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Samsung's Rapid Mode Is Underrated but You Should Use It

Written on July 30, 2020 by Chad Warmenhoven
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What is RAPID Mode Technology

RAPID mode is paired exclusively with Samsung SATA SSDs (840 series and above) and available as a feature of the accompanying Samsung SSD Magician Software Toolset (version 4.2 and later). When configured correctly, RAPID mode functions as a filter driver within the Windows storage stack. The filter driver continuously monitors all storage-related activity between the Operating System (OS), user applications and the SSD. RAPID mode analyzes all system traffic, leveraging extra system resources such as DRAM/CPU to dynamically provide read acceleration via intelligent caching of "hot data" and write optimization.

The concept behind RAPID mode: Your computer "learns" from your computer habits. It recognizes frequently launched applications and attempts to make them instantly available when you first login to your system. Helping applications, databases, webpages, and general use functions to launch quickly due to high usage.

Hot Data

Read acceleration technology in RAPID mode leverages spare system DRAM and CPU resources to manage a change in "hot data". As your system stores hot data in memory, system performance is improved as similar requests for that data are performed; then, data is served directly from DRAM rather than the system having to pull from a storage device. Latency, throughput and overall daily user experience for the most active data are improved. Taking a simple approach to caching the most recently accessed data, RAPID mode operates almost as an extension of the OS cache. RAPID mode handles not just new data, but very carefully takes into account frequency of access, file types, system status, RAM availability, etc. RAPID mode may exclude certain data from the cache based on a variety of factors by excluding certain data not regularly used. This prevents unnecessary data from polluting the cache and allows us to keep the memory footprint to a minimum. Files that RAPID mode deems meaningless to cache (such as large media files) are dismissed.

Hot data is cumulative and persistent across multiple sessions and reboots so that if you have been working on a specific file or application you will be able to access critical data faster as well.

Impervious Performance

A consistent performance bottleneck users experience is usually caused by background tasks performed by the OS such as updating, logging, or indexing. When your PC stutters, it is often caused by these small random transactions frequently failing to complete in a timely manner. RAPID mode favors transactions that can be processed in parallel thereby dramatically improving the completion time for these small transactions. This almost entirely eliminates any storage-related stuttering and can be hugely beneficial to some aspects of system performance.

How to enable RAPID mode

1. Connect the SAMSUNG SSD to your PC

2. Install Magician v4.2 (or later) - RAPID mode is available as an Advanced Feature in Magician 4.2.3

3. Click Performance Optimization tab

4. Select Target drive from the dropdown at the top

5. Click the RAPID Status radial to enable it

- Click “OK” for system reboot.

- RAPID Mode is enabled.

Are there any risks with using RAPID mode?

RAPID Mode was specifically designed to not add any additional risk to user or system data, even in the event of a power-loss. In fact, RAPID strictly adheres to Windows conventions in its treatment of any buffered writes in DRAM -- RAPID obeys all “flush” commands, so any writes buffered by RAPID will make it to the persistent media just like the Windows OS cache or the HDD cache. (Consequently, the data loss risk is identical to that of Windows OS cache or HDD cache).

Furthermore, RAPID is mindful of any changes in system behavior or resource availability, meaning that RAPID will scale back or release (and re-acquire) system resources seamlessly based on system activity and requirements. RAPID consumes at most 25% of the installed DRAM, up to a maximum of 1GB, but will scale down resource usage and eventually revert to a pass-through mode if the CPU core(s) or DRAM is occupied with other system tasks. (This technology is really designed to make use of excess system resources).

Conclusion

Samsung believes that their SSDs and the RAPID mode combination represent a compelling mix of killer technology and a creative and efficient use of spare system resources to deliver an optimal and seamless end-user experience. As the SSD industry continues to evolve, Samsung seems to be on the cutting edge, and Samsung’s RAPID mode is just one of the many ways they intend to deliver that edge to us. The evolution of storage will require not just device side technology advancements, but also host-side software innovation.

RAPID Mode will help you to more effectively utilize your system and it's available resources without impacting reliability, stability, performance, or function. There is no downside! Hopefully this guide was useful for you.

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Ken Fordyce

Has anybody actually used this over a significant period of time without seeing adverse effects? Unless, you are marginal on SSD memory it appears to be a good thing. I presume it actually does reduce stutter from minor OS actions.

Posted on 2020-08-09 17:03:42
Shaun

I have used Samsung Magician with RAPID mode for years and while performance benchmark scores become amazing, the real-world difference is marginal. One thing I will add is that its memory consumption is WAY more than 1GB stated above. I have a 12GB system that without magician installed boots to ~4GB of used memory. With Magician installed it boots to ~7GB used memory. The reduction in available memory for regular use and regular NTFS cache negates a significant amount of the value of RAPID mode.
Also ... data stability is definitely a concern. If 'shouldn't go wrong' but the reality is; it does go wrong!

Yesterday I allowed the app to update itself (to V7 i believe) and immediately following a reboot started to get disk corruption issues in the event log. Removed Magician and RAPID mode and CHKDSK was able to fix, but the damage was quite extensive. I have a dual boot system so booted to my 2nd Win10 OS (which is on a completely different SSD), and all was fine until I tested the Magician auto update which resulted in the same disk corruption events appearing. Again, only fix was to uninstall Samsung Magician and fix with CHKDSK.

Ironically, i have notice zero degradation in performance now I'm running without Magician & RAPID mode installed.

Posted on 2021-10-06 19:39:34
Charles Bihler

I had an issue using on my newly upgraded to Windows 11 system but I think it was because I had controlled folder access activated on my data SSD. When I tried to restart after enabling rapid mode, got a fatal error and Windows had to do a 45 minute system restore. I configured controlled folder access to allow the Samsung Magician .EXEs and services, but haven't tried enabling again yet.

Posted on 2021-10-18 00:41:54