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Old November 14, 2013, 05:23 PM
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Default SSD durability as main drive these days

This is a pretty newbie question I guess; I own a small intel SSD that I used till now as a caching device. My primary HDD is dying however, and I'm strongly considering switching my core+games drive to a 256Gb SSD (-maybe- 512 if I find a great deal). I'm looking specifically at a Samsung 840 Pro right now, though open to suggestions.

The thing is, I move files around alot. Not only would I install games on this drive, but I mod my games extensively (ex. 300 mods on my Skyrim install), and I also torrent alot of stuff, some of which I keep some of which I delete. I recall this kind of writing used to kill early SSDs pretty fast. I know things have improved on that front but I wanted to know how much before I pull the trigger.

Can I afford to move around files as freely on a SSD primary drive than I would a HDD? Should I take precautions such as directing my torrents to write on one of my secondary HDDs instead? Just thought I'd get a better idea of what to expect.

I'm not in a super hurry to buy it; for now I've reinstalled windows on my small old caching SSD and it works well enough. I'm thinking at waiting till Cyber monday or something to buy.
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Old November 14, 2013, 07:53 PM
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If I was torrenting I'd gets external drive save em there to put less wear tear on ssd.
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Old November 14, 2013, 08:12 PM
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Actually write cycles gets worse every time the manufacturing process shrinks. Modern NAND will last about 1/3 as long as 50nm drives from 4 years ago. Most drive failures are not from NAND failing though, they are from the controllers dying. So generally you don't ever need to worry about killing off the NAND on a drive unless you are writing hundreds of GB a day to the drive. But I wouldn't ever suggest using one for torrents, that just seems silly.
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Old November 14, 2013, 08:29 PM
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Thanks, that answers my question pretty well. Was planning on keeping the torrents elsewhere for the size issues alone, but it was to get a ballpark idea of what they could handle.
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Old November 14, 2013, 08:56 PM
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The thing with die shrinks is that while the lifespan does get shorter....the increase in the controllers abilities to lower the write amplification has in the past made up for it. Take the Indilinx 1 + 50nm NAND combo. Yes the NAND was good for 10K writes...but the write amplification was in the 15-20x (or even higher) range. Modern controllers keep it .... much...much lower than that! IE the old days for every 1GB of data written the long term impact on the SSD was equivalent to 15, 20GB or even greater compared to a couple GB it is now.

Of course we have basically hit the point of no return on this trade-off (e.g. SF is already below 1X write amp) and future die shrinks WILL reduce lifespan. This is why TLC NAND and its 1K lifespan is something I recommend avoiding.

To the OP. If you DL a lot....stick it to a HDD. If you HAVE to write to a SSD...go for an Enterprise SSD. e-MLC is much more durable than normal MLC. You will pay more for them, but if you HAVE to use a SSD for such endeavors...its the only way. :)
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Old November 14, 2013, 09:15 PM
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Thats well outside my price range. Hm. I guess I'll try and see how sturdy they are while being relatively careful not to abuse it excessively. I mean, anyone using a SSD as an OS and games disk IS going to be writing stuff on it consistently, thats a given. If it wasn't possible to make em last 2-3 years, nobody would be buying them :)
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Old November 14, 2013, 09:35 PM
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I have had the same ssd as my main os drive for just over 2 years I think now. It has had countless games installed to it and moved from it to hdd and back and forth. It also has been at about 80% full most of the time.

It is still going strong if that is any indication of them lasting. That said I do not use it for any torrenting needs, just use a regular hdd for that.
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Old November 15, 2013, 06:05 AM
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Exactly. Normal wear and tear =/= continuous torrenting. For a main drive the amount of writes is actually pretty low (Gigabyte wise). I know peeps who DL 30-50GB a day. On a '240GB' drive that is a .2 Drive Write Per Day. Id expect a consumer SSD to last 3-5 years in such a scenario....but it would depend on the Drive. An Intel 5 series, yeah probably 5+. Vector 150, no problems for 5. A Phison based unit? Nope. ONFi 1? Nope. An Intel 3 series? Nope. Marvell based unit...maybe. Everest 1. Rofl nope.
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Old November 15, 2013, 07:02 AM
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Are Samsung 840 Pros considered relatively 'durable' or are they all about speed?
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Old November 15, 2013, 08:04 AM
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Sammy 840 Pro is the only Samsung I recommend. Its good kit. I've used them in many builds. But once again....its a consumer grade SSD. For torrents you dont need SSD speed. Get a (for example) a 840 Pro for your OS drive and a 1TB black/cuda/etc for your 'data'.
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