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AHCI for SSD? How do I set it up?

By ingeborgdot
Oct 28, 2012
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  1. I am going to be putting together another computer and using another SSD. I was wondering what the required setting for and SSD in the bios is? Don't I set it to AHCI? I have SATA burners and also 3 HDDs though. What should I do for that situation?
     
  2. St1ckM4n

    St1ckM4n TS Evangelist Posts: 3,479   +624

    "Another SSD" <-- What does this mean, exactly?

    The BIOS setting doesn't matter too much, really. It all depends on if you want to set up RAID arrays etc. AHCI or IDE won't make too much difference to the standard user.
     
  3. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 760

    Everything I have heard is telling me AHCI for SSD to make it run the best.
    I have another question then. I am going to be reformatting another computer with an SSD drive in it. What is the proper way to do that? I was reading somewhere that you should do something special but can't find it again to read what it has to say.
     
  4. Darth Shiv

    Darth Shiv TS Evangelist Posts: 1,184   +177

    First of all I presume you are not installing onto RAID because that will complicate things a little.

    1) Setup bios. Set your SATA controller to AHCI mode. It is most definitely beneficial as it will allow NCQ.

    2) Secure erase the SSD if you have used it previously. If you have not, skip this step. If you don't know what that is, google around for it. Different manufacturers have their own tools for doing this.

    3) Preferably install an OS that supports TRIM such as Windows 7. Do a format of the SSD from within the Win7 installation. This will do the proper cluster alignment that SSDs need for best performance. Don't bother with a full format. Quick format will be fine.

    4) Complete the Windows installation. Not sure if you will need to but you may need SATA drivers using the F6 key during the install to support the controller being in AHCI mode. Intel provides F6 drivers for Intel chipset based motherboards. I presume AMD does the same. This step used to require a floppy drive for older windows but you might be able to put them on a USB stick nowadays in Win7.

    That's a pretty light guide. More comprehensive info will be on SSD manufacturer forums such as OCZTechnology.com.
     


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