read in Everest does not produce a flat line like yours (I realize I used 512MB block size, but the 1MB block size produced identical results), and why my numbers are so much lower when they should be higher. I have also ran the benchmarks without an OS (or any data) on the array at all, and the results are very similar. Any thoughts?
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# Partition alignmentOlin Coles 2010-06-14 19:43
I'm betting that our results are higher because of drive conditioning: partition alignment, diskpart clean all, secure erase, etc. Since TRIM doesn't always pass through to RAID arrays, used drives will produce lower performance results.
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# sanitary erasetypoknig 2010-11-27 21:23
I have had this problem fixed for quite some time now. If you go to the link I provided in my last comment you will see that using sanitary erase did trick for me... so as you said, "drive conditioning" was my problem. To keep my drives as clean as possible I use the "Wipe Free Space" feature of CCleaner. Does the same thing as wiper.exe but it works when drives are in RAID (unlike wiper.exe).
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# flash, not dramscott 2010-12-02 15:43
Samsung K9HCG08U1M-PCB00 is flash memory, not DRAM... this is why we call it an SSD
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# 4-drive RAID 0Remo 2010-12-23 08:42
Mr Coles, do you have any idea how would a 4 SSD in RAID-0 perform? Would you use it as the boot drive in a windows 7 system?
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# RE: 4-drive RAID 0Olin Coles 2010-12-23 08:44
You should look into the OCZ RevoDrive 2 PCI-Express SSDs, which fit four SSDs into RAID-0 on one board. Our review is here:

benchmarkreviews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=635
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# RE: RE: 4-drive RAID 0Remo 2010-12-23 08:57
I definitely will look for it. But, how much gain in performance would you expect when upgrading from a 2-drive raid-0 to a 4-drive raid-0?
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