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What Type and Size of SSD Do You Need for Your Trading Computer?

Trading Computers Solid State Hard Drive Selection

If you are a trader, you know that having a fast and reliable computer is essential for success. But what type and size of SSD do you need? This post will discuss the different types of SSDs available and help you choose the right one for your trading computer.

You should always use a Solid State Drive (SSD) for a trading computer. SSDs are much faster and more reliable than conventional magnetic hard drives. SSDs should never be defragmented as this will lead to reduced performance and premature failure. Defragmentation is a process that rearranges the data on a drive to store it in contiguous blocks. This can help improve performance on magnetic hard drives, but SSDs benefit from having the data fragmented as it will be spread amongst the various NANDs, which will enhance the performance of your SSD.

There are two main types of SSDs: Serial Advanced Attachment (SATA) and Nonvolatile Memory Express (NVMe). SATA SSDs are the most common type and are typically cheaper than NVMe SSDs. However, they are also slower than NVMe SSDs.

SSDs with a SATA interface connect to a SATA port, which is then connected to another controller that adds latency and limits performance. The top speed of the SATA controller is 6 Gbps, which translates to 750 MB/s overhead from the controller, dropping it down to around 600MB/s.

NVMe SSDs plug into the motherboard PCI Express slot, giving them direct access to the drive and reducing latency. NVMe drives can read and write at 3500MB/s, which is much quicker than SATA drives. Another big difference is that NVMe drives react in a fraction of the time it would take a SATA SSD to respond. The reduced latency will help you improve the speed of your trading platform, and it will also backtest faster, allowing your trading platforms to perform at a much higher level. Backtesting is a time-consuming task that involves scanning through many years of data, and we've discovered that using an NVMe SSD improves backtesting results by 15%. Reducing latency has many advantages for your trading platform. If you want to get the most out of your trading computer, we recommend using an NVMe SSD.

When it comes to size, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The size of the SSD you need will depend on the amount of data you need to store. A small SSD will suffice if you only need to store a few gigabytes of data. However, if you need to store hundreds of gigabytes or even terabytes of data, you will need a larger SSD.

We recommend image backups (such as Paragon software) for your trading computer to protect your data in the event of an SSD failure. SSDs are much more reliable than hard drives but can still fail. Image backups allow you to quickly and easily restore your data if your SSD dies. An image backup copies the entire drive and stores it as a large file on a backup hard drive. A backup hard drive is necessary because image files are too big to backup to cloud storage.

Image backup can combat viruses, resolve issues with Windows, and quickly recover from a solid-state drive failure. They also act as a time machine for your Trading Computer to allow you to travel to a point when everything was working correctly. We find this is extremely helpful for our clients when upgrading indicator sets or restoring Windows after a feature update goes awry.

If you have further questions, please contact our Sales Team, and they will be more than happy to help you select the correct NVMe SSD for your Trading Computer.