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Performance in PCMark 2004/2005

PCMark 2005 has the same tests as the 2004 version (not only in names, but also in results as we have seen a lot of times), so we only use one test from PCMark 2004 which is not available in the 2005 version. It is called File Copying and measures the speed of copying some set of files.  The other tests are:

  • Windows XP Startup is the typical disk subsystem load at system startup;
  • Application Loading is the disk activity at sequential starting-up and closing of six popular applications;
  • General Usage reflects the disk activity in a number of popular applications;
  • File Write is about the speed of writing files; and
  • Virus Scan benchmarks the disk’s performance at scanning the system for viruses.

The final result of the average of ten runs of each test.

Copying in PCMark 2004 is not exactly the same as copying in FC-Test. The Samsung M7 takes the lead here. The HDDs from Western Digital and Toshiba are in the top three, too. The Seagate 5400.6, Samsung M6 (this gap between Samsung’s HDDs cannot be explained by recording density alone), and Hitachi 5K500 are the slowest drives in this test.

The Seagate 7200.4 is better than the others at booting Windows XP up, but the gap from its pursuers is not as large as we might expect from a HDD with higher spindle rotation speed. The Fujitsu and the new Hitachi 5K500.B are very good, too.

The Application Loading test shows the same standings as the previous one: the Seagate 7200.4 is in the lead, followed by the Fujitsu and Hitachi 5K500.B. Samsung’s HDDs are poor in this test, including the new M7.

We see almost the same standings in the General Usage test, too. The only difference is that the Fujitsu cedes its place among the leaders to the Hitachi 5K500.

Scanning for viruses is highly sensitive to some peculiarities of caching mechanisms. The Fujitsu MJA2, Seagate Momentus 7200.4 and Toshiba MK5055GSX pass this test better than the other drives. Recording density is also important for this test as is indicated by the HDDs that take last places.

The speed of writing files depends on their average size as is proved by FC-Test, so PCMark 2005 provides an opportunity to check the HDDs out with one more file-set (here, a prerecorded trace). The Samsung M7 delivers a brilliant performance and is followed by the Seagate 7200.4. The HDD from Western Digital is in the top three, too.

Thus, the Seagate 7200.4 takes first place in terms of PCMark 2005 whereas second place goes to the Samsung M7. The HDDs behind the leaders have similar results. Besides the 3-platter models, the Seagate Momentus 5400.6 is poor in this test.

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