Boot Drives? and why?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by alien, Nov 7, 2005.

  1. alien macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    London, ON
    #1
    I've been noticing on here quite a bit recently that people are using "boot drives". It appears that they are smaller, yet faster hard drives. What exactly is a boot drive, what are its benefits, and why would someone want/need a boot drive? Thanks.
     
  2. Flying Llama macrumors 6502a

    Flying Llama

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #2
    I think a boot drive is just the drive you have installed your OS on. It's your startup disk.

    llama's $0.02
     
  3. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    Jul 28, 2003
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    #3
    A boot drive is any drive you can boot from. It can be external or internal. It can even be you iPod.
     
  4. alien thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    London, ON
    #4
    Ok... it makes sence that it would be a drive that you boot up from, but what is the advantage of having a smaller and quicker drive dedicated to the system? Will it actually improve the performance of your computer? It seems as though most people have a 10,000 rpm boot drive, whereas the standard drive is usually 7,200. I'm just trying to understand the benefits...
     
  5. grapes911 Moderator emeritus

    grapes911

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    Jul 28, 2003
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    Citizens Bank Park
    #5
    The faster a drive can spin, the faster data can be read. Most people have 5400 or 7200. 10,000 is rare. The access time can be limited by the technology used to connect the drive to the computer.
     
  6. whocares macrumors 65816

    whocares

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    Oct 9, 2002
    Location:
    :noitаɔo˩
    #6
    The faster the boot drive, the faster the system will boot and theoretically run.

    It's best if boot drive is physically different from applications, documents and scratch (virtual memory) disks. An optimal (speed-wise) system would have separate drives (and possibly separate controllers) for each of these. In this case System, applications, documents and virtual memory could all be accessed simultaneously (or as good as, no time wasted moving the disk heads). However in day to day use, this is overkill ;)

    I do recommend a separate scratch disk for photoshop if you have one spare. The speed increase for large files is noticeable even on my G3 iBook :cool:
     
  7. Flying Llama macrumors 6502a

    Flying Llama

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2004
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    Los Angeles
    #7
    Well I heard that the jump from 4200 to 5400 RPM is huge. 5400 to 7200 RPM is big but not as big, and 7200 to 10000 RPM is minuscule, at least with current technology.

    llama
     
  8. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #8
    Yup:
    And as scratch disk space is configured by default on the boot drive, the first thing to do if you're limited to a two-drive system is to put the data onto a second drive and make the boot drive your fastest one.
     

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