Samsung PB22-J 256GB SSD
Our new favourite solid-state drive
Review The catchily named Samsung PB22-J MMDOE56G5MXP-0VB weighs in at 256GB and is the biggest SSD we've seen to date. Biggest, that is, in terms of capacity. Physically, it follows the usual 2.5in hard drive form-factor and measures 100 x 70 x 9.5mm. Cosmetically, it’s an attractive drive that has a brushed metal finish but, let’s face it, once the drive is installed, you couldn’t care less what it looks like.
Samsung's 256GB SSD and friend: we like it too
Samsung tells us that it was the first company to sell a 32GB SSD, in March 2006, and was also the first to reach 64GB, which it did in 2007. Here we are with a 256GB drive in 2009. For the record, G.Skill lists a 256GB Titan drive in its range, and OCZ has a 250GB version of its Apex SSD. However, the Samsung is the first 256GB SSD that we have received.
Before we get started with the tests, we have to sound a cautionary note about availability and pricing. Samsung doesn't sell its SSDs direct to the consumer as they all, for the moment, go to its laptop customers.
A quick bit of research suggests that Alienware, Flybook and Lenovo are the companies in question. Take a look at the Alienware Area-51 m15x laptop, which starts at £899 with a 160GB 7200rpm SATA hard drive with sudden-drop protection. Upgrading to a 250GB drive with the same spec costs an extra £40, while a 320GB drive is a £62 upgrade - £22 more than the 250GB.
Switching from the 160GB SATA drive to a 128GB SSD costs £246, while a 256GB SSD costs £411. That gives us an approximate price of £430-440 for the Samsung 256GB SSD, but these prices are extremely fluid and seem to be changing rapidly.
Not cheap, it seems
Taking the Lenovo option is far more expensive than the Alienware route, so if you fancy upgrading the 120GB 5400rpm HDD in a Lenovo ThinkPad X301 to a 128GB SSD, it will cost you £382. Phew.
We are making the assumption that the SSDs in question are Samsung products as that is the best information that we have at present. To put those prices in context, an 80GB Intel X25-M costs £350 and the 160GB version is priced at £690.
These units are now available, though they're a very pricey £575 from Novatech..
One reason for Linux's smaller footprint is that shared libraries are used to a greater extent, whereas Windows programs tend to carry their own copies. This no doubt has an effect on boot time. However, I boot Debian from an IDE disk(ATA-66, I think) and I get kdm in under a minute. How can people find these times acceptable?
You said it, mate. Leave aside installations of various FPS games:
XP + Visual Studio + Office + Firebadger = somewhere north of 20 GB.
Linux* + KDE** + GCC + libraries + kitchen sink = less than 12 GB.
*Fedora 8 or 10, SuSE 9.x thru 11.2, Slackware to 12.x
**I just like it.
Can't speak for Ubuntu, it drives me nuts. To each his own.
Now... which version of Emacs do you use?
Up to six minutes to boot with a high clocked quad core?
"Windows, ZoneAlarm firewall, Windows Defender, Sophos..." plus what else? Got lots of pretty icons in your task tray, my friend - do they make you feel important or well provisioned?
A clean system that's getting old? That's utterly ridiculous. Computers running Windows do not slow down because they get old. They slow down because Windows collects cruft like a stray dog collects fleas, and the registry collects errors like the DNA of a radiation poisoning victim. This is a maintenance issue, not an age issue.
You ought to take a look in the run keys in the registry and removed all your vendor cruft-ware. Then clean out the run-on-login folder in your start menu. Then run regclean about twenty times.
Statements like "...system that's getting old" to explain those boot times do not inspire confidence, buddy.
What the hell?
1 minute 14 seconds, Jesus that's an awful boot time.
I use an OCZ Apex running Ubuntu Jaunty with a custom kernel.
My boot time recorded by bootchart is 8.4 seconds.
Maybe another 2 seconds for X & Gnome Startup and that's it.
No more disk light. Desktop fully usable.
And I use around 10% of my 60GB drive for the OS & Apps.
Only exception with the apps is the 8GB taken up by
Call of Duty 4 and Visio... The only two windows apps I still use.