SATA or SCSI drives - Multiple Read/write speeds.

Robin Laing Robin.Laing at drdc-rddc.gc.ca
Mon Dec 8 16:23:26 EST 2003


Hello,

This may be off topic but may be of interest to many that follow this 
list.

I have searched the WWW until my eyes are seeing double (and it isn't 
just the beer) trying to find a real answer to my question.  I have 
read the reviews and the hype about SATA being better than IDE/ATA and 
almost as good as SCSI, even better in a couple of areas.

I have talked to our computer people but they don't have enough 
experience with SATA drives to give me a straight answer.

With most new motherboards coming with controllers for SATA drives, I 
am considering using SATA drives for a new high-end workstation and 
small cluster.  I have seen RAID arrays using SATA drives which just 
makes the question even greater.  Of course I have seen RAID arrays 
using IDE drives.

I have used SCSI on all workstations I have built in the past, but the 
cost of SATA drives is making me think twice about this.  Files seem 
to be getting larger from day to day.

My concern is regarding multiple disk read/writes.  With IDE, you can 
wait for what seems like hours while data is being read off of the HD. 
  I want to know if the problem is still as bad with SATA as the 
original ATA drives?  Will the onboard RAID speed up access?

I know that throughput on large files is close and is usually related 
to platter speed.  I am also pleased that the buffers is now 8mb on 
all the drives I am looking at.

Main issue is writing and reading swap on those really large files and 
how it affects other work.

OS will be Linux on all.

-- 
Robin Laing


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