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"GIGABYTE SATA2 Driver" or "AMD SATA RAID Driver"

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June 7, 2011 1:35:58 PM

Im setting up my computer. it has a GA-880GA-UD3H (rev. 2.2) mobo.
It has 2 Western Digital Caviar Green WD20EARS 2TB drives set in RAID 0 (GPT) for storage. (and a SSD for my OS)
when downloading the RAID driver from Gigabyte i saw 2 drivers that im not sure which one i wanted to load during Windows install.

AMD SATA RAID Driver (Preinstall driver, press F6 during Windows* setup to read from floppy

and

GIGABYTE SATA2 Preinstall driver (For AHCI / RAID Mode)Note: Press F6 during Windows setup to read from floppy

i went ahead and isntalled the first one (AMD SATA RAID Driver).

Am i losing any preformace since i didnt install the SATA2 driver during windows installation? whats the differance. and can i just install the other driver after windows install since they don't have the os on there?

Thanks :) 
a b G Storage
June 7, 2011 3:52:38 PM

If your computer is working ok with the one driver you installed I would not worry about the other one. If you are having problems then load the second driver.
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June 7, 2011 7:06:00 PM

it works but im wondering if it would be faster if i installed the SATA2 driver?
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June 8, 2011 2:04:09 PM

Here's the skivvy. The AMD driver is for the 6 'light blue" SATA ports which are supported by the AMD SB850 southbridge. The Gigabyte SATA driver is for the two "white" SATA ports next to the AMD ones supported by the Gigabyte SATA 2 controller. Here's a pic of the board:


So, depending upon which ports you have your hard drives connected, that's the driver you need. Personally, I prefer to use the AMD ones for my internal drives and the Gigabyte ones for external e-SATA connections.

The manual TemplarLord linked shows a diagram of them on page 8, along with RAID setup instructions beginning on page 77 for the AMD SB850 controller, and page 83 for the Gigabyte controller.

Also of note, Windows 7 (and Vista) has have built-in RAID drivers, so a setup disk is no longer necessary for Windows installation. XP still requires such a setup disk, which is why the "Press F6..." message is still used. While I doubt the drivers need updating, you can update them if you wish. But I'd go to AMD's site ( http://sites.amd.com/us/game/downloads/Pages/downloads.... ) and get the southbridge/RAID drivers there. Find them by choosing your Windows version under the Motherboard/Integrated Video list, then under the "Optional Downloads" tab.
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June 8, 2011 3:31:40 PM

Most excellent reply! cheers. Thanks for all the great info :D 

Is there a difference in speed between the white and blue ports? Its to my understanding that sata3 and 6 etc... are superfluous so far since no drive unitizes these speeds.
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June 8, 2011 5:04:16 PM

The blue ones (AMD) are all SATA3, which have a maximum transfer rate of 6Gb/s. The Gigabyte ones are SATA2, which have a maximum transfer rate of 3Gb/s. And you're right, even top-tier SSD's can't reach SATA3 speed.

Have a look at the specifications tab here: http://www.gigabyte.us/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3...
(Note: That's a link to revision 3.0 of that model motherboard, but the SATA/RAID design and support is identical for all 5 revisions.)
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June 9, 2011 5:37:18 PM

Best answer selected by dballs.
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