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GUIDE - Enabling AHCI mode AFTER Windows 7 Installation

Discussion in 'SSD and HDD storage' started by Hilbert Hagedoorn, Jan 19, 2010.

  1. Da{N}ka

    Da{N}ka Master Guru

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    I'm skeptical about NCQ, I like to have it disabled and what I've seen (Please DO correct me if I'm being a total noob) is that with AHCI mode there is no way to disable NCQ.

    My setup is as follow :
    2x separate Hitachi HDT725032VLA360 320GB SATA : One is C: with Win 7, the other D: with paging file and some temporary download.
    1x Corsair CMFSSD-128GBG2D : I gave it the letter S:, it has games installed.
    1x Samsung HD103UJ 1TB : This is F: for backup/storage and various file purposes.

    Now the controller is in IDE mode (via BIOS of my Asus Rampage Formula) and with HD Tach (Quick bench) I get a Burst Speed result of :
    on the 2x Hitachi around 210 MB/s
    on the Samsung around 235 MB/s
    on the SSD around 247 MB/s

    I remember seeing in Win XP and the 780i (yeah I know, different OS different controller) a far better speed with the NCQ disabled, therefore my settings for all HDD in Win 7 are :
    [​IMG]

    And I get a better performance as with the write-cache buffer flushing enabled.

    Now, everyone says that SSD should go together with AHCI mode, but still I hate to see performance taken away by NCQ, in my case useless and counterproductive.

    Any take on this one ?

    (damn i wrote too much..)
     
  2. dirthurts

    dirthurts Master Guru

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    Question

    What is NCQ ?
     
  3. Da{N}ka

    Da{N}ka Master Guru

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  4. dirthurts

    dirthurts Master Guru

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    Ah

    Seems it's most effective when traditional drives or very high end SSD's with the feature implemented. Not sure mine supportst his. It's the X25-M.
    I believe teh X25-E does however.
    Wouldn't this only come in handy if the CPU reaches full load and is unable to send commands to the SDD?
     

  5. goodald

    goodald Member Guru

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  6. Pill Monster

    Pill Monster Banned

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  7. WhiteLightning

    WhiteLightning Don Illuminati Staff Member

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    lol!!
     
  8. goodald

    goodald Member Guru

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    eh.. about 5 (should have left the maxtor off).. oh well. the first link is still good.
     
  9. Labyrinth

    Labyrinth Ancient Guru

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    I take it people are remembering to install the drivers after its booted ie any sata / intel drivers

    i run AHCI/NCQ on both hard disks without any problems
     
  10. goodald

    goodald Member Guru

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    I've never had problems with them working (and install with ahci/ncq enabled) but found it interesting that IDE mode seemed to deliver better performance in many cases when used with an SSD.

    I'll make my own comparisons eventually, maybe once vertex 2 comes out.
     

  11. mrmonsoon

    mrmonsoon Master Guru

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    I have read the same article. they said they got an extra 20+ MBPS with sata VS ACHI.

    Personally i have not benchmarked both ways, but have it set to ACHI.
     
  12. dcx_badass

    dcx_badass Ancient Guru

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    So whats the verdict with it on HDDs, put Win 7 on my sisters laptop yesterday did a clean install going from vista.

    And her bios had it set to ahci, even though it said the recommended setting is ata (or ide), seems weird that they set it against their recommended default. I just left it on ahci in the end) Win 7 works fine anyway.
     
  13. TruMutton_200Hz

    TruMutton_200Hz Ancient Guru

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    On my ICH9M with eSATA, also Intel Matrix Storage Console package had to be installed to enable AHCI mode because it contains the driver. :D
     
  14. civato

    civato Master Guru

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    I tested it (changing from IDE to AHCI) on my WD Velociraptor 300GB 10.000RPM and on that HDD the performance drops are huge . Min becomes 2MB/sec(AHCI) instead of 50.7MB/sec(IDE) , Max is the same 120MB/sec , Average is 85MB/sec(AHCI) instead of 96MB/sec(IDE).

    Test on Samsung HD 103UJ 1000GB the performance is almost the same but still a performance win in IDE mode , about 10MB/sec in min , max and average transfer rate.

    So on my motherboard and HDD's it's better to leave it at IDE.
     
  15. TruMutton_200Hz

    TruMutton_200Hz Ancient Guru

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    Which AHCI driver are you using? ;)
     

  16. shadex

    shadex Master Guru

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    I have this motherboard and apparently this ACHI driver is from AMD:

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813153125

    When I enabled ACHI, my SATA channels becomes available (more slots..). Because from what I understand, IDE restricts 4 SATA channels. No wonder why my HP DVD RW didn't show up in windows until I enabled ACHI, then windows were able to identified rest of the hardware install on SATA channel 5 or above (1-4 already been taken).

    However, it suffers performance drops on a large margin, so I am not sure if there's an updated driver from AMD? I have AMD 790GX.
     
  17. TruMutton_200Hz

    TruMutton_200Hz Ancient Guru

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    Download one from their official website maybe?
     
  18. fr33k

    fr33k Ancient Guru

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    Guys i want to enable AHCI, but whenever i do windows never loads. It goes to the loading screen with the colorful windows logo and just sits there. I have to force restart.
    Safe mode has the same issue, it goes to the drivers loading screen and when it gets to the bottom it stops loading. Same thing happens with windows recovery console AND when i try to install a fresh windows. I looked at what hilbert said and it was already set like that. There are three settings and i will try to get a pic of what it looks like.

    ok here it is:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2010
  19. CoreyPL

    CoreyPL Master Guru

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    Can you change OnChip SATA Type to AHCI? Because now AHCI is on only for eSATA and additional controller on your mobo (probably jMicron). If your system drive is connected to Intel Controller (ports 0-3 or 0-5) then set AHCI only for those (before that use the tweak from 1st post). If you have any devices connected to eSATA and/or jMicron Controller (it's called GSATA on Gigabyte motherboards) then disconnect them, run Windows, uninstall drivers for them, go to BIOS, change to AHCI and install AHCI drivers when in Windows.

    For GSATA drivers (jMicron) do and download the newest one from ftp://driver.jmicron.com.tw/ (probably jmb36x chip, a least I had this chip on my Gigabyte mobo - take eSATA version) as Gigabyte drivers are very old.

    =====================

    As for AHCI mode itself - If I have the chance, I always use it with new drives. I never saw negative performance compared to IDE. But I have never change controller settings after installing system - I use AHCI on fresh installs/builds as default - maybe this is why everything works fine, without performance drops? (and I always run HDD tests to see if it's working without problems)
    On my personal system I use AHCI for hot-swapping with Marvell chipset - it's very good feature with Welland ME-751 Tray-less HDD Bay - you can slide HDD in/out without the need of any other tray/enclosures to be mounted to it.

    I have also read that if you have RAID on your motherboard, you should always enable it, even if you don't use RAID 0-1-5-10 or other volumes. HDD in RAID mode can work as a single drive, not being part of any RAID volume. When you enable RAID mode, you have AHCI within it enabled as default. So you have all that AHCI has to offer plus all the advanced options that RAID controlling software can give you.
     
  20. dreydin

    dreydin New Member

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    so i made the mistake of installing Windows 7 Pro 64 on my new X-25M 80g in IDE mode instead of AHCI and am trying to do everything i can to increase my performance. here is my first CDM...

    [​IMG]

    since, ive disabled system restore on my SSD...

    [​IMG]

    not what i was expecting, but my main concern here is switching from IDE to AHCI. ive done the whole HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Msahci to 0 bit, but when i go into my BIOS, this is what i see. where do i change it to AHCI???

    [​IMG]

    before going any further, here is my system's relevant specs... (please let me know if you need to know any additional)

    AMD 64b 3500+
    K8NS Ultra-939 mobo
    3 gigs ram
    Sapphire HD 3850 AGP
    Intel X-25M 80gig (primary)
    WD Black Caviar 640 (secondary)

    is it possible that my Gigabyte K8 Triton board doesnt have the AHCI ability? if not, is there a certain spot my X-25 should be plugged into?

    [​IMG]

    any direct help or relevant linking would be greatly appreciated as i have been out of the PC modding loop lately. my rig is old, but ive just recently upgraded the storage (1. X-25M 2. Black Caviar 3: 1TB WD external) and plan on doing the case/cooling next, then mobo/proc/ram/video last. i rarely game now, so keeping everything top of the line really isnt that big of a priority anymore. plus, the idea of dumping a lump sum of cash on a new rig and skimping on the less important parts bc of budget isnt very appealing to me.
     

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