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Video of latest xbmc code on Raspberry Pi
(2013-12-12, 15:39)stuCONNERS Wrote: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-x9-9gXtNtw

try that to show the difference between flash drive speeds

It useful, but this is mainly testing write speed.
Random access read speed is more important for navigating your media library.

A video comparing performance of opening movies folder and scrolling through it would be interesting.
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is 4k read speed the most important?
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(2013-12-12, 15:48)stuCONNERS Wrote: is 4k read speed the most important?

Yes.
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Thank you guys for all the tips, When I'll get my 2nd RPi in a week or so I'll do some tests with a sandisk blade I have, If it won't be fast enough I'll buy a better usb drive, and overclock everything.
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Information 
Decided to do this testing after reading about the extremely poor Random Read 4K performance of my "fast" USB 3.0 drive.

The "old n cheap" Silicon power USB 2.0 loads posters almost instantly after scrolling through a +500 video library in fanart view.
UI navigation has some occasional pauses when loading new windows (could be some background activity related to fresh install. e.g. caching?).
Scanning the library slows the system down quite a bit.

The "fast" Class 10 SD Card takes about a 1-3 secs to load posters after scrolling.
UI navigation is pretty smooth, rarely has slowdowns.
Library updates slow the system a bit but UI is still responsive.

The "new and more expensive" USB 3.0 takes about a 1-3 secs to load posters in fanart mode, after scrolling.
Navigating the UI is very smooth and item/menus load instantly.
Updating the library or installing addons have almost no impact in system performance.

Code:
* Silicon Power USB 2.0 4GB
-----------------------------------------------------------------------                    
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 Shizuku Edition (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo                    
                           Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/                    
-----------------------------------------------------------------------                    
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]                    
                    
           Sequential Read :    29.942 MB/s                    
          Sequential Write :     8.473 MB/s                    
         Random Read 512KB :    29.898 MB/s                    
        Random Write 512KB :     1.492 MB/s                    
    Random Read 4KB (QD=1) :     7.284 MB/s [  1778.4 IOPS]                    
   Random Write 4KB (QD=1) :     0.014 MB/s [     3.5 IOPS]                    
   Random Read 4KB (QD=32) :     7.566 MB/s [  1847.2 IOPS]                    
  Random Write 4KB (QD=32) :     0.026 MB/s [     6.3 IOPS]                    
                    
  Test : 50 MB [H: 61.9% (2361.5/3812.1 MB)] (x5)                    
  Date : 2013/12/12 20:45:26                    
    OS : Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x86)                    


                * Samsung 8GB SDHC Class 10 (MB-MP8GA)                    
-----------------------------------------------------------------------                    
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 Shizuku Edition (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo                    
                           Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/                    
-----------------------------------------------------------------------                    
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]                    
                    
           Sequential Read :    19.819 MB/s                    
          Sequential Write :    15.832 MB/s                    
         Random Read 512KB :    19.109 MB/s                    
        Random Write 512KB :     1.800 MB/s                    
    Random Read 4KB (QD=1) :     2.792 MB/s [   681.5 IOPS]                    
   Random Write 4KB (QD=1) :     0.026 MB/s [     6.4 IOPS]                    
   Random Read 4KB (QD=32) :     2.963 MB/s [   723.4 IOPS]                    
  Random Write 4KB (QD=32) :     0.032 MB/s [     7.7 IOPS]                    
                    
  Test : 50 MB [I: 0.0% (0.0/126.0 MB)] (x5)                    
  Date : 2013/12/12 21:31:09                    
    OS : Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x86)                    


            * Patriot Supersonic Boost XT USB 3.0 16GB                    
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 Shizuku Edition (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo
                           Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

           Sequential Read :    25.122 MB/s
          Sequential Write :    16.913 MB/s
         Random Read 512KB :    29.902 MB/s
        Random Write 512KB :     9.039 MB/s
    Random Read 4KB (QD=1) :     1.837 MB/s [   448.4 IOPS]
   Random Write 4KB (QD=1) :     0.752 MB/s [   183.6 IOPS]
   Random Read 4KB (QD=32) :     2.541 MB/s [   620.4 IOPS]
  Random Write 4KB (QD=32) :     1.253 MB/s [   306.0 IOPS]

  Test : 50 MB [H: 0.0% (0.0/14.7 GB)] (x5)
  Date : 2013/12/12 23:21:08
    OS : Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x86)
 
  • Intel NUC Kit DN2820FYKH ~ Crucial DDR3L SO-DIMM 4GB ~ SanDisk ReadyCache 32GB SSD ~ Microsoft MCE model 1039 RC6 remote
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(2013-12-13, 11:56)xbs08 Wrote: Decided to do this testing after reading about the extremely poor Random Read 4K performance of my "fast" USB 3.0 drive.

Good information.
My comment about 4k read being important is for the library browsing case.
That seems to match your results.
Interesting the old/cheap USB 2.0 device has much better 4K read than the new USB 3.0 one.

Scanning a library will be using more 4k writes, which is where the "fast" one wins (by a factor of 50!!!)

Looks like we need to find a device with fast 4k reads and writes.
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@popcornmix, you said you are using sandisk extreme usb 3.0. from what I've read is the best usb flash drive, and it's 4k reds and writes are great:
http://usb-flash-drives.whoratesit.com/S...tab=Review

@xbs08, did you notice a big difference between the three devices of the time that takes a movie to start playing?
This is the parameter that matters me the most, since usually my library contains ~30 movies and ~5 tv shows. UI smoothness is important, but not as much as the delay before the movie starts to play (around 8 seconds for a movie, around 15 seconds to youtube addon, which generally works pretty slow)
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Hi,
I've started a thread here (http://openelec.tv/forum/72-xbmc/68513-nfs-vs-sd-vs-usb) to know what would be the best performance setting between NFS/SD/USB key. As the website is down is still don't have any answer.
But my main question was raised because of the video you posted, because scrolling is really slow on my setting, although the database is not that big. How can i improve that ? (even when using the OpenElec 4.0 nightly builds, it's way slower)

My setting has the .xbmc folder on a remote NFS hosted by my linux server (that's running just fine, the nfs folder is located on a 7 hd raid 5 setup. i copy / paste using the network at around 100 Mo/S). The rest of the /storage and the OS is on a sandisk extreme pro class 10. The pi runs with default settings (no OC)

Access to the network :
openelec:~ # iperf -c data
------------------------------------------------------------
Client connecting to data, TCP port 5001
TCP window size: 20.7 KByte (default)
------------------------------------------------------------
[ 3] local 192.168.0.41 port 40170 connected with 192.168.0.14 port 5001
[ ID] Interval Transfer Bandwidth
[ 3] 0.0-10.0 sec 69.8 MBytes 58.4 Mbits/sec

SD and USB access (sda is a usb2, sdb a usb3)
openelec:~ # hdparm -t /dev/mmcblk0 /dev/sda /dev/sdb
/dev/mmcblk0:
Timing buffered disk reads: 62 MB in 3.04 seconds = 20.38 MB/sec
/dev/sda:
Timing buffered disk reads: 68 MB in 3.06 seconds = 22.26 MB/sec
/dev/sdb:
Timing buffered disk reads: 74 MB in 3.08 seconds = 24.06 MB/sec

My advancedsettings.xml:
<advancedsettings>
<videodatabase>
<type>mysql</type>
<host>192.168.0.14</host>
<port>3306</port>
<user>xbmc</user>
<pass>xbmc</pass>
</videodatabase>

<musicdatabase>
<type>mysql</type>
<host>192.168.0.14</host>
<port>3306</port>
<user>xbmc</user>
<pass>xbmc</pass>
</musicdatabase>


<videolibrary>
<dateadded>0</dateadded>
<importwatchedstate>true</importwatchedstate>
<recentlyaddeditems>50</recentlyaddeditems>
</videolibrary>
<loglevel hide="false">0</loglevel>

<network>
<cachemembuffersize>30242880</cachemembuffersize>
</network>
<fanartheight>540</fanartheight>
<thumbsize>256</thumbsize>
<gui>
<algorithmdirtyregions>3</algorithmdirtyregions>
<nofliptimeout>0</nofliptimeout>
</gui>
<lookandfeel>
<enablerssfeeds>false</enablerssfeeds>
</lookandfeel>
<bginfoloadermaxthreads>2</bginfoloadermaxthreads>
</advancedsettings>
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sandisk 16gb extreme usb 3.0 is memory stick you want. but it needs to be at least 16gb, smaller sized usb 3 sticks, seem to have poor 4k read/write speeds. also check you got a real memory stick, stick it in a computer and do some speed tests, then compare online to other peoples results. i think there are more fake usb sticks out there than people realise.
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(2013-12-13, 14:46)kortex Wrote: My setting has the .xbmc folder on a remote NFS hosted by my linux server (that's running just fine, the nfs folder is located on a 7 hd raid 5 setup. i copy / paste using the network at around 100 Mo/S). The rest of the /storage and the OS is on a sandisk extreme pro class 10. The pi runs with default settings (no OC)

Network files have bad latency compared to local files.
That means bad 4K read/write.
That means slower browsing.

The important part for navigation is the .xbmc folder (the databases and Thumbnail cache).
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Just for reference, here's the CrystalDiskMark results for an Integral Fusion 32GB USB3.0 drive tested in a USB2.0 port.

The 4K write results for the 1000MB test are quite dreadful, but for some reason much better when testing only 50MB (another factor of 50 improvement). I've repeated the tests several times and the results are consistent - 4K write performance falls off a cliff at 500MB:

Code:
1000MB Test:
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 x64 (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo
                           Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

           Sequential Read :    34.775 MB/s
          Sequential Write :    13.574 MB/s
         Random Read 512KB :    33.825 MB/s
        Random Write 512KB :     0.579 MB/s
    Random Read 4KB (QD=1) :     5.442 MB/s [  1328.7 IOPS]
   Random Write 4KB (QD=1) :     0.024 MB/s [     5.9 IOPS]
   Random Read 4KB (QD=32) :     5.606 MB/s [  1368.7 IOPS]
  Random Write 4KB (QD=32) :     0.035 MB/s [     8.5 IOPS]

  Test : 1000 MB [H: 0.0% (0.0/28.9 GB)] (x5)
  Date : 2013/12/13 12:55:48
    OS : Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)

50MB Test:
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 x64 (C) 2007-2013 hiyohiyo
                           Crystal Dew World : http://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
* MB/s = 1,000,000 byte/s [SATA/300 = 300,000,000 byte/s]

           Sequential Read :    33.405 MB/s
          Sequential Write :    12.676 MB/s
         Random Read 512KB :    32.925 MB/s
        Random Write 512KB :    11.387 MB/s
    Random Read 4KB (QD=1) :     4.912 MB/s [  1199.2 IOPS]
   Random Write 4KB (QD=1) :     1.236 MB/s [   301.6 IOPS]
   Random Read 4KB (QD=32) :     5.633 MB/s [  1375.2 IOPS]
  Random Write 4KB (QD=32) :     1.437 MB/s [   350.9 IOPS]

  Test : 50 MB [H: 0.0% (0.0/28.9 GB)] (x5)
  Date : 2013/12/13 13:02:19
    OS : Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 [6.1 Build 7601] (x64)

I use this drive formatted with ext4 in an OpenELEC R-Pi overclocked to 1GHz, and library performance is good (fanartres 1080, imageres 720). It's possible to get ahead of the poster display when browsing quickly through the library but it only takes a second or so to catch up. Can't say I've seen any impact on movie start performance as they're all streamed over NFS.
Texture Cache Maintenance Utility: Preload your texture cache for optimal UI performance. Remotely manage media libraries. Purge unused artwork to free up space. Find missing media. Configurable QA check to highlight metadata issues. Aid in diagnosis of library and cache related problems.
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@popcornmix
Yes, a fast Random R/W is the way to go.
Recently added movies/tv shows in home screen also load noticeably faster on the USB 2.0 pendrive.

@Alonzzo2
I'll try doing some testing regarding video playback startup times on the weekend and report back.
Normally I stream from a wired SMB share (USB HDD connected to a router) but I will try local playback too.
 
  • Intel NUC Kit DN2820FYKH ~ Crucial DDR3L SO-DIMM 4GB ~ SanDisk ReadyCache 32GB SSD ~ Microsoft MCE model 1039 RC6 remote
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(2013-12-13, 15:47)xbs08 Wrote: I'll try doing some testing regarding video playback startup times on the weekend and report back.
Normally I stream from a wired SMB share (USB HDD connected to a router) but I will try local playback too.

I wouldn't expect USB speed to affect time to start playback of network content (but please test, would be interesting if there were a difference).

If you play content from the USB, then a fast one should start quicker.
I believe there is a small amount of seeking at start of playback(*), but it's mostly read in large blocks, so the suqential read speed is probably most important here.

(*) It's worth testing a good (indexed) format like mkv (or mp4 or avi), as well as a bad (non-indexed) format like ts (or m2ts or vob) as they may have different characteristics.
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This thread has gotten very interesting.... but totally off-topic. Big Grin

Wonder if any of the Mods would consider splitting it off to a new thread? Personally I think a thread devoted to a performance comparison between the different SD card and USB stick brands (using the CrystalDiskMark test?) would be a very good idea.
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(2013-12-13, 15:00)stuCONNERS Wrote: sandisk 16gb extreme usb 3.0 is memory stick you want. but it needs to be at least 16gb, smaller sized usb 3 sticks, seem to have poor 4k read/write speeds. also check you got a real memory stick, stick it in a computer and do some speed tests, then compare online to other peoples results. i think there are more fake usb sticks out there than people realise.
I found this interesting link ..
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/usb-...477-3.html

It seems indeed the sandisk extreme 64gb is a good choice
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