Configuring SSDs


I am about to replace my HDD system drive with an SSD, the Samsung 850 Pro 512GB.

I have a few questions if anyone might have come across this…

Firstly, I’m hoping to transfer my system drive to the new SSD via the software Samsung provides. The existing HDD is 1 TB Seagate HDD

Any issues or pitfalls there?

On the Samsung Magician software, there are a couple of things…

Under the Disk Drive page, it says: “Your OS is currently optimized for use with an HDD. You can optimize it for use with the OS Optimization menu”.

When you got to that menu, there’s a whole series of options.

My question on this is, my samples and audio will still use other HDDs in the computer, so do I want to optimize use for SSD or HDD ?

The other thing is the “Rapid Mode” … do I want to or should I activate this at all?

Thanks in advance

Can you just install the new drive and install the OS there with a clean install? You can then set up the drive as fresh and only use the 1Tb HDD as back up/ data repository. You can even attempt a dual boot option and keep the old OS to upgrade/ test Win10…

My 2 cts…

That is certainly an option, and one that I’d prefer to do ideally. But there is a lot of software on the PC installed on the system C: drive, and, if possible, I need to avoid the extra time required to do a clean install and configuration.

Beware of optimisations done by non-OS software, as they always have their own biases, mostly towards making their stuff look good, but not necessarily good for DAW/samplers.

Note that Windows will automatically optimise for SSDs, like using TRIM instead of defragmenting (though it still calls it that), and bypassing ReadyBoost (which all SSDS are too fast for).

run this tool > HD Tune Pro 5.50

I have some Samsung 830, 840, and 850 generation SSD drives here…on Intel and AMD platforms both.

I’m pretty familiar with their software. They give you some options on optimization, and these days I think a bunch of it has to do with how big your SSD drive is, and personal priorities.

Some of the optimizations depend on if boot-times are important to you. I.E. should various hibernation and sleep files be used. Such files can take a good bit of storage space, but will really speed up boot times.

If you’re running an OS on a smaller SSD drive, you might well want to sacrifice boot speed for more drive space. It’s all about personal priorities in that case. If your SSD is a smaller one, I think it’s very wise/important to do the recommended overprovisioning process (leaving a chunk of the drive un-partitioned for garbage collection purposes). In contrast, if you’re not running an OS from the drive, or it’s a larger drive with plenty of free space…overprovisioning isn’t as important.

@512gig, I’d say if you’ve got it pretty full…go ahead and do the overprovision process. It’ll give you headroom as it fills up with stuff. If all you’re running is the OS and a few apps, and got plenty of free space…you could wait.

Next comes things like disabling indexing and prefetch. If your SSD drive is larger…I’d say don’t worry about it…just leave it all on. If it’s a smaller drive, cutting that stuff off will reduce the number of writes to the drive and might help it last a few years longer at a very small performance cost to drive ‘reads’. If it’s a larger drive (I.E. 1tb or more) with plenty of free space…again I’d say either way is fine.

There are some extra ‘write speed’ enhancement modes offered by the Samsung software. These offer an ‘option’ to devote a percentage of memory to optimized write caches and buffers. On my windows 10 system, none of that seems to be an option for me to even try at this point (says unknown OS). If any of this can be enabled on your system, it shouldn’t hurt to give it a try to see if it works and offers a worthwhile performance boost. If you’re happy with write performance without enabling such boosts, and would rather keep the memory available for other things (like loading apps and samples), then just leave this enhanced write cacheing stuff disabled.

How do you set up overprovisioning on a non-samsung SSD? (I know magician can do it for samsung drives.)

SSDs generally overprovision. It is just hidden, which is why you buy drives that are nominally 120GB, rather than 128GB.

Just leave some of it un-partitioned/empty.

If all of the drive is partitioned, you could use Windows Disk Manager to ‘shrink’ the last partition some.

There are some articles floating around that give recommendations on how much leave empty. Web search a few, compare, contrast, and form your own conclusion on how much (if any) to allot to OP.

Basically, all usage scenarios, except the most intensive, will only require about 10-15GB of free space, regardless of drive size, and that will give over 100 years of use before any hint of write exhaustion.