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Hardware  » Time to upgrade?

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34 posts found
  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13305

 
OP  11/30/13 7:26:32 AM#21

For what it's worth, I decided to replace the SSD for now:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820248016

That's a LAMD controller, so its only real flaw is using about 1 W at idle--which doesn't matter in a desktop.  It's also been around for a while, and Seagate has plenty of experience with testing and validation of SATA storage devices.

That doesn't rule out the possibility of replacing the computer in a few months anyway.  But I decided that a new, more reliable SSD was worthwhile even if I do replace the computer and relegate this one to backup duty.  An unreliable backup defeats the point of having a backup.

  aspekx

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/24/05
Posts: 2188

11/30/13 7:30:40 AM#22

i am in no position to advise you technically, but as mentioned by others, after all you've done i would like to toss in one recommendation.

i have always been a fairly frugal person in that i willingly give up quite a number of 'luxuries' in order to have one or two really high quality core items. in recent years however my age has begun to show in that having very basic amenities seems to improve my overall life.

all of the above to simply say, if you're going to wait or not, might i recommend that you find a really comfortable mouse and keyboard to add to your setup? it doesn't seem like much, but i have really begun to find that these small things can really add to the overall experience one has in many areas of life.

"There are at least two kinds of games.
One could be called finite, the other infinite.
A finite game is played for the purpose of winning,
an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play."
Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13305

 
OP  11/30/13 9:35:38 AM#23
Originally posted by aspekx

all of the above to simply say, if you're going to wait or not, might i recommend that you find a really comfortable mouse and keyboard to add to your setup? it doesn't seem like much, but i have really begun to find that these small things can really add to the overall experience one has in many areas of life.

I already have a mouse that I really like.  It's lightweight, comfortable, and just works right, every single time.  Much of the paint has worn off over the years, but that's fine, because that doesn't affect the functionality.  The mouse was $14 before shipping, too; I've used more expensive mice, but didn't like them nearly as well.

As for the keyboard, I've used a lot of keyboards, but never one that made me say, this is better than most keyboards.  Some keyboards find creative ways to be worse than most others (the most common are wireless and the fraudulently-named "ergonomic" keyboards), but I'm not aware of any ways to meaningfully improve on what you could get 20 years ago.

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13305

 
OP  12/05/13 7:50:41 PM#24

I just got my new SSD today.  So far, I'm not impressed.  It feels slower than my old drive, but that's probably mostly it is installing a ton of Windows updates in the background, so I'm not concerned about that.

But there are other issues that I am concerned about, however.  Most pointedly, every time the computer boots, my motherboard stops to insist that the SSD has failed a S.M.A.R.T. test, which indicates that the drive is about to fail.  It won't continue booting until I press F1 to continue.

When I first installed Windows on the SSD and tried to boot to it immediately afterwards, it simply wouldn't boot to the SSD.  The BIOS insisted that I needed to insert a valid boot device.  I reinstalled Windows a second time, and now the BIOS does accept that it's bootable, at least.

I went to Seagate's web site hoping for some tech support.  Unfortunately, they barely acknowledge that Seagate even sells SSDs.  I did download their SeaTools diagnostic while there.  It runs the S.M.A.R.T. test and reports that the drive passes.  But it also reports that a brand new SSD has only 39% of its total lifetime write endurance left.

  Ridelynn

Elite Member

Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3360

12/06/13 9:17:10 AM#25

RMA - it shouldn't be doing that.

Also, check to make sure you have the latest BIOS - odds are you do, but it could be old SATA firmware just freaking out with a new drive.

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13305

 
OP  12/06/13 7:10:40 PM#26

I tried updating the motherboard BIOS.  That made no difference.

What I find strange is that the motherboard says that the SSD failed a SMART test while SeaTools says that it passed a SMART test.  The SSD passes the other three tests in the SeaTools suite, one of which is a very in-depth test that takes about half an hour to run.  

I tried using the SMART monitoring in SpeedFan, and it says everything is wonderful, just as it should be on a new drive.  For comparison, it says that my old OCZ Agility has 16126 uncorrectable sectors and should therefore be replaced.  CrystalDiskInfo also says that the new SSD is fine.  So does HD Tune--and with a test that scans the entire SSD and takes over 20 minutes, no less.

I looked into it somewhat and it seems that what SMART attributes drives support varies wildly from one drive to the next.  The newest BIOS available for my motherboard predates the launch of the first SSD on a LAMD controller by about a year and a half, so the motherboard BIOS writers had no way of knowing what SMART values the SSD would offer or what the normal range would be.  A lot has changed since then, too; when the motherboard launched, nothing supported either TRIM or SATA 3.  On that basis, I'm inclined to say that the motherboard BIOS test is simply wrong.

I figured out how to disable the motherboard BIOS check of the SSD.  That would at least get the BIOS to stop complaining.  I just don't want it to be akin to disabling an annoying fire alarm when there is a real fire.

As for the claim of 39% write endurance, write endurance is hard to measure and plenty of vendor-provided tools that expose some numbers on it have been wrong.

I submitted a ticket with Seagate support last night and am hoping to hear back soon.

  aspekx

Hard Core Member

Joined: 12/24/05
Posts: 2188

12/06/13 7:37:40 PM#27
Originally posted by Quizzical
Originally posted by aspekx

all of the above to simply say, if you're going to wait or not, might i recommend that you find a really comfortable mouse and keyboard to add to your setup? it doesn't seem like much, but i have really begun to find that these small things can really add to the overall experience one has in many areas of life.

I already have a mouse that I really like.  It's lightweight, comfortable, and just works right, every single time.  Much of the paint has worn off over the years, but that's fine, because that doesn't affect the functionality.  The mouse was $14 before shipping, too; I've used more expensive mice, but didn't like them nearly as well.

As for the keyboard, I've used a lot of keyboards, but never one that made me say, this is better than most keyboards.  Some keyboards find creative ways to be worse than most others (the most common are wireless and the fraudulently-named "ergonomic" keyboards), but I'm not aware of any ways to meaningfully improve on what you could get 20 years ago.

ha! too true.

 

my worst keyboard yet was a new logitech wireless. gahds that thing was awful.

 

well as long as your comfortable i spose that's the most important bit. though im sure you won't need it, good luck on your rebuild over time (ROT? somehow that doesn't sound right :)

 

 

"There are at least two kinds of games.
One could be called finite, the other infinite.
A finite game is played for the purpose of winning,
an infinite game for the purpose of continuing play."
Finite and Infinite Games, James Carse

  Kyleran

Bitter Vet™

Joined: 9/13/06
Posts: 18993

Fools find no pleasure in understanding, but delight in airing their own opinions. Pvbs 18:2, NIV

12/06/13 8:16:16 PM#28
Originally posted by Quizzical

I tried updating the motherboard BIOS.  That made no difference.

What I find strange is that the motherboard says that the SSD failed a SMART test while SeaTools says that it passed a SMART test.  The SSD passes the other three tests in the SeaTools suite, one of which is a very in-depth test that takes about half an hour to run.  

I tried using the SMART monitoring in SpeedFan, and it says everything is wonderful, just as it should be on a new drive.  For comparison, it says that my old OCZ Agility has 16126 uncorrectable sectors and should therefore be replaced.  CrystalDiskInfo also says that the new SSD is fine.  So does HD Tune--and with a test that scans the entire SSD and takes over 20 minutes, no less.

I looked into it somewhat and it seems that what SMART attributes drives support varies wildly from one drive to the next.  The newest BIOS available for my motherboard predates the launch of the first SSD on a LAMD controller by about a year and a half, so the motherboard BIOS writers had no way of knowing what SMART values the SSD would offer or what the normal range would be.  A lot has changed since then, too; when the motherboard launched, nothing supported either TRIM or SATA 3.  On that basis, I'm inclined to say that the motherboard BIOS test is simply wrong.

I figured out how to disable the motherboard BIOS check of the SSD.  That would at least get the BIOS to stop complaining.  I just don't want it to be akin to disabling an annoying fire alarm when there is a real fire.

As for the claim of 39% write endurance, write endurance is hard to measure and plenty of vendor-provided tools that expose some numbers on it have been wrong.

I submitted a ticket with Seagate support last night and am hoping to hear back soon.

Why I buy my PCs rather than build them 

"In these forums 'honest' seems to be a symonym for 'hates the game just like I do'" - ohioastro
Kyleran - Bitter Vet ™ since 2006
"This is the most intelligent, well qualified and articulate response to a post I have ever seen on these forums. It's a shame most people here won't have the attention span to read past the second line." - Anon

  Wizardry

Elite Member

Joined: 8/27/04
Posts: 6674

Perhaps tomorrow will be better.

12/06/13 8:49:01 PM#29

I have an I5 laptop and have no need what  so ever to upgrade,so any decent I7 should be good for about another 10 years especially if all we are going to get is Wow or Wildstar type graphics.

My PC is only an ancient 5200+ and 8800GT and still runs ANY MMORPG,yes even FFXIV,albeit not on high settings of course but good enough to see good visuals.A lot of these games are so ancient ,they even have global lighting and little to no shader use and shadows are imo rarely needed or noticed.

Even the single player games are easily run on my I5 Laptop,game design right now is really sad it is moving backwards faster than forwards.

I will wait and see what Valve or Epic games comes up with next to see if i should even think about any PC upgrade,otherwise i bet my I5 laptop will still play the newest with ease.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Napolianboo#p/u/15/rCYLLQCNc1w
Samoan Diamond

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13305

 
OP  12/06/13 8:57:18 PM#30
Originally posted by Kyleran
Originally posted by Quizzical

I tried updating the motherboard BIOS.  That made no difference.

What I find strange is that the motherboard says that the SSD failed a SMART test while SeaTools says that it passed a SMART test.  The SSD passes the other three tests in the SeaTools suite, one of which is a very in-depth test that takes about half an hour to run.  

I tried using the SMART monitoring in SpeedFan, and it says everything is wonderful, just as it should be on a new drive.  For comparison, it says that my old OCZ Agility has 16126 uncorrectable sectors and should therefore be replaced.  CrystalDiskInfo also says that the new SSD is fine.  So does HD Tune--and with a test that scans the entire SSD and takes over 20 minutes, no less.

I looked into it somewhat and it seems that what SMART attributes drives support varies wildly from one drive to the next.  The newest BIOS available for my motherboard predates the launch of the first SSD on a LAMD controller by about a year and a half, so the motherboard BIOS writers had no way of knowing what SMART values the SSD would offer or what the normal range would be.  A lot has changed since then, too; when the motherboard launched, nothing supported either TRIM or SATA 3.  On that basis, I'm inclined to say that the motherboard BIOS test is simply wrong.

I figured out how to disable the motherboard BIOS check of the SSD.  That would at least get the BIOS to stop complaining.  I just don't want it to be akin to disabling an annoying fire alarm when there is a real fire.

As for the claim of 39% write endurance, write endurance is hard to measure and plenty of vendor-provided tools that expose some numbers on it have been wrong.

I submitted a ticket with Seagate support last night and am hoping to hear back soon.

Why I buy my PCs rather than build them 

It's not a buy versus build situation.  It's an issue with upgrading a 4+ year old computer, with an SSD that didn't exist until long after the last motherboard BIOS update, and hoping the parts will play nicely together.

  Ridelynn

Elite Member

Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3360

12/06/13 11:29:34 PM#31

That's possible I suppose that it's just a BIOS thing - SMART is really horrible at predicting failures anyway, so I don't think that disabling it your really missing much.

I've got a similarly old motherboard, and it's running SATA3 SSDs fine (Crucial C300). That's not to say that other drives with other firmware and other Motherboards with other controllers won't play oddly together.

Regardless I think I would RMA or return it...

  Trionicus

Novice Member

Joined: 1/31/12
Posts: 488

12/09/13 11:15:20 AM#32

First, thank you for all the advice and help over the years. Even back when I was just lurking, you've helped me more than you could know!

My advice to you is to spend that chee$e, get the 5 big screens and the full tower case and all the bells and whistles. You've been making that phat lootz, it's now time to spend some. Sell the old machine, keep your storage drives, transfer the data and shred'em, get a new burner, blu-ray even.

What's next? Gonna jerry-rig a tesla coil to your balls to be a ghetto cyborg?! Stop the madness and build a signature worthy rig!

I say this all out of love!

  Kabaal

Advanced Member

Joined: 8/02/05
Posts: 2946

Haggis Humper

12/09/13 12:24:36 PM#33

Re monitors : Why do you want more and which games to you play where Eyefinity would be beneficial over 1 large main screen and 2 smaller satellites?

I have Eyefinity just now with 3 x 1080p DGM 120hz screens and wish i was running a single1440p for gaming with 2 1080p monitors for everything else. Eyefinity rocks for the likes of FSX but is a waste of money for 99% of games where a single 27" at higher res would be a better experience. It comes down to whether the majority of your time is taken up by games where peripheral vision add substantially to the experience, if it's not then don't bother.

I couldn't do without 3 screens btw just that they don't add much to the gaming aspect for me.

Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13305

 
OP  12/09/13 7:47:18 PM#34
Originally posted by Kabaal

Re monitors : Why do you want more and which games to you play where Eyefinity would be beneficial over 1 large main screen and 2 smaller satellites?

I have Eyefinity just now with 3 x 1080p DGM 120hz screens and wish i was running a single1440p for gaming with 2 1080p monitors for everything else. Eyefinity rocks for the likes of FSX but is a waste of money for 99% of games where a single 27" at higher res would be a better experience. It comes down to whether the majority of your time is taken up by games where peripheral vision add substantially to the experience, if it's not then don't bother.

I couldn't do without 3 screens btw just that they don't add much to the gaming aspect for me.

For three monitors in landscape mode, I'd agree.  But that's why I want to put them in portrait mode.  There are lots of programs where more vertical pixels would be nice, and 1920 vertical pixels is more than you can get in landscape mode by anything short of a very, very expensive 4k monitor.  That lets you read more before you have to scroll down, for example.

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