Seagate and Western Digital 1TB Drives: Improved and Greenby Dave Robinet on November 26, 2007 7:00 AM EST
- Posted in
Vista (and its associated drivers and applications) has finally matured to the point where we feel comfortable including it in our benchmark suite. To that end, we are pleased to include the following as our inaugural Vista storage selections:
- Windows Vista Startup / Shutdown
- PCMark Vantage
Going forward, we will continue to expand the Vista benchmark and application selection as they become ready for prime time. With this in mind, we have chosen not to include hibernation benchmarks in our initial round of testing due to related issues with Vista. Service Pack 1 should go a long way towards resolving these issues (and initial looks at the latest release candidate suggest that it does), so we will revisit this decision when the final release of SP1 comes out.
Our Vista strategy follows the one we are using for Windows XP. We apply only major milestone releases (SP1, SP2, etc) and keep drivers updated as necessary. Whenever there is a major driver (or OS) update, we will go back and re-run previous benchmarks to ensure that the data set remains consistent. For our tests, we disable Windows Defender, set the paging file to a static 3.0GB in size, and limit the Recycle Bin to 1GB maximum. We also close the Sidebar application.
PCMark Vantage is the latest benchmark available from Futuremark, and is available only on Windows Vista. Similar to the venerable PCMark05 in its makeup, Vantage modernizes the criteria and test methodology to reflect what users may encounter when running the new Windows OS.
For the HD test suite, the white paper breaks the tests down as:
- Windows Defender: Windows Defender performs a scan operation, resulting in a read-intensive (99.5% read, 0.5% write) benchmark reflecting a common task in Windows Vista.
- Gaming Performance: Streaming performance is measured using actual game mechanics found in Alan Wake. This test is nearly all read (99.95% read, 0.05% write) in nature.
- Windows Photo Gallery: A large collection of images is imported into Windows Photo Gallery. This is the first of the tests which bring write performance into account in a meaningful way, with a roughly 84% read, 16% write ratio.
- Windows Vista Startup: Simulates Windows Vista start-up operations, producing a test that breaks down to roughly 85% read and 15% write operations.
- Windows Movie Maker: The first of the Vantage tests which comes close to equally dividing read and write operations (54% read, 46% write), concurrent video performance is tested both for video read and skip performance, as well as video write operations.
Media Center: Performing three distinct tasks:
- SDTV video playback
- SDTV video streaming to Extender for Windows Media Center
- SDTV video recording
- Windows Media Player: Adds music to Windows Media Player. This test reverts to favoring read operations (78% read, 22% write).
Loading: The following applications are loaded:
- Microsoft Word 2007
- Adobe Photoshop CS2
- Internet Explorer 7
- Outlook 2007
The total benchmark is roughly 87% reads and 13% writes in nature. We run each test five times per drive, producing a median score that we use for comparison in our charts.