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Web-Server, File-Server, Workstation Patterns

The drives are tested under loads typical of servers and workstations.

The names of the patterns are self-explanatory. The Workstation pattern is used with the full capacity of the drive as well as with a 32GB partition. The request queue is limited to 32 requests in the Workstation pattern.

The results are presented as performance ratings. For the File-Server and Web-Server patterns the performance rating is the average speed of the drive under every load. For the Workstation pattern we use the following formula:

Rating (Workstation) = Total I/O (queue=1)/1 + Total I/O (queue=2)/2 + Total I/O (queue=4)/4 + Total I/O (queue=8)/8 + Total I/O (queue=16)/16.

The Seagate ES.2 and Western Digital’s WD7501AYPS are the best drive at high loads. The latter has certainly become better since the update – you just somehow forget about its low spindle rotation speed. The Seagate 7200.11 is very good at low loads. By the way, the previous-generation pair of disks from Seagate behave in the same manner (the server version is better at high loads while the desktop version, at low loads) but their absolute results are lower, of course. The desktop version is always better in the pair of Western Digital’s RE2 and Caviar Blue drives.

Let’s see what performance rating we have.

Our rating system prefers drives that do well under low loads (such loads have a higher weight in the formula), so the Seagate 7200.11 takes first place. That’s why the WD7501AYPS outperforms the Seagate ES.2 and takes second place. The Hitachi is a disappointment as it is even inferior to the WD7500AYPS that has modest firmware and a spindle speed of 5400rpm.

When there are no write requests, Seagate’s newer drives are in the lead, the desktop version being better than the enterprise one. Third place is shared among the three drives from Western Digital (the WD7500AYPS is out of the competition) and the Hitachi. The Samsung isn’t far worse, either. It is slower at high loads only.

So, third place goes to the Western Digital RE2 according to our rating system. The other drives contending for third lose only by a few points, though.

 
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