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Intel DQ77MK

RobertC
Novice
546 Views

Hello ALL. I have an older DQ77MK motherboard which is working fine. However I have three SATA3 SSD drives in the system and the 3rd drive is only showing connection as SATA2. I know there are only two dedicated sata3 connections on the motherboard, but the documentation does indicate that you can get sata3 rates by connecting a third sats3 device to the gray sata connection on the motherboard, through the PCIe chipset. So I moved the sata cable to the gray sata port and rebooted the system. The third drive is still showing as sata2 connectivity. Is there some trick to get that port to provide sats3 throughput, or is the documentation incorrect and only two sata3 ssd drives can get sata3 throughput with the onboard motherboard connections? Thanks. 

 

                                                                              RobertC

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RobertC
Novice
511 Views

Thanks for the reply Scott. The documentation is a bit confusing since it "appears" to indicate that the gray SATA connector would support SATA III speeds. Unfortunately the board has limited card ports for expansion, and my only available free port is the single PCI port. I searched all around, but all the SATA3 adapter cards use the PCIe interface and none are just PCI <sigh>. I do understand why, but it is sad that none of our electronic geniuses could have come out with one with a PCI connector interface. The motherboard is a solid performer and I've only had to replace CMOS batteries over the years, and it does run sweet with 32gb ram on Win10 pro 64-bit and a GTX 1060 graphics card. It's just irritating to see my Macrium Reflect image backups cooking along at 1gbps on the sata3 drives, and then drop to 700gbps on the sata3/sata2 drive connected to the gray port or a black connector port. Such is life <grin>. I've been building my own systems since 1989, and LOVE building computers, but I'm in my 70's now and social security doesn't permit me the luxury of buying new parts and building new systems nowadays ! But my AMD FX8350 systems run at a fast 4.25g, so plenty of speed on all my systems, all with 32gb ram and SSD drives. ALL my systems use GTX nvidia cards because ever since AMD took over AT I have never been able to get any system to run properly with the AMD drivers <sigh>! Pop in the new ATI/AMD graphics card and boot up windows and all looks beautiful. Install the AMD drivers and the screen is almost unreadable artifacting! I tried everything to remedy the problem, including trying three different class brand new AMD cards, but the problem persisted. So I just witched to Nvidia cards and have never had any issues ever since. Thanks again for your info and Happy Father's Day if applicable <grin>!

 

                                                                                           RobertC

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4 Replies
n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
531 Views

Actually, the Gray connector supports only SATA II. Only two SATA III ports are supported by the 7 Series chipsets and the MK board does not provide a secondary SATA III controller. This really irritated me the first time I caught this as it (also) means that the mSATA drive (which usually makes the most sense to be the system drive) is also limited to SATA II performance.

My suggestion is to get a PCIe card that provides an additional SATA III controller:

Hope this helps,

...S

RobertC
Novice
512 Views

Thanks for the reply Scott. The documentation is a bit confusing since it "appears" to indicate that the gray SATA connector would support SATA III speeds. Unfortunately the board has limited card ports for expansion, and my only available free port is the single PCI port. I searched all around, but all the SATA3 adapter cards use the PCIe interface and none are just PCI <sigh>. I do understand why, but it is sad that none of our electronic geniuses could have come out with one with a PCI connector interface. The motherboard is a solid performer and I've only had to replace CMOS batteries over the years, and it does run sweet with 32gb ram on Win10 pro 64-bit and a GTX 1060 graphics card. It's just irritating to see my Macrium Reflect image backups cooking along at 1gbps on the sata3 drives, and then drop to 700gbps on the sata3/sata2 drive connected to the gray port or a black connector port. Such is life <grin>. I've been building my own systems since 1989, and LOVE building computers, but I'm in my 70's now and social security doesn't permit me the luxury of buying new parts and building new systems nowadays ! But my AMD FX8350 systems run at a fast 4.25g, so plenty of speed on all my systems, all with 32gb ram and SSD drives. ALL my systems use GTX nvidia cards because ever since AMD took over AT I have never been able to get any system to run properly with the AMD drivers <sigh>! Pop in the new ATI/AMD graphics card and boot up windows and all looks beautiful. Install the AMD drivers and the screen is almost unreadable artifacting! I tried everything to remedy the problem, including trying three different class brand new AMD cards, but the problem persisted. So I just witched to Nvidia cards and have never had any issues ever since. Thanks again for your info and Happy Father's Day if applicable <grin>!

 

                                                                                           RobertC

n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
494 Views

Yea, the TPS can be vague. I originally assumed that the port was the second half of a separate SATA controller such as the fancier boards always included, but no, it is just one of the standard SATA II ports from the PCH. It was the block diagram (see page 17 of the TPS) that finally identified it as being one of the standard SATA II ports (and only 3.0Gb/s).

The PCI bus, at least in this 'legacy' implementation, is just too slow to support SATA. Best possible performance in this implementation is 33MHz * 64bits = 266MB/s, whereas a single SATA III port can consume 600MB/s and most cards support at least two SATA III ports.

Your board has three PCIe connectors, x16, x4 and x1. When a typical 'double-wide' graphics card is installed in the x16, the x1 connector is covered up and can't be used. This does leave the x4 connector available, however. Are you using it already? If not, it can host a x1 (or x4) PCIe SATA card.

In two of my older (P55, X58) systems, which only had SATA II support, I improved their performance and extended their lifetimes using a card that hosted a System SSD and also provided a SATA III port for a Data HDD: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01452SP1O. Mounting my SSD drive right on the card simplified things. It also provided an OpROM so that I could boot from this SSD.

Social Security pays for 32Gb DRAM and SSDs? That's pretty good (just joking, no explanation needed).

...S

RobertC
Novice
483 Views

Great information Scott and thanks for all of your help and tips. Have a great Father's Day weekend!

                                                                              RoertC

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