I recently bought a motherboard that had the ICH7 chipset (south bridge) and my SATA controller didn't seem to perform well at all.
When I benchmarked my scores were half of others with the same system. Do you think its the just motherboard I choose or the ICH7 chipset lacks speed in the SATA controller?
Which chipset do you think has the best SATA controller? ICH7R or ICH8 and do you think I'd notice a difference between ICH8 and ICH8R...I'm not using the RAID so I'm not sure if the ICH8R would prove better for me or not.
Any input would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
You likely won't be able to use ICH8R RAID in linux, since it's a software-based 'host raid' setup. The ICH7 and ICH8 series south bridge chipsets should perform very closely for disk performance - both are Serial-ATA-2 controllers if memory serves. The main difference would be the north bridge - the ICH7 is generally paired with the 945P or 945G chipsets, while the slightly newer ICH8 is generally paired with the G965 or P965 chipsets, but that difference should not impact disc i/o performance. One other note about the ICH8 and ICH8R is that there is no PATA support - some board manufacturers are adding it separately, but it's not supported natively by the southbridge chipset.
As noted above, it is important with any ICH southbridge to make the appropriate BIOS changes in order to gain optimal disk i/o performance. Generally there is an "Enhanced Mode" setting in the BIOS for the SATA controller that will work best under Linux.
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Yes I was running enhanced...it must have just been the motherboard I was using. I upgraded to an Intel board, we'll see how that supports it. The Intel board does have one PATA port though so I think I'm set on that. Thanks for the input though.