It’s easy to feel overwhelmed in the world of hard drive technology available today.
If you are looking to upgrade your computer’s storage you probably have questions on just what type of drive to purchase.
This guide will explore SSD drive technology and help determine if it is worth getting the latest and greatest in terms of cost and performance. This will apply to Lenovo Laptop Drives as well as any computer.
NVMe really does make a difference. NVMe SSD drives are the new standard and are faster than SATA drives. But wait, there’s more to know.
SATA Vs. NVMe SSD Is There A Difference?
- Types Of Computer Storage Devices
- What Is An SSD?
- What Are The Different Types Of SSDs?
- What Is A Data Bus?
- Is PCIe SSD Faster Than SATA SSD?
- Which Is Better NVMe Or PCIe?
Types Of Computer Storage Devices
The most common drives are HardDisks(HDD) and Solid-State Drives(SSD).
HDDs are the older type of drive with spinning platters and moving parts.
SSDs are a newer type of drive with no moving parts and are commonly thought of as similar to USB thumb drives. That is, they are flash memory storage devices, which make them faster than the older HDDs.
What Is An SSD?
SSD stands for solid-state drive. It stores data on flash memory and as such is nonvolatile storage media. They have no moving parts are are very stable, giving SSDs a definite performance advantage over HDDs.
A computer will see performance improvements with a SSD because of it’s low read-access and faster throughput times.
What Are The Different Types Of SSDs?
You’ve decided it makes sense to buy a SSD, but there are many types.
You need to know how to attach a new SSD drive to your computer.
The hard drive is the slowest part of a computer.
SSDs as stated earlier are storage types and are available in several form factors to allow them to connect to your computer.
These form factors are:
- 2.5 inch – Traditional and a common size.
- mSATA – Uses SATA bus.
- M.2 – Replaces mSATA. Uses PCIe and SATA buses.
- U.2 – Uses PCIe and SATA buses. Used with 2.5inch drives and are hot-swappable.
- HHHL – Half Height Half Length physical PCIe card. A card that plugs into a PCIe slot.
What Is A Data Bus?
Data is transferred using data buses – either SATA or PCIe.
The operating system uses communications interfaces to communicate to storage devices – either AHCI or NVMe.
Serial Advanced Technology Attachment(SATA):
- An older data bus used to transfer data of up to 600MB per second.
- Traditional HDDs used a SATA data bus for transferring data.
- SSDs came along to replace HDDs but still used the SATA data bus.
- SATA is being phased out by faster PCIe data bus.
- Used to connect high speed SSDs directly to the CPU.
- Transfer speeds of around 4000MB per second, depending on the PCIe standard.
- SSDs can use the PCIe bus but older HDDs cannot.
Advanced Host Controller Interface(AHCI):
- Designed for the older HDDs with spinning platters.
- Communicates with the SATA controller.
Non-Volatile Memory Express(NVMe):
- NVMe allows SSDs to connect to the PCIe interface and communicate directly to the CPU.
- Designed for SSD drives to enable faster data transfers via PCIe.
- Communicates with the CPU.
Putting It All Together
Storage is the slowest part of your computer and the bottleneck for data transfer. SSD drive technology greatly improved data transfer speeds over the previous HDD technology with spinning platters.
Interested in upgrading the SSD on your Thinkpad X1 Carbon? Find out the steps you need to follow.
Is PCIe SSD Faster Than SATA SSD?
And now SSDs that use NVMe and the PCIe interface have faster transfer data speeds over a SATA SSD.
PCIe sockets can transfer data at about 25 times faster than SATA.
SSD drives that use NVMe are more expensive than SATA SSD drives so deciding if it’s worth buying comes down to how you plan on using the drive.
In normal day to day computer use you won’t see a great performance increase. If you work with large files or data transfers though, you should notice the benefits of the performance boost.
Upgrading an older HDD to a SSD will provide a very noticeable performance boost and is worth the upgrade.
Upgrading from a SATA SSD to a new NVMe SSD will not result in the same perceived performance boost as that from HDD to SSD.
If you do decide to upgrade your Lenovo laptop drive or any computer, make sure your computer motherboard supports the latest PCIe standard to take advantage of the increase in performance. Check the connector types of the motherboard as well so the SSD is compatible.
Also, buy a quality SSD. It’s worth the money to invest in a product that performs as expected.
Which Is Better NVMe Or PCIe?
If you are asking if NVMe or PCIe is better, then you need to know the PCIe interface can use NVMe to communicate with the CPU. As stated earlier, PCIe is a data bus and NVMe is a communications interface.
If you buy a NVMe SSD it will use PCIe.
Ask these questions:
Can the Lenovo laptop drive be upgraded?
Many Lenovo laptops have bottom panels that can be removed to upgrade the drive. Not all of them have this ability though. Check the Lenovo support site and double check your model can be upgraded.
What is the current size of the Lenovo laptop drive?
Make sure to know what size you currently have and what size you will need.
What bus does my Lenovo laptop use?
Make sure to know and check what type the current drive uses. You need to make sure the replacement you buy will be the same and compatible.
Do you need to make a backup before replacing the drive?
Make sure to do a complete backup if you deem it necessary.
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