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SSD/HDD impact on OpenFOAM/ANSYS/etc

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Old   March 29, 2012, 09:03
Default SSD/HDD impact on OpenFOAM/ANSYS/etc
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Ken
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Dear all,

Will having an SSD [Sata III] compared to a typical Sata I/II HDD have any significant [in the minutes or longer] effect on the inbuilt calculation facilities (icoFoam, SRFPimpleFoam, etc), simulations and general operation of OpenFOAM/ANSYS/Solidworks?

This is assuming the RAM, CPU and GPU are at the higher end of the hardware spectrum (specifically the Kingston HyperX T1, AMD Bulldozer FX 8150, EVGA GTX 580 1.5GB respectively).

If this thread is in the wrong section, please move it to the correct forum subsection
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Old   March 29, 2012, 11:35
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Obviously, hard drive speed only matters if you are frequently reading or writing to it. Simply iterating towards a solution does not tax the hard drive at all (assuming you have sufficient RAM). Without knowing what your workflow is like, I cannot tell you whether or not you would actually benefit from a faster hard drive. I can tell you a few situations where it does matter...

If you often run transient simulations and store the entire flow history at a high resolution, then you will be writing to the hard drive very frequently. Over the course of a single transient simulation, a faster hard could save hours or even days.

You should also consider a faster hard drive if you do a lot of interactive post processing. This is more-so for your sanity than saving time. A faster hard drive may mean loading the velocity field in 10 seconds instead of 30 seconds, which is not on the order of minutes but is a huge difference when you are sitting there waiting on it.
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Old   March 29, 2012, 19:49
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Cheers Kyle for the reply,

I may be storing entire flow histories for transient simulations as my final year engineering thesis is 'CFD of a turbine' [Quite a general thesis lol!], so I guess I may just fork out an extra $AUD 100 on a Corsair Force III 60GB SSD.

I will most likely have 16GB's of RAM clocked to at least 1.6GHz if not more depending on thermal stability with the fins/metal plates on the RAM and a RAM fan [Only water cooling on the AMD FX-8150].
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Old   March 30, 2012, 10:18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister_K View Post
so I guess I may just fork out an extra $AUD 100 on a Corsair Force III 60GB SSD.
Don't. Fork out more for a 120 gb Corsair Force GT... It doesn't slow down as much when filled over ~3/4 capacity as the Force Series III does, plus to hold your OS, installs of those 3 main programs and some decent sized results, you need 120 gb anyway.
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Old   March 30, 2012, 11:08
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scipy View Post
Don't. Fork out more for a 120 gb Corsair Force GT... It doesn't slow down as much when filled over ~3/4 capacity as the Force Series III does, plus to hold your OS, installs of those 3 main programs and some decent sized results, you need 120 gb anyway.
The biggest problem I have with SSD's is whether or not they are worth it, because $AUD99 can fetch either a 60GB SSD or a 1TB typical sata 3.5" HDD, the difference is a few seconds/minutes of speed for over 16x more storage capacity.

I most probably won't install anything except my OS [Win7 home 64 bit] and VirtualBox ubuntu with OpenFOAM on the SSD, because I can easily wait that few more seconds for SolidWorks/ANSYS to load up.

The point I'm not too sure about is the 'results' are they videos, data tables, or something else? Clearly I am very new to CFD , as well as the significance of having an SSD over a 'normal' HDD for CFD

EDIT: I've made a final decision to get the Intel 520 series 120 GB SSD

Last edited by Mister_K; April 2, 2012 at 20:30. Reason: Wrong description
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