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Intel SSD 520 and any Apple Macs with Nvidia MCP79 chipset BUG.

Esteemed Contributor III

Hi Intel.

There are many Mac computers with Nvidia MCP79 chipset (Nvidia MCP79 is present in many models of iMac, Macbook, Macbook Pro, Macbook Air).

Nvidia MCP79 have SATA II controller.

There is well known bug with SSD based on SandForce SF-2281 and any Mac with Nvidia MCP79. SSD negotiated Link Speed is 1.5 Gigabit (SATA I). But it must be 3 Gigabit (SATA II).

OCZ already have fix for this issue (for their SSD):

Corsair works on this issue (they have SSD based on SF-2281).

Patriot Memory works on this issue (they have SSD based on SF-2281).

Intel 520 SSD have same issue.

Intel will you fix this? Talk to Apple or release fix by yourself, but you must do something, because Intel 520 SSD with 150 MB/s read/write speed on Mac (with Nvidia MCP79) is indecent.


Valued Contributor II

Thank you all for posting,

I am sorry for the inconvenience.

Please note that the compatibility between different devices including (but not limited to) SSDs and Apple* products is very specific. Therefore, we recommend you to contact Apple* for a list of validated Intel® SSD models that can be used with their products.

Will the Intel® SSD work in my MacBook?

View solution in original post


Esteemed Contributor III

I am having the same problem. My local computer shop offered my money back... I would prefer not having to do that.

Please fix this.

Esteemed Contributor III

This problem seems to be more widespread: Intel 330 in a Mac Pro with Intel ESB2 Chipset only negotiates on 1,5 Gigabit as well. I am quite disappointed, will probably return the drive

Esteemed Contributor III

I too am experience this issue with an Early 2009 MBP 17" and the MCP79 chipset using the Intel SSD 520 480GB. It should be able to negotiate to 3.0Gbps with that SATA II interface, but as the OP has noted, this has plagued other drives with the Sandforce chipset along with this MCP79 interface.

It would be nice if Intel could release a "fix" like one of the other OEMs has done. Their solution was a simple Linux utility that forced the drive to a particular speed.

Come on Intel, please issue us a fix/workaround for this issue!

Esteemed Contributor III

Im having the exact same problem! Currently running an Intel 330 inside of an Macbook Pro 5.1 (Late 2008) with Nvidia MCP79, and the negotiated link speed is 1,5 GBit while it should be at 3 GBit. My system is also plagued with beach balls every 3 minutes, and then the system is frozen for exactly 30 seconds.

Please Intel, fix this! At least tell us if there is a fix in the works, and an ETA when it will be available. Thanks!

(P.S. Has anyone tried running the OCZ tools to force the 3 GBit link speed in an Intel drive with sf-2281? Just curious.)