I'm using the Toolbox Optimizer precisely for the reason you stated: I'm stuck with Intel's Matrix Storage Manager (no documented way to remove the drivers). Hopefully, by the end of the year (9 days), a new MSM will be out that supports TRIM and the issue goes away.
Uninstall IMSM an windows should revert to the default driver. If it doesnt, you can manually change it for your SATA controller in the device manager.
However, there are sometimes good reasons to use IMSM. I, for example, have to use it because the default driver wont allow me to use eSATA hotplugging with my P35 board. Its been like that with vista and is still this way with win7. Another one would be less stuttering issues with SSDs under win7. There are quite a few reports out there of people experiencing random short freezes when using the microsoft driver...
This stuff is simply not mature yet. I'm glad the only problem I have is that IMSM doesnt let TRIM pass.
The thing is that this is what the official Readme says about uninstalling the Matrix Storage Manager:
"9a. UNINSTALLATION OF NON-DRIVER COMPONENTS
The removal of this software from the system will render any
Serial ATA hard drives inaccessible by the operating system;
therefore, uninstallation procedure will only uninstall
non-critical components of this software (user interface,
start menu links, etc.). To remove critical components, see
Use the following procedure to uninstall the software:
1. Select 'Uninstall' from the following Start menu folder:
* All Programs -> Intel(R) Matrix Storage Manager
2. The uninstall program will start. Click through the
options for the uninstallation.
9b. UNINSTALLATION OF DRIVER COMPONENTS
The removal of this software from the system will render any
Serial ATA hard drives inaccessible by the operating system.
Back up any important data before completing these steps.
1) If the system is in RAID mode, delete any RAID volumes
using the Intel(R) Matrix Storage Manager option ROM
2) Reboot the system.
3) Enter the system BIOS (usually done by pressing a key
such as 'F2' or 'Delete' during system boot).
4) Disable 'Intel(R) RAID Technology' and 'SATA AHCI mode'.
5) Reinstall the operating system."
In a nutshell, uninstalling only uninstalls the UI. To get rid of the driver, you have to re-install the OS. I've seen some of the posts here about just changing the driver in Device Manager. But, if it's so easy, why doesn't Intel have that method in the Readme? I guess it just worries me a bit. Anyway, like you, I've also kept the MSM because of problems with eSATA hot-plugging with the standard drivers. I just wish Intel would allow me to designate the port my eSATA is hooked to as "Removable" instead of "Internal." That way, I wouldn't have to use:
to remove the external drive when I'm done.
The "only" in your statement makes it wrong. (Using absolutes can be hazardous to one's credibility.)
Another case is data files that are accessible from both Win7 and some other OS such as XP. You delete files in XP. Such files are not automatically trimmed at the time of deletion from XP because XP does not support trim natively. A user in such situation can schedule the Optimizer to run from Win7 periodically to "scavange-trim" the files left un-trimmed by the NTFS OS that is not trim-aware.
Im running it for 2 reasons. Number 1 the intel matrix storage manager drivers are faster than the microsoft ones and 2. I don't believe the trim in windows 7 works. I had my machine set up with the microsoft drivers and everything as it should be for windows 7 trim to work. My drive got slower and slower. One pass with the toolbox optimizer and it is like new again. Microsoft should provide some way of visually telling if trim is doing it's thing or not.
Well...If i had to delete a file from a XP partition that is shared with WIN7, then I would delete the file from WIN 7 so that automatic trim would mark the space as usable. If i could not delete the file from WIN 7, then i would go in XP and delete the file and I would schedule the Optimizer to run in XP.
Second, i would not share a partition that has XP and WIN 7 data unless I could delete from that partition within WIN 7. I would not create a partition and dedicate it to 2 Operating systems where some data can only be deleted from within a specific operating system. The prudent one will create seperate partitions that will hold data specific to the operating system.
BTW, most people would not set-up a system such that you described, even though it is possible. Also, notice that Intel did not mention this case in their PDF; you want to know why? One can easily mess up their system if they don't know what they are doing sharing a partition between 2 distinct operating systems(WIN 7 and XP) that handle file system i/o differently although at the hightest level they are both NTFS compatible.
I'm running intel optimizer because win7 with MS AHCI standard drivers does not TRIM my drive.
In my desktop setup it does not work (ASUS P5B with intel ICH8-R):
Also if you have a laptop (ICH8-M) this site says it does not work either:
I dont know if the optimizer works for ICH8-M, but I can say it works for my ASUS P5B (ICH8-R).
In my case I dont know if it's the ICH8-R or something in the motherboard implementation, but I get full speed after I run the optimizer, so I'm happy with it until I buy a new motherboard+cpu
I have ICH8M in my laptop and TRIM works like a charm for me.
(Win 7 64-bit, AHCI, MS drivers and 160GB X25-M)
Could you run AS SSD benchmark and post your total score?
I have 418 total score for intel x25m g2 160gb.
Also please verify that intel toolbox optimizer scheduler isn't runing the optmizer daily and you didnt run the optimizer in the last 10 days.
EDIT: link to download AS SSD
Not much point in running the same tool as you do since the machine is a Lenovo T61 which has got it's SATA interface speed limited to 1,5 GB (even though it is a SATA 2 interface).
I'm using CrystalDiskMark to measure the disk performance (yeah I know it can't always be fully trusted) and the performance has stayed consistent ever since I installed firmware 02HA back in october 27. After installing 02HA I ran the optimizer once and that made a huge difference. I upgraded to firmware 02HD on december 2, no performance change. The second time ever I ran the optimizer was yesterday after installing ver 1.2 and that didn't change the performance at all either.
Ok, maybe it's something with the bios implementation and not the controller...I dont know.
But there are some win7 setups that dont autotrim.
Edit: The 1rst optimizer version is preconfigured to autorun itself daily, if you did not delete the schedule job, the optimizer was running daily.
Since there were quite a few horror stories surrounding firmware 02HA and the corresponding Toolbox I made sure it didn't run more than once. (I never experienced any problems with 02HA though.)
First, MS support Trim if AHCI is used rather than classical IDE. Mine for now is configured to IDE. But this isn't a problem since I can activate the AHCI driver in W7, then reboot or even I can re-install W7 after changing the BIOS to use the AHCI instead of IDE.
The real problem is if I can't upgrade for some reason the firmware to the 2CV102HA where Intel just begin to support Trim.
Actually I'm in this latter case. I have no CD-ROM drive and I wasn't able to find a way to upgrade via USB flash key.
Do you know any way to put the ISO image of the firmware on my USB key and make it bootable ?
I'm surprised Intel restrict the upgrade process by CD-ROM. What people not having a CD-ROM drive are supposed to do ??!!!