I purchased an Intel X25-M (G1) 80GB SSD in October 2009 when I built my computer - so a little over a year ago. Initially it was beautiful, very fast and reliable. Expensive, at $240 from Newegg, but I figured I was paying for quick boot times, snappy OS, fast core applications and web browsing.
Unfortunately in the last 3-4 months, performance has been degrading gradually, frmo noticeable, to bad, to outright terrible. It seems to manifest most often as insanely high disk queues in Windows 7 Resource Monitor. When I look in the Disk tab, I see the following, without fail, every time my system does its periodic lock-ups:
Both shots are literally from the last few minutes as I was typing this message. Response time column in Resource Monitor skyrockets (sometimes 6,000+), Disk Queue Length soars to over 1.00, CPU usage drops to 0, and the system is unresponsive for 5-30 seconds at a time.
It's always the SSD. Usually the responsible processes are related to my browser (Firefox) but thats because it's my most used application.
That blue line going up indicates "% Highest Active Time" according to the Resource Monitor. This happens even under light load - I could be loading a webpage or opening a speadsheet or what have you.
Here's the pretty sorry-looking specs I get from AS SSD.
The performance degradation of the Intel X25-M G1 SSDs seem to be pretty well documented online, although I don't know if Intel has ever acknowledged it. The most useful article I've come across is this: http://www.pcper.com/article.php?aid=669&type=expert&pid=1
I was hoping I maybe just had to update firmware, but Intel's tool says I have the latest (8820) so no hope for a quick fix there. System also tells me I have TRIM on but I don't know if Intel ever updated the G1s to make use of trim.
Windows 7 64 bit
Intel Core 2 Duo CPU (E8500 @ 3.16 Ghz)
And no, I don't try to defrag this drive, I know better than that. It seems to me like the extensive writes to the firefox profile files and maybe my images folder (which I recently moved off the SSD because of all this) wore the drive out - but in only a year! I still have mechanical HDDs from 5 years ago that run indistinguishably from when they were new.
What are my options, besides "wipe with secure erase and reinstall windows", or "buy a G2" - because I'm honestly wary of Intel SSDs now, and maybe SSDs in general. I'm willing to spend money on my PC but dropping $240 ($3/GB!) for less than a year of solid performance from my storage is not worth it. I could have bumped up to a quad core CPU and picked up a fast mechanical HDD for about the price the SSD cost me.