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Slow SSD, tried lots of things, ahci changed to amd sata after driver update

Tags:
  • SSD
  • Storage
  • AMD
Last response: in Storage
January 28, 2014 3:31:47 AM

My speed test results:

http://i40.tinypic.com/smy8sn.jpg

System:
Motherboard: Asrock 870 Extreme3 (AMD 870, AMD SB850)
CPU: AMD Phenom II X6 1055T
Memory Kingston DDR3 1333 (4*2GB)
SSD: Samsung SSD 840 EVO 120GB
HDD: WDC.WD10Eals-00Z8A0

I installed Win7 on the SSD in IDE mode. Changed it to AHCI after (and I had to plug the SATA3 cable to an anothert port on the motherboard, don't know why, because I think all of them 6.Gb/s, but the up facing one, where the DVD-drive used to be was the one working with AHCI). At this stage the random read was around 38000 IOPS.

I wasn't satisfied with this, so I updated the drivers from here:
http://support.amd.com/en-us/download/chipset?os=Window...

Now the speed is better (but not good enough I think), but in AS SSD benchmark it says amd_sata - OK instead of ahci...

Is my SSD OK in this mode, or should I change it back to ahci (if yes, how?). What else could I try to improve my SSD performance (I tried all of the usual tweaks).

Thanks a lot!

More about : slow ssd lots things ahci changed amd sata driver update

January 28, 2014 3:45:48 AM

If you installed Windows in ancient IDE mode, you cannot simply change settings to AHCI, because Windows will not load the corresponding drivers, and your computer will crash while booting Windows. There are tricks described in the internet how you can switch your already-installed Windows to load AHCI drivers at boot time, but it is not as easy as changing the BIOS setting. I did not witness exactly what you did, but if you did not have to put any effort in making Win7 boot into AHCI, then your SSD is still running in IDE mode, which is an archaic mode that will easily limit your data throughput.

The official solution is to reinstall Windows 7 with BIOS being set to AHCI. As I said before, there are unofficial tricks to be found in the internet how you can circumvent needing to do this.

The other thing that you may want to check is the SATA cable. I have had my own share of trouble with poor SATA cables that caused all sorts of symptoms that pointed towards a defective SSD when in truth it was only the cable.
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January 28, 2014 3:58:41 AM

AHCI was OK before the driver update (changed it in the BIOS as well), because AS SSD said ahci OK, and the samsung magician did not said anything about ahci problem...

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January 28, 2014 4:02:34 AM

Just to get this straight: You set BIOS to AHCI and were still able to boot up windows?
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January 28, 2014 4:05:39 AM

Yes, I did the registry thing... AHCI appeared in Devices.

Now (after the driver update) it disappeared from Devices as well...
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January 28, 2014 4:08:40 AM

Well, it does nto seem you did this properly then. You may have to decide either to live with the crappy SSD performance or to do a proper reinstallation.
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a b G Storage
January 28, 2014 4:16:52 AM

AMD_sata.sys is the AHCI driver for AMD chipsets.

Have you checked partition alignment? Are you actually experiencing poor performance in real life or is it just a matter of benchmarks?
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January 28, 2014 5:11:25 AM

Ijack said:
AMD_sata.sys is the AHCI driver for AMD chipsets.

Have you checked partition alignment? Are you actually experiencing poor performance in real life or is it just a matter of benchmarks?


So my AHCI might be OK? Under Devices / IDE ATA/ATAPI, I have "AMD SATA controller" instead AHCI, so this backs up your point as well (is it?).

What should I check?
AS SSD Benchmark says 103424 K - OK
Partition starting offset can be divided by 4096 (the result is whole number).

I don't have any other real life experiences with SSDs, so I can't compare. (Although it seems OK to me, Windows boots up in no time).
I've read that Benchmark softwares and Samsung Magician may have some problems with AMD chipsets/drivers.... Any other benchmarking software I should try?
Thx for your help!
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January 28, 2014 5:20:12 AM

Sounds like you are spending more time finding out whether you have a suboptimal configuration than the time this suboptimal configuration can ever cost you.
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Best solution

a b G Storage
January 28, 2014 5:23:34 AM

If it seems OK to you then just enjoy the enhanced performance and forget artificial benchmarks. Depending upon how exactly you run the benchmark you will get different figures for read performance, varying from 10,000 to 100,000.

In the end, what matters is how it performs in day-to-day tasks.
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January 28, 2014 5:25:25 AM

DeathAndPain said:
Sounds like you are spending more time finding out whether you have a suboptimal configuration than the time this suboptimal configuration can ever cost you.


So I won't notice this lack of speed? As I said I've no experience with SSDs...

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January 28, 2014 5:33:40 AM

You most obviously don't. You say yourself that Windows is booting up fantastically fast, as it should be with an SSD. Not worth investing lots of time searching for an error under these circumstances.
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