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For many of us old-timers, computers have been around ever since we can remember; and for those of you who can remember how it was at the beginning, especially when it comes to the speed and the processing powers of those early computers, you are amazed at how you were able to get your work done with such limited features.
As technology evolves and new innovations are created our children will look back on the types of technologies we used such as hard disk drives and imagine the same thing, as they would be replaced with new storage devices such as solid state hard drives.
Traditional Hard Drives and Aging Technology
For many years hard disk drives have been the standard for storing data on computers. But because of their complex moving parts such as spindles, platters, and magnetic surfaces, there’s always a huge possibility for errors and failures. They can also be slow when reading or writing data.
This is due to the fact that the disk has to be in rotation when data is read and written; also, the head must be in the correct position over the disk to do that as well. As a result, the margin of errors are quite high in these data storage devices, due to the fact that the tiniest foreign object such as a speck of dust could jeopardize the whole process, not to mention the energy wastage caused by friction between the moving parts.
Advantages of Solid State Disk Drives
Solid state hard drives are designed to eliminate the problems associated with the moving parts of traditional hard drives. In solid state hard drives they use chips to store data rather than magnetic plates, which means data can be read and written almost instantaneously without waiting for the disk to start spinning or the head to locate the data.
Listed below are the advantages and disadvantages of solid state hard drives:
- Quieter (No Noise)
- Speed and Access Time Faster
- Better Life Span (because there are no moving parts)
- Size and Weight (smaller)
- More Power Efficient (Uses less wattage)
- Generates (far) Less Heat
- No Disk Defrags are needed
- Cost considerably more than traditional hard drives
- Smaller capacity (size)
- Must be configured properly in order to optimize use
How Do Solid State Disk Drives Work
Solid state hard drives use NAND flash technology, which is common in USB flash drives and many other memory cards. NAND based flash drives are persistent and they do not need a separate power source for it to function; therefore solid state hard drives can be used for non volatile data storage and can mimic the operations of a hard disk drive.
Because of the fact that solid state hard drives are more resistant to physical elements such as pressure and impulse due to the absence of moving parts, they can be used in devices that are meant to work in extreme conditions withstanding physical anomalies such as in high altitudes, or in P.D.A’s given to soldiers in the battle field.
Components of a solid state hard drive:
- SSD Controller – The controller regulates the speed of the solid state hard drive and controls how the drive writes to the NAND Flash Memory.
- NAND Flash Memory – These modules or chips come in various sizes, usually 25, 20 and 19 nanometer (nm). These represent different densities, which means one is faster than the other and can hold more data. For example, the 19nm is the newer module, which is smaller, faster and has a greater capacity.
Who Makes Solid State Hard Drives
This may not be a complete list but covers most of the brands:
- Kingston Technology
- OCZ (Formerly Indilinx)
Detailed Tutorial on Solid State Hard Drives (Courtesy: Newegg.com)
Note: The drive shown in the picture at the beginning of this post, is the Crucial M4 CT128M4SSD2 2.5″ 128GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive. It has been one of the best selling drives on the market. The Crucial m4 incorporates Micron’s industry-leading 25nm NAND flash technology in a 2.5″ form factor.
It also supports the SATA 6Gb/s interface, opening up the data path between the host processor and the SSD, and resulting in improved overall system responsiveness, including faster boot times and application loads. The Crucial m4 SSD reaches read speeds of up to 415 MB/s, a 17% increase over its predecessor.
Ideal for client computing, Crucial m4 SSD provides benefits for notebooks, desktops, workstations, and industrial applications, including low power consumption, lightweight construction, and resistance to shock and vibration. You can purchase this drive from Newegg.com today by clicking ===> here