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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger chowur's Avatar
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    Could An SSD Be The Best Upgrade For Your Old PC?

    Here's a very informative article;http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/...?%2008-08-2011
    Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them. -Albert Einsten

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  3. #2
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    Pretty interesting. Thanks for the article.

  4. #3
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Thanks from me as well. I will be investigating further for my laptop.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
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  5. #4
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Yes definitely, if an SSD can be worked into your current hardware and software environment, it can be a decent upgrade for an older PC.
    ...But with a few caveats.

  6. #5
    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    Why is it that the image of putting a Rolls-Royce engine in a tractor springs to my mind?
    BATcher

    Time prevents everything happening all at once...

  7. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    It might be cheaper than replacing the whole computer, especially if it isn't actually necessary.
    Ideally it would be far better to just replace an old computer with a new one. But not everyone has the cash for it.

  8. #7
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    Any computer with SATA is not "old". "Old" is PATA and there is no SSD option there.

    cheers, Paul

  9. #8
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    My PC is far from old or reached anywhere near end-of-life. It has a Quad Q9550, 8GB RAM running Win 7 x64: I'd be mad to want to sacrifice that just to move up to a new P67/1155 platform. It would still need an SSD to make it significantly better anyway.

    So I purchased a PCIe SATA-3 adapter card and a 120GB SATA-3 SSD. It is probably the most significant upgrade I have ever made in my long career in computing, far greater than changing PCs.


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    I will use this thread to ask the same question about upgrading my really old PC with SSD.

    I donít want to buy a new PC yet, because Iím able to perform all the tasks I need with my old one. Anyway, I feel that for many tasks the bottleneck is my HDD. Iíve read other users experiences with SSDs on their old systems and I was impressed by the results, therefore Iím considering upgrading with SSD too. Iím thinking of buying SATA3 SSD that I would be able to use with my new machine, which I will buy in the future. However, I would like to use SATA3 SSD on my old machine like for a year or so before buying a new computer.

    Here is the specifications of my current old PC:

    CPU: P4 3.8 GHz (x64 capable)
    RAM: 4 GB DDR1
    GPU: 256 MB
    MB: Intel D915PGN. SATA1. 2 x PCI Express x1 connectors. 1 x PCI Express x16 connector.

    As far as I know, in order for a SSD to work properly (not to slow down and accumulate garbage) TRIM command (windows 7 and newer supports TRIM) and AHCI are needed. My motherboard doesnít have AHCI. Would it be possible to add a controller that supports AHCI and SATA3 to my motherboard PCI-e slot? By reading Wikipedia about TRIM Iíve found this information:
    Windows 7 only supports TRIM for ordinary (AHCI) drives and does not support this command for PCI-Express SSDs that are different type of device, even if the device itself would accept the command.
    Does that mean that I will not be able to use a controller in order to upgrade my motherboard for using SSD?

    To sum up, I would like to buy a SSD and use it on my current old PC for a year or more (it depends how well it will perform) before buying a completely new PC. Could you please tell me if itís possible to upgrade my old PC with SATA3 SSD? What controller would be needed? What to do in order not to get my SSD slowed down?

    I appreciate your input and help. Thank you.

  11. #10
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Storage Interfaces
    Intel ICH6 : ATA-100 - connector(s): 1 x 40pin IDC - 2 device(s),
    Intel ICH6 : Serial ATA-150 - connector(s): 4 x 7pin Serial ATA - 4 device(s)

    Your board supports 4 SATA ports, but you're not going to get anything near the SATA 3.0 speeds that a SATA 3.0 SSD is spec'd for.

    A SSD on your board would make a decent hardware upgrade option on one of the available SATA controllers.
    Get yourself a couple of 1 or 2TB drives to fill a few more ports, and relegate the IDE port for a CD/DVD ROM device.
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    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

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  12. #11
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    Yes, my motherboard has 4 SATA1 ports, but it doesnít support AHCI. Some people say that AHCI is crucial for proper functionality of SSD.

    Would it be possible to add an expansion card that support SATA3 interface and AHCI to motherboardís PCI-e slot? I think that should help using more that SSD has to offer. If yes, what expansion slot should be used: PCIe x16 or PCIe x1?

  13. #12
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    No, AHCI is not "crucial" for an SSD's function, but it will improve performance above that of IDE mode.
    There are many PCIe SATA expansion that cards will support AHCI mode. Hardly worth doing PCIe x1 though.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

  14. #13
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    Iíve heard of people using their SSD straight on their SATA 1 connection without bothering with expansion cards (PCI-e to SATA 2 or 3 controllers ), but wouldnít an SSD start to slow down and accumulate garbage without AHCI and NCQ support?

    Slowing down and premature aging of an SSD is what Iím trying to avoid. Therefore, Iím thinking about using a controller. Theoretically it should help to get more speed from an SSD too, because maximum transfer rate of SATA 1 is 150 MB/s while PCI Express 1.0 offers maximum per-lane data rate of 250 MB/s. Is it really so? Would I get that maximum speed of 250 MB/s when using PCI-Express x1 to SATA 3 controller? My GPU is on AGP port, therefore PCI-e would be used by the SATA controller only.

    By the way, in my case does it matter which controller PCI-e to SATA 2 or SATA 3 I would use? I think it doesnít, because in the case of SATA 2 orSATA 3 the bottleneck would be the PCI-e port itself which limits the maximum speed to 250 MB/s.

    Iíve found these two controllers:Controller 1 and Controller 2. Both of them support NCQ, but how do I know that these controllers support AHCI?

    If I understand correctly, those controllers should have their own chipsets and BIOS that would upgrade my old system with capabilities of SATA3 and AHCI. But is it possible? My motherboardís southbridge is ICH6 which has an integrated SATA 1 controller that supports data transfer rates up to 150 MB / s. Am I able to increase this rate by using an expansion card controller? Wonít the southbridge limit it?

  15. #14
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Don't over complicate things, an SSD in IDE mode will do just fine, and your antiquated system will only be worth upgrading to a point.

    TRIM support and garbage collection will be done with an operating system that is fully capable of supporting SSD's, Like Windows 7 & 8.
    Your disk controller's AHCI or IDE mode will have little to do with that.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

    Build your own system; get everything you want and nothing you don't.
    Latest Build:
    ASUS X99 Deluxe, Core i7-5960X, Corsair Hydro H100i, Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD, Corsair DOMINATOR Platinum 32GB DDR4@2666, W8.1 64 bit,
    EVGA GTX980, Seasonic PLATINUM-1000W PSU, MountainMods U2-UFO Case, and 7 other internal drives.

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  17. #15
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    Ya, you get what you get and 150 mb is not bad, it will be way faster than any traditional hard drive, not only because that exceeds the top speed of a hard drive but the value of random access cannot be understated in that an SSD will be consistently faster, which makes it seem even faster. I wouldn't over-complicate it either unless you feel like experimenting and because you plan on upgrading and moving the drive to a new system. From everything I read the SSD firmware is such now that garbage collection alone is enough to keep an SSD from slowing significantly over time on a system that does not run an OS that supports TRIM.
    I'm running several on XP systems with SATA 2; I'm sure they're not performing at optimum, but they're still crazy fast.

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