I read yesterday in The Wall Street Journal an interesting article in Personal Technology, “Solid-state drives challenge hard drives in speed, but not value”. While the title does sum up nothing new, the barrier to entry to embracing new technology is always cost, and early adopters may not have deeper pockets, but it’s also about being a alpha geek.
As the article states “Solid-state drives have some key advantages. Because that lack moving parts, they are faster, draw less power, and harder to damage and are quieter”. It also backed this up with some results.
What I did not realize, is the new MacBook Air has a 80GB HHD version at $1,799 and as 64G SSD version at $2,798. Testing showed that there was little difference in battery life between these models, however with the Toshiba Portege R500 and the right battery there was a 36% battery life increase. That’s interesting news for those that spend a lot of time on planes,trains and airports. Tests clearly showed faster cold startup and reboots, up to 40% faster.
Kevin Burton has had a lot to say recently about MySQL and SSD, and Matt Yonkovit has also just published some results with Mtron SSD Sysbench/MySQL results, DBT2 MySQL SSD Results and More Details on MySQL & SSD drive performance…. It seems that Mtron SSD was the brand reviewed by Matt and Kevin (See 24 Hours with an SSD and MySQL).
Where do we go from here, MySQL as with any database has certain characteristics, large amounts of storage needed, fastest access possible, but generally sequential and random writes, but random reads. Certain MySQL storage engines may benefit with sequential writes, such as PBXT. As with any architecture today, multiple layers, caching and different approaches to storing and retrieving data within your application or website will ultimately be required to maximum the strengths of underlying technologies and minimize the weaknesses.
More information at Wikipedia Solid State Drives.