Optimize your SSD Drive

Have you recently purchased and cloned your old HDD with a new SSD?

  • Make sure your SATA controller is set to AHCI mode.

    Set AHCI mode in the BIOS if this is not enabled and make changes to the registry (first)

    AHCI is needed for native TRIM support in Windows 7.  This allows TRIM to do its job

Device Manager

  • Click on the Start
  • Control Panel
  • Device manager
  • IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers
  • Do you see the AHCI controller?

How do you enable AHCI?

Before doing the process below,  see if your BIOS has AHCI capabilities (Windows 7)

  1. Open Registry Editor and move down to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\msahci.
  2. Right click on the Start DWORD and click on Modify.

  3. Set the value to 0 and click OK.

  4. Reboot your computer and enable the AHCI setting the BIOS.  Another restart will be required to finish the driver installation.


The next step is to enable TRIM. Type the following command in a command prompt to enable TRIM:

fsutil behavior set disabledeletenotify 0

Next, turn off Defragmentation.  These drives should not be defragged.

Next, turn off indexing.  This causes unnecessary writes.

Next, Click on Start  -Right-Click Computer – Manage – Services and Applications – Services -Right-Click Windows Search – Properties  Find the Startup type – Select Disabled – Click OK.

(The above disables the “search indexer”)

Windows Search


Click on Start – Computer – Right click on your SSD – Properties – Uncheck Allow files on this drive to have contents indexed in addition to file properties – Click OK.

Drive Index


  1. Right Click on Computer and select Manage
  2. Click on Device Manager

  3. Expand Disk Drives
  4. Right click on the hard drive and select Properties for that hard drive (you can also double click the drive
  5. On the Policies tab:

    Check Turn off Windows write-cache buffer flushing on the device

  6. Hit OK and close the Device Manager

Next, if you have 6 GB of RAM or more, disable the page file if it is the only drive.  If you have a second drive, point the Paging file at the other non-SSD drive

Finally disable Superfetch and Prefetch on the drive (Official Microsoft Article)

Click on Start Menu – Right-Click Computer – Properties – Advanced System Settings – Advanced Tab – Performance Settings – Advanced Tab – Click Change under Virtual Memory – Uncheck Automatically manage paging file size for all drives – Click on No paging file – Click Set – OK – Restart your computer. (Always check your pc to see if the 6 GB or more is OK. This will be based on programs that are running)

Check for the latest firmware!


Load Windows Server or Windows 7 on the SSD drive.  Optimize the SSD and complete these actions.

  • Open a command prompt and “Run as administrator”. Next, type in the command “Fsutil behavior query disabledeletenotify”

    This will take care of TRIM

  • Don’t defrag the drive (SSD) (Windows 8 is optimized for SSD Drives- leave the native defrag utility on and optimize as necessary)
  • Turn off indexing
  • Disable Superfetch and Prefetch on the drive (Official Microsoft Article)
  • Move the pagefile to one of the mechanical drives
  • Install programs to other drives on Windows Server
  • Small databases such as Quickbooks or Access databases can be used on the SSD 

    (If you have thousands of logins to your shared database daily, consider moving the databases to one of the storage drives)

  • Ensure your computer has AHCI enabled in the BIOS AND in the Registry (Make sure you enable in the registry first AFTER verifying your BIOS supports AHCI)

While you’re at it, optimize your CPU…


Over-provisioning is the allocating of a specific amount of free space on your SSD.  Over-provisioning improves SSD endurance and performance.   Many SSDs are packaged with software that helps the end user install the drive and to plan for OP.  (More advanced drives are doing away with OP).

The SSD controller manages all of the data that is stored on the drive.  While these drives are really fast, data writes are not just placed on the drive.  Data is moved around and the controller on the drive is programmed to use the drive evenly across the NAND blocks.   By moving the data around, the controller can use the free space (OP) to swap information as needed.     This in turn adds life to your SSD.  Always update your SSD firmware, use the manufacturer’s software for OP if your drive recommends it and don’t forget to trim your hard drive.  TRIM allows for the removal of junk or old data.  How? Easy – Open a command prompt (as Admin)

Type the following – fsutil behavior set DisableDeleteNotify 0

Over-provisioning in Samsung Magician’s software.


 Intel Drivers (mine) vs. Windows Generic



About TCAT Shelbyville IT Department

The Tennessee College of Applied Technology - is one of 46 institutions in the Tennessee Board of Regents System, the seventh largest system of higher education in the nation. This system comprises six universities, fourteen community colleges, and twenty-six Applied Technology Colleges.
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