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Sluggish performance in AHCI mode after SSD install and fresh W7 install

Tags:
  • Performance
  • Kingston
  • Storage
  • Solid State
  • SSD
Last response: in Storage
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April 16, 2014 8:35:48 AM

As the title says, I recently installed a new 120gb Kingston SSDNow v300 series solid state in my rig. Having not a lot of experience with hardware (mainly software being a developer) I did not realize I needed to swtich to AHCI mode, so I installed W7 on my new ssd in IDE mode.

Once I read a little more and discovered I should definitely be running my SSD in AHCI mode, I did the W7 registry hack to enable the AHCI driver and turned on AHCI mode in my BIOS and restarted. I noticed the performance was not all that great. After a little more research, a lot of people suggested to freshly re-install windows 7 on the ssd now that AHCI mode was enabled. I went ahead and did this, formatting the partition and re-installing W7 on the ssd in AHCI mode.

I am still noticing a bit of slugglish performance. Chrome is running a lot slower and more sluggish than before. Games I play like global offensive are running a lot worse than before the ssd install: poorer frame-rate, slower launch etc.

Things I have tried:
-Updating to the most recent ssd firmware
-Enabling TRIM
-Installing all of the most recent windows updates/driver updates
-Clearing my ssd so that it is only roughly 40% capacity used

I am at work right now so I don't have a screenshot of the ssd benchmark results but I was getting roughly 150 read and 75 write. My mobo only supports Sata2 so I didn't expect the speed to be perfect, but certainly not that low.

Specs are:
Intel i7 950 @ 3.06 GHz
Gigabyte X-58-USB3
8 GB Gskill ripjaw 1033 (DDR3 1333) RAM
Nvidia Gtx 460
120 GB Kingston SSDNow v300 series SSD
500GB WD Caviar Black
Noctua NH-DH14 CPU Cooler

I'm kind of at a loss now and running out of things to try/ideas. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance!

More about : sluggish performance ahci mode ssd install fresh install

April 16, 2014 9:32:10 AM

I think you need the latest intel sata drivers.The only way to install them is to go on the intel website find and download the lastest version of Intel Rapid Storage software that supports your motherboard's chipset.I think your motherboard chipset is quite old and the latest version doesn't support it.You have to find a version that is compatible with your chipset.Install it and I think you 'll be fine.
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a c 544 G Storage
April 16, 2014 9:39:46 AM

The advertised 450MB/s Read and 450MB/s Write speeds are on a SATA 3 (6Gb/s) port using ATTO.

Advertised Read/Write speeds using AS-SSD are up to 180MB/s Read and 133MB/s Write. http://www.kingston.com/datasheets/sv300s3_us.pdf

So your benchmark results appear to be normal considering that your SSD is on a SATA 2 (3Gb/s) port.


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April 22, 2014 9:43:30 AM

WOW! I LOVE Tom's Hardware. I am getting ready to install this same drive in my "older" system which is SATA 2. ASUS P5N7A-VM rev. 1 motherboard.

I am trying to figure out if my hard drives are set to ACHI (I don't think they are, but I'm still looking.) since much of what I have read says "make sure ACHI drivers are installed and AHCI is enabled before you install your SSD." I am going to do a fresh install of Windows 7 64-bit. I am currently running 32-bit.

I bought this Kingston drive because of price not speed. I'm not going to upgrade to SATA 3 anytime soon. If you continue to have problems call Kingston's customer support. They responded to many of the negative comments on Newegg indicating that all you need to do is call for help.

Here is an article regarding installing an SSD on an "older" system.
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ssd-upgrade-sata-3g...
It basically says: Don't focus on benchmarks, your system should be faster in everyday use with the SSD. Of course since your system seems to be slower overall then there might be some other changes you need to make.

Also, I believe that there are two parts to ACHI. One is the drivers which are contained in Windows 7. (I think that's right.) The other is enabling ACHI in BIOS. I'm not sure you need to do a registry hack, but I could be wrong. I did run across a Microsoft Fix it Article ID 922976 that might address this issue. This article might help as well:
http://solotechpros.com/2014/03/27/install-sata-ahci-dr...

My motherboard appears to have several SATA connectors. The user manual seems to indicate that only two of them support ACHI and RAID. I did a quick look at your motherboard specs but didn't see if your board has the same restriction as mine so you might want to check for that.

I hope you are able to work this out before all your hair is gone!

(I'm rambling a bit but if someone else finds this thread hopefully they will benefit from my ramblings.)
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