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Thanks, Mac. I've always had good luck with StarTech products, so I'd trust this to work as advertised. It would certainly be much less expensive than using an SSD, and it's perfect for a front-end box.
 

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There's nothing special about using a flash drive to boot from. It's just slower than booting from a good sata drive. there are lot's of differences in the speed of flash drives though. I've got a Transend Jetfalsh V30 that reads at about 14MBps, a Corsair readout at about 17MBps, and just got a Patriot Exporter XT that reads at 29+MBps. These are all 4GB flashdrives and times are from hdparm. Only other thing is that your MB supports boot from flash.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by wnewell /forum/post/18264049


There's nothing special about using a flash drive to boot from. It's just slower than booting from a good sata drive.

Actually booting from a decent speed CF card is a lot faster than from a good sata drive due to the absence of latency. Mac was talking about CF cards, not USB flash drives (which generally have slow low quality flash chips inside).


Both my HTPC and my home router/firewall run off a CF card (Transcend Industrial), for the HTPC I use the following CF to SATA adapter:
http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.19904


Dealextreme is a HongKong dealer that ships worldwide (free shipping) with a good reputation, I have bought a few times from there with no issues (other than the shipping time which is about 7-10 days to where i live).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by wnewell /forum/post/18265308


I'd be curious to see some hdparm speeds using this type setup.

With a 4GB Transcend Industrial Ultra (TS4GCF100I) I get consistently 40.7 MB/sec (did 4 runs of hdparm -t).
http://www.transcendusa.com/Products...pNo=1&LangNo=0


The adapter is the one I mentioned in my previous post, but it doesn't really matter, any CFSATA adapter would give the same results.


My point is though, continuous read speed is not what matters most for a OS disk, what makes flash very noticeably faster is the absence of latency on random reads.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I guess i should actually credit PC Perspective for this find, since that's where I heard about it.



Tux's numbers matches PC Per's (Ryan Shrout's) estimate of the throughput (~40MB/s).


Ryan's using it because it's ~2-3 times faster for transferring photos off his CF cards compared to the USB2.0 card reader that he was using.


But, to me, it looked like a nice cheap alternative to buying an SSD since most of us have unused CF cards laying around and in many cases we care more about the low-power and no-noise features than we do about the speed improvements.


And in my case, it looks like a cool way to try out new Distros. Instead of having to risk trashing GRUB, just pop out the card, pop in a different card, install the new distro and experiment to my hearts content.



I know someone's thinking "just use a VM!". But, VM's don't work in this case because I want to know how well it works with the real video and audio cards, not with whatever phony cards the VM emulates.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac The Knife /forum/post/18266793


Tux's numbers matches PC Per's (Ryan Shrout's) estimate of the throughput (~40MB/s).

The troughput depends on the rated speed of the card, the one I use is 266x which means 40MB/s, other cards will be different.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mac The Knife /forum/post/18266793


just pop out the card, pop in a different card, install the new distro and experiment to my hearts content.

Just be aware you can't do hot swap with such an adapter, you need to power off the PC before swapping cards!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·

Quote:
Originally Posted by tux99 /forum/post/18266830


...


Just be aware you can't do hot swap with such an adapter, you need to power off the PC before swapping cards!

Yeah, I didn't intend to imply hot-swapping. Just the ease of swapping in general.
 
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