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Author Topic: Kingston USB 3.0 for ISO usage  (Read 1345 times)
MilesAhead
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« on: April 17, 2015, 08:43:59 AM »

I am starting to like Kingston USB 3.0 as a container for install media.  This 16 GB flash only writes at around 10 MBs but it reads pretty fast.  This makes it handy for install media.

At $8 a pop I find myself getting more of them.  I have one for Visual Studio 2013 Pro.  I just ordered another to use with Windows 7 Pro.  It also works pretty well as a bootable recovery for the Laptop.  I'm not sure how rugged it is.  But so far I haven't had any cause for concern.

Edit: I wish it came in more than one color.  I find myself putting a rubber band on to distinguish the contents.  I tried a web search for computer related decals or stickers.  But I didn't find anything useful for sticking on the side of the drive.  Printable labels might be fine if I was at home with my own printer.  But for something I can just stick on I didn't see anything good.

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4wd
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« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2015, 08:51:56 PM »

Use a CD pen, (permanent marker, Sharpie, etc), that's what I usually do.  You can always wipe it off with a little metho if required.

I wish they'd come out with a USB3 version of the Lexar Firefly, small with a nice big LED indicator that you could write on to show what it was used for.
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f0dder
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« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2015, 03:41:11 AM »

I've been using USB flash drives for OS installs for years, even USB2 tends to outperform optical media. A 20x DVD drive can theoretically read 26MB/s, but that's at the outer rim of a pressed DVD - the reading speed starts out closer to 1X, and you don't tend to hit 20X for home-burnt media, and any random I/O kills performance totally... so a USB2 flash that can do 20MB/s easily beats your optical drive, and since USB3 ones can easily read 100+MB/s, I haven't touched opticals for ages smiley

As for ruggedness, I really dunno. It's been a while since I've had a flashdrive die on me, but when they do, it tends to be from one day to the next, without any warning, and without a lot of use. I don't trust those things, and use the solely for installs or data transfer, not for long-time storage of data.
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f0dder
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« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2015, 03:51:04 AM »

Oh, and I'm annoyed with the way some manufacturers advertise speed. My 32GB SanDisk UltraFit is advertised as "up to 130MB/s read", but only does 40MB/s. It's stupid that they let their marketing goons be so deceptive... it's almost a 100MB/s difference, and 40MB/s is impressive for such a tiny thing, anyway.


For comparison, my 32GB Corsair Voyager GT 3.0 does 203MB/s - installs are preeetty fast from this one smiley
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MilesAhead
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« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2015, 06:43:43 AM »

@4wd thanks for the suggestion.  Cranioscopical suggested a kid's sticker instead of a label.  I'm lazy and it turns out Walmart will send 4 sheets of kid stickers(some stuff with monkeys or something) to the local FedEx Store for less than a buck.  Now I just need to create a legend which monkey signifies which software.  smiley  It may seem lazy but it is rapidly getting hot for dragging a bag in Miami.  The FedEx Store is right across the street from a MetroMover Station.  smiley

@fodder I'm not sure how fast the install will read from these Kensingtons but sequential read of both a virgin stick and one after it has a lot of data on is around 100 MBs.  I added Blend from vstudio 2013 Pro and although it did no back flips I didn't fall asleep waiting. For $.50/GB that's ok.  smiley

I'v owned various types of AData USB.  Some feel very light and flimsy, some rubbarized, some very rugged like the s102.  I don't know if it's luck but I don't remember one of them dying.  Maybe the rubbarized one as I had to squeeze it into a close space to plug it in.  One out of 10 or so seems pretty good.  Sandisk the first one I bought died which put me off the "sliding guts" design.  But you're right.  I just have to assume the worst.  I use the AData s102s for image backup as there's no other rational choice.  I can't lug WD Sata IIIs around in my bag.  smiley
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Innuendo
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« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2015, 11:21:42 AM »

@4wd thanks for the suggestion.  Cranioscopical suggested a kid's sticker instead of a label.  I'm lazy and it turns out Walmart will send 4 sheets of kid stickers(some stuff with monkeys or something) to the local FedEx Store for less than a buck.  Now I just need to create a legend which monkey signifies which software.

Waitaminnit....a fistful of flash drives each emblazoned with the image of a monkey? Hmmm....is Miles the origin point of the army of the 12 monkeys? <eyes Miles suspiciously>

Sandisk is a horrible company. I refuse to buy anything from them since when a few years ago they bought out a flash drive OEM (who I can't remember the name of at the moment) who offered drives that were three to four times as fast as what Sandisk was offering at the time. They bought the company, killed their products off, and kept offering their existing products with craptacular speeds.

If you can't beat the competition, buy them out and bury them.
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MilesAhead
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« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2015, 04:22:43 PM »

Waitaminnit....a fistful of flash drives each emblazoned with the image of a monkey? Hmmm....is Miles the origin point of the army of the 12 monkeys? <eyes Miles suspiciously>

It may be once I get 12 of them.  I keep telling you guys I'm a time traveler.  But people waste my time asking if I am from the past or the future.  In time travel, even at 1x, there is only the present.  Don't ask me how it works.  In the 1970s I was able to repair rear wheel drive automobiles that tended to traverse space in a very limited fashion.  I am not trained in temporal displacement engine  technology.  xaml is learning curve enough.  smiley
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cranioscopical
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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2015, 04:30:23 PM »

Now I just need to create a legend which monkey signifies which software.
If you use three you'll be completely free from evil. Also, since you'll be blind, deaf, and dumb you can sell off that laptop and relax.
 
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Chris
MilesAhead
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2015, 04:35:41 PM »

Now I just need to create a legend which monkey signifies which software.
If you use three you'll be completely free from evil. Also, since you'll be blind, deaf, and dumb you can sell off that laptop and relax.
 


I can forget about multimedia programming at least.  Wink

Edit:  I was tempted to get the Hello Kitty Sticker Sheets but they were $2.  I'm not made of money after all!  smiley
« Last Edit: April 18, 2015, 04:47:13 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

superboyac
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« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2015, 04:45:35 PM »

every advertised usb speed i've seen in my life has been grossly exaggerated.  
read speeds are not an issue to me, I've never really had any issues with read speeds with usb drives in my life. but maybe i'm not remembering anything correctly.
write speeds are where it's at for me.  for usb 2 drives, the write speeds are never more than, say, 20 MB/s.  Maybe sometimes it will burst high, but usually i think they are in the 10-20 range.
for usb 3, i have hit the 80-100 MB/s range, but only with an SSD drive inside an enclosure.  And even that wasn't terribly consistent.  Depending on the computer, or the situation, I've even seen that commonly go to the 30-50 range.
for thumbdrives, I've never had great speeds, regardless of the advertised speed or whatever.  Thumbdrives are just going to be slow.  And the usb 3 offerings for thumbdrives suck.
I don't even know if it's the thumbdrive problem.  There is something wrong with USB 3 in general, it's not very reliable.  I've tried transferring a large about of data to an external drive connected to USB 3...wether it was an SSD, or flash, or mechanical drive...and things usually go wrong.  Often times, the drive will disconnect in the middle of the transfer.  SOme of my research has shown me this is common, and not resolved, and people aren't very sure what the issue is.  There is something wrong with USB 3.    Drives have become corrupted on more than one occasion.
There is one great thing that has helped me...I bought an extra external power USB cable to use with my external drives, and that seems to be a great help (I got it from addonics).  So I plug the external drive in the usb 3 slot, and i plug an additional power cable to the enclosure.  This makes the transfers much smoother.  SO USB 3 may have a power supply problem.  Still, I feel something is wrong with it fundamentally.  

i recently was able to get about 100 MB/s, consistent and reliable, with the mentioned power cable with a inatek usb3 enclosure on my tablet and the extra power cable (mechanical 2.5 drive inside).  Without it, the tablet couldn't even read the drive.  it would literally connect and disconnect constantly.  and in the past, without the extra power, the drives have become corrupted and needed to be reformatted.  be careful with USB.

esata has been good to me.  No problems usually.  But my esata drives usually have external power connected anyway.  It might just be a power issue.  Which may be why all the thumbdrives suck, is because they don't have external power.

I personally have always had problems with usb as far as speed and reliability.  For convenience, it's great, but for transfers, not so much.  

and what frustrates me the most is that there just doesn't seem to be much discussion about these real issues with USB.  Again, one time I found this one guy who had done quite a bit of investigation and had proven that this is not a driver problem, or an enclosure problem, or a manufacturer problem...but really a USB problem.

If you were to ask me, I would like a little more attention given to other platforms like esata or thunderbolt.  but there is politics here.  I think the important people know about this power problem, but there isn't enough demand to fix anything at this point.

Case in point, a couple of years ago, I got a vaio laptop that had a special thunderbolt implementation.  Did it have an actual thunderbolt plug?  Nope.  guess what it was?  it was a funky USB3+power cable.  And it kind of worked pretty well compared to other USB 3 implementations I've seen.  So that means sony is aware that USB3 needs additional power to do anything that the advertised specs say.  yet hardly any USB3 implementation have the extra power (talking about thumbdrives and stuff, for obvious reasons).  see below for the plug I'm talking about:


so my point is, no matter what anyone says, I would never expect much more than 30MB/s write speeds with any kind of USB device that doesn't have extra power.

Also, the only time I've seen awesome write speeds (as in, over 80 MB/s consistently) is with good RAID setups.  I've gotten 50-80 with software raid, which is ok.  I've gotten almost 200 MB/s with SSD raid (two drives).  I've seen videos of people getting crazy high, like 400 MB/s, with some good Raid setups.

I just ultimately feel the consumer market for thumbdrives is not getting the attention needed to get the higher speeds.  I think the technology is there and available.
« Last Edit: April 18, 2015, 04:55:00 PM by superboyac » Logged

f0dder
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« Reply #10 on: April 18, 2015, 06:00:09 PM »

superboyac: weird.

USB isn't a super swell protocol, especially USB2 was bad - FireWire400 routinely beat the crap of out the 480mbit/s USB2, for various reasons. And I've seen my fair share of connectivity issues in the days of USB2. But I think it's been an issue of controllers and firmware - not drivers or protocol.

The last several years, I haven't had connectivity issues (apart from a few flashdrives frying). I've had devices connected and transferring for 10+ hours without problems (zeroing out a new drive or transferring data) for externally-powered USB2. My corsair USB3 flashdrive is fast (haven't timed writes, but even though it's slower than the ~200MB/s listed above, it's way faster than USB2 xfer speed).

A 180gig Intel SSD in (externally powered) USB3 docking station easily does 150MB/s, and the (self-powered) USB3 2.5" WD Passport 2TB has been stable as well, and performs pretty much as I expect a raw drive to do:


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superboyac
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« Reply #11 on: April 18, 2015, 07:35:33 PM »

fodder: that's usually the first response, that it's a problem with controllers and firmware.  But I wish I could find it...this one guy tested this idea using different controllers, different computers, different firmware, and always had the same result.  it's a USB problem, and for some reason, it is not talked about.

I'm not saying usb is bad.  it's perfectly fine and awsome for convenience, and a common platform, etc.  but for reliable, large capacity, heavy usage transfers, it is just not very good.

your corsair thumbdrive, i assure you, is getting nowhere near 200 MB/s.  reading is fine, nobody really has issues with reading speeds.  i'm willing to bet you're not even really getting over 50 MB/s sustained.

external power is a different story.  external power +usb3 is pretty good.  here's my opinion:

esata: great
usb3 (no ex. power): mediocre.  a little better than usb2, and more unreliable.
usb3 + ex. power: good.  great for speed, somewhat unreliable but probably not that big a deal.
usb3 (no ex. power): bad!  not worth it, i'd rather go with usb2.
usb2 (no ex. power): good. slow speeds, pretty reliable for non-mechanical drives. not reliable for mechanical drives or large capacity drives.
usb2 + ex. power: very good.  reliable.  not very fast.  should work fine with any kind of drive.
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f0dder
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« Reply #12 on: April 18, 2015, 08:11:00 PM »

superboyac: well, "this guy tested it"... no, sorry.

I'm not a fan of USB myself, the protocol is a hackjob - as I mentioned before with firewire400 vs usb480. But it does work in practice, at least on recent systems... and the right ports. USB3 speed is a guesswork, "blue" ports on my motherboard seems irrelevant.

Quote
your corsair thumbdrive, i assure you, is getting nowhere near 200 MB/s.  reading is fine, nobody really has issues with reading speeds.  i'm willing to bet you're not even really getting over 50 MB/s sustained.
The results I've posted are from HDTune - it's real. Those are repeatable, sustained speeds. And we're talking old-fashioned megabyte/sec, not megabit or mibibiwhatever. Write speeds are obviously different, especially for flash memory, and I haven't timed those.

So...

I'll exclude all the externally powered devices from my conclusion - they perform way too well, anyway. So: the USB3-self-powered passport disk does 52MB/sec min, 116MB/s maxx. I have three of those, and one of them has two platters. I haven't transferred a petabyte to them yet, but it's close.

My experience:
eSata: joined too early, (reproducable) random disconnects due to buggy firmware - nice speed
usb2: lame, slow speed, instability due to drivers

usb3 has nice speed - but it requires host compatibility.
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superboyac
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« Reply #13 on: April 18, 2015, 09:31:27 PM »

ok fodder!  I'm convinced!
i need the models of your usb3 flashdrives.   Thmbsup

check that...I'm rereading your response.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but you are talking about 2.5 disks, not thumbdrives right?  If you have a thumbdrive that is consistently getting over 50MB/s, i need the model!
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« Reply #14 on: April 19, 2015, 09:01:48 AM »

Speaking of shortcomings of USB 2-3 has anyone heard of actual USB 3.1 in the wild?  Or is it still something that only works in standards committee meetings?
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« Reply #15 on: April 19, 2015, 10:06:52 AM »

fodder: that's usually the first response, that it's a problem with controllers and firmware.  But I wish I could find it...this one guy tested this idea using different controllers, different computers, different firmware, and always had the same result.  it's a USB problem, and for some reason, it is not talked about.

I do not doubt you read this & I don't doubt that this guy achieved the results he did. However, there needs to be more tests. There may have been a flaw in his testing methods of which he was not aware.

I have a Patriot Rage flash drive that just screams on reads and writes. I had an old Kensington USB 2.0 drive that was very fast for its time as well. The problem is that some manufacturers lie about their read/write times. Others just slap the words USB 3.0 on their packaging & while it's technically true it's a USB 3.0 drive, their product actually performs much worse than a lot of USB 2.0 drives.

Price isn't always an indicator, either. There are some truly crappy drives that are being sold at really high prices. The only thing we can do is research, research, research before we make our purchase.
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f0dder
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« Reply #16 on: April 19, 2015, 10:07:23 AM »

check that...I'm rereading your response.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but you are talking about 2.5 disks, not thumbdrives right?  If you have a thumbdrive that is consistently getting over 50MB/s, i need the model!
My first post has benchmarks of a SanDisk (50MB/s) and a Corsair (200MB/s) thumbdrive, my 2nd post is a 2.5" WD harddisk smiley
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superboyac
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« Reply #17 on: April 20, 2015, 02:59:40 PM »

check that...I'm rereading your response.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but you are talking about 2.5 disks, not thumbdrives right?  If you have a thumbdrive that is consistently getting over 50MB/s, i need the model!
My first post has benchmarks of a SanDisk (50MB/s) and a Corsair (200MB/s) thumbdrive, my 2nd post is a 2.5" WD harddisk smiley

What do you get for WRITE speed on your corsair?  btw, it is rated quite highly online.  Can you crack 100MBps?
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f0dder
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« Reply #18 on: April 28, 2015, 10:19:33 AM »

What do you get for WRITE speed on your corsair?  btw, it is rated quite highly online.  Can you crack 100MBps?
Did a Windows reinstall the other day (now running Win8.1, yay!) and used the Coprsair for the install files - got a steady 50MB/s for the ~27gig vmware image I was restoring, that's decent enough write speed for a thumbdrive.
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superboyac
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« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2015, 03:44:10 PM »

What do you get for WRITE speed on your corsair?  btw, it is rated quite highly online.  Can you crack 100MBps?
Did a Windows reinstall the other day (now running Win8.1, yay!) and used the Coprsair for the install files - got a steady 50MB/s for the ~27gig vmware image I was restoring, that's decent enough write speed for a thumbdrive.
Not bad!  That is blazing for a thumbdrive.  And it's not that expensive...i should get one.
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