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The best allocation unit size for music.


sphinxsix

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2 hours ago, AudioDoctor said:

@bluesman thanks for the comprehensive answer.

 

I'm not on Win of any sort, or even Mac OS so I'll just have to suffer through not knowing. I did know not to attempt to defragment an SSD. Not that I have had to even think about defragmenting a drive in probably a decade or more anyway. I know my Linux install has a trim setting that works weekly, and that's all that's needed.

It’s the file system that asks you to set allocation size when you format a drive.  Modern Linux uses ext4, and the default is also 4K.  You can run into mounting problems when block size is bigger than page size, and there’s no performance advantage to going above the default.  So stick to the default and you’ll be fine.

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1 hour ago, sphinxsix said:

AFAIK it does matter as far as balance between the wasted disc space vs read speed is regarded, eg often people who like to stream (or record) a couple of movies at the same time use quite big AUSs on their HDs

I’ve run benchmarks on current HDs (WD Red and Seagate Iron Wolf) using tiny and huge clusters, and the difference in random read and write performance is negligible.  Others have found the same thing. This project was done 8 years ago, so the discs tested were not as fast as the new ones I used a few months ago when I got my new Asustor NAS - but the results are the same as mine:


“The speed differences seen in this test between the large sizes and the default size were not significant enough to recommend large sizes...I was curious to see whether there are obvious benefits to large cluster sizes.  Apparently, there are not.”


Poorly chosen cluster size can interfere with function, eg NTFS cannot compress files with clusters bigger 4k. It can also affect RAID, since stripe size is independent of allocation and should always be equal to or bigger than cluster size. If bigger, stripe size should be in multiples of cluster size for best performance and efficiency.  There’s little (if any) reason to use other than the default allocation for a given file system.  

 

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