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-   -   [Guide] SSD Performance Care (https://forum.overclock3d.net/showthread.php?t=67884)

Wraith 30-10-14 05:14 PM

[Guide] SSD Performance Care
SSD care & performance guide.

Many many people are moving onto solid state drives for their windows environments and who could blame them, they are possibly my most recommended upgrade by far, especially those on a budget who need "moar speed", drives can be had these days at a more affordable price than ever before, a good quality 250GB drive will set you back in the region of £80 - £100 which is a nice healthy size to accommodate your windows install and a fare few important programs.

With all this taken onboard there are one or two things you must do to keep your new solid state drive health in tip top condition and also get the maximum performance from it, I can not take credit for all the following tips and recommendations as even I had to learn these too (we all start somewhere). So here we go and I will give credit where credit is due to contributors.

1. Enable AHCI

The Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) is a paramount feature for ensuring that Windows will support all of the features that come with running an SSD on your computer, especially the TRIM feature, which allows Windows to help the SSD perform its routine garbage collection. The term “garbage collection” is used to describe the phenomenon that occurs when a drive gets rid of information that is no longer considered to be in use.

To enable AHCI, you’ll have to enter the BIOS of your computer and enable it somewhere within its settings. I can’t tell you exactly where the setting is, as each BIOS functions differently. You’ll have to do a bit of hunting. Chances are that newer computers will have this enabled by default. It’s most recommended that you enable this feature before installing the operating system, although you might be able to get away with enabling it after Windows has already been installed.

2. Enable TRIM

We’ve talked about TRIM enough in the previous section. You could see how such a feature would benefit your computer’s speed greatly, so let’s get to enabling it!

Open up your command prompt and enter the following:


fsutil behavior set disabledeletenotify 0
That’s all you have to do! Onto the next step!

3. Disable System Restore

This isn’t an obligation. But, just so you know, your drive doesn’t exactly have infinite space. System restore undermines both the speed and space of your SSD. Why don’t you just get rid of it?

Click your Start menu, right-click “Computer,” and click “Properties.” Click “System Protection” on the upper left-hand corner, Once in the window, click “Configure”.

Once in the configuration dialog, click “Turn off system protection.” Click “OK” and you’re all set.

4. Disable Indexing

A good part of your SSD speed is consumed in indexing files for Windows search. This could be useful if you store everything you have on your SSD, but you might be annoyed by it if you experience slow-downs due to the periodic indexing process that occurs every time you add new data to the drive. You’re better off without it in an SSD, because the speed boost from the indexing process is superfluous in such environments.

Click your Start menu and click “Computer.” Right-click your SSD and click “Properties.” De-select the box labeled “Allow files to have contents indexed in addition to file properties” and click “OK.” Once you do this, the operating system will apply this to all the files and folders on the drive. If you see a dialog telling you that it couldn’t remove a file from the index, click “Ignore All.” That will streamline the process and ignore any errors.

5. Disable Scheduled Defragmentation

Because the SSD is a solid media with no moving parts, you often don’t see a performance drop due to file fragmentation. Therefore, there’s no need to actually defragment the drive as frequently as you would defragment an HDD, per se. That’s why we’re about to disable this!

Access your Start menu, click “Accessories,” click “System Tools,” and then click “Disk Defragmenter.” Click “Configure schedule,” like so:

Once in the schedule configuration window, uncheck the box labeled “Run on a schedule.” Click “OK,” and you won’t have to worry about scheduled defragmentations again.

6. Remove The Page File

The page file in Windows refers to a file on a disk reserved for the storage of application components that would otherwise fit into physical memory. It’s like a form of RAM on your hard drive. Disabling the page file on a solid state drive would greatly increase the focus it would have on running system processes. Don’t do this if you run your computer solely on one SSD. If you paired an SSD with an HDD, then you can easily configure the HDD to handle the page file. The most ideal setup, though, is one SSD to run the page file, another SSD to run Windows, and an HDD for storage.

The process of configuring the page file differs based on your setup, so we’re only going to teach you how to reach the configuration window.

Right-click “Computer” in the Start menu and click “Properties.” Click “Advanced system settings” on the top left-hand side of the window and access the “Advanced” tab. Click “Settings” under “Performance.” You should now be at a window like this:

Click the “Advanced” tab and click “Change.” The rest of the configuration process should be easy enough.

7. Disable Hibernation

Windows occupies at least 2 GB for the hibernation state image. If you want to keep it, that’s fine by me, but you’re not getting all the juice you can out of your drive. Type “powercfg -h off” in your command line to disable it. You’ll be thankful for those two extra gigabytes when you have an intense game to install on it.

8. Disable Prefetch and Superfetch

Windows sometimes places information in your physical memory and virtual memory belonging to programs that you don’t currently use, but use very often. This is known as “Prefetch” and “Superfetch.” If you are stuck with having to cope with virtual memory on your SSD, you’re better off just doing away with these two features. You can find them on your registry editor under


HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\CurrentControlSet\Control\Sessi onManager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters
as two values: EnablePrefetcher and EnableSuperfetch. Set both values to zero and be done with it.

9. Configure Write Caching

On many SSDs, user level write caching can have a detrimental effect on the drive. To figure this out, you’ll have to disable the option in Windows and see how the drive performs afterwards. If your drive performs worse, enable it again.

To reach the configuration window, right-click “Computer” on the Start menu and click “Properties.” Click “Device manager,” expand “Disk Drives,” right-click your SSD, and click “Properties.” Select the “Policies” tab. In this tab, you’ll see an option labeled “Enable write caching on the device.”

Benchmark your SSD with and without the option and compare results.

10. Disable Services for Windows Search and Superfetch

Even with the above-mentioned registry tweak and index removal, your computer might continue slowing your hard drive with their respective services. Press “Win+R” on your keyboard, type “services.msc,” and press “Enter.” Find both services mentioned in the title of this section and disable them.

11. Disable ClearPageFileAtShutdown and LargeSystemCache

Windows is quick to implement things that are no longer necessary. An SSD operates on flash memory, making it possible to easily overwrite things on the disk. Therefore, the page file doesn’t need to be erased while the computer’s shutting down. This will make the Windows shutdown process much faster. LargeSystemCache, on the other hand, exists primarily in Server versions of Windows, and tells the computer whether to use a large cache for pages on the drive.

Both these options are found in your registry editor under


HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\CurrentControlSet\Control\Sessi onManager\Memory Management
Set them to 0.

12. Set the “High Performance” Power Option

This should be a no-brainer. When your SSD powers on and off all the time, you’ll notice a slight lag whenever you use your computer after you’ve been idle for a while.

To switch your power options, access your control panel, click “System and Security,” and then click “Power Options.” Select “High Performance” from the list. You might need to click “Show additional plans” to find it.

Well that is about it for the basic stuff and getting the most from Windows and your SSD, there are still many other various tweaks that can be implemented like relocating your web browser temporary data folder to a mechanical storage drive, also do the same if you are using a torrent client, if you are installing a game client for instance Steam, Raptr or Origin, you can also chose your installation destination to be on a separate drive, thus extending the life of your solid state drive further by reducing the need for constant read/write operations.

Well this is the end of this (for now) if you feel you have something to contribute to the post please leave your comments below.

Source & Credits: Microsoft & Miguel Leiva-Gomez


Spiderz 30-10-14 05:25 PM

Thanks Wraith, good write up. Possible addition, how to enable ACHI when it isn't in the BIOS to begin with? There will be some folk on systems where ACHI isn't a default in the BIOS.

Innocent159 30-10-14 05:30 PM

For me :p (and others)
Thanks dude now i know where to come when i need help

Master&Puppet 30-10-14 05:44 PM

Nice summary dude, I like!

Puck 30-10-14 05:56 PM

This is exactly what I did when I thought my SSD was failing.
See here: (http://forum.overclock3d.net/showthread.php?t=67511)

Problem was the addition of the RAM to the system. Because there was 16 GB of RAM installed it created 16 GB more of paging files (I think).

Any way I followed those steps listed above (I think the article was from 2011/2012) awhile back and sure enough it freed up A TON of space on my SSD!

This should definitely stick to the top of the section of storage mediums!

Nice Article Wraithguard!

Innocent159 01-11-14 05:30 AM

Can you do "Raid" guide if you don't mind and if it is that difficult

NeverBackDown 01-11-14 05:46 AM


This has a lot of info too. I have used it time and time again, good write up though.

Tiuqu 01-11-14 07:45 AM

tl;dr version:

Point 12 is horribly wrong (and does not fix the issues mentioned), instead manually set "Turn off hard disk after" to 0 minutes in all plans (just in case you switch them).

Extended edition:

Point 12, set to High Performance, while not being major concern on desktop machine, is 9/10 times a big hit to battery life of mobile devices (laptops, netbooks, tablets) because simply changing to this "one" power plan in fact changes a trucktons of tiny little settings, most importantly the cpu % state/performance, which causes cpu to use all its glory for no reason (idle, web browsing), causing visible cuts in battery time (depending on the age of laptop it can be up to hours).

Correct way would be to set "Turn off hard disk after" to 0 minutes in all plans and in some cases set the PCI Express energy saving setting to off and/or same with USB power settings (laptops are horrible abominations of technology after all...).

Obviously desktop pc does not suffer from lack of battery life, unless you own UPS and power goes down, but its all up to your personal preferences, parents or your wallet and/or your sense of "going green" (as there is a difference between running 100W+ cpu and <10W cpu or even turning the pc off).

Last but not least, I did not intend to offend anyone (oh internet...), just wanted to clarify error in the guide.

Excalabur50 01-11-14 09:15 AM

Wraith strikes again with another top article

Thelosouvlakia 01-11-14 05:06 PM

Is there a way I can switch from ide mode without windows failing to boot?

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