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Booting (Window7 64bt) off an SSD (cruicial's SATAIII model) though the mobo is only SATAII. It's time to replace my secondary drive with a new 1T+ spindle model and expect that to be SATAIII as well - so it looks like I'll end up with 2 drives that are both SATAIII even though my mb offers only SATAII connectors. A quick browse shows that SATAIII interface cards are not too expensive raising 2 questions:

Keeping in mind that I expect to be able to boot off a drive on this controller, is a SATA controller on a card fully equivalent to a native controller? (performance/ compatability-wise)

Do I need to look deeper into potential comparability issues re: the controllers/hw of the drives themselves in the sense that 2 different form factors (ssd vs spindle) and manufacturers?


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They are going to be the same speed. – surfasb Oct 14 '11 at 18:27
up vote 2 down vote accepted

Generally speaking, it should work (you'll be able to boot from a disk connected to an expansion card), but whether you'll get any performance increase is debatable:

  1. Is SATA II your bottleneck right now? With SSD disk, it might be, but with a regular disk, I doubt it...

  2. How this expansion card is to be connected? PCI Express 2.0 offers 500 MB/s throughput per lane, while PCI Express 1.x is limited to 250 MB/s. So clearly with PCIe 1.x one lane connection, PCIe is going to be your bottleneck.

So, without any solid tests pointing out that you're currently hitting the SATA II bandwidth limit, I don't think it's wise to invest in SATA III card.

I suggest you first use something like HD Tune to benchmark your current system and see where your bottleneck is:

enter image description here

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