Mac Pro HDD Configuration

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Fedge, Aug 31, 2006.

  1. Fedge macrumors regular


    Aug 9, 2006
    Well, the anticipation of my new mac pro arriving has become so bad that I've resorted to spec-ing out the machine with my existing HDDs. I've got a total of eight HDDs, four of which I'm planning on sticking into the Mac Pro. The stock apple drive is a 250GB, 8MB cache drive (i seem to recall anyway). I have another SATA II, 250GB, 16MB cache drive as well.

    In the opinions of some of the very knowledgeable forum members, would it more beneficial to use the 16MB cache as the boot drive, or as the scratch drive? I've been debating whether or not the added performance would better suit the OS and it's components, or the aperture libraries, and PS and Final Cut scratches.

    Any thoughts?
  2. kered22 macrumors 6502


    May 26, 2006
    Torrance, CA
    Well if you want the system to launch even faster and apps to launch even faster, then make it the bootup. :)

    If not, then make it the scratch.
  3. mistafreeze macrumors member

    Aug 29, 2006
    i plan on throwing the 250 stock apple drive into an external SATA usb drive, or sell on eBay. 8 meg cache is a bit rough. zipzoomfly you some 400gb drives (not as nice as 500's but damned cheaper) i plan on getting a full set, + one external 400 for time machine when leopard comes out.
  4. hal0n macrumors regular

    Dec 27, 2004
    i just got 2 500gb-ers and they were pretty reasonable at <200$ each
  5. Fedge thread starter macrumors regular


    Aug 9, 2006
    I imagine that the 16MB cache would certainly help the boot process, and the launching of applications. But would the scratch drive also see a significant performance increase? How often does the boot drive read/write to the drive compared to the scratch drive? My guess is that the scratch drive does so much more often.
  6. milozauckerman macrumors 6502

    Jun 25, 2005
    When I checked the stock drive in one at an Apple location, it was a 16MB cache version of the Western Digital Caviar line.
  7. Fedge thread starter macrumors regular


    Aug 9, 2006
    Oh, that's good news. Maybe this is a moot issue for me. Thanks for the heads up.
  8. Abulia macrumors 68000


    Jun 22, 2004
    Kushiel's Scion
    With that many drives (not sure if you need the space) I'd make a RAID grouping for some performance gain and leave the odd disk out as a scratch volume. Kinda the best of both worlds.

    This presumes, of course, you have the proper drives for a RAID configuration.

    If you don't want to go down that path then, all things being somewhat equal, I'd make the higher RPM drive your boot drive vs cache size. If they're all the same RPM then place the higher cache sized drive as your boot.
  9. Glen Quagmire macrumors 6502a

    Jan 6, 2006
    I'm going to be using the Apple-supplied drive (the 160GB model in my Mac Pro) for Windows, as I don't anticipate using Windows all that often (so the lack of speed, relatively speaking, won't matter as much).

    Both my OS X drive (250GB) and my data drive (500GB) will be 16MB cache Seagate 7200.10s.
  10. slughead macrumors 68040


    Apr 28, 2004
    250GB stock as the boot with 100 as NTFS for Windows XP
    500GB for my user folder--holds my itunes and dvd collection
    300GB x 2 (600GB) in RAID 0 for my work

    Hard drives are freakin cheap these days.

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