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Raid SSD or new NVMe PCIe

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I am updating my system to 7900X with the Asus X299 Prime Deluxe.

I have now 2 SSDs in RAID (Samsung 840 Pro, 128GB each), only for Win 10 Pro, the P3D is on a 850 EVO SSD 500GB.

Does it make sense to update the SSDs to the NVMe PCIe, for example for the Windows (but non RAID), or perhaps the one for the P3D?

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I'll make this simple, until you put a n NVMe stick onto your motherboard and try it you have no idea just how incredibly quick these things are.

I've just got a 1TB Samsung 961 and although it's effectively bottom of the range with 3000 in and 1100 out it just blows my SSDs away for speed. Windows boots up like magic in an instant, and every program I load up is just there in a blink.

For simming? well FSX is the pig in the poke... However, you won't regret it. I've cleaned up and RAID configured all my 4 Sata SSDs into a single volume for storage of source files, movies and backup files. My X99 has the vertical mount and a PCI slot adaptor so I'll end up putting a second NVMe in there I think, eventually. 

SATA is a real bottleneck once you've had the chance to try these PCi-e units. Just wow!

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On 10/16/2017 at 9:13 AM, MarkJHarris said:

I'll make this simple, until you put a n NVMe stick onto your motherboard and try it you have no idea just how incredibly quick these things are.

I've just got a 1TB Samsung 961 and although it's effectively bottom of the range with 3000 in and 1100 out it just blows my SSDs away for speed.

SATA is a real bottleneck once you've had the chance to try these PCi-e units. Just wow!

Thanks!  This sounds perfect for me because of late, maybe since loading up lots of FTX sceneries and other add on airports and everything else I'm getting some pauses when flying thru very dense areas like over LA Area w/ FTX So Cal.  I have always valued putting an ultra lean OS w/ no other software beyond what's required for P3D and I always install P3D on the same drive as OS.  I guess my Samsung 840 SATA isn't up to the task any longer, although it was until very recently and I'm not quite sure why since I've added very little new add-ons lately.   OpenLC NA was about it.  The little pauses I can get now never happened previously.   I'm still using P3D V3.0 and when I do a new hardware build I think I will try going to one of these PCIe storage solutions as it sounds really nice to have for P3D.

What would I look for to find other solutions w/ ultra fast performance as you are saying your Samsung is on the bottom tier?

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A Mortgage? I just saw a Linus video where he RAID configured 4 NVMe drives on an ASUS slot in board that allows for four drives. He was getting read speeds of 12,000 and writing at 8,000! Mind you, the only setup he could get it working on was an AMD MB and Chipset. Intel pulled the software just before they did the build for the video.

You should remember though, even a good setup will sometimes appear to be running dog slow. I was getting issues with my Oculus OVRserver software running continuously and clogging up the PC. Also Corsair Link appears to have a mind of it's own.

Now my gaming PC is the house main PC, I've had to scale right back. Just about to buy P3D but haven't yet. 

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On ‎10‎/‎11‎/‎2017 at 9:37 PM, Noel said:

Thanks!  This sounds perfect for me because of late, maybe since loading up lots of FTX sceneries and other add on airports and everything else I'm getting some pauses when flying thru very dense areas like over LA Area w/ FTX So Cal.  I have always valued putting an ultra lean OS w/ no other software beyond what's required for P3D and I always install P3D on the same drive as OS.  I guess my Samsung 840 SATA isn't up to the task any longer, although it was until very recently and I'm not quite sure why since I've added very little new add-ons lately.   OpenLC NA was about it.  The little pauses I can get now never happened previously.   I'm still using P3D V3.0 and when I do a new hardware build I think I will try going to one of these PCIe storage solutions as it sounds really nice to have for P3D.

What would I look for to find other solutions w/ ultra fast performance as you are saying your Samsung is on the bottom tier?

Pauses in the sim will not be improved by updated drives only initial loading times, pauses are more down to CPU or GPU or both.

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8 minutes ago, rjfry said:

Pauses in the sim will not be improved by updated drives only initial loading times, pauses are more down to CPU or GPU or both.

That sounds like an unambiguous opinion thank you.  Tell me if you will what leads you to this conclusion?

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There is only so much the CPU and the GPU can do the worlds fastest drives will have little affect when in flight, loading times at the start will improve but if your expecting big increases in FPS well.

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7 hours ago, rjfry said:

There is only so much the CPU and the GPU can do the worlds fastest drives will have little affect when in flight, loading times at the start will improve but if your expecting big increases in FPS well.

I'm afraid you've done nothing to substantiate your unambiguous opinion beyond reasserting it.   Do you have any numbers to back this up with?  Maybe someone else will chime in.

Never said a thing about big increases in FPS, nor any increases in frame rate per se.  What I did wonder was wether or not the amount of data to be read during flight thru ultra complex areas could possibly hit the drive's read rate limit.   When you boot up your computer from cold using a 6gb/s SATA SSD not just how long it can take to completely initialize Windows 7 for example.   This is mostly a function of the drive's read capacity in large part, and clearly it is overwhelmed and takes what 20-30 seconds to fully boot to the desktop.  Now imagine if that is the case, it is certainly conceivable during a flight thru ultra complex terrain that at some point the drive can become a slight bottleneck intermittently, briefly for a few seconds at a time, so nothing to do w/ sustained frame performance, but instead contributing to w/ slight pauses and hiccoughs which I am currently experiencing and never experienced prior to installing OpenLC.  Could be something entirely otherwise, but after years of rarely ever seeing these pauses it's difficult to explain, so I'm grasping at all possible straws.   With CPU/GPU you will not see 1-3 second pauses, you will see bad frame performance, but not this sort of thing.

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13 hours ago, Noel said:

I'm afraid you've done nothing to substantiate your unambiguous opinion beyond reasserting it.   Do you have any numbers to back this up with?  Maybe someone else will chime in.

You can get the numbers yourself - have task manager and NV Inspector running and you can see that at least one core on the CPU (sometimes more) is pegged at around 100%. Even a 1070 can get pegged when you're above a solid overcast. By comparison, FSX and P3D rarely do much disk I/O; they load the textures into RAM and then don't bother with the disk again.

I believe Win10 Task Manager can show you the disk traffic.

Cheers!

Luke

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54 minutes ago, Luke said:

By comparison, FSX and P3D rarely do much disk I/O; they load the textures into RAM and then don't bother with the disk again.

Cheers!

Luke

Actually I did this many years ago w/ FSX using FilemonNT.exe I believe it was.  Back then disk I/O was virtually constant while flying though the bytes/sec and /read vary.  Since that time complexity has increased markedly w/ FTX sceneries.   I'm running HT w/ terrain texture loading happening in the other 8 logical processors and in flying over FTX SC's LA area I get these pauses.  I haven't looked yet, but the next place to look is to see how many of those 8 are maxed at 100%.  And they do get maxed out in those types of sceneries, I've just never brought up a monitor to see if any of those are maxed when a pause happens.  It is exceedingly common, if I let it, to be able to max out the main threads.  I DO NOT get pauses in this instance most often, I just get lower frame performance, but no hard pauses.  Next time up in this area I will see if I can get filemonNT to run, but more importantly will see if how the terrain loaders are doing.  At the moment I have been running AM of 340 w/ a hexacore, which limits the number of LPs that will do texture loading I believe, over AM of 4052.

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5 hours ago, Noel said:

Actually I did this many years ago w/ FSX using FilemonNT.exe I believe it was.  Back then disk I/O was virtually constant while flying though the bytes/sec and /read vary.  Since that time complexity has increased markedly w/ FTX sceneries.

That's plausible. But unless you're approaching the limits of SATA I don't see what NVMe is going to give you besides a few extra airline miles or reward points on your credit card. Do you know what the rate is? (For comparison, I'm at cruise at FL360 in P3D 4.1 and I'm reading around 32K/sec from my SSD. It's nothing. My 500GB 840 EVO can easily do 10,000x as much.

Cheers!

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I think you're right Luke.  I think when I did that I was seeing spikes of up to 140mb/sec and I was looking at this to see if there was any correlation with stuttering that I was experiencing at the time quite a few years ago.  And that was on sata HDDs.  I never did see correlation.  

Well, the pauses I'm experiencing as described.  What is the best tool I can use to monitor for what might very recently have caused pauses to start happening of 1-4 seconds?  I've never seen this on this hardware so I need a tool that will pinpoint what exactly is happening right before the pause starts.   This is in areas where I am seeing an average frame rate of 26 to 30, w/ frames locked by vsync at 30.  I would have expected to see frames really tank to zero prior to a pause/freeze if something GPU/CPU was the ultimate cause.   It's like something else, for example disk i/o, is suddenly stealing the show from the cores assigned to P3D's main thread, but as I say I think you're right for sure w/ the relatively low demand on i/o.  What tool do you think?  I will see if filemonNT.exe is still available.

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I'm just using the Windows 7 resource monitor, which you can get to from Task Manager. That should give you some clues as to what process is doing the I/O, and to what files.

Cheers!

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On 11/19/2017 at 1:27 AM, Noel said:

I think you're right Luke.  I think when I did that I was seeing spikes of up to 140mb/sec and I was looking at this to see if there was any correlation with stuttering that I was experiencing at the time quite a few years ago.  And that was on sata HDDs.  I never did see correlation.  

Well, the pauses I'm experiencing as described.  What is the best tool I can use to monitor for what might very recently have caused pauses to start happening of 1-4 seconds?  I've never seen this on this hardware so I need a tool that will pinpoint what exactly is happening right before the pause starts.   This is in areas where I am seeing an average frame rate of 26 to 30, w/ frames locked by vsync at 30.  I would have expected to see frames really tank to zero prior to a pause/freeze if something GPU/CPU was the ultimate cause.   It's like something else, for example disk i/o, is suddenly stealing the show from the cores assigned to P3D's main thread, but as I say I think you're right for sure w/ the relatively low demand on i/o.  What tool do you think?  I will see if filemonNT.exe is still available.

I fly California a lot with all the FTX stuff, regular SSD (and a pretty common least expensive 480~500MB/s one btw), never saw that kind of thing you're describing. You should look somewhere else to fix your problem before spending money on faster storage. Not saying you shouldn't, faster storage is faster :P, but I don't think the lack of it is the root cause of your problems. Just for the sake of it, I tried Raid 0 with 2 SSD's and saw no performance increase on load times on P3D (X-Plane with ortho was another story :P). P3D to me seems to be bottlenecked by CPU, even in heavy IO duties like startup for example. 

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Well, I wouldn't be buying faster storage for my current PC, but would consider it for my next PC after hearing about their 6x faster read rates which sounds really impressive for boot up and loading P3D.   But I tend to agree w/ your opinion that it's not being caused by disk i/o on my Samsung 840 as I've now got some other problems I never had before very recently--I'm unable to complete a flight nor complete a flight at KSAN and now KPDX and I have no clue why.  I tend to think all of  these issues began w/ installing OpenLC North America, which I've since uninstalled and reinstalled but to no avail.   I also discovered scenery doesn't load correctly, at all, at KRDD which I have FTX version of.   When I moved it in the scenery library below OpenLC NA scenery entries it now loads correctly, or at least did when I last did this adjustment.   I was hoping to avoid a complete reinstall until deciding on P3D V4 because at some point I will be upgrading hardware and so will be doing a complete reinstall of everything necessarily.    I can also restore a prior image which might be the quickest path forward to untangle whatever has gone awry after a couple years of trouble-free use.

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5 minutes ago, Noel said:

Well, I wouldn't be buying faster storage for my current PC, but would consider it for my next PC after hearing about their 6x faster read rates which sounds really impressive for boot up and loading P3D.

Well, I wouldn't count on that either, as I said, saw no benefit from single SSD to raid 0 on load times, even at P3D startup. Booting the machine and opening other related things, that's another story, but P3D, not so much. Just fireup p3d and monitor your CPU usage, you'll see a CPU core pinned at 100%, that's the loading bottleneck, and it happens on single SATA SSD (at least on my testing :P).

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6 hours ago, sebastorama said:

Well, I wouldn't count on that either, as I said, saw no benefit from single SSD to raid 0 on load times, even at P3D startup. Booting the machine and opening other related things, that's another story, but P3D, not so much. Just fireup p3d and monitor your CPU usage, you'll see a CPU core pinned at 100%, that's the loading bottleneck, and it happens on single SATA SSD (at least on my testing :P).

Thanks good to know.  Even so, MarkjHarris' testimony is pretty compelling, just not for P3D per se.   I wonder why it is the CPU is working so hard to load stuff into memory--no rendering, just setting up the initial load, and that would seem way more of a stress on I/O than the CPU at least intuitively, but I know what you mean I've seen the CPU fully busy when initializing a flight.  They're not all that pricey so makes sense to get one for my next build--6x is a whole lot more potent than raid 0, which I guess is around 2x.

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On 11/18/2017 at 1:47 PM, Luke said:

... I'm reading around 32K/sec from my SSD. It's nothing.

Luke, can you point to what utility you're using to see this?  I used perfmon.exe and saw maximum of 78mb/read I believe it was (78,124 or something like that).  I'm not sure which parameter I should be looking at.

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14 hours ago, Noel said:

Thanks good to know.  Even so, MarkjHarris' testimony is pretty compelling, just not for P3D per se.   I wonder why it is the CPU is working so hard to load stuff into memory--no rendering, just setting up the initial load, and that would seem way more of a stress on I/O than the CPU at least intuitively, but I know what you mean I've seen the CPU fully busy when initializing a flight.  They're not all that pricey so makes sense to get one for my next build--6x is a whole lot more potent than raid 0, which I guess is around 2x.

Honestly, I dunno what exactly the CPU is doing on the process. My guess is that a lot of memory objects are being created, some sort of SDK/Framework objects being processed and initialized (taking a ton of CPU time) and also that things like scenery has to be loaded _and_ heavily interpreted by the CPU (things like, where to put roads, autogen buildings, mesh, body of waters, and so on...)... 

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On 11/18/2017 at 9:27 PM, Noel said:

What tool do you think?  I will see if filemonNT.exe is still available.

I would try using Process Explorer to help diagnose your new stutter.

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I currently have Windows 10 on a Crucial MX300 275GB M.2 SSD and P3Dv4.1 on a Crucial MX300 525GB SATA SSD.  When at a high quality airport  when I change views the building are black for 1-2 seconds before filling in.  Would a faster Samsung Pro NVME help reduce that?  I am running a 7700K @ 4.7, 16GB ram and a GTX1080.

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