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SSD (Solid State Disk) could improve trading speed?
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SSD (Solid State Disk) could improve trading speed?

  #21 (permalink)
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ddouglas View Post
In some cases, I believe a SSD would, in fact, increase your actual platform's speed. Or at least increase the amount of data that it can handle at the same speed.

Case in point: Sierra Charts.

Information is written to the disk first, then read off of it to draw the charts/post data wherever you want it to be shown. (this is spelled out in their documentation, and is done on-purpose, so that multiple simultaneous representations of a market can be run off of a single data file).

My style is not that data-intense, so this is never a problem at all for me. And I notice no lag when I sometimes use a different platform right next to it (if anything, Sierra seems to be the faster of the two).

But if you needed say 6-10 different markets, each with volume and Depth of Market, your HDD would be crying for mercy & overheating alot as it wrote all of that data in real-time (I tried it just for fun, & my HDD is still mad at me).

Intuitively, it would seem that a SSD would speed up this process if you were stuffing large amounts of data into it in real time. Anyone with real expertise, feel free to chime in here & correct me if this notion is way off-base.


That is great to know...as I use Sierra charts...

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  #22 (permalink)
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I have not done any tests to compare speeds but...

I had a Dell 1330 with 500 gb drive.
It seemed fast until I got the Sony.

I now have a Sony Vaio 256gb SSD. (Raid 0 128(X2) SSD).
I can tell you the start up is fantastic.
21 seconds from switch on to desktop in Windows 7 64bit.

The speed of NT may not be affected but it sure seems as if it is faster but that could be because the same setup running on the 1330 took over 60 seconds to load and on this machine it loads in 24 seconds. (no changes in workspaces)

The most amazing thing I noticed is the display resolution. This one has 1080 full HD and the colors are vibrant.

I would recommend this setup to anyone thinking of upgrading laptops.

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  #23 (permalink)
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ddouglas View Post
In some cases, I believe a SSD would, in fact, increase your actual platform's speed. Or at least increase the amount of data that it can handle at the same speed.

Case in point: Sierra Charts.

Information is written to the disk first, then read off of it to draw the charts/post data wherever you want it to be shown. (this is spelled out in their documentation, and is done on-purpose, so that multiple simultaneous representations of a market can be run off of a single data file).

While the above is true, it does not mean that you are running slower. If the implementation is done correctly, then the disk writes are cached and write followed by reads is really going thru memory.

The access patterns from trading software are a perfect fit for an SSD, because you are banging on lots of files in a random fashion, and the SSD removes all of the seeking.

SSD also makes the multiple instance model of SC work really well. So for example, you can have one copy getting data from IQFeed, and another copy running thru your broker. This model works well without SSD, but the SSD just makes it appear seamless due to the speed up of the disk accesses.

I run SC with SSD, and it rocks. THe one draw back of SSD is capacity. I do find myself having to go clean up data files etc occasionally, so I do not run out of space.

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  #24 (permalink)
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aslan View Post
THe one draw back of SSD is capacity. I do find myself having to go clean up data files etc occasionally, so I do not run out of space.


For those who may not be aware

Win 7 allocates an equivalent amount of HD space to the pagefile.sys in proportion to the amount of RAM installed on your computer, 16 GB in my case. A similar amount is allocated to the HIBERNATION MODE or hiberfil.sys.

The amount of HD space these files use can be manually set OR turned off completely (e.g. if you never use hibernation mode it can be disabled) if you want to reclaim precious SSD space from Windows. I recovered 27.8 GB in about 15 minutes following the steps within the links below. Win 7 pro NOW occupies only 16.3 GB of my SSD.

HIBERNATION MODE
pagefile.sys & hiberfil.sys - Windows 7 Forums


HUGE PAGEFILE
Huge pagefile.sys file - Windows 7 Forums

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  #25 (permalink)
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I have a Crucial M4 256GB SSD in my main system.

It does make Windows boot faster. But I only boot Windows once a month or every two months or so.

It does make loading applications faster. But I only load applications once every few weeks for the most part

For trading specific applications, your charts will load faster as you read historical data from the file system into the chart. But personally I am not loading charts very often. Most the time, the charts are loaded just once when I open the application. And since I only open the application once every few weeks, that extra second or two it saves is really not a big deal.

SSD's are the way of the future, no doubt. But they are still extremely expensive, to the point where a lot of people buy small capacity SSD's and then have to fight with their OS because they are constantly running out of space.

SSD's are also still prone to failure, just like mechanical drives. SSD's are not a replacement for backup. If there is something important on your drive, you better have a known good recent backup.

In general, if you are a high end tech guy, then SSD is the only way to go for a workstation system. But my 8TB media server for example won't be seeing SSD any time soon until the costs come way, way, way down.

I think in general, if you have a few hundred burning a whole in your pocket, then an SSD is a good idea. Especially if you have a low end mechanical drive. I came from a four disk RAID 10 to the SSD, so my throughput actually dropped from about 700-800MB/sec down to 500MB/sec. Naturally, throughput isn't everything. Seek time is generally much more important, and that is where SSD rules the day.

If your system only has 4GB of memory, then I would recommend upgrading that to 8GB or 12GB rather than buying an SSD. Memory is dirt cheap right now. Hell, buy 16GB if your mainboard supports it, it's only a few bucks more. Then the OS will keep all those data files in the cache and it will be even faster than SSD. Memory caching is really where you want to be. And if you use your PC for more than just trading, you likely need 8GB just to browse the web these days (my Chrome regularly consumes 4GB with the 20-30 tabs I keep open), and then you add your background trading apps and you can easily be up over 6GB, leaving precious little for file system caching.

If your system is not SATA 6.0Gbps, then most modern SSD's are overkill and you'll leave a lot of performance on the table. Better to buy a new mainboard and high end CPU and lots of memory, instead of spending $400 on a SSD, in some cases.

Mike

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  #26 (permalink)
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LOVE MY SSD!

A-mazing....

Replaced a 500GB HDD(only 150GB used) with 250GB SSD on my Dell Insprion 1750

Got a 840 Series Samsung 250 SSD from Ebay for $150 (new unopened)

I already had a USB/SATA cable (SATA end connects to any HDD or SSD)

I formated the SSD to NTFS using Windows control panel utilities - clicked on it and let it do it's thing during day when I was at the 9-5.

Used Segate's Diskwizard (free download from their site that is reported to work on any make of disk) It took 1 hour to Copy Hard Drive with source as the HDD and destination as the SSD, plus this feature made the SSD bootable.

I then replaced the HDD with the SSD (4 screws and careful of no static)

Everything has been screaming fast ever since.

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  #27 (permalink)
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I also got a SSD a week ago and have been loving it. Nothing runs faster once it runs, because it's already in super fast RAM once it loads, but load times are faster, windows boots faster (which I don't do very often but it is nice when I run windows update and the like), and generally the responsiveness of the system is much improved. Not an essential, but definitely a nice addition to upgrade my 2 year old system.

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  #28 (permalink)
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I have upgraded my hd after failure from my 2 hds in raid and it is only faster in boot time off the programs.

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  #29 (permalink)
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I believe it all depends on the apps you run. If they use of any form of disk cache logic, the app will run faster. The redraw of my charts in NT absolutely run faster, browser redraws run faster, and my Office products run faster (Word, Excel, etc). The Windows Vista OS runs also faster. This was a great upgrade for me, well worth the $150.

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