As with everything new and unexplored, researching before interacting is a good idea. Before getting to the actual data, let me start by saying that the Corsair Accelerator is a great SSD cache drive. Seriously, even without the need for caching, it functions exceptionally as a normal SSD. So, I do not have a problem with the Accelerator, but rather NVELOs Dataplex. Unfortunately, Corsairs Accelerator has to take the hits as it is associated with it.
Now, here is what I meant about reading, and in this case, understanding what you are installing:
Dataplex is licensed on a perpetual, single-user basis. Dataplex may not be used on more than one machine at the same time. Unlimited product activations are allowed on the same PC.
If you wish to transfer the product key for use on another PC, you must first deactivate the original product key by uninstalling Dataplex while you are connected to the internet so that the Dataplex license manager can properly log the request. Then, you may install Dataplex on the new machine.
It is essentially DRM…on hardware. Take heed that Dataplex only works for authorized SSDs, as it checks hardware during installation. Therefore, having to put in the serial code twice, once for software download and once during installation is not needed. If anything, the hardware check is enough of a security check, and perhaps even an integrated code within the SSD would have sufficed. Even then, there is no need as the software will not install unless the SSD is registered with NVELO.
Now, the software is relatively new and unexplored, so difficulties are to be expected. In accordance, NVELO has provided a list of restrictions and limitations:
Concerning my experience, something went haywire during the install process, where the BIOS could not locate any partitions on either of the drives present. It persisted, eventually leading to the Windows Repair console, which did not recognize any of my drives, or their partitions.
I did notice something interesting here. Both the WDC Black and Corsair Accelerator were renamed to Unallocated Space, showing 100% empty (which clearly was not the case). Oddly, the System Reserved partition had grown from 100Mb (the usual) to 1006Mb. Thankfully, all of my data was still intact, but I still have no clue what exactly happened during installation to corrupt the process.
Again, this has nothing to do with the state of the Corsair Accelerator directly. All of this, however, is something you should make note of before and after installing it.
Luckily, one of our Forum Administrators (Sean) received a beta copy of NVELO’s upcoming Dataplex release, which solves many of the restrictions in the table above and introduces a plethora of new features. You can read his incredibly comprehensive write-up here.
With that out of the way, let us check out what makes the Accelerator such a tantalizing option for breathing new life into an old system.
BENCHMARKS AND RESULTS
The synthetic benchmarks are listed first, followed by real-world tests. For consistencys sake, many of the results from these various benchmark programs will yield virtually the same results, and test the same areas of the hybrid setup.
ATTO DISK BENCHMARK VER. 2..47
The ATTO Disk Benchmark measures storage performance with various transfer sizes and test lengths for reads and writes. Several options are available to customize performance measurement including queue depth, overlapped I/O and even a comparison mode with the option to run continuously. ATTO is rated to test RAID controllers, storage controllers, host adapters, hard drives and SSD drives.
Western Digital Caviar Black (Normal)
Western Digital Caviar Black (Cached)
The speed difference is gigantic. Normally, the WDC Black performs at 85MB/s read and 75MB/s write. With the Corsair Accelerator, it blasts to 275MB/s read and 240MB/s write!