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I've been trying to understand what Intel's SRT does. As far as I know, it uses an SSD to create some sort of RAID with the main hard disk (which may be a mechanical drive) and uses it to cache frequently used content.

So, the question is, if I have an SSD disk as a primary disk, does it make sense to use Intel's SRT?

The root of this question is that I'm trying to setup my new computer at the Sager Notebook website, and I'm wondering what is the fastest configuration possible. I don't really care about hard disk space (60gb is enough for me). I just want fast HD reading/writting speed and boot time.

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No, the point of Smart Response Technology is to cache frequently accessed data and boot files onto a faster Solid State Drive, it is not RAID. The Idea is you keep a large spinning disk as your main drive but still get the benefits of an SSD on programs you use frequently, while booting up/hibernating, and with your page file. Large SSD's are still quite pricey, particularly when compared to platter based drive, however small ssd's (40-80GB) are fairly cheap. It's completely pointless if you have two SSD's as it will be the same speed, it won't actually add any room. If you are going to drop the money on two SSD's just do a RAID 0 and call it a day.

Use the SSD as your main boot drive. I have used SRT on the z68 chipset and the asus caching on the x79 chipset. It's just not a refined technology. I did notice significant performance increase on read and moderate improvement on boot but my writes were actually slower than my platter drive alone (if it matter the platter drive is a 10k raptor and the ssd is a corsair GT). Your going to get the best performance when the OS can write/read quickly to the temp directories and the page files. You might as well keep it all in one place if space isn't an issue, other wise you are leaving it up to Intel to predict what you will use and cache it to the SSD.

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Intel SRT document here

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From link below:

Intel Smart Response Technology (SRT) is designed to bridge the middle ground between traditional mechanical hard drives and solid state drives by combining the two. Although high capacity SSDs are quite expensive, low capacity units are much less expensive and achieve similar levels of performance. Intel’s SRT lets you use a low capacity SSD to boost the performance of a mechanical drive by using the SSD as a cache.

Until now, there hasn’t really been any middle ground between the two. Sure there are products out there like the Seagate Momentus XT hybrid hard drive which boosts read speeds using a 4 GB read cache but, in most benchmarks, these can be easily beaten by Western Digital’s VelociRaptor hard drives.

SSD Caching isn’t actually anything new and has been around for a few years in various different forms like Intel Turbo Memory Technology (a.k.a. Robson Technology), which was launched in 2006. But it hasn’t gained much traction until now with the launch of Intel’s Z68 chipset, which supports I/O caching in the form of SRT.

Smart Response Technology improves performance by storing the files or parts of the files that you access most frequently on the SSD for quicker access. The SRT software is only able to cache some files because there is a limited amount of space on the SSD, so it identifies which are the most beneficial files to cache by monitoring which programs and files you use most frequently. It is also able to identify files that you’re only likely to use once or twice, like audio and video files.

As a result of the software having to learn your behavior, the performance benefits of SRT aren’t going to be noticeable straight away. But the software is able to adapt to your habits over time, which should bring long term performance benefits. Your system will also only display one drive letter despite there being two physical drives in your system.

Source of Information

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Additional Intel Documents

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I don't see why there would be any performance benefit on a single SSD drive.

You can Google search "Intel SRT Benchmarks" for some performance reviews and hardware setups.

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