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Performance in Emulating Patterns

Click here for Intel IOMeter Workload-Emulating Patterns Table.

Workstations don’t usually deal with long request queue depths, so we ran the Workstation pattern with small loads. Although some of our colleagues criticize this test, we are still using it, as a typical workstation doesn’t work under the ideal conditions imitated in the majority of other tests. Particularly, 1) several applications, rather than one, are usually accessing the hard disk drive at the same time, 2) the disc is usually filled with data, and 3) these data are often fragmented. This extreme case is emulated by our pattern.

As expected, both variants of the HDS722525VLAT80 (of 250 and 200GB capacities) are in the lead. The smaller access time allows them to have better results. Considering this fact, we should name the first Vancouver the winner and only then place the ATA variants of the 7K250 with an 8MB buffer. Most probably, their adaptive anticipatory reading allowed them to outperform slightly the rest of their family, which formed a dense group with the Deskstar 180GXP in the head. The Serial ATA variants are again slower than their ATA counterparts, and we again suspect the negative influence of the translator chips they use.

The single-platter models with a 2MB buffer are at the end of the line, right where Hitachi had intended them to be. One model is out of the order, though. We mean the strange and undocumented 60GB model we have already discussed in the Low-Level Characteristics section. This is not a great event, though, so let’s move on to our server patterns.

The disk subsystem of a server can meet much bigger loads than the one of an ordinary PC, so the loads range is different here.

Strangely enough, the situation is quite different here. First, all the Serial ATA models are down at the bottom of the list. This can be explained, though. When analyzing the results of the Database pattern we marked the worse scalability of the senior 7K250 models depending on the load in mixed modes, and this affected the results of the File Server pattern, too. The leader is the Deskstar 120GXP, which is closely followed by the dual-platter 7K250 models with a 2MB buffer. The rest of the participants are behind them.

Theoretically, if there were no writes at all, we should have another picture of performance. The Web Server pattern differs from other patterns in having no write requests.

And really, when there’re no writes, the senior 250GB models are in the lead, followed by the Deskstar 120GXP (what a vigorous oldie!) This time the Deskstar 180GXP rolls down to the end of the list, being only faster than the budget 7K250 models. On the other hand, the gaps between the models are very small here to be taken seriously. Moreover, they are almost fully explained by the differences in the average seek time of the different models.

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