Side by side, but miles apart – HDD vs. SSD hard drives

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In modern technology, several factors determine usability of a certain product. Speed and the amount of space available are just a few, so it would be much easier to compare two “rivals” and see which one is more rentable to buy. Specifically, we are talking about SSD (Solid State Drive) and HDD (Hard Disk Drive) drives. Both are in usage, and we will try to give our objective judgment.

Construction

The very beginnings of storage space are paved with usage of magnetic materials. Somewhat related to old floppy disks, HDD drive uses several rotating disks covered with thin layer of magnetic-sensitive material. Small mechanical “arm” with reading head moves above those writing and reading data at the same time. This system is packed in durable, magnetic-resistant and air-tight housing, which provides protection. However, this is not sufficient to protect it from shakes and shocks, and this is the biggest disadvantage of this approach. On the other hand, SSD is literally a memory block, similar to those used in RAM memory sticks, so without any moving parts, it is much more durable. However, this approach has a downside as well, because SSD drives are somewhat sensitive to data loss due to lack of power supply.

Speed

In terms of the speed of transferring data, we can freely say that SSD has incredible advantage before the race even started. Until HDD picked up the speed needed to work, SSD had already started transferring. To be specific, SSD has range of transfer speed somewhere between 300 and 500 MB per second, while hard drive limps behind with modest 100 to 160 MB per second. In practice, this means that for example, booting Windows 8.1 will go down from a minute to around twenty seconds, when opted for faster one. This big difference is present because HDD’s head need to “find” data where is written on the disk, and even then it needs to read it and transfer. With SSD this time is shortened with immediate availability of all data.

Space available

Until recent HDD had an absolute advantage on this field. Simply put, it was much cheaper to produce 1TB of this space than same amount of an SSD. But, recently, things have changed, because new types of semi-conductors are far cheaper and affordable, so therefore SSD had begun beefing up the space. As an example, one of the newer drives, Samsung 850 evo is already earning its place, and that is not just because of its smaller size, but also because of bigger storage space. Progress and development works in favorite for SSD, because few things might change with standard HDD drive; it has reached his pinnacle, and from there the only road leads downwards. In addition, with increased competition of manufacturers of this kind of drive will surely cut down the expenses, thus reducing its price.

One thing is clear from this article. Solid state hard disk drives are the future. All the things we took into consideration are done better with this approach, and we cannot foresee any reason for this not to happen. Of course, standard hard drives will linger of a while, but do not invest too much in this devices. Time will simply trample them.

Dan Radak is a web hosting security professional with ten years of experience. He is currently working with a number of companies in the field of online security, closely collaborating with a couple of e-commerce companies. He is also a coauthor on several technology websites and regular contributor to Technivorz.

 

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