AHCI / SATA mode support for Latitude D620

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AHCI / SATA mode support for Latitude D620

  • Hi,
     
    Does anyone know if there is a way to enable AHCI/SATA mode on the Latitude D620.  The onboard I/O chipset (Intel 82801 GBM - ICH7M) supports it as well as the internal SATA drive I have, but it is only running in ATA mode and I would like to take advantage of the performance improvements of the AHCI/SATA mode.  Most vendors have BIOS options to select the interface mode, however, I did not see any options in the latest A08 version.  Maybe there are utilities to enable this?
     
    Thanks,
    -Scott
  • Even if you could switch it, you would have to reinstall the Operating system while it is in AHCI mode.
     
    You cannot just toggle between these two modes
     
    If it is not in the bios, then it is not available,
     
    AHCI is for server environments anyway, the only advantages to using it are NCQ (only if the hard drive supports it, and again this is for servers) and it also allows Sata hard drives to be hot swapped while the system is on and booted into Windows. None of these have any advantage on a Desktop or Laptop.
  • Hi,
     
    So are you saying that if I could run in native sata mode that I would not benefit from a higher throughput (150MB per second) versus ATA 100 (100MB per second)?
     
    Thanks
     
     
  • You have it all wrong.
     
    ATA can represent  Pata (ide) or Sata. 
     
    ATA mode will install the correct Sata drivers with no loss of performance.
     
     
    150mbps is burst speed, not sustained. Just so you will know sata is not that much faster than the ata100 that you refer to, even ata 133 was a hoax that only Maxtor refused to let go of, to sell their inferior drives to people that believed they were faster than ATA100, this sata thing was for marketing purposes to sell more hard drives in my humble opinion.. If you will go to the manufacturers website and read the technical specifications on that hard drive model you will find the truth about sata.
     
    Pata and Stat drives both suffer from the physical limitation of the spindle speed of the drive, you can only move so much data on or off a drive that spins at at 7200rpm.
     
    There are some sata drives that spin at 10,00 and 15,000 rpm with noticeable difference in performance. Expensive.
     
     
    Here is a truthful rant on Sata I and Sata II
     
     
    That all being said, I do prefer Sata drives for system drives, but for storage purposes, there is little difference between the two.
  • I signed up to the dell forum thinking that it would help to generate some good discussions .. unfortunately, I was incorrect.
     
    Thanks for your input.
     
    -Scott
  • "I signed up to the dell forum thinking that it would help to generate some good discussions .. unfortunately, I was incorrect.
     
    Thanks for your input.
     
    -Scott"
     
     
     
    You have been incorrect the entire thread. I was just trying to give you the facts of the matter. Point you in the right direction.
     
    Whats wrong, did I burst your bubble or something?, I guess you did not want the facts?


    Message Edited by mombodog on 06-22-2007 11:12 PM


  • steltsa wrote:
    I signed up to the dell forum thinking that it would help to generate some good discussions .. unfortunately, I was incorrect.
     
    Thanks for your input.
     
    -Scott



    ignorance is bliss!
  • Whether AHCI is for Servers or not is beside the point, There was a valid question that you ignored. The system, D620 by default is set to run in Compatibility mode as far as SATA is concerned. The D630 BIOS has a feature in the BIOS under the Onboard Devices section called SATA Operation which has two options: ATA or AHCI. This option is absent from the D620 BIOS and by default the system is set to what Dell refers to as ATA mode. This is COMPATIBILITY mode and is not using the AHCI drivers from Intel. I realize that if it was in AHCI mode, you would have to interrupt windows setup (F6) to provide the drivers disk in order for windows to be able to run properly, however this option is taken away from D620 so it's stuck in a COMPATIBILITY mode. Perhaps this other post which found on here might clarify the issue further - too bad nobody bothered answering it:


    Hello to the group! I have two Latitude D620s as well as an HP dv5000t (T7200 Intel-based) laptop. On the HP dv5000t the machine came in "compatibility mode" with respect to the Intel SATA setup, meaning the enhanced SATA mode was turned off in the bios. That meant that the advanced features of the drive were not available until I installed the Intel Matrix Storage drivers and enabled the function in the bios. That machine is noticeably faster now. On the D620, the device manager hardware settings seem to indicate that the settings are in "compatibility mode" like my HP was when I first got it. It is a T7600, 80gb 7200rpm, with 2 gb ram. Unlike the HP, I don't see a setting to enable or disable the enhanced SATA functionality for the drive controller. Can anybody shed some light on whether the D620 will allow installation of the Intel Matrix Storage drivers (AHCI) to allow the drive to operate with NCQ enabled? Or if I do that will the machine not even see the hard drive anymore? Thanks, WA
  • "If it is not in the bios, then it is not available,"
     
    I think I addressed the issue. Going into an in depth explanation of what does not exist on that particular system is kind of pointless.
     
     
    "Can anybody shed some light on whether the D620 will allow installation of the Intel Matrix Storage drivers (AHCI) to allow the drive to operate with NCQ enabled? Or if I do that will the machine not even see the hard drive anymore?"
     
    No you cannot on that model, Dell has the ahci function of the chipset blocked/disabled in the bios.
     
    If it is not in the bios, then it is not available for use.
     
    Installing software in windows will not help.
  • What a shame... And there I thought Dell business notebooks offered the best performance options... Both HP (nc6400) and IBM (t60) of the same time frame offer the option to run SATA in AHCI mode or compatibility mode.

    I agree - there's no point of an in-depth explanation, however I still find it hard to believe that Dell would omit this selection in their bios until the Dx30 models...
  • They also removed it from many desktops also, thinking it would cut down on support calls.
     
    I think they got too many complaints when people tried to re-install windows and XP could not find the hard drive due to lack of drivers.
     
    Darned if you do, darned if you don't.

  • mombodog wrote:
    If it is not in the bios, then it is not available...


    This may be interpreted in various ways! My interpretation is it is not available because it is not in the BIOS! ;)

    This problem has been raised too many times not only for the Latitude D620 but also for the Inspirons 6400 and 9400! I have read some time ago the chipset employed in the 6400 and in the 9400 models supports the AHCI mode. In my case, I have a hard disk which also supports this mode, but there's no setting in the BIOS.


    mombodog wrote:
    Even if you could switch it, you would have to reinstall the Operating system while it is in AHCI mode


    I don't want to be a jerk, but I would like to express my opinion: let them enable the AHCI option in the BIOS and I will deal with the Windows installation!

    Inspiron 6400, 80 GB HDD, 4 GB RAM, ATI x1300,

    A17 BIOS, Win XP SP3

  • "I don't want to be a jerk, but I would like to express my opinion"
     
    Then express your opinion without being a jerk! Problem solved.
  • There's really no need to reinstall windows anyways. All you need to do is to boot up the system in BartPE/WinPE and modify the registry and insert the ahci files into the windows\system32 folder (maybe \drivers?) Problem solved. True this is not a solution for home users (read: Inspiron) but on a Latitude, the machine would be built with this option enabled by whoever's creating the image (this would be me for our company and clients). It just really frustrates me that I'm having to run the SATA in this degraded mode on the D630 which does have the option, just because I can't get the D620s to run in true sata.