Storage

Category page of all posts on the web site that are tagged as related to storage including benchmarking, various storage devices, walkthroughs and more!

Using Cheap 2.5″ SSDs with PS4/Xbox to Improve Performance

Last-Gen Console SSD Upgrade using StarTech

When my wife and I were trying to play Cyberpunk 2077 on our last-gen console it was extremely painful and not just because of the bugs. It was painful because every time I died it would take 2-3 minutes to reload the game.

Eventually I decided to grab one of my spare SSDs and use a USB to 2.5″ SATA adapter and hook it up to our last generation consoles and try installing all of the Cyberpunk files to the SSD. It made a gigantic difference getting my load times down to something closer to 20-30 seconds (much better than 3 minutes).

This is also an incredibly cheap thing to do. Even if you buy a new SSD and a 2.5″ SATA adapter you will spend under $30 or so if you get a minimal capacity SSD. If you already have an older spare SSD even better.

Today I’ll cover how to set this up. Let’s get started!

eMMC to SD Card Adapters Explained

UUGear eMMC to SD Adapter

The eMMC to SD card adapter shows up a lot in IoT devices. I have owned one for my Raspberry Pi for a while and they are fantastic.

In this article I will explain what these devices are, the main advantages of them (speed/performance) and benchmark some eMMCs to show performance differences. By the end of this article this should give you an idea if this is a type of device you’d want to work with / use.

Let’s begin!

2022 Raspberry Pi Storage Benchmarks

Storage Benchmark #48648

It has been a while since I covered storage benchmarks on the Raspberry Pi because every time I sat down to write it I ended up adding new features to the SBC storage benchmarks web site and it never got finished. Definitely make sure you check out the web site frontend as it will always give you up to date benchmarks!

There definitely have been some changes since my last coverage of this with the Compute Module 4 now dominating the charts by taking advantage of real NVMe via PCIe adapters to achieve speeds never seen before on the Pi. Let’s get right into it!

Benchmark Storage Performance on Linux

Linux Storage Benchmark

When attempting to determine storage performance on Linux there are common tests such as doing a DD write command and measuring the speed of that. These methods leave a lot to be desired and are especially bad at measuring random read/write performance (the most important for operating system / application performance).

I solved this problem for the Raspberry Pi by creating Pi Benchmarks. This is an open source benchmark that *does* measure random read/write performance as well as several other important factors (IOPS, etc.). We’ve collected many years worth of performance data across thousands of different drives including SSDs / HDDs / others. It’s enough information to be used to make important decisions about performance using hard data.

I’d like to announce that this exact same benchmark is now available for all devices! If you’d previously taken the benchmark on a PC or device other than a Raspberry Pi those results are now retroactively live on the site.

Benchmark Tinker Board, ODROID, Pine64, OrangePi and others

PiBenchmarks.com - Benchmark #43289

PiBenchmarks.com is now several years old. It has over 31,000 identified benchmarks. Previously only results from the Raspberry Pi would show live on the site.

like to announce that over the past couple of weeks I’ve added support for the SBCs that many of you had already submitted benchmarks for (even though they weren’t recognized on the site yet). These are now all retroactively live on the site right with all of the Pi submitted benchmarks.

Let’s take a look at a list of some of the models that were added and how to run the benchmark!

Fix Home Assistant / HAOS Raspberry Pi USB/SSD Boot Freeze

Home Assistant / HAOS

There are few things I dislike more in this world than getting questions on my setup guides that I don’t know the answer to, but thanks to an investigation by Bill Schatzow we can strike one of those issues off the list!

We’ve had a few comments of people who have encountered this issue over the years. Given that at best only 1% of people who visit the site leave a comment I think it’s safe to say that this issue has plagued thousands of people over the past 10-12 months.

Let’s take a look!

PCIe 1x NVMe on Raspberry Pi?! Compute Module 4 Guide

CableCC Vertical Adapter in Compute Module 4 IO Board

I recently covered all the pieces you need for a complete setup to work with the Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4. Today I want to cover the whole reason I wanted to investigate the Compute Module 4: The PCI express capabilities!

In this guide I’ll cover a couple of 1x PCIe to NVMe adapters I picked up to try doing this with as well as full configuration and setup instructions. Let us begin!

Full Compute Module 4 (Raspberry Pi) Setup / Imaging Guide

Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 mounted in IO Board

The Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 is primarily meant for embedded projects and didn’t catch my interest at first. That was until people started absolutely smashing previous records on my Pi storage benchmarking site pibenchmarks.com.

Upon further investigation it turns out that people are breaking these records using the Compute Module 4 since it allows running a NVMe drive through PCI express instead of having to use a USB adapter (the current bottleneck in other Pis).

Wanting to investigate these new capabilities for myself I got a hold of some gear and wanted to write a setup and configuration guide on everything you need for a full CM4 (Compute Module 4) setup and how to get it imaged and configured. Let’s get started!

Fixing Storage Adapters for Raspberry Pi via Firmware Updates

StarTech USB312SAT3CB

I’ve covered how to get the right type of storage adapter for your Raspberry Pi for years on this site and cataloged storage adapters that both work and don’t work with the Raspberry Pi. Over the years we’ve learned that many of these adapters can be “fixed” with a firmware update to work with the Raspberry Pi.

In this article I’ll put together an evolving list of firmware adapters that can be fixed with these updates from my own experience as well as comments people have left over the years!

Using Multiple M.2 NGFF 2280 SATA Drives Simultaneously

IOCREST NGFF 2230/2242/2260/2280/22110 SATA PCIe Enclosure

I’ve been running pibenchmarks.com for several years now so I’ve held on to any spare storage devices I can get my hands on for benchmarking/testing/cataloging purposes. This led to a big surplus of drives and no easy way to utilize them. That was before getting some new tools to be able to utilize lots of drives at once.

Last time I covered a monster 16 bay hot swappable 2.5″ SATA cage (as well as a more reasonable 8 bay option) in this “extreme storage” series of articles and in this article we’re going to cover M.2 SATA NGFF / M.2 NVMe drives. It’s also possible to do RAID!

Monster 16 Bay Hot-Swappable 2.5″ SATA Cage – ICY DOCK

ICY DOCK 16 Bay SAS/SATA Backplane Cage

I have a *lot* of 2.5″ SATA drives around the house that have collected from over the years from various devices. Often these drives have useful data on them or aren’t big enough to justify using on their own. The absolutely monstrous ICY DOCK 16 bay 2.5″ SAS/SATA backplane cage solves all of these problems and lets you hot swap (change out the drives while the OS is running) drives live in your OS!

In this guide I’ll cover how what I needed to actually set up something like this and my advice for people who are interested in these same type of hot swappable / RAID capabilities. I’ll also share the “sweet spot” recommendation to get the most bays for the least money if you’re on a tight budget. Let’s get started!

Where to get the 64 bit Raspberry Pi OS image for Pi 4 / 400

Pi 64bit OS - Forum Post

Last year a official 64 bit version of Raspberry Pi OS was released. There have been 3 versions of the image released with the latest one just having came out April 9th 2021.

It can be a little tricky to find and I’ve been asked in the comments here before on the site where to find it so I figured it was time to write a quick guide!

Raspberry Pi 400 Overclocking / NVMe SSD Setup Guide

Raspberry Pi 400 Setup w/ NVMe SSD

The Raspberry Pi 400 is the first offering from the Raspberry Pi lineup that is meant to approach desktop level performance. The official raspberrypi.org site lists the Pi 400 kit as the “Raspberry Pi 400 Personal Computer Kit“. It comes in the very interesting form factor of a keyboard with all the ports right in the back!

Although the performance on stock clock speeds and with a SD card was really great, especially for a Raspberry Pi, I would not call it desktop class performance. Fortunately we *can* make it desktop class performance with a few tweaks! This guide will show how to overclock the Pi 400 as well as set it up with a NVMe SSD to get the maximum possible performance we can out of it!

Raspberry Pi: Reclaim ~1% CPU Usage when SSD/USB Booting

SSD Ubuntu 'Top' - Fixed

Native support for USB mass storage device booting has made it’s way to all of the Raspberry Pi 4’s firmware release channels! With that exciting development an old issue from the Pi 3 and earlier USB booting days has manifested itself once again in the form of a constant 1-2% CPU draw even with nothing running.

This guide will show you an easy config.txt parameter to eliminate this problem and optimize your mass storage boot setups!