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  1. #1

    Booting off and running on USB stick = same speed as SSD hard drive?


    Say I run Linux off a USB stick.
    Is this the same speed and performance as running off an SD hard drive?

    While on the subject of USB sticks... how do I know the speed?
    Unlike SD cards, I don't see USB stick advertised with speeds?

    Assuming that I will run off a USB 3 connection, what should I buy?

    Sorry if that sounds like a dumb question!

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by enginestar View Post
    Say I run Linux off a USB stick.
    Is this the same speed and performance as running off an SD hard drive?
    Not even remotely close. Running off a USB stick is SLOW. It might be marginally better with a USB 3.0 drive in a USB 3.0 port but it will never even approach the throughput of spinning hard drive much less an SSD.
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  3. #3
    Linux Engineer drl's Avatar
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    Hi.

    I agree with NGIB. We are currently using FreeNAS: FreeNAS Storage Operating System | Open Source - FreeNAS - Open Source Storage Operating System on a hex-core machine (12 CPUs considering hyper-threading).

    It is designed to run the OS off a stick so that the disks can be used exclusively for data.

    It is monitored and controlled by a custom web server, and responses to web requests are very slow compared to other means of storage.

    Best wishes ... cheers, drl
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  5. #4
    Say I run Linux off a USB stick.
    Is this the same speed and performance as running off an SD hard drive?
    No - there are fundamental differences in the flash memory used in USB sticks and SSD drives. While USB flash used to be *very* slow, it has improved. But in general, it's only 'speedy' when writes/reads are sequential. And USB flash is not designed to last with many reads and writes over and over - it will fail much sooner than an SSD. This makes it not ideal to run an operating system (unless the OS resides primarily in memory.)

    There are sites that share user-measured USB thumb drive performance, since they do vary widely between models. Sites like Best USB Flash Drive - 104 Charts - UserBenchmark

    If you are running a normal desktop OS from USB, you'll likely want to use an SSD or HDD unless you don't mind the drive A) running slowly with small, random I/O and B) suddenly dying.

  6. #5
    Not even remotely close. Running off a USB stick is SLOW.
    quite.

    often one can choose a hybrid mode called "live usb install with persistence".
    search for that (with "linux" in front), you will find.
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