Compact Flash
I have been thinking about using the OPenELEC software with a compact flash for my system (to be determined). Has anyone had any experience with these drives. What is the performance like compared to a SSD drive? Thanks
One thing to keep in mind is that if this drive is going to be constantly read/write from, it won't last nearly as long as a SSD. They just aren't designed in the same fashion. It also will not be as fast as an SSD and likely not as fast as a normal HDD either (depending on adapter, speed of the CF, etc..).

That said, I run a CF as the OS drive in my NAS box. It works great for that application since the NAS OS (FreeNAS in my case) is only read once into memory and is never accessed again (thus it's speed was irrelevant to me, but it boots fast enough for me) unless I change a setting or reboot. From my limited search, it seems openelec is also designed to boot from flash media so I don't see why it wouldn't work.
OpenELEC is designed for CF cards, the system is completly readonly. only on updating the system there is any writing to the CF. but for sure you must use a different HDD/SSD for storage and configs (xbmc's home folder, the database, configs, media). if you use OpenELEC in this way only a 128MB-256MB CF card is needed.
greetings, Stephan

I started my openelec clients with 8GB flash drives. Way more that what is needed but they were less than like 10 bucks each and when I started I only had a SMB server out there for all the media content. I ran this way for a few weeks just to see if I liked it, during this time, the flash held the library files and thumbnails so when ever they got updated it was on the flash, but even so that is not much write action once they are built. Now I only run the openelec environment and configs from the flash drive. All content is on a SMB server, library databases are on mySQL server and the Thumbnails are centralized on a SMB server, which are all running on a W7 PC with 7TB of storage. The only RW action the flash sees, is, log file updates, when openelec gets upgraded, addons get updated or I modify configuration files. As far as speed goes, it is very fast to boot, for me sub 20 seconds.

If for some reason the flash does ever die, just get a new one, if you are anything like me you have a desk full of old usb flash drives, and reload openelec on it, and your back an running again.
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