Introduction to SSDs
You might have heard of SSDs (solid state drive) and the revolutions the SSDs bring to our computing devices. It is not that these SSDs have just been invented and the world has started using it for the very first time. SSDs were present in the market decades ago. However, these were not used much by individual consumers. The major reason was that SSDs technology was not fully evolved and it was quite expensive.
Nearly 1GB of SSD used to cost $1 million in 1978. It was only used for military and high-tech computer labs. Many tech giants, including Intel, made SSDs in the past, but many times SSDs failed because of cost or other reasons. Now SSDs are quite affordable compared to the past. Many companies are manufacturing SSDs and they are widely used in laptops, ultrabooks and desktops.
With the many laptops deals and discounts available in the market, such as Dell coupons, this technology becomes more affordable for customers. In this article we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of SSDs, and such information might help you decide whether you need an SSD in your laptop.
Advantages and Disadvantages, and Comparison to HDD
SSDs are becoming popular and modern computing devices like smartphones, Ultrabooks, tablets etc. have SSDs installed in them, we can say that this technology is highly adaptable and cost-efficient. However, each technology has its own pros and cons and in this section, we will discuss the cutting-edge features of SSDs and its drawbacks.
If you have a 1-year-old laptop without SSD and the person sitting next to you has an ultrabook, which comes with SSDs, and both of you open your respective laptops by pressing the power button, you will notice that while you are staring at the loading logo of Windows the person next to you has already opened their email account and is writing emails.
Yes! SSDs make your laptops boot that fast. It is extremely fast compared to HDDs. This is because SSDs are based on entirely different technologies from HDDs. HDDs have magnetic platters which are used to store data. These magnetic platters are spun using motors and then data is stored and retrieved accordingly. This makes retrieving data from HDDs time-inefficient. While in SSDs the data is stored on flash memory chips. Storing and retrieving information from flash memory chips is insanely faster than spinning magnetic platters.
Enhanced File Searching
While using a computer with HDD have you noticed how much time it takes to search for a file in a 40GB disk? It takes a lot if the disk is full of files. Besides the processing power, storage medium matters a lot in increasing the time consumed by a file search. Storing and retrieving data in SSDs is extremely fast. This not only makes booting faster but it also helps a lot in crawling through the data and finding the required file.
HDDs have a motor in them, which spins the magnetic platters and drive heads, so that the data can be read or written. Motors draw a fair amount of energy and participate a lot in increasing the power consumption of a computing machine. With SSDs there are no motors and data is accessed the same way as USB flash drives.
HDDs are quite sensitive. If it falls off the table or endures considerable impact, there are high possibilities that you might lose the data. While in SSDs, the flash memory chips are tightly packed with each other and there are fewer chances of getting an SSD corrupted through physical damages.
SSDs are very expensive compared to HDDs. You can get an HDD for much cheaper than an SSD. The cost per gigabyte is higher for SSDs when compared with HDDs. SSDs are of two types: SLC and MLC. SSDs of SLC type can store less data than MLC, but at the same time SLC type SSDs are much faster than MLC type SSDs.
MLC type SSDs are less expensive than SLC type SSDs. Cost of SSDs depends on the quality of the NAND gates used.
Theoretically, SSDs have a shorter life span than HDDs. However, how a storage medium works for you is dependent on your luck. Both of the storage media have a failure rate. SSDs’ life span is dependent on the number of writes on each cell, percentage of free space in SSD and the quality of the drive. In SSDs the number of writes on each cell is limited and after a certain number of writes, the cell becomes useless.
Once a cell is used in an SSD, the SSD tries not to use that particular cell for multiple times. HDD is a good option when it comes to long-term storage medium as it has nearly unlimited read-write cycles.
SSDs are revolutionizing our computing devices, especially mobile computing devices. With the help of SSDs, modern ultrabooks could wake up from sleep mode in a matter of seconds; you can search for files from a large space disk in a matter of seconds. Everything that used to take time on HDDs is now done in a matter of seconds. While we enjoy SSDs on our laptops, there are many disadvantages that hold us back from installing an SSD in our system.
This includes the higher price of SSDs and shorter life span. As technology is progressing, we can expect that these two problems will be solved soon. SSDs are increasing the speed of computer systems; therefore, it is worth installing one if you can afford the price.