Your question
Solved

Average HDD read write speed?

Tags:
  • Speed
  • Hard Drives
  • External Hard Drive
Last response: in Antivirus / Security / Privacy
May 24, 2015 9:39:09 AM

I was wondering, What is the average read write speed of HDD these days? I have a Maxtor Internal 7.2K RPM HDD, And it is about 7 years old. I also have a 1TB external USB 3.0 WD HD, Which is only half a year old.. So I ran a 500MB Read Write test on my internal and external HDD, Here are the results:

Internal HDD: http://i.imgur.com/KruKLd7.jpg?1

External HDD: http://i.imgur.com/7wsGO9k.jpg?1

Also, What do all the other 4 results mean?

Thanks!

More about : average hdd read write speed

Best solution

May 24, 2015 9:48:36 AM

Not sure how you got CrystalDiskMark to produce those results. 3 are standard CDM results, 1 is not, and you're missing 1 which is standard.

Sequential is the speed at reading/writing big files. So if you were copying a bunch of 1GB movie files (which weren't fragmented), the sequential speed is what you'd expect. For a modern 7200 RPM drive it ranges from about 80-160 MB/s today.

4k is the speed at reading/writing really small files (4 kB in size). On many larger drives this is the smallest cluster size, so it's the lower speed limit. There's OS and drive overhead in locating the file, then the time associated with moving the read/write head to the proper location and waiting for the right section of the platter to spin under the head. For a modern drive it's about 0.7-1.3 MB/s.

QD32 is queue depth of 32. That is, you queue up a bunch of read/writes in the drive, and the drive does them as quickly as it can. It doesn't make much difference on HDDs since you're mostly limited by the physical speed of the platter and read/write head. On SSDs it can make a huge difference reading small files, since time it takes for the drive to transfer the data to the computer can be a lot longer than the time to read the data. For SSDs, 4k read/write speeds of about 25-70 MB/s is typical. With a QD32, this can reach 200-400 MB/s. The drive is reading/writing multiple files in parallel from the perspective of the computer.

The benchmark you're missing is the 512k scores. This tests speed of 512 kB files, which as you can guess is between the 4k and sequential speeds. This varies a lot from drive to drive (especially for SSDs where I've seen it range from 25 - 300 MB/s). It's typical of the speed you'd expect if you were copying a folder full of MP3s or office documents.

External USB 2.0 drives maxed out at about 25-30 MB/s. USB 3.0 drives can theoretically hit over 300 MB/s, but I've seen poor implementations which have trouble exceeding 50 MB/s. It would appear your external drive is one of these. Unless your 1 TB drive is almost full?
Share
May 24, 2015 10:28:14 AM

Solandri said:
Not sure how you got CrystalDiskMark to produce those results. 3 are standard CDM results, 1 is not, and you're missing 1 which is standard.

Sequential is the speed at reading/writing big files. So if you were copying a bunch of 1GB movie files (which weren't fragmented), the sequential speed is what you'd expect. For a modern 7200 RPM drive it ranges from about 80-160 MB/s today.

4k is the speed at reading/writing really small files (4 kB in size). On many larger drives this is the smallest cluster size, so it's the lower speed limit. There's OS and drive overhead in locating the file, then the time associated with moving the read/write head to the proper location and waiting for the right section of the platter to spin under the head. For a modern drive it's about 0.7-1.3 MB/s.

QD32 is queue depth of 32. That is, you queue up a bunch of read/writes in the drive, and the drive does them as quickly as it can. It doesn't make much difference on HDDs since you're mostly limited by the physical speed of the platter and read/write head. On SSDs it can make a huge difference reading small files, since time it takes for the drive to transfer the data to the computer can be a lot longer than the time to read the data. For SSDs, 4k read/write speeds of about 25-70 MB/s is typical. With a QD32, this can reach 200-400 MB/s. The drive is reading/writing multiple files in parallel from the perspective of the computer.

The benchmark you're missing is the 512k scores. This tests speed of 512 kB files, which as you can guess is between the 4k and sequential speeds. This varies a lot from drive to drive (especially for SSDs where I've seen it range from 25 - 300 MB/s). It's typical of the speed you'd expect if you were copying a folder full of MP3s or office documents.

External USB 2.0 drives maxed out at about 25-30 MB/s. USB 3.0 drives can theoretically hit over 300 MB/s, but I've seen poor implementations which have trouble exceeding 50 MB/s. It would appear your external drive is one of these. Unless your 1 TB drive is almost full?


Thanks for such a detailed answer! My External HDD has 700GB of space left, So no, It isn't full.. So what you mean to say is my external HDD is slow? Or are they both slow for today's standards?
m
0
l
Related resources
May 24, 2015 12:40:04 PM

A modern 2.5" 5400 RPM drive should be able to hit 100 MB/s. If the drive were full, there might be a chance all the sectors on the outer edge (where more platter area passes per rotation) were full, so the drive was doing sequential speed testing on the inner edge. The speed of the inner cylinders is about half that of the outer cylinders, which would explain your 50 MB/s speed.

However, this is unlikely to be happening since 70% of the disk is empty. So either your drive is very badly fragmented, or the USB 3.0 interface on it is substandard and limiting your speeds to 50 MB/s.

For the most part this isn't a big deal. Only large files like videos transfer at max speed. When copying smaller files like music and office documents, the speed will mostly be limited to about 25-50 MB/s on any HDD even if the drive were plugged into a SATA port on a desktop. When transferring really small files (OS files, config files), you're lucky to get even 10 MB/s. But in the future when you buy another USB 3.0 HDD, it is something to watch out for.
m
0
l
May 24, 2015 1:15:08 PM

Solandri said:
A modern 2.5" 5400 RPM drive should be able to hit 100 MB/s. If the drive were full, there might be a chance all the sectors on the outer edge (where more platter area passes per rotation) were full, so the drive was doing sequential speed testing on the inner edge. The speed of the inner cylinders is about half that of the outer cylinders, which would explain your 50 MB/s speed.

However, this is unlikely to be happening since 70% of the disk is empty. So either your drive is very badly fragmented, or the USB 3.0 interface on it is substandard and limiting your speeds to 50 MB/s.

For the most part this isn't a big deal. Only large files like videos transfer at max speed. When copying smaller files like music and office documents, the speed will mostly be limited to about 25-50 MB/s on any HDD even if the drive were plugged into a SATA port on a desktop. When transferring really small files (OS files, config files), you're lucky to get even 10 MB/s. But in the future when you buy another USB 3.0 HDD, it is something to watch out for.


So basically my copy/paste or read/write speed is ok? I mean I install all games on the external drive, And some applications such as Adobe Photoshop are also installed there.. My Internal HDD contains Windows. So do you think that the Internal HDD might be causing a bottleneck or something? I mean I do experience slow boots, And the login screen stays black for about 30 sec before showing me the actual login screen.. Do you think this is caused by HDD or corrupted windows?

Thanks!
m
0
l
May 25, 2015 4:46:41 PM

hashir2k said:
So basically my copy/paste or read/write speed is ok? I mean I install all games on the external drive, And some applications such as Adobe Photoshop are also installed there..

Generally you want your OS and programs on the internal drive. If your programs are on an external drive and you accidentally disconnect it while running the program, it could result in loss of any open files.

Speed-wise, having these on the internal drive would be best. But you're not going to lose much speed running them from a USB 3.0 external drive.

Quote:
My Internal HDD contains Windows. So do you think that the Internal HDD might be causing a bottleneck or something? I mean I do experience slow boots, And the login screen stays black for about 30 sec before showing me the actual login screen.. Do you think this is caused by HDD or corrupted windows?

That's usually a symptom of Windows waiting for something at boot-up. Like for a network service or hardware to become available (and after 30 seconds the wait times out, it gives up and continues booting.)

Run msconfig or install ccleaner and go to the Startup page. Look for any services or programs which don't look important (like Acrobat's preloader, or the little app which constantly checks for updates to your printer driver). Disable them. I had good luck with Soluto in the past in diagnosing slow boot times, but that was years ago and I haven't had to use it recently so I can't say if it's still good.

By far the biggest improvement you can make is to replace your OS HDD with a SSD.
m
0
l
Tom’s guide in the world
  • Germany
  • France
  • Italy
  • Ireland
  • UK
Follow Tom’s guide
Subscribe to our newsletter
  • add to twitter
  • add to facebook
  • ajouter un flux RSS