Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

SLUGGISH: Fresh XP install on new SATA hard disk

Last response: in Storage
Share
February 25, 2007 1:32:12 PM

Hey all,

I recently made the journey into SATA - so I put a fresh image of XP on my new disk, and now I'm up and running like normal - except, seemingly more SLUGGISH than with IDE.

Specifically, my Mp3s - which used to run just fine even through heavy computing - are now skipping and halting like crazy even when doing so simple as opening a web browser!

I am wondering if there is some sort of driver conflict with the Silicon Image SiI 3112 SATARaid controller that windows automatically installed at install. I attempted to download new drivers from the SI website, but after installing them, my computer would crash during bootup and I would have to rollback to previous settings. The error I got during bootup only flashed for a second, so I can't reproduce it here, but it was the standard blue screen with all kinds of numbers and letters streaming across the screen, etc.

I was then thinking maybe the SATA controller on the mobo itself needed to be updated, at least before the newer Windows drivers would work??? I recently updated the BIOS of the mobo, but I don't think that necessarily effected the SATA controller? I saw files on the SI website for updating the SATA controller through flashing, but the process looked pretty complex?

One other thought - the drive is SATAII/300, but the controller on my older mobo is 150 - do I somehow need to alter the jumper settings on the drive to know to limit itself to 150? Could that be the cause of the sluggishness, or should the drive already be backwards compatible?

Finally, the last thing I could think of would be to update the firmware of the hard drive, but that seems like a longshot?

While so far the only notable slow spots have to do with sound, I don't think it has anything to do with my sound card - I'm using the same drivers I have in the past, the same settings...

Windows XP Pro SP2, all current updates
AMD Athlon XP 2100+
1 GB (2x512) Corsair XMS-3200
Asus A7N8X Deluxe mobo

Any help you can offer would be great! Thanks...

Joe
February 25, 2007 2:22:05 PM

Quote:
Hey all,

I recently made the journey into SATA - so I put a fresh image of XP on my new disk, and now I'm up and running like normal - except, seemingly more SLUGGISH than with IDE.

Specifically, my Mp3s - which used to run just fine even through heavy computing - are now skipping and halting like crazy even when doing so simple as opening a web browser!

I am wondering if there is some sort of driver conflict with the Silicon Image SiI 3112 SATARaid controller that windows automatically installed at install. I attempted to download new drivers from the SI website, but after installing them, my computer would crash during bootup and I would have to rollback to previous settings. The error I got during bootup only flashed for a second, so I can't reproduce it here, but it was the standard blue screen with all kinds of numbers and letters streaming across the screen, etc.

I was then thinking maybe the SATA controller on the mobo itself needed to be updated, at least before the newer Windows drivers would work??? I recently updated the BIOS of the mobo, but I don't think that necessarily effected the SATA controller? I saw files on the SI website for updating the SATA controller through flashing, but the process looked pretty complex?

One other thought - the drive is SATAII/300, but the controller on my older mobo is 150 - do I somehow need to alter the jumper settings on the drive to know to limit itself to 150? Could that be the cause of the sluggishness, or should the drive already be backwards compatible?

Finally, the last thing I could think of would be to update the firmware of the hard drive, but that seems like a longshot?

While so far the only notable slow spots have to do with sound, I don't think it has anything to do with my sound card - I'm using the same drivers I have in the past, the same settings...

Windows XP Pro SP2, all current updates
AMD Athlon XP 2100+
1 GB (2x512) Corsair XMS-3200
Asus A7N8X Deluxe mobo

Any help you can offer would be great! Thanks...

Joe



Did your run benchmarks?
or are feeling different towards your new technology and expected a big change?

can you tell the difference?
February 25, 2007 2:50:54 PM

try setting the jumpers on drive to match controler speed
Related resources
February 25, 2007 3:03:14 PM

You didn't say which hard drive you got, so it's hard to tell you about where to put the jumper, or where to update the internal software. I suggest going to the website of the maker of your hard drive and see if there are any instructions on how to toggle the SATA150/SATA300 setting. Some usually get shipped @ 150. If your SATA controller is on the mobo, I wouldn't worry about updating the firmware for it. It should get taken care of when you update the BIOS for the mobo. You haven't set anything for RAID, have you? Have you defragged your hard drive yet? When you install Windows, it just throws everything onto the hard drive. Usually at the first defrag, you see more red than blue. That could be hampering your computer from finding your mp3 files quick enough as to not lag. Try running www.pcpitstop.com and run the full test. It'll tell you if your drive performance really sucks or if there's somewhere else you should be paying attention to.
February 25, 2007 4:01:10 PM

Sorry all - I have a Western Digtial WD2500KS - 250 GB, 300 MB/s, 16 MB Cache, 7200 RPM.

I will try to adjust the jumper settings to reduce the speed to 150...

I don't have any kind of RAID set up, but the mobo does load a RAID management system from Silicon Image that I presume wasn't updated with the BIOS flash, since it still says 2004 on the version during bootup. This RAID setup utility only loaded after I changed a jumper setting on the mobo itself. I activated this since I figured that the mobo wouldn't recongize the SATA drive unless I did - was this wrong? Should I turn that jumper back to off? Is it now trying to run a RAID that isn't there? Sorry if that's a foolish question, I know nothing abou this (obviously)!

As for whether I was expecting to see dramatic performance gains just because of this new harddrive - no, I wasn't. But, my older IDE drive was obviously slower, and only had an 8MB cache, and it ran without incident, and that was back when I had 512 mb of RAM - so it would seem unlikely that after those upgrades, Mp3s would run worse...

I will run various benchmarks to see if that yields any useful info if the jumper settings don't fix the problem, and I will post the results.

Thanks so much everyone!

Joe
February 25, 2007 4:42:18 PM

Quote:
Sorry all - I have a Western Digtial WD2500KS - 250 GB, 300 MB/s, 16 MB Cache, 7200 RPM.

I will try to adjust the jumper settings to reduce the speed to 150...

I don't have any kind of RAID set up, but the mobo does load a RAID management system from Silicon Image that I presume wasn't updated with the BIOS flash, since it still says 2004 on the version during bootup. This RAID setup utility only loaded after I changed a jumper setting on the mobo itself. I activated this since I figured that the mobo wouldn't recongize the SATA drive unless I did - was this wrong? Should I turn that jumper back to off? Is it now trying to run a RAID that isn't there? Sorry if that's a foolish question, I know nothing abou this (obviously)!

As for whether I was expecting to see dramatic performance gains just because of this new harddrive - no, I wasn't. But, my older IDE drive was obviously slower, and only had an 8MB cache, and it ran without incident, and that was back when I had 512 mb of RAM - so it would seem unlikely that after those upgrades, Mp3s would run worse...

I will run various benchmarks to see if that yields any useful info if the jumper settings don't fix the problem, and I will post the results.

Thanks so much everyone!

Joe


BINGO!
Put the jumper back on the mobo...you want it to see SATA...not RAID.
February 27, 2007 11:55:19 PM

Hey all - no luck just yet.

The PC Pitstop did not yield any info about problems with my hard drive. In fact, it made it sound as though I was at the top of the game based upon the hardware I had. It merely suggested to defrag my harddrive, which I did, and that had no effect.

In terms of jumpers, setting the jumper on my disk to limit to the 150 transfer rate has had no effect. And, in terms of the mobo jumper, switching that resulted in my system not booting at all - as that must be enabled to boot any SATA device, I now guess.

I'm still convinced new drivers may help - anyone have any ideas why my previous attempt to install the new drivers from Silicon Images yielded failure during bootup? Could it have anything to do with a conflict with old firmware in the onboard SATA controllers? Would updating the firmware on the disk itself help?

I'm going to try to run chkdsk with bad sector check - would posting those results here yield any positive clues?
February 28, 2007 12:12:36 AM

I recently bought the same drive and had the same problem.

The drive has a "feature" called acoustic management that slows the speed (and performence) of the drive to keep it quiet. Download the Hitachi Feature Tool to change the disk bios settings if changing the mobo performance settings doesn't work. I had to fiddle with the mobo settings a couple of times to get it to take.
February 28, 2007 2:03:12 AM

I don't understand - my drive is a Western Digital - will these Hitachi utilities work?
a c 152 G Storage
February 28, 2007 2:38:24 AM

i got 2 WDC drives(250 sata 150)...OEM and 1 was that way and the other was not...they also had 2 different motors... go figure....and yes hitachi's tool DID fix it....not that the drives where slow....speed where normal....its the seek times that sucked...i mean 20+ms....

The feature tool will let u turn silent seek(so something like that) down....it would not let me turn it off....so i set it to max speed(what ever hitachi called it back then....)....and it was the same as off.....

You should grab HDtach and see your speed and seek time....

The skipping sounds like a drive or motherboard problem....
February 28, 2007 4:46:27 AM

Quote:
Hey all - no luck just yet.

The PC Pitstop did not yield any info about problems with my hard drive. In fact, it made it sound as though I was at the top of the game based upon the hardware I had. It merely suggested to defrag my harddrive, which I did, and that had no effect.

In terms of jumpers, setting the jumper on my disk to limit to the 150 transfer rate has had no effect. And, in terms of the mobo jumper, switching that resulted in my system not booting at all - as that must be enabled to boot any SATA device, I now guess.

I'm still convinced new drivers may help - anyone have any ideas why my previous attempt to install the new drivers from Silicon Images yielded failure during bootup? Could it have anything to do with a conflict with old firmware in the onboard SATA controllers? Would updating the firmware on the disk itself help?

I'm going to try to run chkdsk with bad sector check - would posting those results here yield any positive clues?


In PCPitstop, under test details, what was your transfer rate?

I've got the same exact drive in my HTPC. It scores 53 mb/s uncached speed in PC Pitstop.
February 28, 2007 6:57:00 PM

HD Tach / Western Digtial WD2500KS

65MBs read
199MBs burst
!