If your SSD sucks, blame Vista, says SSD vendor

It's Windows Vista's fault that solid-state storage isn't performing as well as its proponents predicted. So said SanDisk CEO Eli Harari, but at least he didn't go as far as saying it's Microsoft's problem to fix. SSDs are viewed as the heir apparent to the hard disk, particularly for laptops and other mobile computers. SSDs are way more shock-resistant and consume less power. Theoretically, they should deliver better performance.

Alas, many tests reveal that they don't. SSD "performance in the Vista environment falls short of what the market really needs", admitted Harari at the company's earnings conference this week.

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wow, this popped up here too

As soon as I saw the sandisk comment on other sites I was wondering how they'd care to comment about the OCZ SSD's superior performance on the tomshardware test ( http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ssd-hd...ttery,1955.html [tomshardware.com] ). It thoroughly trounces all of the competition.

This was due mostly to the real SATA II controler, rather than a SATA bridge.

Vista is not at fault here, sub par interfaces are, time to use real hardware SanDisk.


http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=12458 actually called them out on it pretty much outright

DailyTech
It is quite true that SanDisk's SSD are woefully subpar in performance when running Windows Vista. Numerous benchmarks from around the web have shown SanDisk SSDs getting outpaced by the competition.

While Vista may be a performance inhibitor compared to Windows XP for SSDs, it appears that most new, current-generation SSDs are having no problems performing well with the operating system. The problem appears to be SanDisk's low reads and writes (67 MB/sec and 50 MB/sec respectively) compared to the competition (i.e., OCZ�s new Core Series SSDs which clock in at 120 to 143 MB/sec for reads and 80 to 93 MB/sec for writes).

Such a striking shame compared to Sandisk being the only company who's Compact Flash cards seem to actually perform DMA transfer properly.

I have a setup with an SSD drive in it. My boot drive and apps drive is an SSD drive and the drive where the swap file goes as well media is a traditional but high speed HD. The speed of this combination is insane.

I burned my toast this morning. It was Vista's fault. I stubbed my toe rushing out of the house this morning for work. It was Vista's fault. I was late for work. It was Vista's fault. My boss sucks. It was Vista's fault. My job sucks. It was Vista's fault. My apartment is too small. It was Vista's fault. Dinner was not on the table when I came home from work. It was Vista's fault. There was nothing on TV but reruns. It was Vista's fault. There is no world peace. It was Vista's fault. Famine and disease are rampant in Africa. It was Vista's fault. Gas prices are freaking unbelievable. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. It was Vista's fault. Except for all of the pain, suffering, war, and bloodshed in the world, George W. Bush did all of that.

SSD's fragment like no ones business, and performance overall suffers... as things stand, they are not the future. I've seen/contributed to a white paper for a large SSD maker (on behalf of Diskeeper) and the manufacturer isn't happy with the results I can tell you that.

there is no such thing as fragmentation on SSDs so you can get that idea out your head. SSDs have wear-leveling algorithms so no matter what the OS tells it to do the SSD actually decides where to put the data. So when the OS goes, put this is sector 104402 the SSD might put it somewhere totally different but remembers the correlation between the 2.

Fragmentation is a problem for normal HDDs because they have to go from 00000 to 000001 to get to 99999. SSD can go from 00000 straight 99999 without touching the inbetweens. You can think of it as a table and it has bunch of cups there. You can reach any cup at anytime (no latency) but if you have a huge revolving table, to pickup cup 35 you have to wait till it spins around in order to reach that one then to get cup 38 you gotta wait again for that one. That's why fragmentation is a problem then, if cup 35 and 38 were in line then you could pick up both at the same time instead of waiting.

(Titoist said @ #1)
My wireless mouse AA batteries died, it is Vista's fault! :P jks

Actually, since installing Vista, my Bluetooth wireless mouse has suffered from dramatically decreased battery life because of Microsoft's poorly designed Bluetooth HID drivers, polling the mouse 10x more than they either ought to, or need to.


... Had you going there for a bit yeah? Truth is, I just think Vista is just too easy of a scapegoat at the moment. Its flaws are in the consumer's public eye, and just about anyone can string a few words together, add "Vista" and it's suddenly an inflammatory comment against Vista.

Also, in case you are a little slow today, my wireless mouse works fine, and I don't even use Vista.

(cyberdrone2000 said @ #18.1)

Actually, since installing Vista, my Bluetooth wireless mouse has suffered from dramatically decreased battery life because of Microsoft's poorly designed Bluetooth HID drivers, polling the mouse 10x more than they either ought to, or need to.


... Had you going there for a bit yeah? Truth is, I just think Vista is just too easy of a scapegoat at the moment. Its flaws are in the consumer's public eye, and just about anyone can string a few words together, add "Vista" and it's suddenly an inflammatory comment against Vista.

Also, in case you are a little slow today, my wireless mouse works fine, and I don't even use Vista.

lol, ok.... I blame Vista for you not using Vista! Exactly, you heard me!.... Im going to bed now, soo tired, 16hr work day (2 jobs) and I can barely make any sense. Yeah, thats right, its also Vista's fault that I am tired.

Even if this was a Vista-related problem, its the companies' responsibility to make their product compatible with the Operating Systems. Who the hell do they think they are? Creative?

I must say that I strongly disagree that hardware vendors must run and chance OS quirks!

A vendor must provide (in this case hard drives) that comply with the hardware and interface specs. If they try to match some quirk in how Vista does something, it might change drastically in a future Microsoft patch (if the quirk was in error). This could cause all of their hardware to stop working in Vista. Or in Windows 7 or such.

Bad idea!

So this is a Vista problem, huh?

The crew at Ars Technica ran an SSD-equipped Air through a battery of tests, and found that while the increased random disk read / write speeds and slightly faster processor led to a minor overall speedup and less pinwheeling, the dramatically lower sequential read/ write speeds of the SSD made things essentially a wash.

Source: Engadget

The original hype about SSDs was that they would make recovery from sleep/snooze/hypernate almost instantaneous.

The reality was that recovery in Vista was orders of magnitude better than XP, even without the SSDs. So the primary big-bucks reason for buying SSDs vanished.

I think everyone's taking this a little too far. When he says Vista isn't optimized for SSDs, he's probably right, but it's got nothing to do with any design flaw of Vista or SSDs. Remember, HDDs and SSDs are both accessed via the SATA controller, but their read/write characteristics are different. HDDs work better when reading/writing large blocks of data, and sectors can be overwritten a relatively large number of times. HDDs also suck at random access. SSDs on the other hand have much, much faster access times, have fast read, but relatively slower write times. SSDs also have a limited number of writes to each block. Vista (and other OSs) are optimized for what 99.9% of consumers use, HDDs, and hence takes into account the characteristics of that particular storage medium.

So, when it comes to optimizing Vista for SSDs, it probably isn't such a big deal. Disable defragmentation and make the VM subsystem less "swappy" is probably a good first step.

SanDisk should know better than that. They are a good company and makes great products. I hate it when others blame someone else for their F ups. Whether it be blaming MS, or someone else, it isnt right. Not every single piece of hardware is not going to work right away on every OS. That is why there are beta testers to test these products. Sounds like SanDisk dropped the ball here.

I'd like to see some actual benchmarks comparing Linux, Windows XP, and Windows Vista's performance with an SSD installed. Until then, this article is just a bunch of FUD.

Of course it is, like I've commented before, Daniel is a tool for jobs. :suspicious:

It's a Vista problem only huh? I guess so when he omits things like

The problem surely stems from Windows' use of hard disk space for memory caching, something all modern and not-so-modern operating systems do. So it's not like the SSD manufacturers didn't have any warning this could be an issue.


Peope like to complain about the news posts here but I really don't have much of a problem with them but when it comes to Daniel his bias is ridiculous. I say this and I don't even like Vista

heh that is a pretty good one
"our drives dont work well with computer operating systems because computer operating systems aren't designed correctly for our drives"

This is hilarious. The rule of the tech industry seems to be, "If it doesn't work, blame it on MS!"

I really feel for MS being the so called "evil empire."

Where are my hybrid HDD's?

(tsupersonic said @ #7)
This is hilarious. The rule of the tech industry seems to be, "If it doesn't work, blame it on MS!"

I really feel for MS being the so called "evil empire."

Where are my hybrid HDD's?

Seems so, lately it been found that the local telecom company here in Israel charges money to replace their supplied USB DSL modems to ethernet DSL modems because they dont work on vista (due to lack of drivers of course)

Their official comment on this , is that it is MS fault for not supporting their old and useless usb dsl modems .

Does this mean Mac OS sucks too?
And Linux?

The only times SSDs perform better are when the the OS deliberately fragment files when writing to the drive.

Why not? According to Harari, it's because "Vista is not optimised for Flash memory solid-state disks".

Duh, it's optimized for 99.9999% of users instead.

The article said that Sandisk said it isn't a Sandisk issue.

So said SanDisk CEO Eli Harari, but at least he didn't go as far as saying it's Microsoft's problem to fix.
You see, he never blamed Windows as you state. But that is what the Inq title reads. And if you just read the title, I could see how you got that impression. ;)

I think that the drivers for the channels come from the motherboard suppliers who determine what chipsets are on the MB.

I haven't used a Windows installation with a SSD as it's primary disk, so I can't compare it, however, SSD performance under OSX is much higher that using an ordinary disk.

I can't see how they can blame Vista though

Maybe I'm wrong but I think they're blaming Vista for their own inability to write good drivers for the SSDs/Controllers. This probably is why you see SSD and HDD performance as being the same even though SSDs should be higher. But then again, MS only provides a general controller driver and it's up to the hardware makers to optimize for their own stuff.

Much like how it happens for video cards.

This is what I think the case is. It just sounds like Sandisk is shifting blame to MS which is the easy thing to do.

I seriously don't think that Maxtor, Seagate, Western Digital, etc. provide drivers for their hardware! :P

They make (S)ATA-compliant devices. The OS pretty much handles the drive interface, driven by motherboard chipsets.

If the drives work snappy under OSX, Linux, BSD, BeOS, Amiga... Well, where does that say the problem lies?


* I have not seen performance testing done on any of these OSes, and am taking some points discussed at face value. The facts presented about Vista and SSD may be incorrect.

(markjensen said @ #3.2)
I seriously don't think that Maxtor, Seagate, Western Digital, etc. provide drivers for their hardware! :P

They make (S)ATA-compliant devices. The OS pretty much handles the drive interface, driven by motherboard chipsets.

If the drives work snappy under OSX, Linux, BSD, BeOS, Amiga... Well, where does that say the problem lies?


* I have not seen performance testing done on any of these OSes, and am taking some points discussed at face value. The facts presented about Vista and SSD may be incorrect.

My point was that the problem probably lies with the IDE/SATA Controller drivers. MS has general ones but there are chipset specific ones from either Intel/VIA/Asus etc etc that are installed. In the end it comes down to hardware makers.

(markjensen said @ #2.2)
I seriously don't think that Maxtor, Seagate, Western Digital, etc. provide drivers for their hardware! :P

They make (S)ATA-compliant devices. The OS pretty much handles the drive interface, driven by motherboard chipsets.

If the drives work snappy under OSX, Linux, BSD, BeOS, Amiga... Well, where does that say the problem lies?


* I have not seen performance testing done on any of these OSes, and am taking some points discussed at face value. The facts presented about Vista and SSD may be incorrect.

I bought Maxtor and WD, and they came with a driver CD. Seagate didn't though. And really, the drives don't even work in OS X or BSD but they do in Ubuntu. And Windows had no problem.

Yes you can. This is all Vista's fault and its also Vista's fault that SSD don't perform any better on OS X than they do on Windows. :-)

Yes you can. Just like you can blame President Bush for all of the troubles in the world, you can blame all of your computer problems on Vista (even if you aren't running it).

(Galley said @ #1.3)
Yes you can. Just like you can blame President Bush for all of the troubles in the world

If Bush ever uses Vista it will open a rift straight to hell that will swallow the Earth. Keep him away from any dangerous technology, including our nuclear arsenal.

(sphbecker said @ #1.1)
Yes you can. This is all Vista's fault and its also Vista's fault that SSD don't perform any better on OS X than they do on Windows. :-)

hahahah...there are many Mac fans here like "iBoy Bull S**t" or "iBoy Ass" or " iBoy Black Sheep (like later version of OSX Snow Leapord)" hahaha