Question HP Pavilion 20 addition of SSD

Dec 2, 2020
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Hello everybody.

Back in 2014 I bought an HP-pavilion 20 all-in-one PC. It runs on an AMD E1-1200 APU with 4GB of RAM and an HDD hard drive of 500GB. I know one can expect very little from all these in terms of performance, but the thing is I didn't know much about computers back then and it seemed like a reasonable deal at the time. I should also mention that it came with Linux Ubuntu pre-installed.

Anyway, a few years back I decided to change the software to Windows as I was struggling with compatibility with certain programs and printers that weren't available for Linux. So, I take the computer to the technician and he says that the system will be extremely slow if I get Windows installed in it and that also one of the reasons it ran on Linux in the first place was the extremely weak processor. Unfortunately, like with most AIO PCs, it had the CPU soldered on the motherboard and we couldn't make any upgrade regarding the processor. All he could suggest to me was to replace the existing hard drive with an SSD one to enhance the performance of the system as much as possible. Eventually, I kept the HDD and the performance was indeed decreased with Windows 10, even more so than with Linux.

So my question is, would an SSD really make that much difference with a weak processor like E1-1200? Is it really worth the upgrade or will the processor just constantly be bottlenecked by the SSD? Any suggestion will be much appreciated. Thank you very much in advance.
 
The bigger difference will be ram, and if your model number is the B014L it can take up to 16GB of ram, which will make a huge difference--more than the SSD. Coupling the ram upgrade with the SSD will give it a completely new lease on life. :)
 
Reactions: than_ka
Dec 2, 2020
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The bigger difference will be ram, and if your model number is the B014L it can take up to 16GB of ram, which will make a huge difference--more than the SSD. Coupling the ram upgrade with the SSD will give it a completely new lease on life. :)
Thank you. I see. I am curious though about why it is so. From what I know more RAM is only useful if you actually make use of it, like playing games or running demanding programs. Given that I only use that particular PC for office tasks and the occasional Skype video call, how is it that let's say 8GB of RAM would be better than the current 4GB? If only 1 or 2 tabs are open at a time wouldn't it be like a waste of RAM?
 

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The bigger difference will be ram, and if your model number is the B014L it can take up to 16GB of ram, which will make a huge difference--more than the SSD. Coupling the ram upgrade with the SSD will give it a completely new lease on life. :)
Depending on the use, SSD should be a better upgrade than the RAM in most cases. Only time is if you have a huge file that loads into RAM like when using a large Phtoshop file or video editing and then does not use the drive much. Both would be ideal to upgrade to 8 GB RAM but SSD will speed things up overall better than the RAM even if left at 4. That the swap file lives on the drive, which means the swap file is sped up by a lot with an SSD.
 
Reactions: than_ka
Dec 2, 2020
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Depending on the use, SSD should be a better upgrade than the RAM in most cases. Only time is if you have a huge file that loads into RAM like when using a large Phtoshop file or video editing and then does not use the drive much. Both would be ideal to upgrade to 8 GB RAM but SSD will speed things up overall better than the RAM even if left at 4. That the swap file lives on the drive, which means the swap file is sped up by a lot with an SSD.
Understood. I figured so too.
Thank you all for your help. :)
 
Thank you. I see. I am curious though about why it is so. From what I know more RAM is only useful if you actually make use of it, like playing games or running demanding programs. Given that I only use that particular PC for office tasks and the occasional Skype video call, how is it that let's say 8GB of RAM would be better than the current 4GB? If only 1 or 2 tabs are open at a time wouldn't it be like a waste of RAM?
The main reason is because the OS itself now needs 8GB to completely run everything it needs in ram. Add in some programs that need the same and you're out of memory quick and then swapping to disk, which is always slower--even with an ssd. The more memory you have, the more can run from memory and the less it will touch the disk, no matter what type it is.
Depending on the use, SSD should be a better upgrade than the RAM in most cases. Only time is if you have a huge file that loads into RAM like when using a large Phtoshop file or video editing and then does not use the drive much. Both would be ideal to upgrade to 8 GB RAM but SSD will speed things up overall better than the RAM even if left at 4. That the swap file lives on the drive, which means the swap file is sped up by a lot with an SSD.
In my experience with 4GB, this won't be the case. Moving from 8GB to 16GB doubled the OS performance on my 4790k system (just normal OS stuff like opening control panel, etc. At 4GB, the OS is absolutely hammering the disk. Even at 8GB it will be. I have 16GB RAM and a WD Blue sata hard drive and the system flies once booted, and isn't really slow at booting either. And actually video or photo hits the disk more, not less, so that's why photo and video workstations usually have nvme scratch drives and 10Gb nas links. Swap files are never ideal or optimized. They were always a mechanism to add memory when no other memory was available, and if you have sufficient memory, you can avoid swapping.
 
Reactions: than_ka
Dec 2, 2020
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The main reason is because the OS itself now needs 8GB to completely run everything it needs in ram. Add in some programs that need the same and you're out of memory quick and then swapping to disk, which is always slower--even with an ssd. The more memory you have, the more can run from memory and the less it will touch the disk, no matter what type it is.
In my experience with 4GB, this won't be the case. Moving from 8GB to 16GB doubled the OS performance on my 4790k system (just normal OS stuff like opening control panel, etc. At 4GB, the OS is absolutely hammering the disk. Even at 8GB it will be. I have 16GB RAM and a WD Blue sata hard drive and the system flies once booted, and isn't really slow at booting either. And actually video or photo hits the disk more, not less, so that's why photo and video workstations usually have nvme scratch drives and 10Gb nas links. Swap files are never ideal or optimized. They were always a mechanism to add memory when no other memory was available, and if you have sufficient memory, you can avoid swapping.
I see. I never realized the OS would take up so much RAM. Anyway, I'll probably be upgrading both the hard drive and RAM just to be on the safe side. Thank you. :)
 
Dec 2, 2020
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Just upgraded an old HP notebook Celeron 2 Cores with 4GB of RAM and a 5400RPM HDD to 8GB and SSD. It sure helped. I don't want to throw it out the window anymore.
Good to know. If it does the trick with Celeron I bet it will work for AMD E1-1200 too. It sure gives me hope. ;-)
 

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