Intel Optane Memory Review – 1.4GB/s Speed & 300K IOPS for $44

OPTANE INSTALLATION

Installing the Optane is very easy, if you meet all compatibility requirements and have upgraded your BIOS/UEFI.

  1. Turn the PC off, install the Intel Optane module into a M.2 slot, restart and go into the UEFI;
  2. In the storage section of your menu, change from AHCI to RAID where it will also state words to the effect of ‘with Intel Optane System Acceleration’. Restart;
  3. Install Optane software.  We had to uninstall Intel RST to install the new file named ‘Intel Optane Memory’ and then observed it to have a version number in line with the latest RST build. If all goes well, you should see this:Intell Optane memory Installation Successful
  4. On restart, this will automatically appear.  If it does not, look for the Intel Icon bottom right of your screen, possibly with other hidden icons: Intel Optane Activation Menu
  5. Pressing yes will bring up a screen to enable Intel Optane:Intel Optane Enable menu
  6. At which time, the system will have to be started once again: Intel Optane Restart Screen
  7. Later, if you want to disable Intel Optane, you can check your hidden icons on the bottom right of your screen, clicking the Intel Optane icon and this menu will pop up:Intel Optane Disable Screen

We ran into one other difficulty that should be addressed.  The Intel Optane Memory module needs 5MB of unallocated space at the end of your hard drive, SSD or SSHD.  In our case, it stated that there was none (although the drive was a 2TB SSD 3/4 empty).  We simply went into Control Panel/Administrative Tools/Computer Management /Storage/Disk Management and right clicked on the ‘C’ drive, shrinking the volume by 1GB.  Yes it is a bit much but better safe than sorry.

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Pabst BR
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Pabst BR

Would you consider testing these with the built in Windows 10 Ready Boost alongside the plain HDD?

Les@TheSSDReview
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Are you asking for a comparison of Ready Boost using a USB to that of Optane. You do realize that the USB has a much lower low 4k read speed than the Optane dont you… to the tune of 150-200 times. We are an SSD site but I have tested Ready Boost on my own in Windows. IMO it is more gimmic than worth the trouble. With Optane… in this case, the startup system files are readily available in the cache to equal the startup of an SSD. I might think that alone would dissuade any thought of comparison. Thanks… Read more »

Pabst BR
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Pabst BR

My apologies, I thought it was possible to dedicate a SSD 32 GB or smaller as a Ready Boost drive. If that is not the case then disregard. Thanks for the review. I hope Micron releases a more hardware agnostic version in the future (for AMD boards with NVMe).

Les@TheSSDReview
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No need to apologize.. stuff like this makes us think outside the box. This actually let me in another direction to confirm something i wasn’t sure of with respect to new Optane.

citrix13
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citrix13

Les, I would have like to have seen the Intel DC P3700 in the Real World File Transfer Tests, having said that the Kingston DCP1000 is beyond insane at File Transfers, the Intel Optane excels at 4K low queue depth Reads and the Lowest Latencies i’ve seen to date

Mark
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Mark

“on a green PCB”
Interesting. If the PCB is environment friendly then it is bigger news to me then optane memory.

Mark
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Mark

I wonder how reliable Optane is. Anandtech.com reported that when it failed it took some data with it. I have no issue recommending SSHD over plain HDD but what is worrying me is required software component.

Bnet
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Bnet

So it performs admirably as a read cache, but what about as a write cache? Would the low latency be good enough to overcome the limited sequential write speeds if faced with continuous cache eviction?

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