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Disk Read Speed and SATA Speed


So here I am, minding my own business, testing out HD Tune as a way to check the health of the disks in my RAID array. While doing some basic tests, I see one of my drives is only reading at about 90 MB/sec.

Wait a second – my motherboard has SATA 3.0 connections, rated up to 6.0 GB/sec… gigabytes mind you, not megabytes. I did some reading over at Toms Hardware to make sure I wasn’t crazy (check out the post about disk read speed), and sure enough, 90 MB/sec is about right for a 7200 RPM disk drive. Pretty extreme gap between 90 MB/sec and 6 GB/sec.

This, readers, is where I am personally confused – what kind of consumer drive or peripheral can really get the full value out of the SATA 3.0 interface? I’ll be sure to post back if I come up with the answer myself.

Update: So, first things first. SATA 3.0 supports speeds up to 6 gigabits (Gb) per second, not gigabytes (GB). Looks like some of the nicer solid state drives can come close to fully utilizing the 6Gb/sec speeds (thanks to Dan Fischer, former co-worker and IT extraordinaire for setting me straight).

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