Ahci versus ide

Would be grateful for help with the following:

2 years ago bought a new desktop and set it up to dual boot Windows 7 and Windows XP. My storage devices are 64GB Samsung SATA SSD, 250GB SATA HDD and 1500GB SATA Hard Drive.

Windows 7 and its boot record are on the SSD. Windows XP and the MBR are in a 78GB partition on the 250GB HDD.

I've now finished with the need for dual booting and am in the process of reinstalling Windows 7 from scratch on the SSD. As preparation I reformatted the SSD and the 78GB partition on the 250GB HDD.

As an early progress check in the Windows 7 reinstallation I used Acronis TIH2010 to take images of the SSD and the 78GB partition on the HDD and then transferred them back into situ. Noticed that, although bthe dual boot facility has been removed, the system still boots from the HDD.

My questions:

1. How can I take the HDD out of the booting equation and have the system boot directly from the boot record on the SSD?
2. How and when should I make the switch from IDE to AHCI in the BIOS?
3. Will the switch to AHCI affect any of my data files on the other 70GB of the HDD?

Thanks in advance for any help.
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More about ahci versus
  1. Solved. In case anyone else needs to do it follow these steps:

    1. whs's excellent overall tutorial at
    2. additionally his guide to moving the bootmgr with EasyBCD at
    3. and barefoot kid's tutorial on switching to AHCI after the event at

    Thanks to you wizards.
  2. Hello !

    If you've got an SSD with TRIM, then to use that function you MUST be in AHCI mode.

    Good luck,
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