How To Choose a Hard Disk - Both computers and laptops have two main types of permanent storage: SSD and HDD. Each of them has many parameters that can be used to evaluate the performance of the device. But that's not all, because the parameters affect the cost of the disk.The price of a laptop hard drive depends on the following factors:
- Capacity - from 100 GB to 6 TB.
- Speed - from 50 MB/s to 6 GB/s.
- Connection interface - SAS, SATA II, SATA III, USB.
To choose the right HDD for the correct operation of your laptop, decide on the purpose of your purchase. To store an archive of photos, audio and video files, a drive with a large amount of internal memory is suitable. For the efficient operation of numerous programs, you need to choose the fastest device possible.
To replace old equipment, you will need to replace the internal disk with a new model of the appropriate form factor. If you are expanding your existing disk space or intend to transfer information from one device to another frequently, then pay attention to external hard drives.
Types of hard drives:
HDD (Hard Drive Disk) is a type of hard disk drive (hard drive) familiar to most users, where information is recorded on magnetic platters. An HDD provides large storage capacities, low cost, and an unlimited number of write cycles. Disadvantages: low speed of writing and reading data, heavy weight, significant energy consumption, and sensitivity to mechanical damage. SSD (Solid State Drive) or solid-state drive is a type of hard disk that uses solid-state memory, usually flash memory. It has the same dimensions and connectors as an HDD. An SSD is characterized by silence, lower power consumption, higher data transfer speeds, and shock resistance. Disadvantages: limited number of write cycles, high price.
The physical capacity of a disk indicates how much information you can write to it. It is usually measured in gigabytes (GB), but the capacity of modern hard disk models is indicated in terabytes (TB). 1 TB = 1024 GB.
This characteristic is often simple: the larger the capacity, the better. Today, you can get a maximum capacity of up to 48 TB. This capacity is provided by a networked (external) system of several drives. The maximum capacity of a single hard disk is 12 TB.
When choosing a suitable price-to-capacity ratio, the following rule applies: as the storage capacity increases, the unit cost of storing information decreases (especially between adjacent models, for example, 500 GB and 1 TB HDDs). Therefore, it is more profitable to overpay a little and buy a larger drive. At the same time, the most capacious 8-12 TB solutions will be too expensive and most likely won't be needed. To see the maximum capacity of a hard drive for your laptop, you can check various websites Apple.com, Amazon.com. HP.com. Then you can enter the model of your laptop and order the hard drive you need.
Finding out the make (model) of your hard disk drive (HDD)
The process of getting the necessary information by means of the system tool in Windows is quite simple. Moreover, the instruction is universal, which means that you can, in fact, find out the make and model of your hard disk regardless of which version of Windows is installed on your computer.
Click on "Start" and select "Task Manager. There are traditionally many hierarchical menu items, each listing the available hardware. To get information about the installed hard disk drive, open the menu called Disk Devices.
The drop-down list will show all the physically installed hard drives (if you also have an SSD drive, it will also be present in the list) that are installed in your computer.
HDD and SSD speeds
HDD disks - for this type of disk, an important characteristic is the access speed - the average time to access a unit of information. It is measured in milliseconds (ms). It indicates how quickly the hard disk mechanism can position the read/write head over the desired information track.
The higher the access speed, the less time it takes, for example, to write a large number of files. The optimal access speed for modern HDDs is 13-15 ms.
SSD disks have no mechanical moving parts, so they specify read speed and write speed. The unit of measurement is megabytes per second (MB/s). The higher both of these indicators are, the faster the system installed on such a hard disk will work and the faster files will be copied. The read speed is always higher than the write speed.
Modern SSDs have a read speed of 500-600 MB/s. The write speed is less important than the read speed. The optimal characteristic for an SSD with an operating system is 550 MB/s.
When choosing an SSD drive, keep in mind that its speed depends on its capacity. The larger the capacity, the faster the speed. The minimum recommended capacity is 128 GB.
The speed of the hard disk may depend on various parameters.
For HDDs, the spindle speed is indicated, which is 5400-15000 rpm (denoted by rpm). The higher the speed, the more the device heats up. For desktop PCs, it's enough to buy a disk with a speed of 5400 or 7200 rpm, over 7200 rpm are mostly SAS hard drives for servers. Models with a speed of 5400 rpm are used in laptops.
Buffer (cache) size
For any type of hard disk, the size of the buffer (cache) plays a role - the larger it is, the faster the speed of access to data on the hard disk. Currently, the most popular size is 64-256 MB for HDDs. For every 1 GB of SSD capacity, you need 1 MB of buffer capacity.
Connection interface - usually it is the way the hard disk is connected that determines the speed of data access, i.e. it is impossible to exceed the interface bandwidth.
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