Help Me Choose: Boot Hard Drive/2nd Hard Drive/3rd Hard Drive/4th Hard Drive

Choosing a Workstation Hard Drive
• You should configure your workstation with a hard drive based on your capacity and performance requirements, as well as your legacy tools
• You should also consider your future storage requirements: While a single, smaller hard drive may be adequate for your present needs, adding a larger hard drive or multiple hard drives now can ensure sufficient storage space well into the future
Capacity requirements — Hard drive capacity is measured in gigabytes (GB) and more GB means more capacity. Because presentations, spreadsheets, databases and other higher demand business files take up far more space than email and word processing documents, they require a hard drive with more capacity.

Performance —
Hard drive performance is influenced by the speed of the drive measured in revolutions per minute (RPM). Higher RPM means higher performance. A 7200 rpm hard disk drive (HDD) is standard performance for desktop applications; however, if your work requires higher performance drives with fast access times and fast data read/write, then a 10K rpm hard drive is what you want.

Drive Types:

Solid-State Drives (SSDs):
SSDs provide the best overall level of storage performance. SSDs have no moving parts, so their speed is not measured in RPM. In addition to offering higher performance, SSDs are also more durable, more reliable, and operate cooler and quieter than standard hard drives.

Serial ATA (SATA) 7200 rpm and 10,000 rpm Hard Drives:
For magnetic hard drives the performance is influenced by the speed of the drive measured in RPM. A 7200 rpm HDD is standard performance for desktop applications. 7200 rpm are available in the highest capacities giving you more space to store your current and future data. 10,000 rpm hard drives have higher RPM’s which can transfer data faster resulting in higher performance.

SSD Boot Drive + SATA 7200 rpm Hard Drive:
Use an SSD as a boot drive configured in RAID with a 7200 rpm hard drive that offers the best of both worlds: performance and capacity. The SSD will feature fast boot up, snappy application loads and the performance benefits of the SSD. Pairing it with a SATA 7200 rpm hard drive will provide the capacity needed for current and future data storage. For this storage solution, Dell offers a small capacity 32GB SSD on T1650.

Self-Encrypting Drive (SED):

Keep your data safe by using powerful, hardware-based encryption without a negative impact on performance. With SEDs, the hardware-based encryption engine is built directly into the drive controller, delivering always-on encryption that operates at the full speed of the 7200 rpm SATA hard drive helping you maintain security without significant performance degradation. Dell's SED hard drive is OPAL compliant and FIPS 140-2 certified.

Note: The hard drive industry is transitioning SATA hard drives to Advanced Format technology. All Dell Precision workstations will utilize 512emulated (512e) Advanced Format and 512b legacy technology hard drives.

Storage Bus:
SATA 3.0Gb/s (formerly SATA II) or SATA 6Gb/s (SATA III),
a serial revision of the popular legacy ATA bus, features a raw data transfer rate of up to 3.0Gb/s or 6.0Gb/s, small connectors and cables, and a dedicated bandwidth and cable for each device. SATA delivers an excellent blend of high performance and configuration convenience.

SAS (Serial Attached SCSI)
unifies compelling elements of the SCSI and SATA worlds in a single efficient design. SAS is an excellent standard for workstation environments requiring extremely high performance and reliability. It supports the traditional SCSI command structure so it can work with SCSI software tools. And, like that of SATA 3.0Gb/s and SATA 10K, SAS’s raw data transfer rate is up to 3.0Gb/s. SAS, however, is a bi-directional bus, meaning data can be routed in both directions, yielding a higher number of simultaneous data transfers to and from multiple devices than SATA 3.0Gb/s or SATA 10K.