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  • xfcemint
    replied
    You are completely missing the point.

    SBCs support USB flash storage. PCs also support SSD storage. Or, at least, PCs have better support for SSD storage.

    So: SBCs have feature "A". PCs have feature "A" and "B". (Where "A"= USB storage support, "B" = SSD support).
    How can you argue that this is a disadvantage for a PC?

    In this comparison, PCs have more features. How can an extra feature be counted as a disadvantage for a PC?

    Leave a comment:


  • coder
    replied
    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    My question is: what magic thing does "crappy storage" suddenly gain when you connect it to a SBC?

    Of course, the premise is that "crappy storage" must gain something when you connect it to a SBC, because it suddenly becomes good enough when you connect it to a SBC.
    The performance of USB flash drives is so poor that it always has a noticeable impact on the user experience. If someone cannot afford even to equip a PC with a half-decent SATA drive ($20 will buy a 120 GB Crucial BX500), then you have to ask whether the differential between the PC and SBC wouldn't be better spent on equipping their SBC with better storage, such as a SSD in an external enclosure.

    One of the benefits of a PC is that it already has a SATA controller (along with power and a place for the drive), delivering even faster performance at a lower price differential than most SBCs. Your bare-minimum PC, running on a USB flash drive, wastes this benefit. As long as someone can afford it, that would be a bad place to save a couple $.

    Leave a comment:


  • xfcemint
    replied
    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    What is the difference, when you connect a USB flash storage to a SBC, what magic thing does "crappy storage" suddenly gain that makes it adequate?
    Originally posted by coder View Post
    Here are some benchmarks, so you can start to get your head around just how bad cheap USB flash drives really are...
    Nah, that wasn't my question. I know the benchmarks.

    My question is: what magic thing does "crappy storage" suddenly gain when you connect it to a SBC?

    Of course, the premise is that "crappy storage" must gain something when you connect it to a SBC, because it suddenly becomes good enough when you connect it to a SBC.

    Leave a comment:


  • coder
    replied
    What'd be funny about this, if it weren't so sad, is that this all started with a deeply flawed premise:
    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    ROCKPro64 is a bit too costly (60$). It does have PCIe 4x expansion slot, which is a killer feature. At 60$, perhaps a cheap x86 motherboard would be a better choice.
    And now, you're throwing everything at the wall, trying to hide the fact that your original proposition was invalid. Sorry, but I'm done playing along with this farce.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    A PC is better, much better than a SBC. It's about all the applications, upgradeability, backwards compatibility. Those features are important, much more than a 31% price increase.
    With this, your own words come back to haunt you. If we ignore the shifting goalposts of cost and just take 31%, you wouldn't think that's a small amount if you were buying a car or a house. Your 1st world bias is clear - you don't consider 31% to be a big markup, because you don't consider the absolute price to be substantial. Yet, you accuse me of such a bias, for arguing there needs to be a real, tangible value to justify the increased cost.

    And to the extent your argument hinges on upgradablility, you're just conceding that the value isn't there, in the configuration you quoted, without actually having to state what price would be justifiable.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    On USB 3.0 flash, Linux boots in about 50 seconds. Firefox starts in 10 seconds (on the first run). The speed is comparable to the speed of HDDs. It's the speed that was sufficiently fast in the past times.
    People waited those amounts of time when they had no other choice. The rapid adoption of SSDs, even before their prices started to reach parity with HDDs, is all the evidence you should need that it wasn't "sufficiently fast".

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    What is the difference, when you connect a USB flash storage to a SBC, what magic thing does "crappy storage" suddenly gain that makes it adequate?
    Here are some benchmarks, so you can start to get your head around just how bad cheap USB flash drives really are. And this is far from the worst drive they could've used. I dare say your $15 would've been significantly worse.

    https://www.tomshardware.com/news/ra...est,39811.html

    Ideally, Michael would do some testing of his own, using some of the more I/O intensive benchmarks in PTS.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    PC wins easily on all most important features: versatility, connectors, upgradeability, software availability, GPU performance. It is a no-contest.
    You do not seem to understand the concept of a value judgment. In this scenario, a user's requirements must be satisfied by either option. So, things like connectors and software availability do not count. If they need some connector or software that's PC-only, then they have no choice and the point is moot. I'm not talking about those situations, because that wasn't your original premise.

    And as for versatility, what can your base configuration do that a SBC cannot? It seems to me your versatility argument hinges on upgrades, which is just a way of cheating on the quoted price. Compared with your base configuration, the SBC clearly wins on versatility.
    Last edited by coder; 18 July 2019, 03:25 AM.

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  • xfcemint
    replied
    Originally posted by coder View Post
    So it should be at least 31% better, in order to be compelling. Somehow, you cannot seem to understand this.
    I do. A PC is better, much better than a SBC. It's about all the applications, upgradeability, backwards compatibility. Those features are important, much more than a 31% price increase.

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    Because if you're going to equip it with the same crappy storage as a SBC, then just save money and get the SBC.
    Why not use "crappy storage" with a PC? What makes this "crappy storage" adequate for a SBC, but not for a PC?
    Is it working faster when connected to a SBC? Does it have additional capacity when connected to a SBC?

    What is the difference, when you connect a USB flash storage to a SBC, what magic thing does "crappy storage" suddenly gain that makes it adequate?

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    You are completely ignoring my point about the price of good-performing USB3 storage. It's not cheap. For the price, you can get more performance and capacity with a SATA SSD.
    Well, this is how I see it: I have an Linux Mint installed on a USB 3.0 flash drive. It works fine. It is sufficiently fast for me.
    The same computer can also run from an SSD. In that case, it is obviously faster.
    On USB 3.0 flash, Linux boots in about 50 seconds. Firefox starts in 10 seconds (on the first run). The speed is comparable to the speed of HDDs. It's the speed that was sufficiently fast in the past times.

    In local computer shops, I can see a ton of cheap laptops having an integrated MMC storage. They are obviously selling like crazy. Those laptops would have the speed similar to my USB 3.0 flash drive. Are they all crap?

    The price of this USB 3.0 flash drive is $15, for 32 GB. The cheapest SSDs are $35.

    So what is wrong with USB flash as primary storage for a PC?

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    If someone's budget does not permit a good performing USB3 storage, then they should just go with the SBC, unless they have some unique need for the PC.
    A need for a PC is not "unique", as it is the most versatile computer in existence. It is normal to have a need for PC. A need for a SBC is less common.

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    It lost on cost, so that leaves just features. And on most features, it loses. That equates to a net-loss on features, too.
    PC wins easily on all most important features: versatility, connectors, upgradeability, software availability, GPU performance. It is a no-contest.

    Leave a comment:


  • coder
    replied
    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    In USA, PC is only 31% more expensive.
    So it should be at least 31% better, in order to be compelling. Somehow, you cannot seem to understand this. The more expensive thing needs to be better, in order to justify the additional cost.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    As for your opinion that PCs *should* not be equipped with USB storage as a primary storage,
    Because if you're going to equip it with the same crappy storage as a SBC, then just save money and get the SBC.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    that is only an opinion, backed up by nothing. And, quite a biased opinion: it shows that you are just some rich kid from some rich country not taking objectively considerations of the rest of the world.
    Now you're just throwing labels, because you cannot win with logic. It's funny how you twist it, since I'm actually the one arguing for the cheaper option, and arguing that the PC must offer a substantially better value to be compelling. I'm demanding value for money, in other words.

    You're actually the one arguing that people should spend more on PCs, so I don't see how that makes me the elitist.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    I repeat, USB storage is equally appropriate for either a PC or a SBC.
    I repeat: it's not that it's any worse on a PC than SBC - just that it'd be dumb to pay more for the PC if it's just going to be hamstrung by crappy storage.

    You are completely ignoring my point about the price of good-performing USB3 storage. It's not cheap. For the price, you can get more performance and capacity with a SATA SSD.

    If someone's budget does not permit a good performing USB3 storage, then they should just go with the SBC, unless they have some unique need for the PC. In that case, we're no longer talking about a value argument, which was your original claim.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    "memory capacity, and performance", but a PC easily beats any SBC on those points. Specifically, the PC I proposed beats or equals your $80 SBC.
    No, your PC had the same memory capacity and you're proposing to use the same storage. Performance-wise, it looks like almost a wash. So, like I said, you're wasting the opportunity to play off the PC's strengths, and instead just spec'ing out a bad PC that costs more than the SBC, while being the same or worse in most areas.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    It cannot directly compete on cost, but it competes wery well on cost+features.
    It lost on cost, so that leaves just features. And on most features, it loses. That equates to a net-loss on features, too.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    Moreover, you are a biased person, at least slightly elitist, and you tend to use flawed logic and flawed arguments.
    Name-calling is the surest sign that the facts are not on your side and cannot fully reconcile yourself to this. I accept your concession.

    Respond if you want, but know that further instances of name-calling will be flagged.

    Leave a comment:


  • xfcemint
    replied
    Originally posted by coder View Post
    That's not my point. The PC cannot compete on price, and in trying to do so, you're equipping it with some awful flash drive. If someone is going to build a PC, then they should not waste time with a low-quality USB stick, not waste money on a good one, and instead just go with a decent SATA SSD.
    In USA, PC is only 31% more expensive. That is sufficiently close to say that the pricas are comparable.
    Furthermore, in some international markets, PC and SBC would have the same price.

    As for your opinion that PCs *should* not be equipped with USB storage as a primary storage, that is only an opinion, backed up by nothing. And, quite a biased opinion: it shows that you are just some rich kid from some rich country not taking objectively considerations of the rest of the world.

    I repeat, USB storage is equally appropriate for either a PC or a SBC.

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    In so doing, you're failing to mitigate virtually every other possible downside: heat, power, noise, portability, memory capacity, and performance on every front. Worse, you're making a PC that's little better than the cheaper option you're arguing against. Because it costs more, the PC needs to offer more value, or else you've ceded that argument, as well.
    A PC offers many advantages over SBC, but also a SBC offers many advantages over a PC. So it's not really that one is better than the other or superior, it's more about user's needs. Different users will have different priorities.

    What I was saying is that, for a general home-computer use case, a PC is a better option than a $80 SBC, at a slightly higher price.

    For people requiring special features, like some of the ones you mention: heat, power, noise, portability, an SBC would be a better option. But, for most people, a cheap PC is a better option. Because, as far as computing history goes, heat, power, noise, portability were not important features of a home computer.

    You also mention "memory capacity, and performance", but a PC easily beats any SBC on those points. Specifically, the PC I proposed beats or equals your $80 SBC.

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    You're really complicating this. It's quite simple. A DIY PC cannot compete on cost. Period.
    It cannot directly compete on cost, but it competes wery well on cost+features.

    Originally posted by coder View Post
    The way I look at it is that if someone is going to accept the downsides of a PC, then at least try to maximize its strengths, within their budget. If you take an objective look at what it costs to get a decent-performing USB 3 NAND stick, then you'll see there's a very compelling case for the PC to use a SATA SSD.
    Another elitist statement: a PC now needs a SATA SSD to be worthy of existance (but a SBC doesn't need it, I suppose).

    As I said, your entire argument about USB storage being good for a SBC, while not being equally good for a PC makes no sense.

    In short, I completely disagree with you.

    Moreover, you are a biased person, at least slightly elitist, and you tend to use flawed logic and flawed arguments.

    Leave a comment:


  • coder
    replied
    Originally posted by bnolsen View Post
    bus attached storage
    Uhhh... true bus-based storage died with SCSI and IDE. Beyond that, USB is really the closest thing to a bus.

    Originally posted by bnolsen View Post
    (sata is dying)
    Far from dying, SATA is the most cost-effective option, for desktop PCs. NVMe still commands a significant premium, while M.2 SATA is approaching 2.5" SATA (you didn't specify, but I think you meant drives with a SATA connector).

    Leave a comment:


  • bnolsen
    replied
    For desktop nowadays 8gb would be ideal to better compensate for lack of bus attached storage (sata is dying). But still a microsd card will be fine for boot and system, with higher write filesystems going over a usb3 port. I personally much prefer running void linux we'll see where it can go with the rpi4.

    I would be very pleased with a chromeos that has support for dropping into linux if that were an offering. Chromeos on a microsd and the linux container or whatever living on usb3. I do believe this would be the most practical use of a desktop rpi4 system, one that would work for me as a do it all family computer. Just a touch tight for 4gb ram.

    Leave a comment:


  • coder
    replied
    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    Your argument is flawed. You are not objective.
    USB storage can be used equally well by a PC or a SBC.
    You're not objective and confusing the point. Which is one thing, but then to blame it on me is completely another. That needs to stop.

    Originally posted by xfcemint View Post
    Saying that USB storage is crap for PCs, but it's OK for SBCs is baseless.
    That's not my point. The PC cannot compete on price, and in trying to do so, you're equipping it with some awful flash drive. If someone is going to build a PC, then they should not waste time with a low-quality USB stick, not waste money on a good one, and instead just go with a decent SATA SSD. Otherwise, you're throwing away one of the easy arguments for going with a PC.

    You're really complicating this. It's quite simple. A DIY PC cannot compete on cost. Period. That argument is long lost, as per your own numbers. Yet, for some reason, you can't let it go. So, you're throwing away virtually every advantage a PC could have by still chasing a goal you cannot reach. In so doing, you're failing to mitigate virtually every other possible downside: heat, power, noise, portability, memory capacity, and performance on every front. Worse, you're making a PC that's little better than the cheaper option you're arguing against. Because it costs more, the PC needs to offer more value, or else you've ceded that argument, as well. And then, you're left simply telling people they should buy a PC because you told them to. And, at this point, I don't even see why they would listen.

    The way I look at it is that if someone is going to accept the downsides of a PC, then at least try to maximize its strengths, within their budget. If you take an objective look at what it costs to get a decent-performing USB 3 NAND stick, then you'll see there's a very compelling case for the PC to use a SATA SSD.

    Leave a comment:

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