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raymac46

An Upgrade

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raymac46
Posted (edited)

I've been busy this afternoon with a laptop upgrade. Not my favorite type of IT but I think it'll be worth it.

The system: a Lenovo Flex2-15D from 2014. It has an AMD quad core A8-6410 APU. That's a bit better than Bulldozer but not as good as Ryzen. It's excellent with Linux. There's only one memory slot and that has an 8GB SODIMM in it. 8GB is more than enough for me at this point. The weak point of the system was a large but slow 1TB 5400 RPM drive. Loading and launching programs took forever - especially when running Windows. The Flex2 recently was replaced by a Ryzen laptop and I installed Linux. It has a touchscreen the grandkids like. And it runs a lot better with Linux - the wifi card doesn't crash anymore as it did with Windows 10.

The solution: remove old HDD and replace with a Western Digital Blue 500 GB SSD.

The activity: a lot of screwing around. 9 screws on the back, remove and unplug keyboard, 5 more screws under that, take out optical drive (yes it has one,) 2 more screws for HDD caddy, 4 screws holding HDD. Fit in new SSD, screw it into the caddy, screw caddy back onto the motherboard, replace 4 screws,  replace optical drive and its screw, reconnect and replace keyboard, turn unit over and replace 9 screws. The thing booted up to BIOS. I put in a USB, installed Linux Mint, copied files back from a portable drive. It's working great now.

The O/S: Linux Mint 19.3 - may upgrade to Linux Mint 20 when it comes out. After all the hardware stuff i wasn't in the mood to do anything exotic and the grandkids like Linux Mint.

These consumer grade Lenovo laptops are not designed for easy maintenance or upgrades but I managed. I can't see running any computer these days without an SSD.

 

Edited by raymac46
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raymac46
ray@ray-Lenovo-Flex-2-15D:~$ inxi -Fxz
System:
  Host: ray-Lenovo-Flex-2-15D Kernel: 5.3.0-53-generic x86_64 bits: 64 
  compiler: gcc v: 7.5.0 Desktop: Cinnamon 4.4.8 
  Distro: Linux Mint 19.3 Tricia base: Ubuntu 18.04 bionic 
Machine:
  Type: Laptop System: LENOVO product: 20377 v: Lenovo Flex 2-15D 
  serial: <filter> 
  Mobo: LENOVO model: Lenovo Flex 2-15D v: 31900058 WIN serial: <filter> 
  UEFI: LENOVO v: 9FCN27WW date: 06/11/2015 
Battery:
  ID-1: BAT0 charge: 20.3 Wh condition: 21.3/30.1 Wh (71%) 
  model: SANYO L13S4A61 status: Unknown 
CPU:
  Topology: Quad Core model: AMD A8-6410 APU with AMD Radeon R5 Graphics 
  bits: 64 type: MCP arch: Puma rev: 1 L2 cache: 2048 KiB 
  flags: lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 sse4a ssse3 svm 
  bogomips: 15970 
  Speed: 998 MHz min/max: 1000/2000 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 1318 2: 1181 
  3: 1201 4: 1349 
Graphics:
  Device-1: AMD Mullins [Radeon R4/R5 Graphics] vendor: Lenovo 
  driver: radeon v: kernel bus ID: 00:01.0 
  Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.5 driver: ati,radeon 
  unloaded: fbdev,modesetting,vesa resolution: 1366x768~60Hz 
  OpenGL: renderer: AMD KABINI (DRM 2.50.0 5.3.0-53-generic LLVM 9.0.0) 
  v: 4.5 Mesa 19.2.8 direct render: Yes 
Audio:
  Device-1: AMD Kabini HDMI/DP Audio vendor: Lenovo driver: snd_hda_intel 
  v: kernel bus ID: 00:01.1 
  Device-2: AMD FCH Azalia vendor: Lenovo driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel 
  bus ID: 00:14.2 
  Sound Server: ALSA v: k5.3.0-53-generic 
Network:
  Device-1: Realtek RTL8111/8168/8411 PCI Express Gigabit Ethernet 
  vendor: Lenovo driver: r8169 v: kernel port: 1000 bus ID: 01:00.0 
  IF: enp1s0 state: down mac: <filter> 
  Device-2: Qualcomm Atheros QCA9565 / AR9565 Wireless Network Adapter 
  vendor: Lenovo driver: ath9k v: kernel port: 1000 bus ID: 03:00.0 
  IF: wlp3s0 state: up mac: <filter> 
  Device-3: Atheros AR3012 Bluetooth 4.0 type: USB driver: btusb 
  bus ID: 1-1.2:5 
Drives:
  Local Storage: total: 465.76 GiB used: 95.99 GiB (20.6%) 
  ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: Western Digital model: WDS500G2B0A size: 465.76 GiB 
Partition:
  ID-1: / size: 456.96 GiB used: 95.98 GiB (21.0%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda2 
Sensors:
  System Temperatures: cpu: 50.5 C mobo: N/A gpu: radeon temp: 48 C 
  Fan Speeds (RPM): N/A 
Info:
  Processes: 219 Uptime: 47m Memory: 6.72 GiB used: 1.42 GiB (21.1%) 
  Init: systemd runlevel: 5 Compilers: gcc: 7.5.0 Shell: bash v: 4.4.20 
  inxi: 3.0.32 
ray@ray-Lenovo-Flex-2-15D:~$ 

 

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securitybreach

Very nice :thumbsup:

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V.T. Eric Layton

One of these days, I'll be moving up to those SSDs. I was gifted one a few years back, but already had this system bench tested and ready to stuff in the box, so the SSD is still in the original package in the drawer under this desk. As soon as I have enough $$$ to build a new system, I will add that SSD and others to the next iteration of ericsbanes. ;)

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securitybreach
33 minutes ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

One of these days, I'll be moving up to those SSDs. I was gifted one a few years back, but already had this system bench tested and ready to stuff in the box, so the SSD is still in the original package in the drawer under this desk. As soon as I have enough $$$ to build a new system, I will add that SSD and others to the next iteration of ericsbanes. ;)

 

 

You must not realize what the change from an mechanical harddrive to an SSD would be. That is the one component that will be very, very noticeable when changed out. An SSD will improve the boot time and the overall responsiveness of your system. I bet your current build will be 2-3x faster with an SSD as your install drive, guaranteed.

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sunrat
2 hours ago, securitybreach said:

 

 

You must not realize what the change from an mechanical harddrive to an SSD would be. That is the one component that will be very, very noticeable when changed out. An SSD will improve the boot time and the overall responsiveness of your system. I bet your current build will be 2-3x faster with an SSD as your install drive, guaranteed.

 

Agreed with bells on. I don't think I could bear a system without an SSD system drive these days.

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abarbarian
Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

One of these days, I'll be moving up to those SSDs. I was gifted one a few years back, but already had this system bench tested and ready to stuff in the box, so the SSD is still in the original package in the drawer under this desk. As soon as I have enough $$$ to build a new system, I will add that SSD and others to the next iteration of ericsbanes. ;)

 

Quote

 

An SSD instead of a hard drive results in a significant performance gain. I benchmarked two SSDs against the original hard disk. Figure 4 shows the results. The two SSDs differ a bit, but you see a five- or sixfold increase in I/O performance during sequential reads and a more than eightfold increase during sequential writes. The other results arise from random read and write operations with different block sizes and queue depths. Small block sizes clearly decrease performance, but in the context of the hard disk, you get a huge performance boost in all cases.

Figure-4_large.png Figure 4: SSD vs. HD compared by CrystalDiskMark under Windows. Top-down: The original HD WD5000BPVT-08HXZ, SSD Seagate 600 Pro, and SSD Intel 3500 Series.

 

 
 
 
I fully agree with Josh.
 
Mind you if you are happy sitting waiting for games to load up slowly then why not. Me if i die, and I do often, then I like to get back up and at em as soon as possible. 🤣
 
With Clonzilla or rsync you should be able to swap over drives in less than a couple of hours, an that includes time for tea and scones. I have used both methods in the past with no problems. I am going to give FSArchiver a run soon just for kicks.
 
😎
 
Ha ha, remembered that I had posted some benchmarks of my Skylake build over on another place. Bear in mind this was five years ago.
 
jYGqEMC.png
 
My Samsung SP951 nvme drive results plus I added the results from a Crucial MX200 ssd and a Patriot USB 3 stick both running on the new rig just for a bit of fun. :cool:
You will notice that my Patriot USB3 stick is just a tad slower than the WD drive in the other screenshot :hysterical:
 
Edited by abarbarian
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sunrat

HDDs are unbelievably rubbish at random reads and writes. Your NVMe drive is impressive. I was considering one during my recent SSD upgrade but they were twice the price of the M2 SATA I ended up with and its performance is totally satisfactory.

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raymac46

I didn't bother cloning the old drive since I intended to reinstall a new system anyway. The data I wanted was mostly a backup for my photos which was on a portable drive so I just installed the new O/S and copied the photos back. Most of my stuff is too old for M.2 but the standard SATA3 2.5 inch SSD are fine.

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raymac46

I am not going to waste a perfectly good 1TB HDD so I put it in a drive enclosure and I'll use it for backups as needed.

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abarbarian
38 minutes ago, raymac46 said:

I am not going to waste a perfectly good 1TB HDD so I put it in a drive enclosure and I'll use it for backups as needed.

 

If you just use it for os backups it should last you the rest of you life. Your latest upgrade sounds pretty good. :thumbsup:

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abarbarian
3 hours ago, sunrat said:

HDDs are unbelievably rubbish at random reads and writes. Your NVMe drive is impressive. I was considering one during my recent SSD upgrade but they were twice the price of the M2 SATA I ended up with and its performance is totally satisfactory.

 

Yeah my entire build was quite expensive but I had promised my self a super dooper pc so that I could play Skyrim on with maxed out graphics. I have not managed to instal and play Skyrim yet but Half Life chapters load quicker than a speedin bulitt. :w00tx100:

The upside of over provisioning all round is that so far the pc has hardly ever broken a sweat so the components are not being stressed so should last for ages. That is if I do not buy a VR set. :rolleyes:

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sunrat
3 hours ago, raymac46 said:

...Most of my stuff is too old for M.2 but the standard SATA3 2.5 inch SSD are fine.

 

SATA3 speed is the same anyway whether 2.5", 3.5", or M2. That 2.5" WD Blue SSD would perform very similar to my M2 WD Blue SSD.

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securitybreach

I always use the SSDs for installation and use the normal 7200 rpm drives for storage. SSDs are cheaper but still not cheap enough for storage, plus you are wasting the speeds if its just for media or backups.

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securitybreach
5 minutes ago, sunrat said:

 

SATA3 speed is the same anyway whether 2.5", 3.5", or M2. That 2.5" WD Blue SSD would perform very similar to my M2 WD Blue SSD.

 

Yeah but nowhere near as fast as a nvme.

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securitybreach

Write:

 

Quote

Cerberus :: ~ » sync; dd if=/dev/zero of=tempfile bs=1M count=1024; sync
1024+0 records in
1024+0 records out
1073741824 bytes (1.1 GB, 1.0 GiB) copied, 0.618251 s, 1.7 GB/s

 

Read:

 

Quote

 

Cerberus :: ~ »  dd if=tempfile of=/dev/null bs=1M count=1024
1024+0 records in
1024+0 records out
1073741824 bytes (1.1 GB, 1.0 GiB) copied, 0.119163 s, 9.0 GB/s

 


 

 

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V.T. Eric Layton
13 hours ago, securitybreach said:

You must not realize what the change from an mechanical harddrive to an SSD would be.

 

Of course, I understand the differences. I'm not going to  change the current system just for that speed increase in booting and access times. I have no complaints with the current mechanical drives. One day down the road a piece, I'll build another system; not any time soon, unfortunately.

 

And to be perfectly honest here, I'm just a hand's breath away from losing my electric, water, and phone/Internet in my home. I'm three months behind on the bills. If the restriction on shut-offs is lifted, I'll be done. The city will red tag (not fit for human habitation) my home and force me out. It ain't going to be pretty. So... needless to say, computers and SSDs, etc. are not really a priority in my life.

 

Sorry for the woe-is-me rant. I haven't been in too good of a mood lately, as you can imagine.

 

Peace.

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raymac46

Looks like I might have another upgrade job in future once I can get back together with my daughter's family. My son-in-law is planning to replace his aging Sandy Bridge i5 laptop with a new 10th gen Intel i5 Vivobook. I'll see if I can take the old one, replace its HDD with an SSD, install Linux - and then the grandkids will have a spare unit for schoolwork or browser games. The old machine is an HP Probook and it looks a lot easier to work on.

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