Storage Executive - Frequently Asked Questions

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Following are some frequently asked questions about Crucial Storage Executive, its general use, and some of its specific functions. Additional basic information can be found in our Overview of Crucial Storage Executive.





Will Storage Executive work on a Mac?


No, at this time only Windows is supported. However, other 3rd party or operating system tools may support some of Storage Executive’s functions.


What is SMART?


Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology. It is the drive's self-reporting values around performance and health. These values are stored in the SSD's controller, and can be useful in identifying the cause of system or SSD malfunctions.



Momentum Cache


What is Momentum Cache?


Momentum Cache is a feature of Storage Executive which allows you to use some of your DRAM to cache write commands to the Crucial SSD.


How does it work?


When you switch the feature on, Storage Executive will allocate a portion of your DRAM for Momentum Cache. Whenever the OS needs to write data to the storage drive (the Crucial SSD), the data is actually written to that portion of DRAM instead (which is much quicker). Afterwards, the data is then "flushed" to the SSD for permanent storage.


How much memory does Momentum Cache use?


Momentum Cache will use up to 25% of available system memory, though no more than 4GB.


Momentum Cache is saying "No Battery Detected" but I have a desktop.


Storage Executive will always give this message when using a desktop system. Basically, it's looking for a laptop battery and if it can't find one (as it won't for any desktop PC) it gives this message.




What happens if a system loses power while Momentum Cache is enabled?


An abrupt loss of power using Momentum Cache carries some risk of data loss and file corruption. To try to prevent this, in a laptop Momentum Cache will automatically disable itself when the battery level on a laptop has gone down to 25%. In a desktop, no comparable feature is present, so it is recommended you use an Uninterruptible Power Supply while you are using the Momentum Cache feature.


Why is Momentum Cache not making as big a difference as I expected?


Momentum Cache affects only write operations, not read operations. Read speed should remain unaffected by Momentum Cache.

Also, other system resources like available memory and CPU speed (which is often changed dynamically), power saving modes and SATA driver can have an impact. The effects of Momentum Cache also may not show in all benchmarks. Momentum Cache may not make a noticeable difference on systems that have less than 6GB of available RAM. Running software encryption, for example BitLocker in Windows 7, will noticeably reduce the performance impact of Momentum Cache. Lastly, higher capacity SSDs write faster by addressing more components in the SSD simultaneously, which results in reduced improvements seen by the cache function.


Over Provisioning


What is Over Provisioning?


Over Provisioning (OP) is a feature of Storage Executive which allows you to allocate additional space on the SSD for the controller to use.


Why use it?


Providing additional space for the controller means that functions such as Wear Levelling and Garbage Collection can run even more smoothly, meaning there is even less chance the SSD will slow up under heavy load.


Does the SSD not have enough OP to function correctly already?


Yes, Crucial SSDs already have OP and are designed to function perfectly as consumer drives without the need to allocated additional space for this. However in some more read/write intensive environments, allocating additional OP space will allow the SSD even more room to "breathe" and ensure it functions smoothly under heavier workloads.


How does it work?


When you allocate additional space for OP, a section of the hard drive is partitioned off and the controller can use that additional space. What you will likely see in Windows is the size of your 'C:' drive shrinking by the amount you allocate to OP.


Erase functions


What does Sanitize Drive do?


This operation completely removes all data from a drive. Please note, it will only run on drives not utilizing hardware encryption. If you have such encryption (TCG-enabled/password-protected) then you will most likely need to use the PSID Revert feature to remove the data.


What does the PSID Revert function do?


The PSID revert operation removes all data from an encrypted drive (one with TCG enabled). It can also be used in the event you have an encrypted drive for which you have lost the authentication code to return the drive to its factory default state.


Where can you find the PSID code for your SSD?


The PSID code is located on the label of the SSD.