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Data access in a flash with SSD

Solid State Drives (SSD) are quickly becoming an alternative to traditional hard drives. GRAHAM BRAUM of Acer South Africa gives an overview of their uses and benefits.

Also known as an electronic disk for data storage, SSD uses solid-state memory to store persistent data with the intention of providing access in the same manner of a traditional block hard disk drive with no moving components. SSD’s of today are based on using a lot of non-volatile flash memory as opposed to RAM, which loses content when it loses power. SSD is the perfect alternative to HDDs (Hard Disk Drives) that use magnetic heads and spinning disks to record information. HDDs are today’s preferred method for long-term storage of data.

You may be familiar with Flash memory from the memory cards in your digital camera or mobile phone – this is exactly what the technology is about, however a solid state drive is a bit more complex. Without going into overly complicated details, there are two types of Flash memory technologies used in SSDs:

– Flash memory is based on memory cells, and

– The most common (and most affordable) type is the MLC (Multi-Level Cell) ‚ a technology that enables writing more data to a single cell of the drive

While most notebooks today come with standard hard drives, an increasing number are available with solid state drives.

SSDs Key Features:

Users are often amazed by the speed SSDs operate at which ultimately renders a great deal more productivity. When making use of an SSD card in your notebook you’ll see somewhat better system responsiveness, and a positive change in the way the system handles drive-intensive tasks such as reading data from and writing data to the drive, coming out of standby mode, and booting up from scratch, the extra cost of having “SSD inside”” might just be worth it.

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