Apple Fusion Drive: Speedtest & Demo [Video]

Posted November 9, 2012 at 1:09pm by iClarified | Please help us and submit a translation by clicking here | 14514 views

Tldtoday has posted a speed test and demo of the new Apple Fusion Drive.

Available as a configurable option at the Apple Online Store, Fusion Drive is a breakthrough concept that combines the high storage capacity of a traditional hard drive with the high performance of flash storage. With Fusion Drive in your iMac, disk-intensive tasks — from booting up to launching apps to importing photos — are faster and more efficient. That’s because frequently used items are kept at the ready on speedy flash storage, while infrequently accessed items go to the hard drive. The file transfers take place in the background, so you won’t even notice. As the system learns how you work, Fusion Drive makes your Mac experience even better. And you don’t have to do a thing.

Take a look at the video below...

[via Courtney]

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Simon - November 9, 2012 at 2:38pm
Pretty impressive. I just wish they would offer the fusion drive with 256gb SSD option.
Tipp - November 9, 2012 at 4:23pm
It's already built into Mountain Lion 10.8.2, and you can do it yourself on any machine that supports 10.8.2. It will be interesting to see if Apple offers official support for this in Disk Utility or on the flip side, if they remove the commands to do it from machines that didn't come with the "Fusion Drive" as an option at purchase. Story with linked tutorials here:
MonkeySee - November 9, 2012 at 4:57pm
It's absolutely true. I put Samsung 256G SSD in the machine in conjunction with the existing 2TB drive and reinstalled OSX 10.8.2 on the SSD. Next, I instructed the machine to store and access all movie files in a Movie Folder create on the 2TB drive. The performance of is quite extraordinary. The movie experience is unaffected because it's read-only and limited by the data rate of the file only. All other frequently accessed files are kept on the SSD. Second test: pair a couple of 500G drive, set up as RAID0, with the SSD and set up a Document folder on RAID. The result: nearly twice as fast as the single HD. No need to buy Fusion.
SeaMonster - November 9, 2012 at 2:08pm
Seagate should sue!
Tipp - November 9, 2012 at 2:11pm
Hahaha. You guys are all wrong. You don't understand what this is. It's 2 physical drives SDD+HDD managed by the OS as 1 logical drive. It's not a Seagate hybrid that has a minimal amount of flash storage on a standard HDD logic board as a cache.
Petro - November 9, 2012 at 2:04pm
yeah what he said------^
odedo1 - November 9, 2012 at 1:59pm
this is nothing new!
Tipp - November 9, 2012 at 2:08pm
You are incorrect. This is most definitely new in the consumer space. Read my response to Zeke, also smug and incorrect, below for an explanation. This is not the standard hybrid drive you are thinking of and this isn't possible on any consumer version of Windows.
Zeke - November 9, 2012 at 1:38pm
So it's an Apple branded hybrid hard drive, huh? We've had these for YEARS in the PC world. Nothing new..
Tipp - November 9, 2012 at 1:53pm
No genius, you've never had this, and it is new in the consumer PC world. This is enterprise level tiered storage. It is 2 separate drives - 1 SSD for speed + 1 standard HDD for capacity - intelligently managed at the OS level as one logical drive. It's not a cache like in hybrid drives. Data is actually moved back and forth between the 2 physical disks depending on how frequently the data is used. Windows has never had support for automatic tiered storage like this, not even Windows 8. If you want more info, read through this post and its comments.
Tipp - November 9, 2012 at 1:56pm
And for the record, the hybrid drives you're thinking of are completely hardware based. They have worked with Macs since they arrived because they appear to any OS as a normal HDD. The flash caching that happens on them is managed by the controller on the HDD itself.
Zeke - November 9, 2012 at 2:33pm
I didn't actually get to watch the video, I just made an assumption. That sounds pretty cool! I'll watch it later (I'm in a class at the moment). Thanks for letting me know there's more to it, or I would have just dissmissed it :P
KsidE - November 11, 2012 at 5:18pm
Momentus XT Solid State Hybrid Drive (from Seagate) * a 7200 rpm HDD coupled to 8GB of SLC NAND It has been available for years.
Tipp - November 13, 2012 at 9:54pm
Oye. Did you read any of the other comments? Apple's Fusion Drive is not the same thing as Seagate's hybrid drives. Previous hybrid drives use a small amount of flash storage (4-8GB usually) on the actual HDD motherboard, which acts as a cache. The flash storage in Seagate's drives don't permanently store information, they just use it to speed up the copy process for the user. In Apple's Fusion drive (aka enterprise tiered storage), heavily used data is actually stored permanently on the SSD. It's also composed of a separate SSD and traditional HDD combination.
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