Dell Mini 9 Hardware and Upgrades Discuss Dell Mini 9 Hardware and Upgrades.

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davico_rosello davico_rosello is offline
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Default Re: Runcore NOT so fast! - 03-04-2009, 07:32 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by drbob
My Stock Dell Mini 9 with 16 GB SSD is faster than the 64 GB RunCore. See YouTube movie for video, showing 25 second boot time (vs. about 30 seconds for 64 GB)!

Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rrr9BA8RBf4
now try to install something like office 2007 in both drives and post your sincere opinion about it, you can make a video too :mrgreen:


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WolfKeeper WolfKeeper is offline
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Default Re: Runcore NOT so fast! - 03-04-2009, 07:54 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by davico_rosello
Quote:
Originally Posted by drbob
My Stock Dell Mini 9 with 16 GB SSD is faster than the 64 GB RunCore. See YouTube movie for video, showing 25 second boot time (vs. about 30 seconds for 64 GB)!

Here is the link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rrr9BA8RBf4
now try to install something like office 2007 in both drives and post your sincere opinion about it, you can make a video too :mrgreen:
What's the big deal about Office 2007? I have it on my Mini and Excel and Word open in under 3 seconds each.


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Digitalfiend Digitalfiend is offline
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Default Re: Runcore NOT so fast! - 03-04-2009, 08:04 AM

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Originally Posted by WolfKeeper
What's the big deal about Office 2007? I have it on my Mini and Excel and Word open in under 3 seconds each.
I think he is referring to the installation process, which is where the RunCore should surpass the stock unit.
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WolfKeeper WolfKeeper is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-04-2009, 08:08 AM

That's a given, the install on the stock STEC drive was killer.

But you only have to do it once! :mrgreen:


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holmes4 holmes4 is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-04-2009, 04:40 PM

Please restrict replies for this thread to the topic at hand - the upgrade guide. Comments on the attributes of the RunCore SSDs can go elsewhere.


Steve
Mini 9|2GB RAM|64GB RunCore|Intel 5300|Windows 10
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nextel2010 nextel2010 is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-04-2009, 06:43 PM

Great Guide! However, I would like to point out that users who want to image an existing operating system onto a new RunCore SSD should be aware of the issue of partition alignment. The OCZ forums have extensive information on that, particularly for XP systems. Should a user wish to align the RunCore's partition prior to restoring an existing installation, he/she should NOT use Acronis True Image, as that software is known to destroy the partition's (aligned) offset during the process.

I currently have an OCZ Core v.2 SSD on my desktop. After performing the alignment, I restored onto it using DriveImageXML, then rechecked the disk geometry using Diskpar, and confirmed that the aligned partition held. Aligning the OCZ seemed to lengthen the boot time slightly and did not eliminate the stuttering, but reduced it noticeably. When I ran ATTO on the OCZ, I was getting read/write speeds of over 161/84 Mb/s in the middle ranges (unfortunately I did not run ATTO prior to the alignment, and there's no way I'm going to go back now!). System runs much smoother than before, and is lightning fast at times.

I ordered a RunCore 32GB from MDD, and plan on doing the same alignment/restore (thank God for that usb plug) of my current Mini install. Will update on results with ATTO of RunCore before and after (unless someone had already beat me to it).
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BFRedrocks BFRedrocks is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-04-2009, 07:46 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by nextel2010
Great Guide! However, I would like to point out that users who want to image an existing operating system onto a new RunCore SSD should be aware of the issue of partition alignment. The OCZ forums have extensive information on that, particularly for XP systems. Should a user wish to align the RunCore's partition prior to restoring an existing installation, he/she should NOT use Acronis True Image, as that software is known to destroy the partition's (aligned) offset during the process.

I currently have an OCZ Core v.2 SSD on my desktop. After performing the alignment, I restored onto it using DiskImageXML, then rechecked the disk geometry using Diskpar, and confirmed that the aligned partition held. Aligning the OCZ seemed to lengthen the boot time slightly and did not eliminate the stuttering, but reduced it noticeably. When I ran ATTO on the OCZ, I was getting read/write speeds of over 161/84 Mb/s in the middle ranges (unfortunately I did not run ATTO prior to the alignment, and there's no way I'm going to go back now!). System runs much smoother than before, and is lightning fast at times.

I ordered a RunCore 32GB from MDD, and plan on doing the same alignment/restore (thank God for that usb plug) of my current Mini install. Will update on results with ATTO of RunCore before and after (unless someone had already beat me to it).
Thanks for the info, but can you explain to those planning to do this (upgrade to a Runcore SSD) what are the disadvantages to "destroying the partition's (aligned) offset" versus simply cloning (imaging) the existing drive to the new SSD using Acronis?


Dell Mini 9: Obsidian Black, 64GB Runcore SSD, 2GB RAM, BT, 1.3MP, IOGEAR BT Mouse, 500GB WD Elite HD, LG GP08 DVD Drive, 16GB Transcend SDHC, AT&T Quicksilver 3G Aircard, Timbuktu Sleeve, Case Logic Case
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seniorusn seniorusn is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-04-2009, 08:41 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by RTMini9
I know there aren't many vendors selling replacement drives for the Mini 9.

But I think you should at least mention the High failure rate of the MDD Runcore drives and the limited availability.

Otherwise this is less of an upgrade guide and more of a sales pitch for MDD.

Also adding links to the other available drives would help.

I believe Crucial and Buffalo make replacement drives? as well as Dell selling them.
Thanks for the Crucial and Buffalo names...will have to check them out - however as for DELL - I tried to ask them to sell me the 64gb SSD for the mini 9 and they stated 'THEY DO NOT SELL SSD's" -
but for the read/write time......I do like Runcores times.......
Bruce


Obsidian Black Dell Mini 9 - 2gb ram, 32gb ssd, 1.3mb wc, bt, Windows XP Pro (Yeah!!!)
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nextel2010 nextel2010 is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-04-2009, 10:25 PM

The importance of partition alignment is covered fairly well in this forum:

ssd-performance-boost-by-partition-alignment--t3438.html, as well as the OCZ forum referenced within.

Basically, if the data clusters (smallest blocks, or allocation units, under NTFS) are not aligned to the drive sectors, a cluster access can overlap two sectors, thus increasing the amount of total data accessed (i.e. two whole sectors, instead of one, will need to be accessed for that one cluster). This is particularly hard with small random writes (an MLC SSD's weak area, especially in conjunction with write amplification), as the amount of overhead incurred increases in direct proportion to the amounts of clusters accessed. This inefficiency has at least two bad results: poor system performance (stuttering/pauses) during heavy disk writes, and decreased SSD life, as a 2nd sector block would have to be copied/erased/written to, in its entirety, whereas if the partition was aligned, this 2nd sector would be left untouched.

The OCZ forums have great information and instructions on how to align a partition using diskpar. After performing the alignment (where the user instructs diskpar (using -s parameter) to insert an "offset" to ensure the overlaying clusters will align with the sectors), those who want to image an OS onto the new RunCore should NOT USE Acronis because it will destroy, or bypass, the "offset" he/she just put in, and he/she will have to align again and reimage (using other cloning software). As I stated, I used DriveImageXML* (free) to restore my OS, and diskpar (using -i parameter) showed the partition remained aligned. This is where you will see the usb connector on the RunCore as a godsend; my OCZ SSD had one.

The alignment process is destructive, so the user will need to back up the OS (again, I recommend DriveImageXML). If the user wants to install a clean system from the CD, it can be done as usual after the alignment, but DO NOT ERASE THE PARTITION. This (partition alignment) is NOT an issue with Vista, or Windows 7, as these OS'es will do the alignment automatically upon installation.

This issue does not affect all XP systems to the same degree (it's never that easy), but it did make a noticeable difference on my desktop. The principles behind it are sound, and it is a long-accepted procedure for server drives, which are subject to many random accesses. Misalignment does not affect HD's to the same extent, primarily because of the somewhat unique way in which MLC SSD's handle data writes.

I'm not sure how the Mini is affected, but the STEC I have does take a while to perform writes, and the system does pause now and then. At the VERY least, partition alignment is one optimization which can only help, and it's really not all that hard to do.

Hope this helps.

* I inadvertently referred to this program as DiskImageXML in my 1st posting, now edited and corrected to DriveImageXML :roll:
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novs25 novs25 is offline
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Default Re: Runcore SSD Upgrade Guide (w/Pics) - 03-05-2009, 12:26 AM

This is a great guide. This should be a sticky. I ordered my run-core 16 gig from MDD a few weeks ago and I am still waiting. I do love the mini and cant wait to take on putting os x on it. This guide will lower my stress levels significantly. Thanks.
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