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Finally Installed An SSD In My Laptop


Eric

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Dating back to the early 2000's as SSD were basically sticks of RAM repurposed as a flash drive, I've alway wanted to get one as my boot drive. But the size was always prohibitive. As the size increased, so did the bloatware and OS's. Even so, when the sizes got good enough to handle all that, the cost was extremely prohibitive (the same cost as, or more expensive than, the computer I was going to install it on).

 

Then, about 6 months ago I decided to check in on everything and found a 512 GB SDD from Kingston for around $150. I hemmed and hawed about it for the intervening time until sometime last week, I had had a few too many and found myself on Amazon (a dangerous combination for my pocketbook as anyone who's found themselves in a similar situation can tell you). Anywho, I ended up finally pulling the trigger on the purchase and when I arrived home on Thursday evening, I found a package waiting for me on my doorstep.

 

The first thing I did was to back up my existing HD, which took over night. Excited about the prospect of using the new drive, I got up early on Friday and began to clone the drive using some 3rd Party Software, since the drive didn't come with any itself. I needed to clone the drive instead of simply dragging and dropping the files onto it because it needed to simply replace my existing HD as is. Luckily, I already had a USB/SATA adapter so I was able to plug the drive into the USB port (turns out, this was a crucial piece of hardware to have, and something I highly recommend everyone pick up for a variety of other reasons). So I hooked it up, went into admin tools, assigned it a Drive Letter, then fired up the software package called EaseUS Todo Backup Free (which I found from the LifeHacker website article on cloning without reinstalling). This took about an hour for my 200GB.

 

Then I shut my computer down, replaced the existing drive with the SSD, fired it up, and it just worked. And boy howdy did it "just work". In the time it used to take just for the Windows Boot up screen to come up before, I had already logged in, gone through metro, loaded up my browser and my Outlook and was Sending/Receiving Mail. Yes, that quickly!

 

More importantly than that, I have an external HD attached to my laptop which holds almost 500 GB of Photos (for work) as well as about 200 GB of music (for personal). To say that Photoshop would take it's sweet time opening each day when I began work would be a vast understatement. Not only that, but scrolling through the files would produce 3-5 second hang times every page. With thousands of photos to scroll through sometimes, looking for that needle in a haystack of a generic photo needed, that could cost me anywhere from 15-20 minutes just in the search alone. Now, it's instantanious (since the thumbnails are housed within the Photoshop program on the SSD drive and not the full sized ones on the external). It still takes the same amount of time to pull the full sized ones down.

 

Audio editing is the other thing I tested, since launching the new podcast this last week. If you know anything about editing, sometimes the editing process itself is spent telling the computer to do something, then waiting for that to happen. Well, with the new SSD drive, all of that waiting just disappeared. Processes that were taking 2 minutes or more were suddenly done in less than 5 seconds.

 

Internet connectivity, however, is now the weak link. I can tell how fast or slow the connection is by the time it takes to get anything done on my end, since everything else on my system is running faster than the connection itself.

 

So, the moral of the story? If you are ever frustrated with the amount of time you are spending waiting for things to load on your computer, or the amount of time it takes to boot up, then get yourself an SSD and you will never look back.

 

And for the gamers out there looking to increase the speed with which their games run, this may be the single best improvement you can make to your computer, even more than a Video Card or RAM.  Seriously, it impacts the speed of the system that much.

 

Heck, given the choice of an SSD with a lesser CPU vs an up to speed CPU with an HDD, I'll take the SSD option every time. Yes, it's that good.

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Yeah, I've been looking into a SSD for a bit.  Biggest problem is still the ISP.  It'll still be limited and isn't worth it for gaming.  But the price is slowly getting into the standard price range.  

 

I'm actually surprised SATA hard drives still continue, and SSD's haven't taken over.  It seems that SATA hard drives are VHS, and SSD's are DVD's.  Hopefully Blu Rays are around the corner.  

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Yeah, I've been looking into a SSD for a bit.  Biggest problem is still the ISP.  It'll still be limited and isn't worth it for gaming.  But the price is slowly getting into the standard price range.  

 

I'm actually surprised SATA hard drives still continue, and SSD's haven't taken over.  It seems that SATA hard drives are VHS, and SSD's are DVD's.  Hopefully Blu Rays are around the corner.  

 

 

I've been wanting an SSD for a while, Crucial is a brand that seems to have a really good price to GB ratio last time I checked. 

 

GB, i'd say that SSDs are certainly the Blu Ray of drives. I think it goes Floppy = VHS, SATA = DVD and SSD = Blu Ray.

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I've gone from "Do I REALLY need/want to go through firing up Photoshop? I mean is it worth the time and the hassle?" to "Oh, let me check on that" on a whim.

 

The amount of time I'm saving throughout the day on stuff is ridiculous. Seriously, in less than a week, I've probably already saved 3 hours of wait time for my computer from booting up to loading programs to processing, this is clearly the best investment I've made to my computer in forever.

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