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19 October 2015

SSD Optimizations

Only use 85-90% of the SSD capacity.

When creating the partition, leave 10-15% un-allocated. The drive's firmware will use it for copying. Because of the way an SSD is physically made, it can read/write 4KB at a time, but must erase 512KB at a time. To add data to a block that already has data, the SSD must copy the original data to a different location, erase the entire 512kb block, then copy the new data.

Verify SSD Partition Is Aligned

(Most important step for speed and drive longevity)
This means the location of every partition on SSD has to be a multiple of 2048
There are various ways to do this, depending on if the installation is new, or cloned.
EaseUS ToDo Backup will align the partition automatically.

Make Sure Your System is Running in AHCI or RAID Mode

Use Win+R shortcut to open the Run dialog box.
Type "regedit" and hit Enter key to open Registry Editor.
Navigate to the location "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\msahci".
Set the Start value to "0" (0 means AHCI enabled).
(AHCI and/or RAID can also be set up in BIOS)

Run Windows Experience Index

Start -> Control Panel -> System and Maintenance -> Performance Information and Tools.
Click "Update My Score"
If the drive exceeds 8 MB/sec, (it  will, if it's an SSD) Window will change several parameters to optimize the drive.
"The random read threshold test was added to the final product to address the fact that few SSDs on the market today properly identify themselves as SSDs. 8 MB/sec is a relatively conservative rate. While none of our tested HDDs could approach 8 MB/sec, all of our tested SSDs exceeded that threshold. SSD performance ranged between 11 MB/sec and 130 MB/sec. Of the 182 HDDs tested, only 6 configurations managed to exceed 2 MB/sec on our random read test. The other 176 ranged between 0.8 MB/sec and 1.6 MB/sec."

Verify TRIM Is Enabled

START -> type "cmd" -> Press CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER
Type "fsutil behavior query DisableDeleteNotify".
If the result is 0, then it means that TRIM is enabled. On the other hand, if the result is 1, then TRIM is disabled.

Turn Off Scheduled Defragmentation

In Windows Explorer, right click on SSD partition and then choose Properties.
In the Tool Tab, click on "Defragment now…"
In Disk Defragmenter, if the scheduled defragmentation is on, click on Configure Schedule button, then uncheck scheduled defragmentation.

Turn Off System Protection

Right-click Computer and choose Properties.
Click System protection at the top left corner.
In the pop-up window, you will find the default status of system protection is "On". To disable it, click "Configure".
Choose "Turn off system protection" and click "OK".

Disable Disk Indexing

Click Computer to open Windows Explorer.
Right click on the SSD partition and choose Properties.
At the bottom of General tab, uncheck "Allow files on this drive to have contents indexed in addition to file properties".

Turn off or Shrink Hibernation

START -> type "cmd" -> Press CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER
To turn Off: Type "powercfg -h off" -> ENTER
To Shrink: "powercfg -h -size 50" -> ENTER

Deactivate Prefetch and SuperFetch

START -> Type "regdit" -> ENTER to open registry
Navigate to
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SessionManager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters
Double click "EnablePrefetcher"
Set DWORD value to "0"
Double click "EnableSuperfetcher"
Set DWORD value to "0"
Then reboot the PC.

Disable ClearPageFileAtShutdown

START -> Type "regdit" -> ENTER to open registry
Navigate to:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SessionManager\Memory Management
Double Click "ClearPageFileAtShutdown"
Set DWORD value to "0"

Disable GUI Boot

Start -> Run -> type msconfig -> press Enter
Click on Boot tab in System Configuration interface.
In boot options, check "No GUI boot"

What NOT to do:

Move the page file.
Microsoft did very in-depth studies on page file use and found
that almost 90% of reads were less than 16kb.
"Given typical pagefile reference patterns and the favorable performance characteristics SSDs have on those patterns, there are few files better than the pagefile to place on an SSD."