1. There is no need to install the Intel Chipset "drivers" (they do not contain any real driver, but just text files), because Windows 7 will automaticly detect all Intel system management devices.
2. You should connect the Intel SSD with the first Intel SATA port of your mainboard (Port 1). Otherwise it is possible, that the Firmware installer will not detect it.
3. Before you are going to flash the SSD Firmware, you should set the Intel SATA Controllers to "IDE Mode" within the BIOS. This is the safest possible method for the flashing procedure.
Thank you for the suggestions (especially #2 & #3 - I didn't know about these). I was reading some other posts on this forum where they were stating that one should install IMSM because the Intel drivers don't support TRIM. That's when I started wondering if the chipset drivers are also needed with IMSM - or is there another way to install the Microsoft Drivers (ad not the Intel drivers)?
Regarding #2, in my current setup, IMSM shows a port 0 as well (in addition to ports 1,2,3,4) - I assume you meant port 0 in that case - is that right?
Oh - and one more question - some users have reported that they had to align their SSD partition - I read instructions about how to do this on OCZ's support forum, but not sure if that is needed on Intel's SSDs with Windows 7 - any thoughts? Is that even needed?
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here are my answers:
1. Intel's chipset "drivers" (= INF Update Utility) and Intel's AHCI/RAID drivers are something totally different. When you install Win7 after having set the Intel SATA Controllers to "AHCI Mode", you will get the Intel chipset devices working and the Microsoft AHCI driver (name: MSAHCI.SYS) automaticly installed.
Advantage: automatic Trim support
Disadvantage: Less performance and possible system hangs.
My recommendation: Take the new Intel AHCI driver v220.127.116.117, which belongs to the Intel(R) Rapid Storage Technology (Link: http://www.station-drivers.com/page/intel%20raid.htm ), the successor of the Intel(R) Matrix Storage Manager and is optimized for Win7 and SSD's. You can easily clean your SSD by using the Optimizer of Intel's SSD Toolbox.
2. If your mainboard has a SATA port 0, you should connect the SSD to this one.
3. It is not needed to align a brandnew unused SSD.
I went with the Intel drivers - also installed the SSD toolbox from Intel. Works great! Windows boots up in 16 seconds (after the bios of course).
The move the user directory, there are really two options.
1. You can right click on the 'documents' in your start menu, select properties and update the locatio to the other drive where you want to store the files.
2. If you are using windows 7, the 'documents', 'music' etc on your start menu really are pointing to the libraries. So, I left those as is and just created new folders on the hard drive for documents, music, video etc... and added those locations to the 'documents', 'music', 'video' libraries. That way, when I click on music, it shows me both locations (I store everyone on the hard drive location).
The only annoyance that I have is that in AHCI mode, all these drives (including the SSD) show up under 'safely remove hardware and eject media' icon - just be careful to not click those . In my other post about this issue, Fernando had suggested drivers that would prevent that from showing up, but since were not hosted on Intel's site, I was not very comfortable about installing those.