There is little point of having an SSD that has blazing sustained reading and writing speeds, if the drive can't handle reading and writing of small random files. If you intend to use your new SSD drive to store and run your operating system, then the drive must be able to cope with the many small random files that Windows will write to the drive continually. So we feel it is very important to test how many of these random files that a drive can handle in one second. I believe that anything over 1000 I/O’s per second would be enough for most users running a consumer grade mainstream PC, and should provide a smooth running system. But obviously, the more I/Os that a drive can handle, the faster the drive will feel and leave more headroom for those huge multitasking sessions that users sometimes engage in.
The things that we will look at are the total I/O per second and total MB/s.
Partition alignment and sector boundaries
Windows 7 will automatically align a partition during partition creation, Windows XP won’t. It is imperative that an SSD’s partition is aligned. Windows XP is also restricted to sector boundaries, while Windows 7 will use 4k boundaries if it can. The SandForce SSD controller is 4k boundary aware, and will use these boundaries when it can. Of course it will also remap LBAs for compatibility with the sector boundaries so the drive can be used with Windows XP.
IOMeter allows us to set the sector boundaries for conducting the tests, and we have therefore set the sector boundaries at 4K, which means the IOMeter tests are valid for Windows 7 and Windows Vista users. XP users will not be able to obtain such results.
We will provide a screenshot of the tests on the review drive for those of you who like to see the actual test result. All the comparison drive results are represented in the form of graphs.
If any of you would like to see a screenshot from any IOMeter test on a particular drive, please feel free to request one, and I’ll post the screenshot in the forum thread.
IOMeter 4K random (outstanding I/Os = 4, 32, 128) write test.
Our first test involves creating continual 4KB random files on the target drive with IOMeter. We use a 4KB file size, as it is believed that Windows will create and modify many of this size of file constantly in the background during a typical Windows session. We will also be using different queue depths to test how the RevoDrive X2 scales with higher workloads.
Queue depth 4
Queue depth 32
Queue depth 128
With 4x SandForce SF-1200 controllers at its disposal, you would expect the RevoDrive X2 to be fast and it is, in fact, extremely fast. 116,138 IOPS is insanely quick.
IOMeter 4K random (outstanding I/Os = 4, 32, 128) Read test.
If there are many 4k files created, then that must also mean that many 4k files need to be read. This test measures 4k reading performance, with queue depths of 4, 32, and 128 to test the performance with a higher workload.
Queue depth 4
Queue depth 32
Queue depth 128
Once again the RevoDrive X2 is miles in front.
IOMeter 512KB (outstanding I/Os = 4) write test.
Sequential writing performance is also very important; in this test sequential writing performance is tested.
Once again the OCZ RevoDrive X2 is extremely impressive, and is by far the fastest SSD in our tests.
IOMeter 512KB (outstanding I/Os = 4) read test.
This test measures 512k sequential reading performance.
While all the SSDs in this test have done very well, none of them can match the sequential reading performance of the RevoDrive X2.
IOMeter Workstation 1 simulation (outstanding I/Os = 64).
When running applications you will find that there is a mixture of small random files, and larger sequential files being created and read. Not only that, it isn’t just one file at a time. In this test we measure a simulated workstation pattern, with a queue depth of 64 (threaded).
You would have expected the OCZ RevoDrive X2, with its four SandForce SF-1200 controllers, to do well in the workstation simulation. It certainly didn’t disappoint in this department, with 526.76 MB/s.
While IOMeter test patterns are quite easily compressed by the SandForce controller, there is no getting away from the fact that the RevoDrive X2 has an enormous amount of grunt. The performance of the RevoDrive X2 is absolutely astonishing.
On the next page we will check out application and games loading performance....