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Force 3 RAID 0 wayward ATTO benchmark ....


MRAScott

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Although both read and write speeds reach c. 1GB/s, reads at block sizes of 4 - 32 KB drop well below writes, in fact not even matching a single Force 3 at 16KB.

 

http://i1320.photobucket.com/albums/u529/Oxford59/atto_zpsa46f9f12.jpg

 

I gather that these sizes are quite relevant to responsiveness and loading speed for many apps and processes (less so than for simple, large file transfers).

 

I've searched all over the net and not found a single ATTO result like it.

 

I've never been able to compare my PC with another SSD-equipped one, and given it's certainly very fast in I/O never thought to actually benchmark it (except in Crystaldiskmark, just to confirm is was more-or-less in the ballpark).

 

- Stripe size 32KB

- Writeback cache enabled in IRST [ETA >> v. 11.1.0.1006]

- Write-back caching enabled and write-cache buffer flushing disabled in device manager.

 

Happy New Year.

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False alarm.

 

I ran ATTO again, after going off-line, shutting down anti-virus, Asus fan control, Daemontools - everything.

 

Got this;

 

http://i1320.photobucket.com/albums/u529/Oxford59/atto2_zps7e6c1b5a.jpg

 

That's more like it.

 

I guess my 2+ year old Win 7 Pro install is getting a little bloated, despite my best attempts to forestall it.

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Back when I built my P8Z77 machine in late 2012 (with its 2x 90GB Force 3 RAID 0 system drive) I flashed my P8Z77 Bios with v.1508 and OROM 11.0.0.1339, and installed Intel Rapid Storage Drivers (IRST) v.11.1.0.1006 in windows.

 

I've never updated either since, after hearing various stories about people taking "3 steps forward and 2 back" when they did so.

 

But I just updated IRST to the latest, 12.8.0.1016, released in in Aug 2013.

 

All I can say is - wow.

 

Benchmarks (Crystaldiskmark, ATTO) aren't substantially improved overall, but in the small block/file-sizes are much more consistent - the weird drop-out in read-speeds at 4-32 KB in ATTO has gone completely , but MUCH more importantly ....

 

... the speed programs load!!!! It's like a different machine. For example, my ancient copy of Adobe Photoshop - one of the slowest loading programs I've ever used - is now about 2.5 secs. Most others less than 2. Overall, I would say that the times have more than halved.

 

Believe me - the difference is not subtle at all.

 

I was quite prepared to be underwhelmed, and thought that I might have to flash the BIOS (OROM) to a later version as well, but not so.

 

Finally, a free lunch!

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ATTO with IRST drivers 11.1.0.1006 and 12.8.0.1016 (on the right). The drop-out in read speeds with the older driver would sometimes improve if I shut down every app possible, but these are like-for-like runs.

http://i1320.photobucket.com/albums/u529/Oxford59/comparison_zpsb7cd0f94.jpg

 

Notice that overall speeds have dropped slightly (and small-block writes quite substantially), but the crucial small-size reads (4 - 32 KB) are much faster. As I mentioned, program initialisation is very noticably quicker, and boot also feels faster - I have about 8 programs with notification icons in the toolbar, and the speed it populates is quicker.

 

I got the impression from various discussions that the OROM version in the BIOS should match the IRST driver, so perhaps I'll get round to updating that sometime.

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