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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,853

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    I'm glad to hear that all went well, Preston! I hope you enjoy the added speed of the SSD
    William George
    Customer Service Lead
    Puget Custom Computers
    william@pugetsystems.com

  2. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Quote Originally Posted by PCC-William View Post
    1) Yes, this drive should work fine with your current system. To make sure you take full advantage of its speed, though, make sure you connect it to one of the Intel SATA 6Gbps ports. Your two existing drives are both currently connected to those ports, so it will need to go in place of one of those, but they could be connected to the slower SATA 3Gbps ports instead without any real loss of performance.
    Hello - I just installed an Intel 520 120 GB SSD and everything went pretty well (hosed up my BIOS a bit, post-install, but Puget Support helped me fix that) and was browsing here when the quote got my attention. To wit, how do I know if I am hooked up to a 6 Gbps port? My kit had a SATA cable and power cable, and I also had my spare parts box, so that was not a problem, but trying to figure out what to connect the SATA cable to was very puzzling, there are many wires inside the box and it was difficult to tell where to connect, but I found a compatible female cable connector end on the right side of the case that was wrapped up with a bunch of other cables and hanging down a bit aimed toward the hard drives--it was totally convenient, like it was placed there for someone who might need it, so I used it. Since then, as mentioned, everything works fine, but now you have me wondering what port the other end of that cable connects to, there's so many wires in there it's not possible for me to eyeball their trails. Do you know of any way I can tell which port my SSD is connected to? Thanks,

    GregM

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,853

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    The easiest way I can think of would be to check in the BIOS. It should list which of your drives are connected to which SATA port, and then you can reference in your motherboard's manual what speed those SATA ports are.

    You could also just run a drive speed test, like CrystalDiskMark (which is what we use for testing drive speeds here during production). Just running the sequential read portion of it would work: if you get speeds above 300MB/s at all then you have to be on a SATA 6Gbps port; in fact, the 520 series should generally score somewhere in the 400MB/s range for reads. If you are seeing results lower than that, somewhere in the 200s, then you are being limited by the SATA connection and must be on a SATA 3Gbps port. If that is the case, but your motherboard does have 6Gbps ports, you could check with our support department to find out more about how to move the drive to a better port.

    Link to CrystalDiskMark: http://crystalmark.info/software/Cry...k/index-e.html
    William George
    Customer Service Lead
    Puget Custom Computers
    william@pugetsystems.com

  4. #14
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Thanks, William, I think. I used your link and ran a test showing sequential read speeds in the 250 - 270 range and writes at around 190 mbps, well below the speeds you indicated, and Intel (550/280, yea, right). Looks like I must find out where the 6 Gbps ports are and connect to them. It's tempting to just swap out the cables, connecting the new drive with the original cable and vice-versa for the Caviar. But I should probably know how to connect to the correct port anyhow.

    GregM

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,853

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Yeah, it definitely sounds like you are connected to a SATA 3Gbps port at the moment. It is possible, if your system is older, that those are all it has - and in that case, a SSD will still be a huge performance benefit (even if not reaching its maximum capabilities). My SSDs at home are all older models which are only SATA 3Gbps capable, even though my current motherboard supports SATA 6Gbps, and yet they still feel plenty fast

    Give our support techs a call or email, though, since they can tell you for sure - and if your motherboard does support SATA 6Gbps, they can help you move the connection to the right port.
    William George
    Customer Service Lead
    Puget Custom Computers
    william@pugetsystems.com

  6. #16
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Puget Systems rocks! You were correct again, William. If I hadn't read your post I may never have known my SSD was hooked up to a 3GBps port. That binder Puget includes with system purchases: priceless. I had all my specs, and an Asus utility disc, so I used them--Asus has a fantastic site for its motherboards and a very thorough, well-written manual--and was able to learn where the 3GB and 6GB ports were (and lots more), and get the SSD hooked up. Sequential reads improved from 270 to 470, while writes stayed the same at 180 (maybe it's time for a trim?), so now my reads are 4x and writes almost 2x faster than when Puget tested with the Caviar HDD a year ago, a very nice performance enhancement indeed.

    One little hitch: I did sent an e-mail to support asking how I can figure out where the 6GBps ports were and haven't received a reply. Maybe they thought it was really hilarious that I didn't know blue from gray (the gray ports are 6GBps--too easy!), or everybody has the flu, but Puget's 100% score is no more.

    And a last comment that might help somebody who reads this someday: if you're looking from the PC's right side (the side one most frequently opens), what appears to be 4 ports, but is actually 8, are visible. I knew I was looking for the grays, but I saw 3 blues and one gray, with my HDD plugged into the gray. I knew there were 2 grays from reading the documentation, so I looked a little closer, and found that each of the apparently 4 port locations had 2 slots, and the HDD and DVD drives were plugged into the inside slots, so it was really difficult to find the second gray slot or even see that the other slots were there, since they were well hidden. It seems like a better design--esp for a machine made with upgrades in mind--might have the inside ports vacant, with the HDD and DVD and whatever plugged in to the ports nearest the case, so the vacant ports are more visible and acessible for later use.

    Thanks again, folks! My Spirit is just about 1 year old now and better than ever,

    GregM

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,853

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Hi Greg,

    I'm glad you were able to get that figured out!

    However, I wanted to check on the support situation - and I see a support ticket open for you on this issue. It looks like Christopher emailed you at 12:44pm today (our time, Pacific) but if you didn't get it I'd like to make sure we still have the correct email address for you. This is what I am showing on file, and was where he sent the reply:

    jdy_grg [at] comcast [dot] net

    Is that correct? I have formatted it so that it isn't automatically picked up as an email address by prying eyes, and can remove it entirely once we make sure we have it down right. If that is *not* correct, please let me know what I should update your email to and I will do so!

    Oh, and by the way, here is what Christopher tried to email to you:

    "Hello,

    On your motherboard, the white ports are the 6Gb ports. Your Caviar Blue drive was plugged into one of them, and the other one is right behind it. As for identifying in the BIOS, the ports are labeled under Advanced->SATA Configuration, with the 6Gb ones listed at the top, as seen here - https://d2fn9540hpidsu.cloudfront.ne...226/151440.jpg .

    Thanks,

    Christopher Crader"
    William George
    Customer Service Lead
    Puget Custom Computers
    william@pugetsystems.com

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Columbia, California
    Posts
    151

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Hi Greg,

    Glad to hear you got everything up and running! When I installed my SSD (the same series as yours) having the MB manual was a godsend!

    In your last post you mentioned TRIM. Intel has a utility called the SSD Toolbox. Not only will this untility run TRIM, it has tools to optimize your SDD. Here's a thread I posted about it: Intel-SSD-Toolbox.

    You'll be very happy with performance of the SSD!

    --Preston
    Last edited by Preston; 02-15-2013 at 11:40 AM.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Hello - I got the e-mail so you have my correct address and Christoper's advice was perfect, the screenshot was embarrassing, I'd been in that screen several times and the SATA6GB_1 (Gray), SATA6GB_2 (Gray), SATA3GB_3 (Blue) etc. labels just got right past me. Anyhow, we're all good now, and Puget Systems Support retains their 100% score for providing quick and accurate answers to my questions and resolving all my issues. Thanks once again for a job well done,

    Greg

  10. #20
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Upgrade to Intel 520 240GB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5inch SSD

    Hi Preston -

    Nice to hear from you. You and William saved me from 3GBps purgatory that I didn't even know I was in--although I was wondering a bit about what was so special about SSD. Now I know, and it's pretty sweet.

    I did my homework before buying too, and had the SSD Toolbox before I had the SSD. Intel impressed me very much with the kit they sold me with everything I needed in it and the utilities and information on their sites. This is all why I bought their drive, from them I learned my chipset and their drive supported TRIM and their toolkit provided it.

    Your post is most excellent by the way. Great information and a good link for prospective SSD purchasers.

    Cheers,

    Greg

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