This message was posted on behalf of Intel Corporation
We understand you would like to perform a clean installation of Windows* 7 on your brand new Intel® SSD 730 Series, and would like some guidance.
First off, don't worry, solid state drives do not require all the complicated and confusing setup that many forums will have you believe. Starting with Windows* 7, modern operating systems provide native support for SSDs. And since your drive is a SATA model, all that is necessary is to change the SATA mode to AHCI or RAID in the BIOS/UEFI, install the OS, and you will be ready to go.
Even though AHCI is closely related to RAID, using RAID mode may actually result in a small performance loss. We actually recommend to use AHCI unless you specifically need RAID.
As far as things to watch out for, simply make sure to remove your current hard drive before the installing Windows*. Otherwise, Windows* will place a hidden recovery partition on it, complicating matters. Later, you can re-attach your original hard drive, format it, and use it as you'd like.
Additionally, but mostly unrelated to your question. Once Windows* is installed you may like to download and install the latest Intel® SSD Toolbox. This is a simple application that will notify you if a firmware update is available, and help you monitor your drive's health.
- Intel® Solid State Drive Toolbox.
We would also like to link you to this external article, since you say that you're new to solid state drives. Hopefully it will help you stay away from some very widely spread SSD maintenance myths.
Note: Any links provided for third party tools or sites are offered for your convenience and should not be viewed as an endorsement by Intel® of the content, products, or services offered there. We do not offer support for any third party tool mentioned here.
If you have any more questions, please let us know. We're always more than glad to help.