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SATA variations question. Compatibility?

Last response: in Storage
August 31, 2012 11:19:10 AM

Hey guys. So I've just built my new PC and I'm having some HDD recognition problems. When I got into the BIOS on startup to see the boot options, it's only recognizing one of my HDDs and my optical drive. I've noticed both these drives are using the only 2 SATA cables supplied with the motherboard (SATA III cables I believe?), while the others are I believe SATA I cables taken from an old PC.

Is the reason the computer is not recognizing the other drives because they are plugged into SATA I cables that are then going into SATA II or SATA III ports?

Another question I have is: I want to install Windows on an SSD, though I have a HDD that already has windows installed as well as some of my programs. What is the best way to go about keeping the information on the current HDD with windows, but switching to running Windows from my SSD?
a c 357 G Storage
August 31, 2012 4:46:07 PM

For starters, try using different mobo ports. Although some SATA 6.0 Gb/s systems are picky about the cable quality, that is less a problem with older SATA ports.

It appears from your post that your mobo has SATA II (more properly, SATA 3.0 Gb/s) ports. Now, the average data transfer rate that can be achieved on both mechanical (rotating disk) HDD's and DVD units is LESS than the 3.0 Gb/s max rate of a SATA II port system, so using such a port will NOT slow down those devices. On the other hand, if and when you buy a new SSD, that is MUCH faster and really should be connected to a new SATA 6.0 Gb/s port, so make sure you don't use up all of those now.

Try connecting your HDD and DVD units to SATA II ports, using cables from the older machine. Keep the SATA 6.0 Gb/s cables and ports unused for future high-speed devices. Ensure in BIOS Setup that the HDD and optical units are detected, and set them up in the Boot Priority Sequence for use in booting. See if it all works then.