SSD Management


EDIT : For some very odd Reason all the tutorial Pics have been removed or deleted somehow. I have no idea why., and Imageshack didnt remove them, So If anyone has any issues sorting anything from this tutorial please feel free to contact me via PM. Thanks

Hey all,

I've seen a lot of people around various places have been asking over the last few weeks about SSD's and HDD's, so I thought I'd post a little info for everyone. Some parts were taken from the net to summarise, while other parts are from personal experience. This guide covers mainly SSD info & management but there's also some basics on HDDs.

If you notice any obvious errors please let me know and I'll update accordingly.


Stands for Solid State Disk, and is built from non-volatile memory chips. Individual memory cells are done in pages of 4KB which is the smallest size that can be written and read which is where performance problems for SSDs lie. Only whole blocks can be deleted (512kb). If you only want to overwrite a separate 4KB area, the controller has to read out 512 KB (1 Block) to change the data in the memory and then delete the block and re-write the shifted data. Therefore a 4KB writing action leads to a long chain of commands. An SSD can be thought of pretty much as an over sized USB memory stick


Stands for Hard Disk Drive, and is built from rapidly rotating discs (often referred to as platters), coated with magnetic material and with magnetic heads arranged to write data to the surfaces and read it from them. HDDs can only write data, there is no deletion available on them. When you delete a file it is not removed from the disk, it is just marked as empty space, therefore the operating systems pass no delete commands for data on to the drive.

The MAIN differences between the both are the speeds at which data can be written to or read from.

The more you have used the SSD, the more write-access actions have to overwrite data, which is bad for SSDs.
In order to avoid Data loss and SSD degradation, there are a couple of things to look out for. I'll be referring to windows 7 here. SSD's can be used on other Windows versions but Windows 7 natively supports TRIM. When buying I would personally advise making sure your SSD has TRIM capability. (most now do but not all)

Make sure TRIM support is enabled

When you delete files, they don’t get deleted immediately. The files stay where they are, but their index is changed so that the space they occupy is marked as free. When you write new files to the disk, the whole block of data gets scrubbed for the new files to be saved. This works well for HDDs. SSDs store and overwrite data in a different way. Therefore, it’s best for the SSD to use TRIM command and scrub deleted files rather than perform an entire block erase when new data is written to the disk. TRIM command allows your operating system to inform your SSD drive which blocks of data are not in use anymore and can be wiped. Basically, TRIM helps to avoid write performance degradation by the way it handles deletes and writes.

To check if Trim is enabled, follow the steps below:
  • Click on Start and type cmd in the Search box
  • Press Ctrl+Shift+Enter (This will launch the elevated Admin command prompt)
  • If a 'User Account Control' dialog box appears, click 'OK'
  • In the command prompt window, type:

    fsutil behavior query disabledeletenotify

    DisableDeleteNotify = 0 means that TRIM is enabled
    DisableDeleteNotify = 1 means that TRIM is disabled

Disable scheduled disk defragmentation

NEVER Defrag an SSD. Defragmentation is only useful for spinning hard drives that have moving parts because it puts all file fragments together and lets the hard disk open files in one smooth move. SSDs don’t have any mechanical arms and they don’t care whether the file is contiguous or fragmented. It’s best to make sure defragmentation is disabled. To do that:

  • Click on Start and type dfrgui in the Search box
  • Press Enter (This will launch the disk defragmenter box)
  • Highlight your SSD and click on Configure Schedule
  • Make sure Run on a schedule is unchecked. If it’s checked, uncheck it.


Disable, move or reduce the page file

Your system starts using the page file (virtual memory) when it runs out of memory while working with applications. When the system is using the page file, there are writes to your drive. Because it’s best to reduce writes to an SSD, as mentioned earlier it’s best to either reduce the size of the page file, move it to another drive or disable it altogether depending on personal preference and/or available amount of RAM.

By default the operating system will create a page file that is one and a half times the amount of RAM that is installed in the computer, provided there is sufficient free space on the system hard drive.

The page file can be modified in the following way, depending on personal preference and setup:
  • Delete : If you have a lot of RAM. (8Gig or higher is usually good. DDR3 1333Mhz or higher is best)
  • Move : If you have a high capacity, high speed HDD (500Gig or higher, and the likes of a WD Black would be best / SATA 6 Gb/s, 64mb cache 7200rpm)
  • Reduce Size : If you have half decent size Ram 4Gig or higher and know it wont all be utilized all the time

Use the Page File Bytes Peak counter to calculate page file size

  1. Click Start, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Performance Monitor
  2. On the left, Click Performance Monitor.
  3. In the right pane, click + (the Add button).
  4. Use local computer in first drop down panel.
  5. In the Performance object list, double click Process.
  6. Click Page File Bytes Peak, click Add, and then click OK.
  7. Let the counter run during typical use of your computer for approx 30min

Note the Minimum Value is usually 16MB
Note the maximum value for the Page File Bytes Peak counter, and then multiply the value by .70. The sum of the equation is the size to set for your page file.


To change or disable the page file:
  • Click on Start, navigate to Computer
  • Right-click on Computer and go to Properties
  • Choose Advanced System Settings link on the left-hand side (This will launch the system properties box)
  • Choose Advanced Tab
  • Choose Settings under Performance (This will launch the performance options box)
  • Choose Advanced tab
  • Virtual memory and click Change
  • Uncheck the Automatically manage paging file size for all drives check-box
  • Under Drive [Volume Label], click on the drive where you want to change the size of virtual memory. If your system uses a HDD in addition to an SSD, it’s best to move the page file there in accordance to preference and Ram size as stated above.
  • Click Custom size and type the new size in MB in the Initial size (MB) and Maximum size (MB) boxes. Make sure it’s the same amount to prevent your CPU from constantly adjusting virtual memory.
  • Click Set and then click OK

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Disable hibernation

You can free up a lot of space on your SSD (roughly the amount of your RAM) by disabling hibernation. Disabling hibernation will stop you from using power-saving mode, but the free space benefit is worth it.

To do that:

  • Click on Start, type cmd, right-click on the cmd icon and select Run as Administrator
  • In the command prompt window type powercfg -h off and press Enter
  • Type Exit and press Enter


Enable write caching

Write caching is a feature that improves the performance of both SSDs and HDDs. Even though the advantage of SSD vs hard drive is increased speed, write caching can still improve its performance. When write caching is enabled, high speed volatile memory is used to collect and cache write commands sent to the disk drive. This helps improve performance of the drive.

Enable write caching:

  • Click on Start, right-click on Computer and go to Properties
  • Click on the Device Manager on the left-hand side
  • Open the Disk drives section, right-click on your drive, select Properties and go to the Policies tab
  • Check Enable write caching on the disk and click OK

Disable indexing

Indexing is a Windows service that is designed to speed up Windows search. (indexing automatically keeps track of the files on your computer) which makes searching for files faster. Indexing performs numerous small write operations to maintain the database of file indexes when you create, modify or delete files. The fewer writes there are to an SSD, the longer it will perform well. As for Windows search, it will perform just as well with indexing switched off.

To disable indexing:
  • Click Start and navigate to Computer
  • Right-click on your SSD drive and select Properties
  • Once the drive properties box opens select the General tab if not already selected (*1)
  • At the very end where it has Allow files on this drive to have contents indexed in addition to file properties, make sure the box in Unchecked

    If box is checked:
  • Uncheck it, Click Apply. (This will launch the confirm attributes box) *You may need to provide Admin rights, just click continue (*2)
  • Select Apply changes to drive, subfolders and files. Click Ok (*3)
  • You may get an error box saying it cant apply changes to certain files, just click ignore all (*4)
  • Apply and OK


  • That is all. Sit back, have a beer and have a game of Minesweeper :)

For anyone playing Dirt 3 see here. -> Dirt3 Cache move
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Glad ye like it. And tnx for the +rep.

I figured SSD are so expensive for now, it might be best to just show few tips on how to keep them smooth and last as long as possible. Just hope people get some use from it now. :)
A Sticky would be good, as it did take little longer then just a normal post lol. Be handy for me if it didnt go wasted. :)

Tnx again for the positive feedback


:) Yeh I would NEVER use hibernation anyway so pointless wasting the gigs. Every bit helps when it costs what?? Around €1.15 per gig on an SSD atm lol


Well-known member
I think Win7 will do some of the things you mentioned automatically, such as disable defragmentation (I think you have to run the windows experience index program to make it recognise that it is running on an SSD)


Correct AndyL,
The defrag under SSD with win7 will most likely be off which is why I only said to make sure it is off.
It’s best to make sure defragmentation is disabled

Some people may have installed software that changes the defrag state, such as comp optimization progs. SO I wanted to make sure people knew NOT to defrag an SSD..


Life Serving
hey buzz,

Do you know what IOP's are? looking at getting a new ssd, some kingston ones have like 85k IOP's, whereas a intel 330 has about 33k IOP's. Any ideas?


@Tom ,
Yeh mate its just Input/Output operations per second. Obviously higher the better. :)

great to hear it helped you lad.

And thank you for the rep :)
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Life Serving
Yeh mate its just Input/Output operations per second

FAST REPLY! hahah ps i didnt shout that

More to the point, does that mean higher is better?

Is it worth spending 20quid more on a kingston hyper x with more IOP's over the 330?


FAST REPLY! hahah ps i didnt shout that

Lol Am just a little telepathic is all. :)

More to the point, does that mean higher is better?

Is it worth spending 20quid more on a kingston hyper x with more IOP's over the 330?

Yes. The higher the better and if the difference is 85k Vs 33k then yes for 20 quid extra is pretty good. Most IOPS that are given by any manufacturer are really only a best case scenario anyway so if one say 35K you can probably take that as being more like 28-30k rather then the 35k.

The Vertex 3 I have is
120GB Max Performance*
Max Read: up to 550MB/s
Max Write: up to 500MB/s
Random Read 4KB: 35,000 IOPS
Random Write 4KB: 75,000 IOPS
Maximum 4K Random Write: 85,000 IOPS
which has been pretty much the average till recently bar crazy monies ones.
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Life Serving
thanks buzz :)

looking on pcs the hyper x k is cheaper than intel's 330, so looks like a good choice to me :)

It will be for the OS and origin mainly for bf3.

Good job i've got the p8z68 v pro with the extra sata 6 ports.