Results for my system, in daily usage since April 2014. Many drives, one SSD which runs great!

  • SpinRite v6.1 Release #3
    Guest:
    The 3rd release of SpinRite v6.1 is published and may be obtained by all SpinRite v6.0 owners at the SpinRite v6.1 Pre-Release page. (SpinRite will shortly be officially updated to v6.1 so this page will be renamed.) The primary new feature, and the reason for this release, was the discovery of memory problems in some systems that were affecting SpinRite's operation. So SpinRite now incorporates a built-in test of the system's memory. For the full story, please see this page in the "Pre-Release Announcements & Feedback" forum.
    /Steve.
  • Be sure to checkout “Tips & Tricks”
    Dear Guest Visitor → Once you register and log-in please checkout the “Tips & Tricks” page for some very handy tips!

    /Steve.
  • BootAble – FreeDOS boot testing freeware

    To obtain direct, low-level access to a system's mass storage drives, SpinRite runs under a GRC-customized version of FreeDOS which has been modified to add compatibility with all file systems. In order to run SpinRite it must first be possible to boot FreeDOS.

    GRC's “BootAble” freeware allows anyone to easily create BIOS-bootable media in order to workout and confirm the details of getting a machine to boot FreeDOS through a BIOS. Once the means of doing that has been determined, the media created by SpinRite can be booted and run in the same way.

    The participants here, who have taken the time to share their knowledge and experience, their successes and some frustrations with booting their computers into FreeDOS, have created a valuable knowledgebase which will benefit everyone who follows.

    You may click on the image to the right to obtain your own copy of BootAble. Then use the knowledge and experience documented here to boot your computer(s) into FreeDOS. And please do not hesitate to ask questions – nowhere else can better answers be found.

    (You may permanently close this reminder with the 'X' in the upper right.)

danlock

Well-known member
Sep 30, 2020
155
53
USA
RS000.TXT:
Code:
Driv Size  Drive Identity     Location:    0      25%     50%     75%     100
---- ----- ---------------------------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------
81  250GB Samsung SSD 840 EVO 250GB     516.7   513.2   512.9   517.1   529.3
82  1.0TB ST1000DM003-1CH162            186.9   200.9   176.7   146.4    94.7
83  2.0TB ST32000641AS                  133.0   124.2   112.7    93.0    64.4
84  2.0TB ST2000DX002-2DV164            213.2   209.8   187.2   153.1   101.4
85  4.0TB ST4000DM004-2CV104            183.4   175.9   154.8   127.1    83.2

                  Benchmarked: Monday, 2021-01-04 at 12:12



RS001.TXT (different options? with /ident, I think):
Code:
AHCI '.' and IDE '-' drive reset & diagnostic latencies in milliseconds:

  61.807 61.606 61.3,285 61.604 61.626

  Associating BIOS drive [80-85]:

  [ 80 81! 82 83 84 85 ]
  [ 80 81! 82 83 84 85 ]

   No BIOS association for AHCI controller:  0:31:2  on port: 3      

  BIOS drive count: 6

  BIOS Inter Bus Location Dev Port Intr
  ---- ----- --- -------- --- ---- ----
   80   USB  PCI  0:20:0   3                                        

  BIOS Location Type Clas Pg Vend Devi Prt Intr Cmmd Ctrl Mast Driv Link Size
  ---- -------- ---- ---- -- ---- ---- --- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- -----
   81   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  2    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 250GB
   82   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  1    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 1.0TB
   83   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  5    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 2.0TB
   84   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  4    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 2.0TB
    5   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  3    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 4.0TB

                  Benchmarked: Monday, 2021-01-04 at 12:17



RS002.TXT:
Code:
Driv Size  Drive Identity     Location:    0      25%     50%     75%     100
---- ----- ---------------------------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------
81  250GB Samsung SSD 840 EVO 250GB     534.6   533.5   532.7   531.9   543.1
82  1.0TB ST1000DM003-1CH162            188.9   200.9   175.0   146.4    94.7
83  2.0TB ST32000641AS                  133.1   124.1   112.9    93.2    64.3
84  2.0TB ST2000DX002-2DV164            213.2   209.8   187.2   153.1   100.8
  5  4.0TB ST4000DM004-2CV104            122.7   175.9   154.8   127.1    83.2

                  Benchmarked: Monday, 2021-01-04 at 12:21
Those RS002.TXT results are interesting when compared to the RS000.TXT results.
Informational: The 4TB drive is extremely SLOW most of the time, but fast when being accessed/RW from/to by a program aware of its buffer capacity... (either 5400RPM or 5600RPM, but it's much faster until it runs out of buffer (256MB). (Defragging takes several hours instead of the several minutes the other spinning drives take, possibly because the defragger doesn't take into account the buffer size when reading & writing. It's also a 4TB drive.)​


I think I ran the RS001.txt /ident results with >ident.txt appended, resulting in the following (note the different "81!" and "85", which was displayed as " 5" in RS001.TXT, as well as the duplicate association lines in RS001.TXT. They were probably being written to the USB drive simultaneously. It's possible I ran it sequentially rather than one rs /ident>ident.txt) ident.txt:
Code:
  AHCI '.' and IDE '-' drive reset & diagnostic latencies in milliseconds:

  61.808 61.607 61.1,186 61.604 61.624

  Associating BIOS drive [80-85]:

  [ 80 81 ! 82 83 84 85 ]

  BIOS drive count: 6

  BIOS Inter Bus Location Dev Port Intr
  ---- ----- --- -------- --- ---- ----
   80   USB  PCI  0:20:0   3                                          

  BIOS Location Type Clas Pg Vend Devi Prt Intr Cmmd Ctrl Mast Driv Link Size
  ---- -------- ---- ---- -- ---- ---- --- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- ---- -----
   81   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  2    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 250GB
   82   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  1    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 1.0TB
   83   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  5    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 2.0TB
   84   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  4    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 2.0TB
   85   0:31:2  AHCI 0106 01 8086 8C02  3    5  < AHCI Cntrl >  6.0  6.0 4.0TB
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------



[Edited to correct 4TB drive's buffer size and add spoiler tags to make individual files' text expandable for an increase in usability. Expand only the file(s) you want to see!]
 
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To what does the 61.1,186 from IDENT.TXT refer? (61.3,285 in RS001.TXT) That is, why are there two reset & diagnostic latencies listed for that drive?

No, wait... RS001.TXT was created and last modified at 12:17:58 and IDENT.TXT was created at 12:18:22 and last modified at 12:18:26, so not simultaneously.
 
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The 4TB drive is extremely SLOW (either 5400RPM or 5600RPM, but it's very quick until it runs out of buffer. It has a 256GB buffer. Drive 84 has a 64GB solid-state buffer. I think.
@danlock Looks like you may have meant 256mb buffer. ReadSpeed is designed to be cache/buffer busting as it performs an entire 1GB transfer in one go. What you are seeing here is the just the speed decreasing as the drive circumference changes towards the centre (more rotations are required per track/sector but the rotation rate is still constant) I hope my explanation was correct!
To what does the 61.1,186 from IDENT.TXT refer? (61.3,285 in RS001.TXT) That is, why are there two reset & diagnostic latencies listed for that drive?

This is an excerpt from some documentation Steve produces during some earlier testing releases. I believe it may not be doing a drive diagnostic command in this version, rather it attempts a hash comparison of the boot sector and then if that fails, it performs the drive diagnostic.

The display above shows the time, in milliseconds, required for each of the detected drives to become ready after a hardware ‘reset’ and a drive ‘diagnostic’ command. This reconnaissance will help set reasonable wait expiration times. A ‘;’ separator indicates an ATA drive, whereas a ‘:’ separator represents an AHCI drive. The format is {reset msec}:{diagnostic msec}

edit: Now that I look again, I see there's a comma seperating them. I can't exactly remember what this means. But if I were to hazard a guess it would be the second identification test mentioned above as you had one drive that couldn't be identified in the bios on the first pass (the ! one). The "." is probably the hash test and failing that the "," may be the diagnostic reset test. Perhaps @Steve can confirm.
 
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The specifics of each drive (81-85):


81: SAMSUNG 840 EVO MZ-7TE250BW 2.5" 250GB SATA 6Gb/s 1x nm Samsung Toggle DDR 2.0 3-Bit MLC NAND Flash Memory (400Mbps) Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) [used as boot drive since April 2014 when LGA1150/Haswell PC built]

82: Seagate Barracuda Desktop HDD ST1000DM003 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive Bare Drive [in use since April 2014]

83: Refurbished: Seagate BarraCuda XT ST32000641AS 2TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive Bare Drive [in use since ?; refurbished/recertified drive used since November 2014]

84: Seagate FireCuda Gaming SSHD ST2000DX002 2TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive [in use since March 2017]

85: Seagate BarraCuda ST4000DM004 4TB Sata 6 Gb/s 5400 RPM 256MB Cache (SMR) 3.5" Internal HDD bare drive [since July 2019]

 
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Probably an SMR drive then.
You're correct, if the database of models on this website is correct. https://issmrdrive.com/check?model=ST4000DM004 indicates that it uses SMR [Shingled Magnetic Recording] technology, which is known for its slow speed during manipulation of large amounts of data. Some software seems to take that into account, though, and maintains a continuous high speed regardless of usage.

Are you aware of any defragmentation software which is buffer/SMR aware? I keep a lot of archived data at the end of that drive which never requires defragmentation, but the rest does on a regular (though not necessarily frequent) basis.

SpinRite's latest official version's warning scared me away from using it on anything but the SSD a year or two ago (a level 2 run, which didn't seem to change anything except making Windows 8.1 aware of an extra 8MB of unused space, IIRC. That was some time after I'd applied the newest-available firmware for that SSD, I think.).
 
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