Discussion Using a large HDD with Intel Optane RST module

Mar 27, 2019
Hey Community,
I did a build a couple years ago utilizing a 3TB 7200rpm HDD basically in a raid with a m.2 optane module to test out the tech, and it works great! I haven't upgraded storage yet at all, there is no need. It's also nice because I don't need to worry about downloads or default installs on my smaller c: it's like I have 1 drive. My motherboard came with this optane module for free, It was an unbelievable deal. My bios time is like 13 seconds. My other computer boots off of a SATA SSD and honestly, they both perform windows functions at basically the same speed. Booting up, there is no noticeable difference between the two. I am wondering why this technology seemed to fade off into obscurity? For $35 you can add one of these modules and give you SSD boot speeds on a large 7200rpm drive. Why isn't this option discussed more as a good storage option for gaming scenarios? I know its obviously not as optimal as having 3TB of PCIE storage lol but for $100, 3TB of 7200rpm storage with SSD boot speeds seems like a good deal, especially because you don't have to constantly elect to save files onto the D: in fear you accidentally overload your boot drive.


The Optane can only cache so much data depending on it's size so users that play many games or launch many apps don't see benefit with all them all and get reduced to normal HDD speeds. For what they do they do it extremely well though!


An SSD is fast across its whole space.
Optane is only a cache, and is only fast for what exists in the small cache space.

It is good for what it does, but not good for all use cases.

For a database server, and the DB stored procedures end up in that cache space? Great. Those access and execute really fast.
For a personal game machine, where you're not accessing the same blocks of data all the time? Not so much.
For folks that have full speed M.2 NVME slots on their mainboards, Intel's 660P NVME drives are ridiculously low priced about now, with 1 TB drives at only $109...(500 GB drives are $78, so might as well start with a full 1 TB with those prices!)

Little tiny Optanes are/were useful as cache drives 'sometimes/somewhat', but, with current Intel prices, switching to a full NVME drive on C is a 'must do ASAP' bucket list candidate!