Testbed and Methods
The following testing utilities were used:
- IOMark 0.30b14
- IOMeter 2003.02.15
- FC-Test 1.0
- PCMark 2004
- PCMark 2005
- PCMark Vantage
- Raxco Perfect Disk 8.0
- WinRAR 3.60
- ASUS P5WDG2 WS Pro mainboard
- Intel Core 2 Duo E2160 processor
- IBM DTLA-307015 system disk, 15GB
- Radeon X600 graphics card
- 1GB DDR2-800 SDRAM
- Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP2 (and Windows Vista for PCMark Vantage)
The HDDs were tested with the generic OS drivers. We formatted them in FAT32 and NTFS as one partition with the default cluster size. For some tests 32GB partitions were created on the drives and formatted in FAT32 and NTFS with the default cluster size, too. The HDDs were connected to a mainboard port and worked with enabled AHCI.
We’ve come to use the disk controller integrated into Intel’s ICH7 South Bridge because our recent tests showed that our beloved Promise controller had some bandwidth related problems. Of course, they do not show up with hard disk drives, but it is handier for us to have a single testbed for most types of storage devices (SAS drives do not count in due to obvious reasons). A brief examination proved that the ICH7 with new drivers is free from significant drawbacks. Moreover, this controller is the most widespread one (the newer versions do not differ from it as yet).
We will additionally test the Seagate Barracuda XT on the Marvell 9123 controller integrated into the ASUS P7P55D Premium mainboard. It is the single readily available SATA 600 controller right now. We just don’t have any other way to check out the performance of the new interface.