Building a Crazy but Cool Computer
Choosing your storage by: Fatima ZahidThis is the third of our articles on building your “Crazy but Cool” computer. It may only be a fantasy, but in the first two articles we explored choosing a motherboard and CPU for a maximum speed gaming machine. Then we looked at cases and power supplies. This week we consider storage devices.
Get lots of storage
You have already, perhaps, a good size hard disc, but on examining it you see that its connection is a parallel ATA system and your new motherboard only supports serial ATA connections. You “only” had a 500 GB drive and now you think that as this was getting pretty full you will need at least a terabyte of storage. If you are seriously gaming or streaming video you may find even this gets full soon. This may seem incredible, but whenever we have installed what seems to be an excessively huge amount of storage that we will “never fill”, along come applications that will fill up the space.
You will like the SATA connections as each drive has its own cable and your motherboard will have plenty of connectors. No need any more for those ribbon connectors and daisy chaining your devices! There is another choice you will have to make. SATA2 is being replaced by SATA3 – twice as fast data transfer! So, will you look for a SATA3 drive as your motherboard supports this?
Use an SSD for the OS
For your main storage you will probably use a mechanical hard drive which writes data to a series of “platters” and has a moving read/write head. There is nothing wrong with these devices, but for speed you might be thinking of an SSD drive. These are solid state drives which have no moving parts, so are more robust in moving environments such as laptops or tablets. They are also very fast as they use flash memory. The disadvantage of them is that they are much more expensive than mechanical hard disc drives.
One choice you might make is to use a small capacity SSD to keep your...
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