IronKey Workspace W700 Secure Flash Drive Review

TSSDR TEST BENCH AND PROTOCOL

SSD Testing at TSSDR differs slightly, depending on whether we are looking at consumer or enterprise SSDs.  For consumer SSDs, our goal is to test in a system that has been optimized with our SSD Optimization Guide. To see the best performance possible the CPU C states have been disabled, C1E support has been disabled, Enhanced Intel SpeedStep Technology (EIST) has been disabled. Benchmarks for consumer testing are also benchmarks with a fresh drive so, not only can we verify that manufacturer specifications are in line but also, so the consumer can replicate our tests to confirm that they have an SSD that is top-notch.  We even provide links to most of the benchmarks used in the report.

Sean Webster Z97 Test Bench

This is an updated test bench and, as such, we would love to thank those who jumped in specifically to help the cause.  Key contributors to this build are our friends at ASRock for the motherboard and CPU and be quiet! for the PSU and cooling fans. Also, a big thank you to Thermaltake for the case and Kingston for the RAM. We have detailed all components in the table below and they are all linked should you wish to make a duplicate of our system as so many seem to do, or check out the price of any single component.  As always, we appreciate your support in any purchase through our links!

SYSTEM COMPONENTS

This Test Bench build was the result of some great relationships and purchase; our appreciation goes to the below mentioned manufacturers for their support in our project. All of the components we use for testing and evaluation can be easily purchased at a relatively affordable price. The links provided below can assist in pricing, as well as availability for those of you who may find interest in our equipment.

PC CHASSIS: Thermaltake Urban T81
MOTHERBOARD: ASRock Z97 Extreme6
CPU: Intel Core i7-4790
CPU COOLER: Cooler Master Hyper T4
POWER SUPPLY: be quiet! Dark Power Pro 10 850W
SYSTEM COOLING: be quiet! Silent Wings 2
GRAPHICS CARD: MSI GTX 660 Ti PE OC
MEMORY: Kingston HyperX Beast 2400Mhz

BENCHMARK SOFTWARE

The software we will be using for today’s analysis is typical of many of our reviews and consists of ATTO Disk Benchmark, Crystal Disk Mark, AS SSD, Anvil’s Storage Utilities. We prefer to test with easily accessible software that the consumer can obtain, and in many cases, we even provide links. Our selection of software allows each to build on the last and to provide validation to results already obtained.

ATTO DISK BENCHMARK VER. 2.47

ATTO Disk Benchmark is perhaps one of the oldest benchmarks going and is definitely the main staple for manufacturer performance specifications. ATTO uses RAW or compressible data and, for our benchmarks, we use a set length of 256mb and test both the read and write performance of various transfer sizes ranging from 0.5 to 8192kb. Manufacturers prefer this method of testing as it deals with raw (compressible) data rather than random (includes incompressible data) which, although more realistic, results in lower performance results.

IronKey W700 ATTO

To start off our benches we can see that ATTO results show us a max read speed of 376MB/s and a max write speed of 301MB/s. In all, about a 5% lower than advertised speed. However, we are benchmarking the drive while running the Windows 8 To Go environment at the same time.

CRYSTAL DISK BENCHMARK VER. 3.0 X64

Crystal Disk Benchmark is used to measure read and write performance through sampling of random data which is, for the most part, incompressible. Performance is virtually identical, regardless of data sample so we have included only that using random data samples.

IronKey W700 CRYSTAL DISK MARK

Crystal Disk Mark follows a similar trend with a max read speed of 372.5MB/s and max write speed of 280.4MB/s. This benchmark also gives us our first look at 4K speeds from the device. The 4K read is about 30% what we usually see from standard SATA SSDs and 4K write is about one-tenth. However, while it seems low, it is still faster than what most USB 3 storage flash drives on the market offer.

AS SSD BENCHMARK VER 1.7

The toughest benchmark available for solid state drives is AS SSD as it relies solely on incompressible data samples when testing performance.  For the most part, AS SSD tests can be considered the ‘worst case scenario’ in obtaining data transfer speeds and many enthusiasts like AS SSD for their needs. Transfer speeds are displayed on the left with IOPS results on the right.

IronKey W700 AS SSD IronKey W700 AS SSD IOPS

AS SSD provides us a another look at performance. The W700 hit an overall score of 111. Sequential speeds hit 342.99MB/s for reads and 249.60MB/s write. 4K speeds reach 7.13MB/s for read and 7.02MB/s for write. Furthermore, the drive reached 2,041 read IOPS and 1,686 write IOPS. We can also see that the access times of the drive are about .5 milliseconds, much faster response than a hard drive’s typical 12-14ms performance.

ANVIL STORAGE UTILITIES PROFESSIONAL

Anvil’s Storage Utilities (ASU) are the most complete test bed available for the solid state drive today.  The benchmark displays test results for, not only throughput but also, IOPS and Disk Access Times.  Not only does it have a preset SSD benchmark, but also, it has included such things as endurance testing and threaded I/O read, write and mixed tests, all of which are very simple to understand and use in our benchmark testing.

IronKey W700 Anvil

Finally, Anvil Storage Utilities shows us a max sequential read of 355.19MB/s and max sequential write of 221.41MB/s. When looking at 4K speeds, it was able to reach 9.53MB/s in QD4 for read and 9.8MB/s in QD4 for write.

One comment

  1. Lou Nunzio Loizides

    For a better alternative check out our Indiegogo campaign for a more secure cloud-enabled encrypted flash drive. https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/katana-cloud-enabled-encrypted-flash-drive

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