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4kb sectors on NT5.2


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#1 tempomate

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 07:39 PM

Hello all the reboot.pro team!

I would know if there is any known possible implementation of 4kb-sector hdd support on any xp/2003-sourced PE project ? I mean how can I avoid slow speed of such drives on old systems and make them working as on Vista KB2470478 and Win7 SP1.
As I know MS doesn't support that on their NT5.2 systems at all: http://markparris.co...ves-in-windows/ ...
... but maybe anyone knows anything about such possibility using some 3rd party drivers or something, or maybe there is any way to use Vista KB2470478 files for 2003-sourced PE ?

I was unable to google anything about it though.

Thanks

Edited by tempomate, 24 October 2012 - 07:52 PM.


#2 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 09:09 AM

Hello all the reboot.pro team!

I would know if there is any known possible implementation of 4kb-sector hdd support on any xp/2003-sourced PE project ? I mean how can I avoid slow speed of such drives on old systems and make them working as on Vista KB2470478 and Win7 SP1.
As I know MS doesn't support that on their NT5.2 systems at all: http://markparris.co...ves-in-windows/ ...
... but maybe anyone knows anything about such possibility using some 3rd party drivers or something, or maybe there is any way to use Vista KB2470478 files for 2003-sourced PE ?

I was unable to google anything about it though.

Thanks

I am completely missing the actual question. (actually the background of it). :ph34r:

Do you experience *any* issue with a 4Kb sectored hard disk under your PE 1.x (2003 based or Windows 5.2)?
If yes, which exact make/model of hard disk is it?
Which exact issue is it?
Have you experiemced, on the same system a difference in speed between the same disk partitioned with the traditional "orthodox" way of Cylinder alignment and partitioned with the new convention of cluster aligned?

Maybe you fell :unsure: into a "semantics trap", the fact that Microsoft doesn't support X or Y under Z, does NOT mean that X or Y don't work under Z, it means that IF they don't, THEN you shouldn't whine about that and ask them to solve the issue.
The behaviour between "X" (advanced format disks) and Y (native 4K sector disk) may be different, though.

:cheers:
Wonko

#3 tempomate

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 11:04 AM

Hi Wonko,
You are right, sorry that was my bad. I don't know why I thought that latest versions of Vista and 7 both support 4kb sectors NATIVELY. Seems they don't.

Yes, I mean the alignment problem. My question is: is there a way to make win2003pe work with 4kb-sector drives transparently without aligning them manually as win7 and vista does. When I say transparently I mean with the same performance without need to read-modify-write two 4kb sectors at time. I can provide link with the speed test if needed (I'm typing from my phone atm) but I guess you know what I'm talking about. As I understand there are two ways to do avoid poor performance of nt5.2 on such drives: hardware jumper or manual aligning of partitions, and jumper way requires manual alignment if we have two partitions or more.

How can nt5.2 operate such drives without those operations ? For example: I connect unaligned 4kb-sector drive to 2003pe. It could be too hard to re-align all partitions of it and if I use hardware jumper I would be unable to read any data from it. If I don't do anything it will work though but with poor performance.



I have a side question: does win8 supports 4kb sectors _natively_ or not?



Upd: omg, i just understood that my question was totally stupid. It is easier to manually partition drive instead of making nt5 align it automatically and when 7 or vista does it is automatically aligned, right ?

Edited by tempomate, 25 October 2012 - 11:30 AM.


#4 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 11:28 AM

There is no particular issue with using cluster aligned partitions on XP/2003, with the only VERY NOTABLE exception of this one :ph34r:
http://reboot.pro/9897/

What is highly debatable is the actual performance difference, which is actually "next to none" impossible to notice without benchmarking and very rarely affecting "anything" substantially in real life usage.

The difference is actually noticeable only on very slow devices (please read as "USB sticks") which more often than not are FAT32 formatted and thus the "new" partitioning scheme is usually INeffective :w00t: (and some more "advanced" tricks should be used), see:
http://www.msfn.org/...n-its-clusters/
http://reboot.pro/16775/
http://reboot.pro/16783/

What you are seemingly missing is that there is NO ISSUE whatsoever (exception made for the metioned one) in operating (pre-partitioned, externally or under other OS) disk drives following one or the other convention, and as said an actual speed difference is - at the most and possibly excluding particular Server scenarios - "marginal".

The drivers used by all NT systems (starting from 2K at least) simply ignore any and all CHS data and exclusively use LBA to access a device, the only issue may happen (and it is easily fixable) when booting, because of the CODE in the NT bootsector (both the bootsecto for FAT32 and NTFS is affected).

Right now you seem like attempting to solve a "non-problem"...:dubbio:
Current drives are most (if not all) of the Advanced format type, and there is no actual reason why a filesystem would not work on a non-512 byte sectors.
The issue may come with "particular" apps, mainly - but not only - those that use "direct disk access" (IF they are "badly" coded).

This thread:
http://www.msfn.org/...-sector-drives/
may help you in clearing the ideas :).


:cheers:
Wonko

#5 tempomate

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 12:14 PM

Thanks for your attention Wonko.

Ok, you say that performance difference is not noticable, but take a look please at this test review please: http://habrahabr.ru/post/108697/

Sorry its not english but you dont need to read it, just take a look at the graph picture with speeds for aligned and unaligned partitions under 2003 (i cant post the picture itself atm because typing from phone)

I thought thats a fact that unaligned partition with cluster size more than 512 bytes will operate very slowly on nt5 just because the boundary of almost each cluster will not match the boundary of physical sector of drive, if we have drive with 4kb sector for example. At the link i posted you can see there about two times slower speed for unaligned partition under 2003.

Personally i have one of that WD drives with 4kb sectors and file operations on it under xp have been going slower than under win7, but that was subjective.

Im sorry if im misunderstanding something, i just want to clear this side for myself. Ill take a look to links you have posted.

Cheers

#6 tempomate

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 12:22 PM

Ok, forgot it for some time. What I cant understand is: does win7 and vista automatically aligns partition while creating or does it use another way to operate data and partition is unaligned ? If its automatically aligned by Win7 or Vista there is no need to talk more about it

#7 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 12:31 PM

Yep, that is a benchmark.
Benchmarks are comparison tools, NOT measuring tools (related to "real life" usage).
Compare with:
http://reboot.pro/9897/#entry85960
http://thebackroomte...-on-an-emc-san/

The overall "feeling" will be - with the exception of Server intensive activity and/or "pure" and "random" small file data transfer - barely noticeable, but as said there are no particular issues (if not the one highlighted) with using aligned disk partitioning, if you review the mentioned post which does provide the "history", cluster alignment was actually introduced, with the diskpar (NOT diskpart) tool in 2003.


Ok, forgot it for some time. What I cant understand is: does win7 and vista automatically aligns partition while creating or does it use another way to operate data and partition is unaligned ? If its automatically aligned by Win7 or Vista there is no need to talk more about it

An UNtouched Vista :ph34r: or 7 will default to make cluster-aligned partitions if this is the question. :unsure:
Partitions previously created (not cluster aligned) will NOT be modified.



:cheers:
Wonko

#8 steve6375

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 01:10 PM

You may find some of this interesting... http://www.rmprepusb...utorials/4k_hdd

#9 tempomate

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 01:31 PM

Thank you guys , i understood what i was need

another question: if 2003 does not support TRIM does it mean that SSD will run more efficient only on win7 or later ? There is no alternative to run SSD with full speed on 2003 ?

#10 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 05:35 PM

Thank you guys , i understood what i was need

another question: if 2003 does not support TRIM does it mean that SSD will run more efficient only on win7 or later ? There is no alternative to run SSD with full speed on 2003 ?

The fact that the OS doesn't support the TRIM ATA command doesn't actually means that TRIMming is not possible, most vendors will provide tools for it (working on XP or 2003).

:cheers:
Wonko




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