Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Review: OCZ Vertex 2 SSD

Roberto Peon and Pengtoh had both raved about their SSDs, so when a good deal came up on the OCZ Technology 120 GB Vertex 2 Series SATA II 3.5-Inch Solid State Drive (SSD) OCZSSD3-2VTX120G, I jumped on it. 120GB is enough to install most programs, and still have enough space for the occasional video game, as long as you don't try to get more than one or two big games installed at a time.

The machine, once everything was installed boots fast. 20s boot times were not uncommon, and once you logged in, the browser would just open up in a snap. I didn't realize how quickly I'd gotten used to how fast it booted until my SSD failed last week! Fortunately, I had weekly image backups on Windows on Sundays, and the machine crashed on Monday morning. The image restore went smoothly, unfortunately, the Dropbox process got confused between drive reassignments and duplicated everything I had on Dropbox. I'm untangling the results from that disaster. Needless to say, I cannot recommend Dropbox as a back up solution since if you screw something up on one machine, you get screwed everywhere. Fortunately, Dropbox does let you retrieve previous versions of a file.

Once I figured out that it was my SSD that was having the problem, I went through OCZ's RMA process. What a disaster. It took two days for OCZ to get back to me with an RMA number. Then it took a day for them to receive the disk. Then another 2 days for them to ship me one, and I finally got my new disk back today. Installing the replacement SSD was problematic, since it shipped unformatted. As a result, I've had to make a new windows install, and then recover that way.

The net net: it took 10 days, but my machine is finally fast again. Would I do the SSD upgrade? Yes. Would I buy the same SSD? No. I'm more likely to get an Intel 320 Series 120 GB SATA 3.0 Gb-s 2.5-Inch Solid-State Drive - Retail Box SSDSA2CW120G3B5 for my laptop. My experience with OCZ has definitely soured me on any more of their products, benchmarks not withstanding.
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