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If I select "Enable write caching on the disk" option for a disk in the device manager, it is saved only in the Windows or configures the disk to use its cache?

For example when I disable the cache in Windows, then I boot a thirdparty OS from bootcd, will the write cache be enabled or disabled (or unrelated)?

(I mean individual HDD, no RAID or any fancy config, just a simple SATA drive.)

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Write caching is an OS option, although I have no link to support this comment. –  Moab Jan 4 '11 at 0:55
@Moab, are you 100% sure write caching always sticks with the OS? What about with a RAID array, specifically those managed by Intel ICH10R or other similar controllers? –  ubiquibacon Jan 4 '11 at 1:31
From what I've read online, it appears that checking that box causes the OS to write data to the disk cache, and not wait until the data is actually written to the surface of the disk. I have seen nothing to contradict the assumption that this is a per-OS setting, however. Furthermore, I think if the OP were using hardware RAID s/he would have mentioned it, but this would be an important clarification. –  user55325 Jan 4 '11 at 2:22
@typoknig, nothing is 100%, yes in Windows. Hardware Raid is a whole other story, you can edit your original post to add this new dimension to your question. –  Moab Jan 4 '11 at 3:03

1 Answer 1

up vote 1 down vote accepted

I suspect that most operating systems will enable/disable the write caches on the disk (or RAID array) at bootup according to their saved or preferred settings. Some drives (and arrays) may save this setting themselves over reboots, but I would not expect any OS to rely on this.

Debian certainly does this for example as it executes hdparm as part of the boot sequence.

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