SSD drive, format or not?

vbimport

#1

I have a Dell Mini 9 with a 16 Gig SSD running XP and with 2 megs ram. I would like to format the drive and start over everything (which I would do with a standard HD) but as a SSD drive has different qualities I have a question first.
So the SSD is not that old, not used that often. I want to do this as I understand a little better not to clutter the HD with programs which I did when I first got it. I fear doing that as the cells or blocks of an SSD drive get used and cannot be moved with defag as XP does not have a “trim” function. So the question is “If I do a complete format the SSD will all the blocks or cells be wiped clean and so the drive runs faster and cleaner?”
Thanks for suggestions.
JS


#2

Hi and Welcome![QUOTE=jhampa;2545545]I have a Dell Mini 9 with a 16 Gig SSD running XP and with 2 megs ram. I would like to format the drive and start over everything (which I would do with a standard HD) but as a SSD drive has different qualities I have a question first.[/quote]So you want a clean install again. Formatting the drive is not avoidable (but you can do a “quick format”) then.

I fear doing that as the cells or blocks of an SSD drive get used and cannot be moved with defag as XP does not have a “trim” function.
I guess, this small SSD doesn’t have that either.
On flash based storage, you don’t want defragment for two reasons:
a) it is useless
b) it adds additional wear to the drive

So the question is "If I do a complete format the SSD will all the blocks or cells be wiped clean and so the drive runs faster and cleaner?"
No. This is low-perfomance stuff, and the only improvement you get is from the removal of all the crap and bloat you (and Dell) installed previously.

Michael


#3

You’ll get better, faster answers for SSD’s in our forum dedicated to harddrives and SSD’s jhampa. So, I’m moving your thread in there.

Welcome to the forums.

Edit: Then again mciahel may just beat me to the punch. :slight_smile:


#4

Thanks, I will go there.
js


#5

Ok, so thanks for the basic reply. What I am curious about is rendering the SSD useless faster by formating (quick or full) it. So to be specific

  1. does a quick format free up all the blocks or cells on the SSD? If so when you reload XP it is more compact, faster, etc. and not just going back to the old places it was before on the first install?
  2. how fast does a SSD drive with XP (no trim software) deteriorate? How many times could one mess with it before it basically gets ruined or so slow it is not worth it anymore.
    I like my Mini 9 a lot but now see the reason the Mini 10 has a hard drive disk. I guess the fact that SSD’s deteriorate was not known so well when they first started making the Minis or Netbooks.
    Thanks all for whatever you share.
    JS

#6

The only way you can wipe the cells is with a secure erase using the HDDErase application, however, it is unlikely that your SSD supports secure erase.
What may help is “aligning” the SSD partition then a quick format. Don’t do a full format as you will fill the drive with zero’s which is the last thing you want to do with an SSD.
There is a guide to aligning the SSD in this FAQ.

Sometimes just doing a fresh install is enough to bring speed back, especially with an old OS like XP.