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Samsung 950 Pro M.2 PCIe Gen 3x4 NVMe SSD RAID 0 Report

By: Jon Coulter | RAID in Storage | Posted: Feb 17, 2016 2:15 pm

Jon's Consumer SSD Review Test System Specifications



We would like to thank ASRock, Crucial, Intel, Corsair, RamCity, IN WIN, and Seasonic for making our test system possible.




Bootable PCIe RAID 0 Settings


We will briefly go over the settings we used to create a bootable PCIe array:




SATA mode needs to be set to RAID and RST PCIe storage remapping needs to be enabled.




After a restart, Intel's Rapid Storage Technology will show up in advanced options.




We used 64K stripes. We found that a 64K stripe size delivers better random and sequential performance than the default 16K.




Storage OpROM policy needs to be set to boot UEFI only for a bootable array. Alternatively, you can disable CSM if your video card supports UEFI. You are ready to load Windows at this point, but you must have a compatible "F6" RST driver ready to load with Windows (we chose the latest version 14.8), or the array will not be recognized. Windows installer must be loaded as UEFI, so Windows is installed on a GPT partition.




Once Windows is loaded, you will need to install the RST control panel to enable write-back caching, which is a must for superior performance.



Drive Properties





The majority of our testing is performed with our test drive as our boot volume. Our boot volume is 75% full for all OS Disk "C" drive testing to replicate a typical consumer OS volume implementation. We feel that most of you will be utilizing your SSDs for your boot volume and that presenting you with results from an OS volume is more relevant than presenting you with empty secondary volume results.


System settings: Cstates and Speed stepping are both disabled in our systems BIOS. Windows High-Performance power plan is enabled. Windows write caching is enabled, and Windows buffer flushing is disabled. We are utilizing Windows 10 Pro 64-bit for all of our testing except for our MOP (Maxed-Out Performance) benchmarks where we switch our OS to Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit.



Blink of an eye boot speed



We got some pretty amazing boot speed out of our 950 Pro arrays; somewhat faster than a single drive.

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