Question about Dell Optiplex GX620 Pentium 4 3.4GHz (Open Box Product, Limited Availability, No Back Orders) (248246839OB) PC Desktop

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Extremely slow transfer speeds from IDE hard drive to Sata

I have a dell optiplex gx620 that came with an 80gb sata hard drive. here's the details of the drive : WDC WD800JD-75MSA1 74.50Gb I put in my old IDE hard drive into the machine. The dvd drive that was already in the machine was connected onto the IDE cable and so i connected the IDE hard drive onto that same cable. The jumpers on both the dvd writer and the hard drive were set to cable select. The details for the DVD writer : PHILIPS DVD+-RW DVD8701 for the IDE hard drive: SAMSUNG SP0802N 74.55Gb What i noticed was that to copy something from the IDE drive to the sata drive was extremely slow. Slower than it was in my old pc from IDE to another IDE. I copied about 25 gb of music from the IDE drive to the SATA drive which took me 2 hours. if i try and copy the same files back it is much faster but i haven't had the patience to actually let it finish and time it. Another thing i notice is that while copying all of this my cpu usage goes up to 100% and the whole computer stutters.  here are my processor details: 3.2GHz pentium 4 (HT) I have a 2gb stick of ddr2 ram. here are the details from dell. just to note, the page file size must have been incorrectly calculated because i set it to 3000Mb Available Memory            64.16 % Page File Size                 9.8085Mb Available Page File            43319 % Virtual Memory                  2047.8Mb Available Virtual Memory     98.02 %
Memory Slot 1 [DIMM_1]   2048Mb

not sure what other details you would need so i'll paste some more:

IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers:
Intel(R) 82801G (ICH7 Family) Ultra ATA Storage Controllers - 27DF

Primary IDE Channel

Intel(R) 82801GB/GR/GH (ICH7 Family) Serial ATA Storage Controller - 27C0

Primary IDE Channel

I hope you can make sense of all of this

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  • 3 more comments 
  • brendon911 Feb 18, 2009

    I understand what you're saying. What information would you like clarified? 

  • brendon911 Feb 18, 2009

    hmm so that is why my processor is at 80% or higher when copying anything?

  • brendon911 Feb 18, 2009

    surely it can't be slower than IDE to IDE could it? right now its even slower than IDE to USB... And the 100% CPU usage is a bit of an issue too. I'm not sure what that means 

  • brendon911 Feb 18, 2009

    Thanks so much for all of your help!! it is much appreciated. I found the solution when searching all over the internet. For some reason a setting in my bios was set to off which theoretically should have stopped me from seeing the hard drive all together. Instead of that happening, the transfer mode went from ultra DMA to PIO mode which is very slow and caused a massive load on my cpu. here is the link to the article

  • Peter Steiert
    Peter Steiert May 11, 2010

    I'm not sure if this information is correct. Yet over the years I've gotten the idea that SATA to ATA is going to really slow down the system because of incompatibility issues. It's as if the SATA drive is attempting to send an 18-wheeler down a two-lane road and have it make a U-Turn to reach the ATA drive. It's obviously going to take a lot of work to prevent that 18-wheeler from flipping as it attempts to turn around to make the journey back to the ATA drive.

    I could be wrong, yet I always got that impression. I hope you get this issue resolved, it could just be an incompatibility in the motherboard.


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Yes, I'm afraid it's some form of difficulty in sending files from the SATA data-stream to the IDE ATA drive. It may be motherboard-specific, I don't really know. However attempting to send data between SATA and ATA drives is as I described above. Sending an 18-wheeler down a two-way highway and having the truck make a U-turn to reach the opposite drive.

Sorry I can't confirm if it's motherboard specific, I'm limited in that field of knowledge.

Posted on Feb 18, 2009

  • Peter Steiert
    Peter Steiert Feb 18, 2009

    Well, at least you proved us wrong. Thanks for sharing this information with us. Something else I learned today. :-)


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That causes that switching from IDE to SATA connection..youR IDE drive can be read slower than the sata due to speed compatibility. The new PC now proccess slower to old hard drive or IDE. so thats matter. i experience that also so i remove the drive after copying all the files it and i set aside for storage purpose only.

may this help,


Posted on Feb 18, 2009

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