thatchunkylad198966
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Location: UK, Birmingham

Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:23 pm

Performance wise, why use NVMe?
I have a 8GB RAM 32GB eMMC CM4, I tested an overclock and got 2200 arm freq and 750 gpu freq.
It's nice and fast and boots very quick.

I have a NVMe 500GB drive that I was using. testing the eMMC now and performance wise, there's not a massive difference IMO.
I see hdparm's benchmark is a lot quicker than the eMMC but real world usage, they're the same.

I can boot into my DE in 13 seconds with the NVMe and 14 seconds with the eMMC.

What are the benefits? apart from bigger storage and faster benchmarks????
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ejolson
Posts: 7478
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:47 am

Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:36 pm

thatchunkylad198966 wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:23 pm
Performance wise, why use NVMe?
I have a 8GB RAM 32GB eMMC CM4, I tested an overclock and got 2200 arm freq and 750 gpu freq.
It's nice and fast and boots very quick.

I have a NVMe 500GB drive that I was using. testing the eMMC now and performance wise, there's not a massive difference IMO.
I see hdparm's benchmark is a lot quicker than the eMMC but real world usage, they're the same.

I can boot into my DE in 13 seconds with the NVMe and 14 seconds with the eMMC.

What are the benefits? apart from bigger storage and faster benchmarks????
From your tests, it would appear the main advantage of the NVMe is that it holds 500GB storage compared to only 32GB for eMMC.

thatchunkylad198966
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 10:21 am
Location: UK, Birmingham

Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:37 pm

ejolson wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:36 pm
thatchunkylad198966 wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:23 pm
Performance wise, why use NVMe?
I have a 8GB RAM 32GB eMMC CM4, I tested an overclock and got 2200 arm freq and 750 gpu freq.
It's nice and fast and boots very quick.

I have a NVMe 500GB drive that I was using. testing the eMMC now and performance wise, there's not a massive difference IMO.
I see hdparm's benchmark is a lot quicker than the eMMC but real world usage, they're the same.

I can boot into my DE in 13 seconds with the NVMe and 14 seconds with the eMMC.

What are the benefits? apart from bigger storage and faster benchmarks????
From your tests, it would appear the main advantage of the NVMe is that it holds 500GB storage compared to only 32GB for eMMC.
Yes:
What are the benefits? apart from bigger storage and faster benchmarks????
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dp11
Raspberry Pi Engineer & Forum Moderator
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:38 pm

Booting is only part of real world testing. Try doing some tests that do a lot of accesses e.g. building gcc or the linux kernel

aBUGSworstnightmare
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Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2015 1:35 pm

Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:40 pm

Pretty much what Jeff posted here: https://www.jeffgeerling.com/blog/2021/ ... e-ssds-now

There is a small benefit in performance which - most likely - most people will not be able to notice.
I personally take benchmarks as an indicator only, but not as reference.

What I want to test with NVMe is how it impacts on doing real work. Did quite a few full-kernel compiles in the last months, so I want to see if there is a performance benefit of using NVMe against uSD in regards of total time spend on compiling the full kernel (takes around two hours on a 2GHz overclocked CM4/2GB). Luckily I have a few cloned jigs so I'm able to split work, but all of them need to start with a full compile once as cloning the uSD might not be desired.

thatchunkylad198966
Posts: 576
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Location: UK, Birmingham

Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:49 pm

dp11 wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:38 pm
Booting is only part of real world testing. Try doing some tests that do a lot of accesses e.g. building gcc or the linux kernel
I compiled 5.12.10 and it took just over an hour an half. so not too bad, but that was with NVMe.
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aBUGSworstnightmare
Posts: 3141
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:57 pm

thatchunkylad198966 wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:49 pm
dp11 wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:38 pm
Booting is only part of real world testing. Try doing some tests that do a lot of accesses e.g. building gcc or the linux kernel
I compiled 5.12.10 and it took just over an hour an half. so not too bad, but that was with NVMe.
Do the same with eMMC and let us know the difference. I think there we will nee notable differences (minutes and not just fractions of seconds).

fanoush
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 4:35 pm

Microsd might be fast for reading but writing makes big difference. when doing apt-get dist-upgrade with something bigger like updated linux kernel there are periods when system is unresponsive, you can move mouse but opening menu or starting terminal from icon does nothing for tens of seconds. Don't see this with nvme.

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geerlingguy
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 8:31 pm

The Pi has some constraints that hold back the true performance you could get out of a really good NVMe drive (or heck, even SATA III drives), but you will notice 20-30% faster operations for a lot of little things too, like opening apps, running certain types of code/software, and doing a lot of things at once (where the filesystem might need to do a lot of random accesses).

In the end, on the Pi 4, it's not a night-and-day difference (e.g. not as noticeable as something like an old spinning hard drive vs. a fast SSD on an older computer), but it is noticeable, especially if you're doing something like using the computer as your full desktop computer.

For me, since I use most of my Pis in more headless-server-type scenarios, and most of them are not doing intensive operations, I still stick with quality microSD cards that have good-enough performance, mostly for the convenience, but also the cost and space savings.
The question is not whether something should be done on a Raspberry Pi, it is whether it can be done on a Raspberry Pi.

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thagrol
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Mon Jun 21, 2021 9:11 pm

thatchunkylad198966 wrote:
Mon Jun 21, 2021 3:23 pm
What are the benefits? apart from bigger storage and faster benchmarks????
Compared to EMMC, that's likely about it. Oh and the ability to replace an NVMe drive if it fails. Though that's not a performance issue.

Frankly, I've never seen the point of NVMe on Pi. You're paying (in price and energy use) for pefrormance you can't possibly use. An NVMe drive with a four lane PCIe v4 interface is still going to be capped by the single lane v2 link on the SoC.

Faster than an SD card? Almost certainly.
Faster than spinning rust? Probably, especially with random reads.
Faster than a SATA SSD over USB 3? Maybe for random reads/writes but probably not for sustained transfers.
I'm a volunteer. Take me for granted or abuse my support and I will walk away

All advice given is based on my experience. it worked for me, it may not work for you.
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Gavinmc42
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Tue Jun 22, 2021 12:51 am

I have worn out a few uSD card even from compiling Kernels on 3B+ with swap on the uSD.
13hours of wear n tear ;)

My preference for a Pi compiler box is something with better wear resistance.
Swapping uSD is easy, swapping eMMC, not so easy.
More flash chips and better wear leveling controller on SSD/NVMe?

Been thinking about spinning metal with flash boot/OS section for a compiler box.
I'm dancing on Rainbows.
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pidd
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Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Tue Jun 22, 2021 1:12 am

Speed: NVMe wins slightly
Size: NVMe wins
Cost: eMMC wins
Power: eMMC wins
Life: NVMe wins

thatchunkylad198966
Posts: 576
Joined: Thu Jul 04, 2019 10:21 am
Location: UK, Birmingham

Re: Performance wise, why use NVMe?

Tue Jun 22, 2021 10:12 am

Just for the size, I went back to NVMe. I formatted the eMMC and using it as a backup storage now.

Thanks all.

PS: Nice to see you active, geerling, your site has helped quite a bit with a lot of good information!!
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