Solid State Drives or SSD’s to most, are fast becoming the standard storage for our computers. We all know how much faster they are when compared to standard Hard Disk Drive’s (HDD’s) but we also know that they come at a cost, usually a higher price with a lot less storage. However, with the prices of 480GB SSD’s now dipping below the £100 price point, they’re becoming a lot more accessible for the everyday consumer.
Which is better? You might ask. We think that both are great! A lot of SSD users are now running their Solid State Drives alongside Hard Disk Drives thus getting the best of both worlds (speed from the SSD and high capacity storage from the HDD). Most common configuration is for users to store their operating system on the SSD and then use the HDD for all their movies, games, music, files and photos.
SSD’s are much more power efficient than HDD’s as they operate in a different way. SSD’s do not operate using a disk, we won’t go into any more detail around this as we’re simply here to explain how to optimise your Windows 10 machine for your SSD.
Windows 7 was the first Windows version that recognised SSD’s. Windows 8 and 8.1 inherited these features, making them better and easier to work with. Now, its Windows 10’s turn to bring in even more features and enhancements.
Trim Visible to the User
Trim was introduced back in 2007 but was pretty much hidden to the end-user. A Trim command allows operating systems to inform an SSD which blocks of data are no longer considered in use and can be wiped out for writing the data. It’s the most important feature for managing space on your SSD.
Windows 10 now shows Trim in the ‘Tools’ menu in ‘Drive Properties‘ in a new feature called ‘Optimize‘:
Selecting ‘Optimize‘ will take you to the ‘Optimize Drives‘ app that will then allow you to execute Trim on a predefined schedule or to run it manually.
Say for example you’ve just deleted a large amount of data from a drive, selecting ‘Optimize‘ will allow you to instantly reclaim that space back which will in turn improve the speed and performance of the SSD.
The disk optimisation is scheduled to run weekly as a default. You can change this by clicking on ‘Change Settings‘ in the ‘Optimize Drives‘ window.
Worried About SSD Defrags in Windows 10?
Worry no more, this has been completely disabled in Windows 10.
Windows 7 and 8/8.1 were smart enough to know not to defrag an SSD, however, it was still an option. You can now rest assured that this is not possible in Windows 10, result.
Improved SSD Encryption
Windows 8 saw Microsoft introduce a new feature calls ‘Encrypted Hard Drive’ which offloads the encryption at a hard drive level. Windows 10 takes this features and works best on SSD’s that are self-encrypting ready to provide full disk encryption without compromising performance.
To conclude, you no longer need to worry about your SSD as Windows 10 has you covered out-of-the-box. Our advice would be to ensure that your optimization schedule is in line with how you use your machine plus, if you do happen to delete a load of files be sure to manually run the optimization to ensure you’re always getting the best performance from your SSD.