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Switching SATA from IDE mode to prepare a SSD install

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May 31, 2012 1:13:56 PM

Hi, all!

I'm going to install a SSD drive in a few days and my first thought is to install it as a cache drive until I format my drive, so then I would use the SSD as my boot drive.

The thing is that I'm doubtful about how I should proceed.

First of all, my system (no overclocking):

Motherboard -> Asus P8H77-V
CPU -> Intel i7 3770
RAM -> 2 x Kingston HyperX 4GB DDR3 1600 (running at native 1333MHz)
GPU -> Gigabyte GTX560 OC 1GB DDR5
Primary HDD -> Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7200rpm SATA2 (connected to first SATA3 port)
Secondary HDD -> Seagate Barracuda 2TB Green SATA2 (connected to second SATA3 port)

The SSD I'm going to have is a Crucial M4 128GB.

So, the first thing I intend to do is to swap my secondary HDD to a SATA2 port, obviously. Next, before I install the SSD I'm concerned about what to do with Windows. I mean, I have read I have to switch the SATA mode to RAID (without creating volumes) so I can use Intel Smart response tech and use the SSD as cache. Referring to do this that Microsoft indicates (in this KB), will I lose any data if I switch SATA mode? Can I turn back to IDE mode if boot goes wrong without losing any data?


It's the first time I do this and want to maintain my installation now. In the future I will format and use the SSD as primary.

Thanks in advance!
a c 298 G Storage
May 31, 2012 3:52:46 PM

Good Morning.

Let's just backtrack a bit. If you are going to purchase a SATA 3 6Gb/s 64GB or larger solid state drive, then Intel Smart Response Technology (ssd caching) is not necessary. According to Intel you would be better off and experience better performance if you installed Windows 7 and your software applications on the ssd instead of the hard disk drive. It makes more sense to to get the full benefit of the ssd instead of using it as a cache for a hard disk drive. Use the hard disk drive for storing Windows backups, data files, movies, music, etc. etc.

When Intel devloped SRT, they envisioned using a small 10GB to 20GB ssd as a cache for one hard disk drive. It was meant for individuals who could not afford a larger capacity ssd.

I think what you meant to say is that you read about changing from IDE mode to AHCI mode in the motherboard's system BIOS. Normally you would switch to RAID mode only if you had multiple drives in a RAID array. The change to AHCI mode is normally made when you have the ssd mounted inside you case and you are ready to install Microsoft Windows 7. Just start your pc. Immediately go into the System BIOS and make the changes. Save the configuration and continue with start-up and Windows 7 installation.
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May 31, 2012 4:14:10 PM

Hi there! Thank you for your reply!

Quote:
Let's just backtrack a bit. If you are going to purchase a SATA 3 6Gb/s 64GB or larger solid state drive, then Intel Smart Response Technology (ssd caching) is not necessary. According to Intel you would be better off and experience better performance if you installed Windows 7 and your software applications on the ssd instead of the hard disk drive. It makes more sense to to get the full benefit of the ssd instead of using it as a cache for a hard disk drive. Use the hard disk drive for storing Windows backups, data files, movies, music, etc. etc.

When Intel devloped SRT, they envisioned using a small 10GB to 20GB ssd as a cache for one hard disk drive. It was meant for individuals who could not afford a larger capacity ssd.


My SSD is 128GB. My intention is to use it as a system drive, but for now (until I decide to reintstall everything) I would like to use it as SRT meanwhile. If you think this is nonsense and I should go directly for installing W7 on the SSD, then the question is... Can I securely migrate my current installation to the SSD without formatting?

Quote:
I think what you meant to say is that you read about changing from IDE mode to AHCI mode in the motherboard's system BIOS. Normally you would switch to RAID mode only if you had multiple drives in a RAID array. The change to AHCI mode is normally made when you have the ssd mounted inside you case and you are ready to install Microsoft Windows 7. Just start your pc. Immediately go into the System BIOS and make the changes. Save the configuration and continue with start-up and Windows 7 installation.


Yes, AHCI mode should be. Should I avoid changing this before the SSD Windows installation?

Thank you!!
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