Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

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Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

Or get yourself a SSD, or you need an SSD and need to trash the HDD because it was yesterday and the future is now?


Q: Things seem a little slow, can you help me figure out what is going on?
A: Get a SSD.

Q: What are some tips for speeding up my system?
A: Get a SSD.

Q: My system seems sluggish and non-responsive; how can I speed things up?
A: Same as above

Q: How do I make my computer the best computer in the known world?
A: Get a SSD!

I see that advice so much, from so many people lately and it's only becoming more commonplace. It seems like if people needed advice on why they should buy a SSD, then it would be appropriate to suggest installing a SSD for specific reasons.

But for it to become the catchall response to any number of questions is becoming a bit fan-boyish, isn't it? Yes, SSD's are great and fast and there are no moving parts and they are the latest innovation that is available to the mass of computer users at a reasonable price but, should they really be pushed on users as the panacea for all ills?

If I need help fixing my push mower, I don't really need advice to buy a riding mower because they are faster and better, I know that. But, I have a push mower, not a riding mower. If I take my '78 Ford Pinto to a mechanic to fix a cracked distributor cap, I don't need him telling me to go buy a Lamborghini because they are faster, I need him to fix my Pinto.

What do all of you think?
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by senjoz »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:23 am
What do all of you think?
I think: Get a SSD!

Regards, Jože
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

senjoz wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:45 am
CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:23 am
What do all of you think?
I think: Get a SSD!

Regards, Jože
:D
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by Moem »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:23 am
If I take my '78 Ford Pinto to a mechanic to fix a cracked distributor cap, I don't need him telling me to go buy a Lamborghini because they are faster, I need him to fix my Pinto.
If I had a '78 Ford Pinto that I'd be using as a daily driver, and it had problems... and my mechanic would offer me an affordable replacement engine that was faster, more efficient and turned my Pinto into a more usable vehicle, I'd tell her 'HELL YES'.

Replacing the HD with an SSD is a good way to keep the rest of the hardware usable for longer. I see no reason not to advise it if I genuinely believe it would solve a problem.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by cliffcoggin »

It's advice, not a command, and like all advice it can be ignored if you wish.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by dorsetUK »

Eleven yr old Acer Aspire One with 2 Gb RAM and a 5400rpm HD.

Perfectly usable, so long as I’m patient.

Ten year old Dell Latitude with a 3rd gen i3, 2Gb RAM and a 5400rpm HD.

Well, it’s quicker than my Acer.

Old advice – increase the RAM – solves all known problems.

8Gb in the Dell – Well, this is quite fast.

SSD in the Dell – BURLINKIN’ HELL!

Maybe I’m lucky in that all my hardware is supported, but when – just when! - am I going to make my Coffee!

If all else is well, then IMO a SSD is wonderful.

With due thanks to pjotr. https://easylinuxtipsproject.blogspot.com/p/ssd.html
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by exploder »

I actually gave my 11 year old son a perfectly good laptop because I could not get it apart to install an SSD! I bought a new one with Intel Optane memory that gives me 16 GB of cache for it's SSD! The laptop I gave my son was so slow with it's 5400 RPM HDD. We have 3 laptops and two desktops with SSD's. I will never go back to using a SATA HDD after enjoying the responsiveness of an SSD.

One desktop is 16 years old and it is faster than the laptop with the SATA HDD, that particular laptop is 3 years old. I highly recommend upgrading!
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

Moem wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:24 am
CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:23 am
If I take my '78 Ford Pinto to a mechanic to fix a cracked distributor cap, I don't need him telling me to go buy a Lamborghini because they are faster, I need him to fix my Pinto.
If I had a '78 Ford Pinto that I'd be using as a daily driver, and it had problems... and my mechanic would offer me an affordable replacement engine that was faster, more efficient and turned my Pinto into a more usable vehicle, I'd tell her 'HELL YES'.

Replacing the HD with an SSD is a good way to keep the rest of the hardware usable for longer. I see no reason not to advise it if I genuinely believe it would solve a problem.
If my mechanic suggested I get a Lamborghini when I took my Pinto in to be fixed, I'd tell him to mind his own business and do what I asked him to do, which is fix the Pinto. If he offered a new engine when I merely requested a new set of spark plugs, I would suspect him of being a con-artist and would likely find another man to be my go to mechanic.

So, if a user makes a post asking for advice on how to clean up their computer to maybe gain a bit of speed, I would never suggest purchasing another product to gain that advantage because that advice wasn't what was requested.

If a user has a 2 year old computer and mentions that it isn't quite as fast as he would like and would like some tips and tricks and recommendations on how to make it faster, I would never recommend buying a brand new computer to gain a speed advantage. That isn't what was requested. By offering a solution that wasn't asked for, you are off-topic.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

exploder wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:56 pm
I actually gave my 11 year old son a perfectly good laptop because I could not get it apart to install an SSD! I bought a new one with Intel Optane memory that gives me 16 GB of cache for it's SSD! The laptop I gave my son was so slow with it's 5400 RPM HDD. We have 3 laptops and two desktops with SSD's. I will never go back to using a SATA HDD after enjoying the responsiveness of an SSD.

One desktop is 16 years old and it is faster than the laptop with the SATA HDD, that particular laptop is 3 years old. I highly recommend upgrading!

Sure, there is no denying that SSD's are faster and better than HDD's. What you are discussing is a whole different thing than what I was discussing. I've got a Dell G3 with a better processor, more memory, better graphics card, and a SSD all in a laptop frame and it's more powerful than a huge, clunky, old fashioned Dell XPS that I also own.

That isn't the point; there is always something better.

You could go out and buy the very best computer in the world today, and by tomorrow I could be telling you how you need to upgrade because there are better options already available. But, that would not be what someone wanted to hear because that isn't what they were asking for when they asked for advice on how to speed things up with the computer and hardware that they currently own.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

cliffcoggin wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:55 am
It's advice, not a command, and like all advice it can be ignored if you wish.

Advice needs to be on topic though, correct? If I'm looking for a new boat and asking questions about that, I don't need advice on what kind of house I need to buy.

It's kind of ridiculous how so many people are now offering unsolicited advice on upgrading to a solid state drive.

It would be like every poster with an i3 or i5 processor asking for help to make their computer go faster just being told to go buy an i7 and don't worry about anything else. You just need a faster processor because I have a faster processor and let me tell you, it really helps. Okay, well, thanks for the advice I didn't want anyway, I guess.
Last edited by CtrlAltDel on Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:48 pm
Advice needs to be on topic though, correct? If I'm looking for a new boat and asking questions about that, I don't need advice on what kind of house I need to buy.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

Kadaitcha Man wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:54 pm
Nice, Kadaitcha. I would pull that up right in front of my real house, here:

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and be the envy of the whole neighborhood.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by RIH »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:23 am
If I take my '78 Ford Pinto to a mechanic to fix a cracked distributor cap, I don't need him telling me to go buy a Lamborghini because they are faster, I need him to fix my Pinto.
The issue is that your diagnosis of a cracked distributor cap maybe accurate, however replacing that will not fix the real issue that the engine is well past its sell by date. A brand new distributor may help to start the car but performance on the road will still be terrible with a black cloud of smoke following you.
A decent mechanic would be woefully remiss if he didn't tell you that you are wasting your money. :D

There may well be contributing factors that can help speed up a computer with a 5400 rpm disk, but if you want the best performance then replacing it is the only real answer.
Maybe the user will be happy with the trailing black smoke but he should at least know that will be the case!! :D
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by motoryzen »

"If my mechanic suggested I get a Lamborghini when I took my Pinto in to be fixed,"

HDD= old volkswagon beelte ( as in the 60's version not today), ford tempo 89 through 94
sata ssd =honda civic si, toyota celica, mitsubishi ecplise gs, mustang, older dodge avenger from early 2000's ( today's is more of a sedan now),
intel 750 pci express ssd= dodge viper, chevy corvette, mitsubishi 3000GT, dodge stealth, civic mugen?? ( shrugs)

Well about the closest thing I can put in such an applicable analog to a lambo in PC world is perhaps the best available pci express gen 4.0 nvme ssd
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

RIH wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:18 pm
CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:23 am
If I take my '78 Ford Pinto to a mechanic to fix a cracked distributor cap, I don't need him telling me to go buy a Lamborghini because they are faster, I need him to fix my Pinto.
The issue is that your diagnosis of a cracked distributor cap maybe accurate, however replacing that will not fix the real issue that the engine is well past its sell by date. A brand new distributor may help to start the car but performance on the road will still be terrible with a black cloud of smoke following you.
A decent mechanic would be woefully remiss if he didn't tell you that you are wasting your money. :D

There may well be contributing factors that can help speed up a computer with a 5400 rpm disk, but if you want the best performance then replacing it is the only real answer.
Maybe the user will be happy with the trailing black smoke but he should at least know that will be the case!! :D
No, the engine is perfect; it has never smoked because it has been taken care of properly. It just has a bad distributor cap that needs replacing. Why in the world would I need a new engine? Replacing the engine in an older vehicle is not the only answer. In fact, most of the time, it is the wrong answer.

It's amazing to me how the defacto advice for any sluggishness in a system is now SSD. Even if other advice is given, it is always followed with a "what your really need though is a SSD". It wasn't that way just a couple of years ago.

We get it. SSD fanboy's love SSD's and want everyone to share in their pleasure at owning one because, like, how could you like not have one, dude. Just go get it or order it and put it in and your troubles are over forever. Not only will it make your computer a pleasure to use but, it will make you more attractive as a human being to own one.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:41 pm
We get it.
I'm not sure that you do, and analogies to motor vehicles don't help. Implicit in many of the questions where an SSD is recommended is the idea that the owner of the machine has installed Linux to squeeze out every last drop of life from their ancient and lowly two core, non-SMT CPU but have been disappointed that they didn't get a performance boost. There are only three things that can be done. 1) Move to an SSD, 2) increase the amount of RAM, and 3) drastically reduce expectations.

I don't believe that the suggestions to invest in an SSD are fan-boyish, given the implicit expectations I've just mentioned. The real question is, is it reasonable to move to an SSD with old hardware or should people be better encouraged to go dumpster-diving for something more modern, as in closer to the current decade rather than closer to the last century. There seems to be an outrageous expectation of new users that Linux will suddenly breathe new into their almost-dead hardware, and I think that some, but not all, of the recommendations to move to an SSD may be Linux users promulgating that view. I rarely respond to posts involving old hardware because if I tell someone that their machine should be put out to pasture, someone will always jump in and say, "I have a machine from 2003 running perfectly". Of course, that doesn't help the original poster. I think that's where there is a problem, not in the recommendation to go with an SSD.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by CtrlAltDel »

Kadaitcha Man wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:53 pm
CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:41 pm
We get it.
I'm not sure that you do, and analogies to motor vehicles don't help.


I do a lot of things, Kadaitcha. Last week, I stained my 100ft. long deck. I was sore for days afterwards. Cutting in around the house is what did it because I had to bend over; just spraying the stain on wasn't that hard at all because I could stand up. Yesterday, I installed a new front door, which is a lot harder than one might think.

Kadaitcha Man wrote:Implicit in many of the questions where an SSD is recommended is the idea that the owner of the machine has installed Linux to squeeze out every last drop of life from their ancient and lowly two core, non-SMT CPU but have been disappointed that they didn't get a performance boost. There are only three things that can be done. 1) Move to an SSD, 2) increase the amount of RAM, and 3) drastically reduce expectations.
I guess I'm of the opinion that if it isn't asked for, don't give it. If a poster asks what he can purchase to make his computer faster, sure, recommend a SSD. Otherwise, advice to get a SSD may seem slightly sanctimonious.

Everyone smart enough to hit a button and turn on a computer is intelligent enough to realize that buying faster parts will make the machine go faster, right? Is the advice to go buy something good advice when it is pretty obvious that is not what they were seeking?
Kadaitcha Man wrote:I don't believe that the suggestions to invest in an SSD are fan-boyish, given the implicit expectations I've just mentioned. The real question is, is it reasonable to move to an SSD with old hardware or should people be better encouraged to go dumpster-diving for something more modern, as in closer to the current decade rather than closer to the last century. There seems to be an outrageous expectation of new users that Linux will suddenly breathe new into their almost-dead hardware, and I think that some, but not all, of the recommendations to move to an SSD may be Linux users promulgating that view. I rarely respond to posts involving old hardware because if I tell someone that their machine should be put out to pasture, someone will always jump in and say, "I have a machine from 2003 running perfectly". Of course, that doesn't help the original poster. I think that's where there is a problem, not in the recommendation to go with an SSD.
Kadaitcha, let's be honest. You would consider my 6 year old desktop box, an XPS with a childish GeForce GT 720, an outdated i7-4790, and two super slow 1 TB HDD's, to be something only a loser would use.

For you to be forced to subsist on what I have would make you despise computing and it would deprive you of every last bit of enjoyment you get from having a computer. And, as you say, my computer is running perfectly even though, to you, it is probably viewed as woefully ancient and helpless and beyond redemption for any use that you would have in your daily computing activities.

But, for me, it's great. I guess that is how the people with the 2003 computers feel; it's okay for them. They just want a little advice on some tweaks or something to get a bit of an extra punch out of the computer, not advice on how to buy a bunch of stuff to make it better.

If that is what they wanted, they would probably be asking where to buy a SSD, what is a good price on a solid state drive, how much do they cost, etc... Your strategy of just not responding is probably more helpful to many posters than the strategy of suggesting buy, buy, buy, upgrade, upgrade, upgrade.
Last edited by Moem on Wed Sep 30, 2020 3:48 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Fixed a quote.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 11:01 pm
Everyone smart enough to hit a button and turn on a computer is intelligent enough to realize that buying faster parts will make the machine go faster, right?
Apparently not.

I read the entire post but I'm only going to focus on this:
CtrlAltDel wrote:Is the advice to go buy something good advice when it is pretty obvious that is not what they were seeking?
The only evidence for that is prolix hyperbole, old friend. Post some links.
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

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Kadaitcha Man wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 11:18 pm
CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 11:01 pm
Everyone smart enough to hit a button and turn on a computer is intelligent enough to realize that buying faster parts will make the machine go faster, right?
Apparently not.

I read the entire post but I'm only going to focus on this:
CtrlAltDel wrote:Is the advice to go buy something good advice when it is pretty obvious that is not what they were seeking?
The only evidence for that is prolix hyperbole, old friend. Post some links.
If being verbose is a crime, execute me for repeat offenses. :lol: I'm not going to engage in a battle of wits with you because I know from many years of interaction, years ago, that I would suffer a verbal beating of a thousand cuts at your hands.

Honestly, I don't really care about this subject that much at all, in the whole scheme of things. The truth is that I created a new signature file last night and just wanted to post something, anything, so people could see it. :oops:
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Re: Should advice be to replace the harddrive with a SSD?

Post by Kadaitcha Man »

CtrlAltDel wrote:
Mon Sep 28, 2020 11:30 pm
Honestly, I don't really care about this subject that much at all, in the whole scheme of things. The truth is that I created a new signature file last night and just wanted to post something, anything, so people could see it. :oops:
lol - ok.
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