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= Recent Articles/Updates =

MacBook Pro (Nvidia 8600M) GPU Failures/Repairs page updated
I've updated the page on MBP Nvidia 8600M GPU Failures/Repairs with another reader report on a failure and free repair. (Covered by the extended GPU warranty on affected models after "qualifying" per the special test app.)
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RAID0 Stripe performance w/2 WD RE4-GP 2TB (64MB cache) Drives in Mac Pro
From one of today's drive upgrade reports (first reader feedback on this drive model):

"I have two Western Digital (Enterprise class/5yr warranty) RE4-GP WD2002FYPS 2TB 64MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Hard Drives mounted inside my early 2008 Mac Pro 2.8Ghz dual quad core with 16GB RAM. The drives are striped as RAID0 using Apple RAID. I am using Snow Leopard.

(Apple system profiler info)
WDC WD2002FYPS-01U1B0:
Capacity: 2 TB (2,000,398,934,016 bytes)
Model: WDC WD2002FYPS-01U1B0
Revision: 04.05G04 (drive firmware version)
Serial Number: WD-WCAVY03611XX
Native Command Queuing: Yes
Queue Depth: 32
Rotational Rate: 5400

QuickBench (Extended Test) results: (I asked if system/OS cache was enabled)

Test Size: 20MB  Read: 529.577 MB/sec   Write: 103.486 MB/sec
Test Size: 30MB  Read: 497.702 MB/sec   Write: 129.871 MB/sec
Test Size: 40MB  Read: 525.597 MB/sec   Write: 110.671 MB/sec
Test Size: 50MB  Read: 532.748 MB/sec   Write: 126.109 MB/sec
Test Size: 60MB  Read: 528.853 MB/sec   Write: 123.408 MB/sec
Test Size: 70MB  Read: 526.427 MB/sec   Write: 111.937 MB/sec
Test Size: 80MB  Read: 535.590 MB/sec   Write: 115.273 MB/sec
Test Size: 90MB  Read: 527.714 MB/sec   Write: 123.185 MB/sec
Test Size: 100MB Read: 529.922 MB/sec   Write: 115.119 MB/sec

I've had these for about two months, and they have worked flawlessly. Super fast, although if the drives have not been accessed in a while, the initial speed is slower than shown as the drives come out of energy saving mode.
(He replied to my question on variable RPM (as ASP reported 5400 rpm above, but wondered if he ever saw that change).-Mike)
According to WD, the RE4 drive is "nominally 7200 rpm".
(FYI/Correction: The WD product link he sent is to the "RE4" model, but what he has is the RE4-GP (aka IntelliPower/GreenPower) - which WD does not list as 7200rpm. The GP/IntelliPower drives typically are 5400rpm.-Mike)
Note that this is the Enterprise version of the 2TB drive, not the Green Caviar version with 5400 rpm. (But you have the "GP" (WD2002FYPS) model which WD notes as "IntelliPower" aka GreenPower, it's the non-GP RE4 model (WD2003FYYS) they list as 7200rpm - they do not claim the GP models are 7200rpm. The 2TB RE4-GP does have 64MB cache however.-Mike) The RE4 has 64MB cache and longer MTBF. It costs more and isn't quite efficient as the Green Caviar (5400 rpm, 32MB cache), but to me seems worth the money for the extra performance and longevity.
It seems very quiet inside my Mac Pro and I haven't noticed any fan speed increase when I added the two WD drives to my other two hard drives.

Disclaimer: I have no financial or other interest in Western Digital.
-Pat"

(Neither do I, I don't own stock in any company, nor do I earn any commission on any drive sales, etc.)
I asked Pat to check ASP's "Rotational Rate" reporting after running a benchmark (or leaving it open during that) to see if it reported other than 5400 rpm - as despite the implied variable speed, the GP drives seem to run at a fixed (5400) rpm. (Assuming ASP reporting is dynamic - it's a new feature in Snow Leopard.) Pat later wrote he's not seen ASP report list other than 5400:

"I've got an external 5-disk RAID0 array. I transferred about 23GB in about 4 minutes or less between the pair of WD drives and the external array, and kept checking the ASP. It constantly shows 5400 rpm.
-Pat"

That sounds typical of the GreenPower/IntelliPower models of the past.

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G5 Tower/OS X Tiger user notes/benchmarks of 64GB SSD install
Previous SSD reports were from Intel-based Macs (MacBook/Pro, iMac, Mac Pro, etc.) but over the weekend a reader sent some notes/pix of his G5 Tower with SSD Drive.
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Apple Support/How-To/Troubleshooting Doc Updates

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Recent Articles and Reviews
Listing/links to recent articles and reviews you may have missed.
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