2 Replies Latest reply on Dec 28, 2017 2:44 PM by Intel Corporation

    How much of the data is written onto the Optane cache drive and does an Optane crash really destroy all data?

    aliquis

      Hello.

      I've been checking out the Seagate Ironwolf and Seagate Ironwolf Pro 8 TB drives which offer 3 and 5 years limited warranty with a yearly write of <180 and 300 TB written.

      I've also considered the WD Gold and HGST HE10 drives which is more reliable but they have a higher noise level than the Ironwolf drive. For some reason some review claimed lower noise level for the Ironwolf Pro than the Ironwolf but I guess that may just have been a mistake.

      My Samsung EVO 250 GB is only warranted up to 75 TB and the Optane 32 GB drive I Think was 110 TB.

       

      Anyway:

      1) Should I even bother with HDD life-time with an Optane cache? Is the 110 TB all data being written through to the HDD / does it let everything pass by or can I just assume it's the small file segments or the occasional writes or what?

      I don't know what to make out of the 110 TB but for a good HDD 110 TB is nothing. The Seagate Enterprise Capacity and the WD Gold and HGST HE10 drives all have their reliability calculated on 550 TB written per year.

      Would the Optane cache be gone by far ahead of that time? At-least as far as warranty goes? I assume my writes may be below 110 TB / year but.
      2) I can't understand why Intel Optane cache is worse by design than the SSD cache. The SSD cache work with any HDD as far as I understand and removing the SSD doesn't destroy any data. I can't really understand why one voluntarily put some data only on the Optane drive. Sure I can understand how some write onto it may not have been commited to the HDD yet and possibly for some usage scenarios how you may not want to do that (assuming it changes a lot), but I don't see why you'd DEFINITELY want to remove some operating systems files from the HDD and put them onto the Optane drive (or even worse just some blocks of it) resulting in a corrupt/broken filesystem if the Optane drive dies. Is it just that the machine won't boot because some Windows files is on the Optane drive or do some other files on the HDD also miss parts / some files will be missing because they ONLY were on the Optane drive whereas other parts are just fine and totally readable from the HDD or is the whole system corrupt and completely destroyed because one drive is missing and there goes all your data and you better have a backup of it all? For a normal home consumer where backup isn't a normal routine why would anyone want to increase the odds of losing their data? Especially since the SSD cache doesn't lead to the same problem.

       

      TL;DR:
      1) How much of the writes onto the file-system in general end up being written to the Optane drive. As in after how much total written data can one expect it to be at risk of dying?
      2) Do a broken Optane drive really screw up the whole file system or how much damage is caused by it and how much is easily (hook up  into a bootable machine and just copy your files over) recovered from the HDD once an Optane drive dies?

        • 1. Re: How much of the data is written onto the Optane cache drive and does an Optane crash really destroy all data?
          aliquis

          Is the nature of an Optane + HDD system such that having a backup become even more important?
          Of course one should have one regardless but that's not necessarily the case. Is the risk of losing data massively increased and a backup solution much more justified?

          • 2. Re: How much of the data is written onto the Optane cache drive and does an Optane crash really destroy all data?
            Intel Corporation
            This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation

            Hi aliquis, 

            We understand your concern regarding the Optane(R) Memory. 

            We would like to inform you that the Optane(R) will trigger an alert depending on the situation as per this article

            *If the boot drive is beginning to fail you will see the following error: 

            "Your system drive is starting to degrade. Disable Intel® Optane™ memory to avoid data loss."

            *If the Optane(R) module is starting to fail, you will see the following error message:

            "Your Intel® Optane™ memory module is starting to degrade. Disable Intel Optane memory to avoid data loss."

            The rated endurance for the 32 GB Optane(R) module is 182.5TB lifetime writes as per specs. However, its worth mentioned that this is a conservative estimate for warranty purposes. 

            If your Optane(R) fails, the system will not be able to boot again due to the boot cache files that are in the module. We have seen reports were customers disabled the Optane(R) in a wrong way and they were not able to recover the data even connecting the drive as a storage device.   
             
            Please let us know if there is something else we can assist you with. 

            Regards, 
            Junior M.