[ALUG] SD & Flash Drives

mark fernandes (IFR) mark.fernandes at BBSRC.AC.UK
Mon Feb 7 09:45:18 GMT 2011


Hi Simon,
My 701 eeepc has had no problems with SD or other USB sticks when hooked upto a Huawei 3G soap-bar.
Maybe Tony had a duff one.
Interested in distro's too. Have used Multiboot to make a USB sick with multiple distros to check feature support.
So far Ubuntu NBR 10.10, eeebuntu and Lubuntu (you may detect a theme here :-)) have been tried and am leaning
towards lubuntu (as per my son's desktop PC). That said Xandros has been fine as long as you're using the
eeepc as an appliance.

USB sticks - I've had 2 fail in about 10 years - mainly corruption of files. As has been said it depends on repeated
writes to same block and it is a MEAN time between failures (MTBF) so your mileage may vary (it's the distribution about
the mean that matters).

Regards,
Mark

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Today's Topics:

   1. SD & Flash Drives (Simon Royal)
   2. FOR SALE: ThinkPad R31 (Simon Royal)
   3. Re: SD & Flash Drives (Anthony Anson)
   4. Re: SD & Flash Drives (Wayne Stallwood)
   5. Re: SD & Flash Drives (Adam Bower)
   6. Re: SD & Flash Drives (Anthony Anson)


----------------------------------------------------------------------

Message: 1
Date: Sat, 5 Feb 2011 22:38:03 +0000
From: Simon Royal <mrsimonroyal at gmail.com>
Subject: [ALUG] SD & Flash Drives
To: Anglian Linux User Group <main at lists.alug.org.uk>
Message-ID:
        <AANLkTik7dfeChRXk1X0psrX1EEsMr4GsK5ecDw0gJmUU at mail.gmail.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

Hi

How reliable and durable are SD Cards and Flash memory. Im thinking of
getting an netbook, one of those little EeePC things but the earlier
models have limited internal Flash memory.

So, extra storage would be in the shape of Flash drives or SD cards.

How reliable are they for storing stuff? I read somewhere about the
100,000 rewrite limitation, but how true is this.

Ive got a USB thumb drive that I have had for about 6 years and it is
still going strong. It has outlasted some of my newer ones. It used to
house my website files so was used on a daily basis, written to dozens
of times at once.

Simon

--
--- Twitter:?http://twitter.com/SimonRoyal?- LowEndMac:
http://tinyurl.com/macspectrum?- Skype: Simon-Royal.
--- IBM ThinkPad R31 running Ubuntu 10.10 & Windows XP Home. Apple
PowerBook G3 'Pismo' running OSX 10.4. Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini
Pro running 2.1



------------------------------

Message: 2
Date: Sat, 5 Feb 2011 23:10:27 +0000
From: Simon Royal <mrsimonroyal at gmail.com>
Subject: [ALUG] FOR SALE: ThinkPad R31
To: Anglian Linux User Group <main at lists.alug.org.uk>
Message-ID:
        <AANLkTi==ziQL1qaZo0bvvmqYBQ7Dj4JsCsMQX_eF1jPm at mail.gmail.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

Hi.

I am looking at moving to an ultra portable netbook and to do so would
need to sell my ThinkPad to make funds for it. So up for sale is my
IBM ThinkPad R31.

Celeron 1.1Ghz.
512MB RAM (1GB Max, currently has 1x 512MB)
60GB hard drive.
CDROM.

Comes with two batteries. One is dead, the other holds charge but is
temperamental on charging. Original power supply.

The rear USB port is broken, so I have put a piece of electrical tape
over it. However, the side USB port works fine. Apart from this, it
has no other faults. The screen has some pressure marks.

Brilliant laptop currently running Ubuntu and XP. Has XP Pro COA
sticker on bottom of laptop. Hard drive will be wiped before sending,
so you will need your own OS.

Could supply a wireless card if needed. It is a NetGear I think, not
sure of compatibility with Linux. I would like to keep the Buffalo one
I am using.

If you are interested let me know. Make me an offer. Or swap for a netbook.

Simon

--
--- Twitter:?http://twitter.com/SimonRoyal?- LowEndMac:
http://tinyurl.com/macspectrum?- Skype: Simon-Royal.
--- IBM ThinkPad R31 running Ubuntu 10.10 & Windows XP Home. Apple
PowerBook G3 'Pismo' running OSX 10.4. Sony Ericsson Xperia X10 Mini
Pro running 2.1



------------------------------

Message: 3
Date: Sun, 06 Feb 2011 01:23:05 +0000
From: Anthony Anson <tony.anson at girolle.co.uk>
Subject: Re: [ALUG] SD & Flash Drives
To: Alug list <main at lists.alug.org.uk>
Message-ID: <4D4DF7F9.9090807 at girolle.co.uk>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed

Simon Royal wrote:
> Hi
>
> How reliable and durable are SD Cards and Flash memory. Im thinking of
> getting an netbook, one of those little EeePC things but the earlier
> models have limited internal Flash memory.

Never had any fail. My oldest one is 64 MB, and I had that when it was
state of the art.

If you do get an Eee and it has Xandros on it, I'd advise you to install
a proper distro on it. I've had xPUD and Crunchbang recommended for the
purpose. With Xan-dross on the Eee (or at least, my Eee) you can't use
the USB for anything else if you have an internet dongle plugged in.

If you then want to use anything else in the USB port(s) you have to
remove the dongle and reboot first.

The dongle won't work if you have a SD card in the slot either.

Other distros installed on the Eee don't suffer from this failing, I'm told.

I believe you can get at least 32 GB SD cards - but at a price. (8 GB is
currently around ?23, but I am told that it's cheaper on the continent.)

> So, extra storage would be in the shape of Flash drives or SD cards.
>
> How reliable are they for storing stuff? I read somewhere about the
> 100,000 rewrite limitation, but how true is this.

That's hardly a limitation. Don't forget, your Eee will have similar
'limitations'...

--
Tony Anson
www.girolle.co.uk/




------------------------------

Message: 4
Date: Sun, 06 Feb 2011 01:19:53 +0000
From: Wayne Stallwood <ALUGlist at digimatic.co.uk>
Subject: Re: [ALUG] SD & Flash Drives
To: main at lists.alug.org.uk
Message-ID: <4D4DF739.5020802 at digimatic.co.uk>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed

On 05/02/11 22:38, Simon Royal wrote:
> Hi
>
> How reliable and durable are SD Cards and Flash memory. Im thinking of
> getting an netbook, one of those little EeePC things but the earlier
> models have limited internal Flash memory.
>
> So, extra storage would be in the shape of Flash drives or SD cards.
>
> How reliable are they for storing stuff? I read somewhere about the
> 100,000 rewrite limitation, but how true is this.
>
>

I think modern and reputable make SD cards/flash memory are now durable
to the point that unless you are using them in heavy write scenarios
(swap or log files) then the lifetime will exceed the usefulness as
technology advances.

I have had a few usb flash drives die in my time but most of them have
been due to rough handling/water damage/connector damage. I can't
remember having an SD/CF card fail on me.

Also bear in mind that these figures are talking about writes to a
specific block. file allocation,fragmentation and wear levelling in the
flash controller all have an effect on this so the real figure will be
better.

If you are really concerned then making sure you mount with noatime and
using a non journalling FS will help prolong life..and improve speed as
with flash memory writes are usually slower than reads.






------------------------------

Message: 5
Date: Sun, 6 Feb 2011 09:51:31 +0000
From: Adam Bower <adam at thebowery.co.uk>
Subject: Re: [ALUG] SD & Flash Drives
To: main at lists.alug.org.uk
Message-ID: <20110206095131.GC20675 at electron>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=iso-8859-1

On Sun, Feb 06, 2011 at 01:23:05AM +0000, Anthony Anson wrote:
>
> I believe you can get at least 32 GB SD cards - but at a price. (8
> GB is currently around ?23, but I am told that it's cheaper on the
> continent.)

Wow, you must come from the past in a time machine! :) I got a 16GB
micro-SD last month for ?18 and a 16GB SD for ?16. On top of that I paid
a premium to make sure I got a card from a reliable retailer (so nothing
fake) and getting fast cards. 8GB is around ?8-?10 at the moment, it now
means that when I fill an SD card up in a camera that all I do is buy a
new card and put the old one in the fire safe.

Anyhow, as for the 100,000 writes thing. That is 100,000 writes per
block (and is quite an old metric from ye olde days of flash). How often
will you actually write to the card? I mean, assuming that you do
actually do 100 writes a day to the *entire* card that's still nearly 3
years of life at which point you can throw it away and buy a new one
that will have 8x the capacity of the same price.....

Adam
--
New signature required, suggestions on a post card please.



------------------------------

Message: 6
Date: Sun, 06 Feb 2011 11:58:18 +0000
From: Anthony Anson <tony.anson at girolle.co.uk>
Subject: Re: [ALUG] SD & Flash Drives
To: Alug list <main at lists.alug.org.uk>
Message-ID: <4D4E8CDA.4080204 at girolle.co.uk>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1; format=flowed

Adam Bower wrote:
> On Sun, Feb 06, 2011 at 01:23:05AM +0000, Anthony Anson wrote:
>> I believe you can get at least 32 GB SD cards - but at a price. (8
>> GB is currently around ?23, but I am told that it's cheaper on the
>> continent.)
>
> Wow, you must come from the past in a time machine! :) I got a 16GB
> micro-SD last month for ?18 and a 16GB SD for ?16.

Where?

> On top of that I paid
> a premium to make sure I got a card from a reliable retailer (so nothing
> fake) and getting fast cards. 8GB is around ?8-?10 at the moment,

Where?

> it now
> means that when I fill an SD card up in a camera that all I do is buy a
> new card and put the old one in the fire safe.

It's this 'reliable retailer' thang - The Swedes (Chapelfield Mall)
charge ?23 for 8 giggle, as do various camera shops and allied businesses.

I *KNOW* you can et them at sensible prices (a correspondent in Germany
does), but apart from buying online *I* can't find anyone - in Norwich,
at least. Online's OK unless you want one *now*.

--
Tony Anson
www.girolle.co.uk/




------------------------------

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