Just fix the AHCI already, AMD

I’ve been partial to AMD for a long time. The first PC I built for myself had an Athlon Thunderbird running at a blistering 1.4GHz, and I later upgraded to the Barton-core Athlon XP 2500+. I was one of the lucky ones to get an unlocked model, too, and I took that baby straight up to XP 3200+ speeds. Remember when 200MHz was a major overclock? Crazy kids, spoiled with your Phenom IIs and Core 2s.

When I decided to start using a desktop-replacement notebook instead of a full-on desktop machine, even my shiny new laptop ran a Mobile Athlon 64 3700+, and that thing felt like a demon compared to the XP 2500+. Ultimately, I’d had good experiences with AMD.

After I transferred to the University of California, San Diego, though, I felt like I needed to build a proper desktop for video editing. I also wanted to game on something meatier than a Mobility Radeon X600. Unfortunately for AMD, Intel’s Core 2 Duo was beating the Athlon 64 X2 soundly. I built an Intel machine based around everyone’s favorite sweet-spot processor at the time, the Core 2 Duo E6600. Since then, the same PC has seen multiple upgrades of all types: video cards, memory, and hard disks. Eventually, even the CPU was upgraded to a Core 2 Quad Q6600—another sweet-spot contender. My Q6600 served me well and overclocked to a smooth 3GHz.

When my birthday came around this year, however, I was given an opportunity to upgrade to an AMD Phenom II. I liked what I’d read about these processors and what they offered, and the chance to have a top-of-the-line CPU for a reasonable price (the Phenom II X4 955 Black Edition with Lettuce, Tomato, and a Side of Mashed Potatoes) was very attractive to me. The Phenom II was ordered, and a friend of mine gave me a spare 790GX-based motherboard as a birthday gift. I was set.

Before getting into what happened, I should mention that as part of having a video editing rig, my scratch disk is a RAID 0 hanging off the south bridge. Intel’s south bridges have, in my experience, offered excellent RAID quality. When you’re editing high-definition video, you really do need as much storage performance as you can conceivably get so that your hard drives don’t bottleneck the processor. A single drive often won’t cut it, but a RAID 0 can help shorten render times tremendously.

The reason I bring up RAID is a simple one, and if you’ve been paying attention to AMD for the past couple years, you may already know where I’m going.

The RAID support on my motherboard’s SB750 south bridge was dreadful. Enabling RAID to begin with disabled the expansion card I use to add SATA and eSATA ports, and I could only enable it again once Windows was installed. Also, Windows 7 required a driver installation to detect my optical drive. When I finally got past those hurdles, HDTune was averaging about 100MB/s read for reads on the RAID 0, with a lot of nasty peaks and valleys.

I’ve seen people get much higher speeds than that with SB750-based RAIDs, so maybe my board was just having trouble handling both a RAID 0 and a RAID 1 at the same time. All I know is that installing Windows and getting everything up and running on Intel’s ICH-based RAID is a picnic by comparison. Intel’s RAID BIOS is extremely easy to use, and everything registers perfectly fine through the entire Windows setup (and in Windows itself) without the need for separate driver installations. In Windows, the RAID is cheerfully stable, and performance is solid across the board. My ICH10R RAID 0 averages about 160MB/s in HDTune with pretty consistent peaks and valleys.

In addition to the SB750 RAID benching grossly below what it did on the Intel controller and oftentimes even below a single drive, AMD’s RAIDXpert software was also downright bizarre. I’m stunned that the RAID manager for integrated south-bridge RAID would run in a browser window and even require a login and password. Not only that, but the software lists the login and password under the boxes as "admin/admin." Seriously? For what it’s worth, RAIDXpert was sort of easy to use, but the browser-based interface and "login" screen reeked of a kludge slapped together by people who didn’t care. Re-enabling Native Command Queuing on the drives in the RAID didn’t solve any of my problems, either; the performance remained identical. Outright deleting the AMD drivers and running off native Windows drivers also did not correct the problem, and it left the RAID running painfully slowly.

The bottom line for me is that I need good, functional RAID—maybe not a full-on card, but at least solid motherboard RAID—and I just wasn’t going to get it from AMD. It could very well have just been my board specifically, but you can’t deny how poorly the SB750 comes across when it has trouble with one of its most basic applications: moving data on and off of hard disks. A visit here will show the SB750 underperforming due to needing to run in native IDE mode, but the real crime can be witnessed in this review written in late 2007, nearly two years ago. Basic AHCI support still hasn’t been fixed.

And I’m sorry, but I’m just not interested in wasting time having to perform some strange driver voodoo to get RAID even working at all. I like the 790GX and was keen to use it to drive a spare monitor, but that just wasn’t meant to be.

That’s pretty much how AMD lost my business as a user. I instead opted to spend my upgrade funds on an Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650. My motherboard has an Intel RAID controller that works exactly as I’d hoped.

One of the reasons AMD purchased ATI was to have a complete platform, a processor and chipset that could be sold together. I don’t like watching AMD play second-fiddle to Intel all the time, but letting even basic hardware AHCI languish like this for nearly two years is inexcusable, let alone the dismal RAID performance.

Sorry, AMD. I think the Overdrive software is a nice touch and your IGP is pretty stellar, all things considered. But the platform you offer me is still missing basic functionality other vendors deliver. Maybe when you can get your south bridges sorted out, maybe in the next generation, we can talk, but for now I’ll be just fine with my Core 2 Quad and ICH10R. What good is offering RAID in all of your south bridges when it barely works?

Comments closed
    • ronch
    • 10 years ago

    I must say, I’ve also been a long time AMD supporter, simply because I love alternatives (cars, MP3 players, cameras, you name it), but the thing is, it’s undeniable that AMD has been faltering lately. Intel’s Core 2 and Core i7 have been making AMD sweat bullets lately, and AMD’s frustration seems to be seeping into other areas of its business.

    Take for example, this. AHCI has been missing for the longest time. I don’t know why AMD can’t fix this. It’s been ages. Sure, AMD may contend that most users don’t need it, but that’s a lame excuse. This is the only possible reason I can think of because this issue simply doesn’t have any reason to persist this long.

    AMD’s website has been a subject of frustration as well. Wrong links (like directing me to the German page of the Athlon X2 when I’m sure as heck don’t speak German), occasional bad grammar, poor structure, misplaced user name and password prompts, and overall poor design. To top it off, lately, every time I type §[< http://www.amd.com< ]§, I'm redirected to §[<http://www.amd.com/sa,<]§ on which my browser, Firefox 3.5.1, tells me "An expected error has occurred". I don't know what AMD is doing. Don't get me wrong, I wanna support AMD, and my next CPU will probably still be AMD. But if they fall behind too much I might as well get Intel until they roll out Bulldozer if it turns out as good as they're touting it to be (heck, they did that with Barcelona too, didn't they?). Go AMD. Your fate is in your hands.

    • Barbas
    • 10 years ago

    AMD please fix AHCI or I will be buying Intel next month even though I dont want to…

    • A_Pickle
    • 10 years ago

    Agreed. I do a lot of video, and as compelling as the Phenom platform is, it’s isn’t that much of a jump (monetarily) to go Intel and have a faster, less-pain-in-the-arse RAID setup. I’ve been saving money for a good desktop for awhile now, and it’s getting close to that $1,500 mark that, once it hits, I’m buying. Something tells me the SB850 with properly functioning AHCI won’t be out by then, which means…

    *[<...AMD will have missed out on yet another customer<]*. I hope an AMD rep reads that. If one does, then you can have some consolation in that I will probably buy a Radeon HD 4000-series with my computer. 🙂

    • juampa_valve_rde
    • 10 years ago

    amd depends on others for the hd/ssd controllers, as long as i known the sb750 controller is licensed from promise… so no big deal here. what goes beyond my comprehension is why microsoft ahci driver is faster than amd driver…

    now with this thing of sideport ram, amd could put a ram chip side to sb to feed the hd controller, at least not a bad idea for enthusiast raid, yet far from hardware raid solutions.

    one more… intel knows how to deal with hard disk controllers, they make chips for that! no way they have more resources and know how to make a decent integrated hd controller, amd not, and nvidia i dont know bout them.

    anyone remember via 8251 southbridge? it has 4 sata 2 ports, capable of ahci and raid 0,1,5. what they made with that? they could license such thing to amd 😀

      • armistitiu
      • 10 years ago

      I have to tell you that i have a VIA southbridge and let me tell all of you one thing: You never ever want to make a software raid using via’s raid controller and software. I had to remake my raid 0 3 times in 1 year because for different reasons it would just dissapear.
      So VIA’s southbridge is always a no no.

    • leor
    • 10 years ago

    I would never, ever use a built in motherboard’s RAID implementation, it’s always going to be dealing with a certain a degree of suckage. Literally any drop in RAID card would be better, and if you care about rendering times, spending 50 dollars on a cheap RAID card shouldn’t be a big deal.

    AMD should definitely sort out their chipset issues, it’s ridiculous that it’s been an issue for this long, but choosing one platform over the other based on motherboard RAID performance is like changing platforms because you don’t like the embedded graphics solution.

    • chrone
    • 10 years ago

    “The storage controller that is implemented into many AMD based motherboards is actually a third party device and not manufactured or designed by AMD. AMD relies on the SDK provided by the device manufacturer when creating drivers and interface SDKs for motherboard manufacturers. Each motherboard also utilizes a different storage controller manufacturer as well. Please contact the motherboard manufacturer for more information in regards to these issues.”

    quoted from amd customer care email.

    • Chillectric
    • 10 years ago

    How do I check if my drive is running in AHCI mode? I have a AMD SB750 but I’ve had no problems with read/writes afaik.

    • Ryhadar
    • 10 years ago

    “/[

    • thermistor
    • 10 years ago

    So the author replaced a solid build with wishful thinking, based on regular reviews from this site about AMD’s SB implementation having problems with AHCI/RAID.

    One takeaway from any AMD platform review for the past several years is: Expect problems with AMD chipsets and RAID.

    And don’t start a land war in Asia.

    • shank15217
    • 10 years ago

    If any of you is remotely serious about protecting your data, you would use a second computer or some sort of nas/san device. If i/o performance is your thing look into SD. A new Intel 80GB sd will outperform most raid systems with less than 4 disks in any bench.

    • Zorb
    • 10 years ago

    I would have to agree that the AMD solution for SB raid is not up to par and needs work. I have used NVidia NF2 or Intel ICH (7-10) for onboard raid and never had a problem with either. You have to wonder why they can’t get it right after all this time! It would be nice if someone could get a straight answer from AMD about what’s being done….

      • chrone
      • 10 years ago

      here’s what amd customer care replied:

      “Thank you for your comments. Please be aware that the SATA controller on those motherboards is actually made by a third party manufacturer who is providing the necessary drivers/firmware SDKs to motherboard manufacturers who implement these devices onto their boards to work with our southbridges. As you can imagine, every motherboard manufacturer on the market has a different preference when it comes to peripheral devices and thus they make their own firmware/drivers. Your specific case falls under that category – we unfortunately have no way to control how this drivers/firmware is written. Please contact the motherboard manufacturer for further support. ”

      “The storage controller that is implemented into many AMD based motherboards is actually a third party device and not manufactured or designed by AMD. AMD relies on the SDK provided by the device manufacturer when creating drivers and interface SDKs for motherboard manufacturers. Each motherboard also utilizes a different storage controller manufacturer as well. Please contact the motherboard manufacturer for more information in regards to these issues.”

      i still don’t know what chipset does my gigabyte ga-ma78gm-us2h motherboard use. hope it’s free AHCI performance issues, since i was able to install and running on windows 7 rc x64.

        • MadManOriginal
        • 10 years ago

        Oh my. It would be nice to see your original email text because if there’s not a misunderstanding AMD just completely avoided the question about i[

    • FuturePastNow
    • 10 years ago

    I’m using AHCI (but not RAID) with the drives on my system with SB750, on Win7 RC.

    I’m a bit disappointed, but there aren’t any day-to-day problems. Large file transfers cause the system to really chug. I don’t do that very often, so as I say, it’s not a daily problem. But it does need to be fixed, AMD.

    • Tarx
    • 10 years ago

    “I later upgraded to the Barton-core Athlon XP 2500+. I was one of the lucky ones to get an unlocked model, too, and I took that baby straight up to XP 3200+ speeds. Remember when 200MHz was a major overclock? Crazy kids, spoiled”
    The unlocked Barton cores were “mobile” Bartons. And from that poor OC, it seems like you got the worst XP-M Barton chip I’ve ever heard of (or had poor cooling). The 2500+ mentioned easily OCed from 1.86GHz to 2.4GHz as a starting point with reasonable air cooling and a bump in Vcore and most did quite a bit better than that. Although mine went over 2.7GHz, unfortunately my cooling wasn’t good enough to keep the temps reasonable above 2.6GHz. Pity that it didn’t have SSE2 and adobe required it.
    Before then it was the big OCs from the PIII generation (as long as avoided those with an 133 FSB). The Celeron 600 ran very nicely at 950MHz. Others with slower Celerons had over 100% increase in clock speed.
    My first C2D was the 1.6GHz 2140 that is currently running at 3.4GHz. That remains my best OC in %.

    Ok… the post is all about AHCI – What about that Intel’s G31, P31 and G41 chipsets doesn’t even offer AHCI?

      • flip-mode
      • 10 years ago

      Nope. The first Bartons out of the gate were unlocked. They were not mobile Bartons in the slightest. They were desktop Bartons. That did not last long though, and soon the multis were locked down. Only later did the unlockage return with the mobile Barton.

    • wingless
    • 10 years ago

    My RAID-0 2xWD Caviar Black 750GB setup on an M3A79-T Deluxe runs between 120 to 190MB/s! What is mine doing that yours isn’t?

      • Anomymous Gerbil
      • 10 years ago

      About 20-90MB/s…

    • Ashbringer
    • 10 years ago

    The AHCI problems goes as far back as the SB600 south bridge chip. I have two computers with these and the 690G, and they’re just a ton of trouble.

    When installing Vista X64 for the first time, I have to wait an extremely long time just to get the installation going. The only way to avoid this problem is to set it to IDE mode, and that sucks if you want AHCI.

    ATI drivers are horrible. Every so often I’ll run into a problem with drivers not being digitally signed. Restarting the PC will give me an error that prevents me from booting. Gotta hit the F8 key and select disable detect digitally signed drivers. Mind you, this happened with every new driver update from ATI.

    The best solution to this problem is to install Windows 7, and only install the video drivers. The drivers that come with Win7 do a decent job in performance, plus they don’t have issues.

      • yehuda
      • 10 years ago

      I also had an issue with SB600 in AHCI mode. It was not compatible with Vista’s generic AHCI driver at the time.

    • Scrotos
    • 10 years ago

    What’s wrong with web-based RAID management? I interact with 4 servers with dedicated RAID cards in them where I can manage the RAID containers and hot spares via a localhost web interface. There’s probably more bells and whistles on these like email notification of status, but anything that lets me administer it without custom software or without needing to reboot to get into the RAID card’s BIOS (or built-in mobo dedicated RAID chip, not the fakey chipset stuff) is a big plus in my book.

    The only problem I have is sometimes I forget what user/login goes with what server.

    • snakeoil
    • 10 years ago

    nobody uses those features (ahci)
    but what about the crippled intel lynnfield,
    where the hell is the 2×16 pci express ?
    now we are talking
    intel users deserve a real northbridge, at least to place a heatsink there.
    whats wrong with intel?

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      Repeating Troll Repeat itself!

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      yU no want Esata? Need ACHI to use Esata… nub

      • Meadows
      • 10 years ago

      AHCI is used far more than 2×16 PCIe lanes and it’s more useful too.
      In fact, I’d hazard saying that the vast majority of users _[

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      Wy need 32x pcie for $$kash register ? or ebook? Nettop? laptop? dataentry? dmv? word? email? accounting? paint? pictures? movies? youtube? myspace? adultfreind finder (oh, nm u2 yung), fakebook? polka? music? ripping?

      no game ned 32x….

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      Lynfiled still kick 965 ass

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      Northbridge? only u need 1 to live under. ‘modern’ pc no need moldy old crappy nothb

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      cleerly ‘ 🙁 ‘ sNAKEoil. kittens still dying….

        • Meadows
        • 10 years ago

        Someone should shut you up or at least introduce you to the Reply button.

          • maxxcool
          • 10 years ago

          😉 i c |t fine.. eatch reply makes nu notification…

      • smilingcrow
      • 10 years ago

      “intel users deserve a real northbridge, at least to place a heatsink there.”

      I know where I’d like to place a heatsink and I wouldn’t use any snakeoil as a lube.

      • derFunkenstein
      • 10 years ago

      AHCI is very useful for eSATA hot-plug ability. You’re a dope.

        • A_Pickle
        • 10 years ago

        Seriously. AHCI is a pretty nice set of features, so much so, that when he said “nobody uses it” I just about s*** a brick.

      • A_Pickle
      • 10 years ago

      is faster to denver?
      by bus or did you bring your lunch?
      it doesn’t matter.
      capitalizing is conformist

    • swaaye
    • 10 years ago

    Just buy NVIDIA or Intel chipsets and be joyous. When I took my Phenom II off of my previous 780G mobo and put it on a GF8200 mobo, the HDD performance improvement was truly tangible. No tests were needed other than seeing how fast the transfers from disk to disk were going (Vista readout) and how much faster the system felt in general.

    • Hattig
    • 10 years ago

    Personally I’d say that motherboard RAID should be used for drive mirroring for normal users to protect their data, and if you have need for performance via striping or mirroring and striping, then you have need of a dedicated card.

    However we will see how the next generation of AMD southbridges fair. These are rumoured to be in-house developments instead of licensed IP as with the old ATI southbridges that eventually evolved into the SB7xx series.

      • flip-mode
      • 10 years ago

      So, is that cause for hope?

    • Krogoth
    • 10 years ago

    What is the big deal behind AHCI?

    AHCI is only good for hot-swapping HDDs. It isn’t really any faster than legacy IDE for transfer purposes. NCQ only helps with server-related loads.

    I have worked with RAID long enough to know that it is only “useful” if you want fault tolerance or do loads that are very demanding on I/O (mostly server workloads).

    The entire AHCI-related problems with AMD chipsets are completely blown out of proportion. Average joe isn’t going to care about the subtle performance differences nor hot-swapping that AHCI provides. The OEMs end-up reverting to legacy IDE for compatibility purposes. Those who are serious about I/O performance are going to opt for a true hardware RAID controller for their needs.

    • AlvinTheNerd
    • 10 years ago

    Fake Raid needs to DIE! Its a marketing gimmick that never performed as well and has all of the problems but less of either of the benefits of software and hardware raid. While Intel’s is better, it is sorta like saying the Chevette is better than the Pinto.

    If you can’t afford or don’t want to bother with hardware raid, then go software raid. Mdadm has served me amazingly well with Kubuntu and my adventure with Gentoo. I need boot and home in Raid1 but want root in Raid0. I tried fake raid with four drives and had some of the same issues. Mdadm lets you put multiple raids on the same drive. So all three partitions are now on the same set of SSDs which makes boot up amazing and the HHDs are now just data drives.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 10 years ago

      So pure software RAID is ok but southbridge-based RAID is fake and needs to die. Oookay. btw you must not have looked very hard because Intel’s ‘fake’ Matrix RAID has been able to do multiple RAID types on the same disks since ICH7R iirc.

        • AlvinTheNerd
        • 10 years ago

        Advantages of Hardware Raid: Low processor overhead, no special software required for the OS, extra cache to supplement arrays, best performance

        Advantages of Software Raid: Low hardware cost (only cost is increased use of the processor), easily add or remove drive from a nonroot array without reboot or rewiring (hotplugging removes this though). Can use any port (Raiding usb externals is very useful)

        Southbridge Raid (I will yield ‘fake’ because it isn’t worth fighting) has higher hardware cost (some mobos have it, some don’t, especially raid 5) still uses the processor to a high degree, can’t change the setup without rebooting, can’t use any port, has no extra cache, requires special software for the OS, and has no better performance than software raid (worse when drivers are outdated or bad). Drivers only exist for the newest Windows.

        My point remains that it is a gimmick that should go away.

          • MadManOriginal
          • 10 years ago

          So you list advantages for the ones you like and disadvantages for the one you don’t then ignore the part about Intel southbridges having multiple RAID type on the same drives capability entirely. Are you in marketing by any chance?

          btw it’s great you like one and use it but that’s no reason to hope the comparable solution dies. Or maybe it is in these days of internet right/wrong only, one size must fit all, the solution that I chose is the best for everyone mentality.

            • axeman
            • 10 years ago

            Name one advantage to fake raid over pure “software” raid.

            • Lans
            • 10 years ago

            I wanted to ask that too! 🙂

            Actually for video, something generally scales with number of CPU cores and able to max out all CPU cores, hardware raid seems like the better option to me.

            That aside, I don’t like it when hardware vendor’s feature perform extremely poorly/very buggy and is especially not fixed in 2 years… Although as mentioned in original post and some comments, it does not seem universal (I don’t have any of the AMD SB’s being discussed to test myself though).

            Maybe it is because the CPU cores are being maxed so SB is being starved???

    • flip-mode
    • 10 years ago

    YES, GOD YES.

    Seriously, thank you Dustin Sklavos for calling attention to this pathetic saga of ongoing lameness.

    I hope you emailed this to someone at AMD who can put an end to this crap.

    It’s just a driver issue, right, not a hardware issue at this point?

      • derFunkenstein
      • 10 years ago

      I doubt he sent it to AMD. It’s much more fun to just rant on and on.

        • flip-mode
        • 10 years ago

        Well, and if he was going to say something to AMD, the polite way to go about it would be to say it to them first. But really, AMD has been criticized over this issue since SB600, so if they haven’t gotten to it by now, they might not ever.

    • snakeoil
    • 10 years ago

    the amd dragon platform is superior to the crappy intel platform.
    amd is like having a girlfriend that is , cheap,pretty and nice.
    intel is like having an ugly, expensive,ill tempered, overweighted wife.with mother in law living in the house and obnoxious children.

      • maxxcool
      • 10 years ago

      LOL!!!! :d U shuld <> hav married her!

      • KyleSTL
      • 10 years ago

      You, sir, FAIL@life.

      • TheEmrys
      • 10 years ago

      At least this is well reasoned and thought out…. oh wait, nevermind.

      • Meadows
      • 10 years ago

      No, intel motherboards provide you with a stable, well-performing, powerful platform. Not all of that can always be said about AMD.

      You heard the above statement from an AMD fan owning an AMD board.

      • adisor19
      • 10 years ago

      You recent posts lack a certain je ne sais quoi..

      Adi

      • IntelMole
      • 10 years ago

      Surely an overweighted wife would just fall over very quickly?

      • DrDillyBar
      • 10 years ago

      haha. Implications?

        • ssidbroadcast
        • 10 years ago

        Sshh, he’s projecting.

      • Jigar
      • 10 years ago

      Have you been taking snake bite lately ?

      • ludi
      • 10 years ago

      BOO! HISS! DOWN IN FRONT! *overripe tomatoes*

      • shaq_mobile
      • 10 years ago

      i love you so much snakeoil. you are the best.

      • Anomymous Gerbil
      • 10 years ago

      Surey it’s a brilliant parody, and we’re all along for the ride?

    • swish
    • 10 years ago

    It’s not just this chipset. My old nForce4 board (and nForce5 and 6 possibly) have awful RAID performance, too. I got 3-7MB/sec performance with 3 disk RAID 5 (Each HD was a Seagate 500GB 7200.9 capable of about 70MB/sec PER HD!). I don’t care if you’re reading or writing, that’s just all kinds of wrong!

    Ditto that, this is a major reason in me forgetting about AMD as a platform for at least the next few years.

    Can anyone else confirm nForce6 (or later) issues with RAID speed? RAID1/0/5, all are much, much slower than they should be. The issue does not seem to occur with nForcePRO chipsets. (Can someone confirm that too?) 🙂

    Cheers

    • MadManOriginal
    • 10 years ago

    A question – does RAID0 actually help for video editing? What programs and usage patterns do you actually use? Because in every CPU review I’ve seen there is scaling with CPU speed for all sorts of programs which indicates that the storage is not a bottleneck.

    • axeman
    • 10 years ago

    I’ve avoided AMD chipsets for this reason. I have a couple of rather-obsolete nvidia chipset machines instead. It’s less disappointing to not have AHCI because it’s not there, instead of broken.

      • shank15217
      • 10 years ago

      Your logic is flawed.

    • MadManOriginal
    • 10 years ago

    Chipsets have been a shortcoming for AMD platforms for a long time unfortunately. Although they do some things very well such major problems that last forever are not really acceptable just from a principle standpoint. It’s hard to argue with the solidity of Intel chipsets :/

    • glynor
    • 10 years ago

    Can I just say… HECK YES! I agree completely. This has been broken forever, and they keep “updating” the SB chip, but not fixing this, which really seems to be part of it’s core functionality.

    All we can hope for, I suspect, is a SB800 with their next high-end chipset that finally fixes it (and doesn’t fall back down the terrible USB performance hole again).

    • derFunkenstein
    • 10 years ago

    soooo…are you complaining about AHCI performance or RAID performance? Your headline is deceiving.

    AHCI performance in Windows 7 is fine for me – but I use the Windows driver because I can deal with losing and extra percentage point or so of my CPU time for the increase in performance. I have no comment on the RAID because I don’t use integrated RAID. If something needs RAIDed it needs to be done on a dedicated processor, not the southbridge.

      • MadManOriginal
      • 10 years ago

      Meh, RAID0 and to a certain extent even RAID1 disagrees with you, the latter to a certain extent only because southbridges afaik don’t use both drives for reads in RAID1 unlike most hardware cards.

        • SuperSpy
        • 10 years ago

        I’m pretty sure that was only an issue back when chipsets were using IDE RAID on a single channel.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 10 years ago

        Obviously they don’t diagree if Dustin is bitching. 😉

    • ironoutsider
    • 10 years ago

    This article makes me sad… I was going to start video encoding and I am very disappointed to find out my mobo is going to have issues with raid… I’ll just suffer the performance for video encoding.. Still does a great job as a gaming machine though.

      • tfp
      • 10 years ago

      Why not get a raid card then?

      • moritzgedig
      • 10 years ago

      Do use software RAID, that is what I did in the end.
      software RAID somehow isn’t much slower than MB raid.

        • Saribro
        • 10 years ago

        MB RAID = software RAID, so yeah, that’s not unexpected.

    • Game_boy
    • 10 years ago

    Has TR tried contacting AMD directly for a response? After all they are reviewing AMD hardware and this issue is affecting their public image every time a chart like that is posted.

      • sparkman
      • 10 years ago

      I wonder the same thing every time I read about AMD southbridges on The Tech Report. Has TR attempted to get a comment on the issue from AMD?

        • dale77
        • 10 years ago

        I third that wondering. Someone get AMD on the phone.

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