Got a new ssd and overall I'm pretty happy with it. I have Windows 7 and AoC installed on the ssd and I have a copy of AoC on the second hard drive as well so I can run AoC from either drive. The issue is that there is an odd hitching/stutter during disk accesses when playing AoC, or any other game, from the ssd.
It's not *that* bad and maybe I'm expecting too much but I had thought an ssd would eliminate any kind of stutter from disk accesses completely.
On the other hand, and this is what makes me think something is not right... if I run AoC from the old hard drive the odd stutters do not happen at all. I'm defining odd stutters as when I'm just moving through a zone and everything hitches for no apparent reason. I know AoC has to build a cache after a new install and that anything new coming into range will cause some disk access which can cause stuttering but this seems to be happening for no reason and it's only when running from the ssd.
On the other other hand... When running into a raid or a new area for the first time the ssd is hands down the winner for fast, smooth loading of all the players/npcs and armors. Zone times are much faster as well. 3 to 5 seconds for most zones. Windows boots in about 8 seconds as well.
At this point I'm thinking the odd stutters are caused by some program, likely Windows itself as I have nothing else going that I'm aware of, including no anti-virus atm, writing something to the ssd which apparently only causes in-game stutter if the game is also running from the ssd. About the only thing I haven't done is install Windows to the hard drive and AoC to the ssd and see how that works.
Basically my question would be is this normal for ssds?
If not I'm thinking this ssd is either crappy or going bad or the sata controller on the motherboard is not up to snuff. Perhaps a combination of some/all of that and a slightly weak cpu as well.
Happy to hear any advice or suggestions. What I've done so far is:
Updated the motherboard bios to the latest version.
Updated the ssd firmware to the latest version.
Made sure the motherboard bios was set to Sata and ACHI mode.
Did a full wipe and a clean install of Windows 7 from a disk with SP1.
Turned off Indexing, Prefetch, SuperFetch, Scheduled Defrag and Hibernation.
Ensured TRIM was turned on via the fsutil command.
Installed DX9 from the June 2010 full distribution package.
Installed the latest AMD video drivers.
Experimented with Pagefile on and off. Made no difference. Ditto for Prefetch/SuperFetch and Write Cache Buffering and flushing.
Tried the latest version of both the Windows native ACHI driver and the Intel Rapid Storage Technology drivers. No difference.
Using Driver Booster from IObit to update all the drivers btw. Seems like a decent program.
SSD is plugged into a Sata 3 port. Tried two different cables with it. Also tried plugging it into a Sata 2 port for testing and tried disconnecting every other drive, including the dvd, in the computer to see if there were possible conflicts or resource hogging. No difference.
Disabled Recycle Bin and System Restore.
Set Power option to High performance making sure all cpu cores were set to 100% min and max and that the drive will never go into Sleep mode.
Ran AoC, and other games, with sound off and with the motherboard audio disabled in bios. No difference.
This is a benchmark of the computer from UserBenchmark.
I've noticed over time the write performance on the ssd has gone down slightly, which from what I read is to be expected.