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Thread: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.




  1. #1
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    Question Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    Hi, I'd like to know if the 'default' settings for my new motherboard are correct. I'm an absolute novice at this, so please bear with me if my questions seem strange.

    My system (pertinent parts to this topic):
    -- ASRock Extreme 3 Gen 3 motherboard (using the default BIOS that came with the board).
    -- Western Digital Caviar 'Black' (model: WD5002AALX-00J37A0), 500GB SATA hard disk drive. [see Issue 1., below).
    -- Intel Core i5 (2500K)
    -- note: I'm using the internal video from the CPU, internal LAN from MB, internal sound, etc.

    I have not yet installed ANY updates for this motherboard. I don't know which ones are necessary, or anything about precautions I should take, and so on. NEED ADVICE.

    The problem:

    Issue 1. The ASRock UEFI Setup Utility now shows that my HDD is operating as an IDE drive, and I don't know why. Shouldn't it be SATA, to work faster?

    Here's what the UEFI "Storage Configuration" option shows:

    * [SATA MODE] - It shows "IDE Mode"
    under that, it shows...

    * SATA Controller 0 - Compatible
    * SATA Controller 1 - Enabled
    * Hard Disk S.M.A.R.T - Enabled
    and, below that list it shows...

    * SATA3_0 : NOT DETECTED
    * SATA3_1 : NOT DETECTED
    * SATA 2_2 : Atapi iHAS124 C Atapi (that's my DVD drive).
    * SATA2_3 : NOT DETECTED
    * SATA2_4 : NOT DETECTED
    * SATA2_5 : NOT DETECTED

    The "pop-up" box for the "SATA Mode" at the very top shows these options...

    [SATA Mode]
    * Disabled
    * IDE Mode (it is highlighted!).
    * AHCI Mode
    * RAID Mode

    QUESTIONS: Should it actually be that, or AHCI Mode with my particular HDD? If so, how do I do that now. And, does it matter that my HDD was formatted as "NTSF"?

    I probably over-explained, but I'm trying my best to convey issues that I don't really understand. That's why I want your help in setting things up on this MB so that it becomes enjoyable to use.
    MB: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 * CPU: Intel Corei5 (2500K) * GPU: Intel Onboard * SOUND: Onboard * CPU COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo * PSU: Seasonic X650W 80+Gold
    * RAM: G.SKILL Ares Series 8GB-F3-1600C8D-8GAB * CASE: LIAN LI PC-A70F ATX Full Tower Aluminum * HDD: WD500GB SATA 6GB's 64MB Cache Caviar 'Black' (WD5003AZEX)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    NTFS is the modern Windows filesystem, and is completely normal.

    As for the HDD I'm not sure if you should use AHCI or not. I would check the documentation on your HDD to see if it supports it, and if so, you can enable it.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by SwordOfWar View Post
    NTFS is the modern Windows filesystem, and is completely normal.

    As for the HDD I'm not sure if you should use AHCI or not. I would check the documentation on your HDD to see if it supports it, and if so, you can enable it.
    I tried AHCI but it wouldn't let my computer boot-up; I changed it back to IDE. Hoping someone has more info on this. Thanks for your reply! Appreicated!
    MB: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 * CPU: Intel Corei5 (2500K) * GPU: Intel Onboard * SOUND: Onboard * CPU COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo * PSU: Seasonic X650W 80+Gold
    * RAM: G.SKILL Ares Series 8GB-F3-1600C8D-8GAB * CASE: LIAN LI PC-A70F ATX Full Tower Aluminum * HDD: WD500GB SATA 6GB's 64MB Cache Caviar 'Black' (WD5003AZEX)

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    Default Re: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    I found this: AHCI : Enable in Windows 7 / Vista - Windows 7 Forums

    It notes that AHCI must be enabled in the BIOS prior to OS installation or it will not boot when switching to AHCI. This is because windows will disable the AHCI drivers since it doesn't need them when the OS is installed in IDE mode.

    Basically you need to boot your computer in IDE mode, and then follow the instructions in the above link so that you can manually re-enable the AHCI drivers. Then, go back to the BIOS and try switching to AHCI again and booting into Windows.

    I'm assuming you are running Vista or Windows 7. Windows XP has more issues to deal with when using AHCI drives.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    Wonderful! I haven't read the link info, yet. One more question about AHCI first. Did you also find out if that mode is preferable for a drive like mine (over the IDE mode)?

    EDITED: I found the info I needed about using AHCI or IDE. AHCI is the more modern of the two, so I'll follow the steps required to set it up.
    ANOTHER EDIT: After reading the post following this one, I re-decided to keep my setting as "IDE". This topic can be closed now.

    Thanks for your great help!
    Last edited by LECBOATER; 06-21-2012 at 03:11 AM. Reason: I read the required information already.
    MB: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 * CPU: Intel Corei5 (2500K) * GPU: Intel Onboard * SOUND: Onboard * CPU COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo * PSU: Seasonic X650W 80+Gold
    * RAM: G.SKILL Ares Series 8GB-F3-1600C8D-8GAB * CASE: LIAN LI PC-A70F ATX Full Tower Aluminum * HDD: WD500GB SATA 6GB's 64MB Cache Caviar 'Black' (WD5003AZEX)

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    I don't think you will see any performance difference using a mechanical/magnetic drive. The benefits of AHCI are mostly geared toward SSDs (Solid State Drives).

    I would say the only real benefit to using AHCI with standard drives is for the hot-plug ability (plug/unplug hard drives and using them without needing to restart the computer).

    From what I've read you won't notice any speed difference between either mode on a mechanical drive, like the one you have. You need a solid state drive to see a performance increase using AHCI, I would say.

    AHCI is newer technology, so IDE mode is probably more stable if you don't need the features AHCI provides. If you ever plan on upgrading your OS drive to an SSD, and plan on cloning the drive to your new drive with clone/backup software instead of doing a fresh install, then it might make the process smoother if you already have AHCI enabled in Windows.

    However, I highly recommend doing a fresh Windows install if you ever upgraded your OS drive to an SSD.

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    Default Re: Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 UEFI Setup questions about "Storage Configuration", SATA/IDE/AHCI, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by SwordOfWar View Post
    I don't think you will see any performance difference using a mechanical/magnetic drive. The benefits of AHCI are mostly geared toward SSDs (Solid State Drives).

    I would say the only real benefit to using AHCI with standard drives is for the hot-plug ability (plug/unplug hard drives and using them without needing to restart the computer).

    From what I've read you won't notice any speed difference between either mode on a mechanical drive, like the one you have. You need a solid state drive to see a performance increase using AHCI, I would say.

    AHCI is newer technology, so IDE mode is probably more stable if you don't need the features AHCI provides. If you ever plan on upgrading your OS drive to an SSD, and plan on cloning the drive to your new drive with clone/backup software instead of doing a fresh install, then it might make the process smoother if you already have AHCI enabled in Windows.

    However, I highly recommend doing a fresh Windows install if you ever upgraded your OS drive to an SSD.
    Darn! I just finished adding an "Edited" note to my last reply! HA HA. Then... I saw this, your new post. If AHCI isn't going to benefit me, since I don't plan hot-swapping, etc., then I won't make the change! I'm certainly glad you told me that!

    I EDITED MY POST #5

    Great help from you!!!
    Last edited by LECBOATER; 06-21-2012 at 03:14 AM. Reason: SEE POST #5
    MB: ASRock Z68 Extreme3 Gen3 * CPU: Intel Corei5 (2500K) * GPU: Intel Onboard * SOUND: Onboard * CPU COOLER: CoolerMaster Hyper 212 Evo * PSU: Seasonic X650W 80+Gold
    * RAM: G.SKILL Ares Series 8GB-F3-1600C8D-8GAB * CASE: LIAN LI PC-A70F ATX Full Tower Aluminum * HDD: WD500GB SATA 6GB's 64MB Cache Caviar 'Black' (WD5003AZEX)

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