Mac Pro - Disk Performance OS X/Windows

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Infrared, Nov 6, 2008.

  1. Infrared macrumors 68000

    Infrared

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    #1
    Hi, does anyone have any comparisons of disk performance under
    OS X and Windows?

    The reason I ask: I've come to notice that the sound of disks
    being accessed is very different under the two OS varieties*.
    So much so, I can recognize the OS in use merely by the sound
    of the disk!

    So, I'm led to wonder: which OS on a mac pro has better disk
    read/write speeds?

    * - Really rather rough and silly descriptions follow :)

    Windows - snow being crunched underfoot
    OS X - a spun coin settling on a table
     
  2. irishgrizzly macrumors 65816

    irishgrizzly

    Joined:
    May 15, 2006
    #2
    It's hard for me to compare, as I use a dedicated disk for windows. But I do notice a difference. I'll listen out for crunched snow / spun coins next time. :) Not sure which sounds worse!
     
  3. Infrared thread starter macrumors 68000

    Infrared

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    #3
    Definitely the way to go for comparisons, though. The performance
    for a typical "Boot Camp" partition can be expected to be worse
    because of where it is found on the disk.
     
  4. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #4
    That, and you don't have to worry about them "playing nice" with one another. :p
     
  5. ThirteenXIII macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    #5
    i have two separate hard drives for each OS.

    i have a 500AAKS (Western digital) drive for windows and its only noticeable when transferring large amounts of files.

    my original drive in my system was a Seagate ST3500641AS 500gb (seagate barracuda 7200.9 ... and you could hear it almost any time something was being accessed; which seemed to be the case with ANY Segate harddrives in any of macs and as well as using other seagate drives in enclosures.

    i recently just cloned and updated the original drive in my macpro to a 500aaks for my OSX drive and now its completely silent even on transferring large files and launching apps, a complete difference compared to the previous drive before.

    so i suppose it just depends on the drive you have; seagates have been known to be pretty noisey drives when being accessed.
     
  6. Infrared thread starter macrumors 68000

    Infrared

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2007
    #6
    Definitely the OS in my case. I have two identical WD drives. But I've
    also had Windows on a Boot Camp partition along with OS X. In that
    case, the characteristic drive access noise is there. So it's not a drive
    difference that leads to a sound difference.

    It is also not necessarily a file system issue. If I run Windows off a
    drive in VMware Fusion, it sounds like OS X. Incidentally, as I have
    mentioned before, disk performance seems better in Fusion that it
    does running natively:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=509885

    So, what are we left with? File system structure and layout could be
    a factor. But I suspect a bigger factor is the way each OS deals
    with disk accesses. E.g., maybe OS X caches more. Or maybe there
    is something strange about Apple's BIOS emulation. I only mention
    that because there have been problems with it in the past. However,
    I appear to have both AHCI and UDMA mode 6 enabled, so that may
    be irrelevant.
     
  7. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #7
    Apple's EFI is different. As I understand it, it's a proprietary version of EFI 1.10. Presumably to implement the hardware lock needed to install OS X. And apparently, it can cause headaches for 3rd party hardware manufacturers. I know it's been an issue with some RAID controllers.

    BIOS Emulation may allow the drive to be accessed in a manner more accordant with your drives. They would have had greater levels of testing with BIOS I should hope, compared to Apple's EFI to solve any issues.
     

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