I have a MacBook Pro that I bought around 2011. How do I know what level of SATA the internal hard drive interface supports?

This is the About This Mac:

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And this is what the SATA section of the System Report looks like.

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You can take a look at the Link Speed under the Intel 5 Series Chipset section. SATA levels are named after a number (1, 2, 3) and also for their speeds.

  • SATA 1.0 is known as SATA 1.5Gb/s
  • SATA 2.0 is known as SATA 3.0Gb/s === Your computer supports SATA 2.0
  • SATA 3.0 is known as SATA 6.0Gb/s

"Link speeds are the theoretical maximum speed at which data can transfer to or from those devices." - Taken from here.

The "Negotiated Link Speed" is what you currently have, in your case, this is SATA 2.0 too…

Here is a link with a description of the different SATA revisions

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It really supports any SATA version I, II, or III. The SATA drives and are backwards compatible. If the drive is SATA III and your MB Pro is SATA II, the dive will perform at the theoretical levels of a SATA II drive. Same for SATA I.

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  • So, not only controllers are backward compatible, but the drives too? – Ruslan Jul 13 '14 at 8:21
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    Yes. You can combine any combination of SATA{1,2,3} drives and SATA{1,2,3} controller. The used speed will be the lowest shared one though. (E.g. a SATA-III drive on a SATA-1 controller will work with a link speed it 1.5Gb/sec). – Hennes Jul 13 '14 at 11:03

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