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Windows 7: Get SSD Working again after downgrade to Win 7

23 May 2015   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
Get SSD Working again after downgrade to Win 7

Hi SevenForums People,

I recently downgraded my Windows 8 OEM laptop to Windows 7 Ultimate x64. I've got just about everything up and running exept for the SSD.

I want to get it caching again but I dont have an activation code for Lenovo Expresscache which I has automatically before and I'm having a hard time finding/installing alternatives.

I tried to download an intel driver and use their RST but I didn't have any luck with the particular tutorial I tried. because my bios is not raid.

I have a 1TB HDD & 16GB SSD. My laptop is a Lenovo w530 thinkpad. Im pretty sure I have most of my other specs in my profile.

Any help getting this going and caching or by some other method speeding up my performance would be appreciated! I do notice a greater time booting and also writing/deleting. (if you have any alternate advices for speeding that up please feel free to throw them at me too)

regarding the boot & write speed, I have HEARD that with win 7/8 you dont need something like HDD acceleration or turbo boost (I had a similar program on win 8..) but I could be totally wrong

I want to do something like this:
How to: Set up Intel Smart Response Technology (SSD caching)
But my BIOS isn't RAID its ACHI and I doubt I should just switch it,lol. What would you do to utilize this SSD if it were your computer?

I found these instructions for switching to RAID but I dont know how safe they are (I want to keep my install) and I dont know if it's nessecary. I dont know a lot about thisbecause my previous SSD set itself up pretty much automatically with the Lenovo products...which I deleted lol

1.Exit all Windows-based programs.
2.Press [Win] + R or take the RUN option from the start menu.
3.Now type regedit there and press Enter Key to open up the Registry Editor Window.
4.If you receive the User Account Control dialog box, click Continue.
5.Locate and then click the following registry subkeys:

In the right pane, right-click Start in the Name column, and then click Modify.
In the Value data box, type 0 [3 is default], and then click OK.
On the File menu, click Exit to close Registry Editor.
Restart your computer
Go to UEFI/BIOS and enable RAID, Save & Reboot
Another restart will be required to finish the driver installation.
Note: If you have an AMD systems you may need to look here too: How to install AMD RAID driver after Windows installation - Super User

My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #2
Microsoft MVP


See if this provides anything you haven't seen yet: Install Windows on System with MSATA and ISRT - Windows 7 Help Forums

Otherwise did the ExpressCache really improve performance that much when you used it before? Others report there's no real improvement with these SSD cache drives and have preferred to install WIn7 on them (too small) or just let them sit unused.

Have you consulted your Manual on the PC's Support Downloads webpage for how Lenovo wants it reinstalled? Don't forget to also search the web for Reinstalling ExpressCache on [Your make/model]. Normally others have grappled with a problem like this. But this may become the only thread dealing with it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #3

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

"I have a 1TB HDD & 16GB SSD"

I doubt it, it`s probably just 1 drive.

If you don`t know what you`re doing with this type of drive, you should take it to a professional. :)
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 May 2015   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Whatever man it shows up as a seperate drive and I know what I bought when I set up my computer on Lenovos website... why doesn't this forum have an eye rolling smiley? Why come and say something like that and not explain yourself? Maybe I'd beleive that if you gave me a reason and then a means to prove it.

This post describes it too, in a different Lenovo, and also what I want to use it for:
What exactly will this 16GB SSD do for me? Y580 - SSD - Storage

Gregrocker I followed some tutorials by you to learn how to install Windows 7! They were great and I'm glad to see you on this thread. Yes I did look it up and they said to call Lenovo but I am so reluctant to do that because the last time they called they were utterly useless and kept saying "I cant help you it's out of warranty." Over and over. And then said "Um install updates?" when I decided to see what they had to say about something else. I cant find keys online (0_o)

I looked at that tutorial and it is nice exept I am so not willing to reinstall Windows again. I just got everything how I want it again.

I wish I used Productkey (sp?) or something similar on the program before I uninstalled but I thought it was like a driver and I wouldn't need anything like that.

As for noticing a difference, I don't really know because I was always using it and TBH I never took performance tests because it just worked extremely fast. but in general the computer was faster then and that's the only difference I can think of. (although I admit the options to exhaust in my mind aren't vast here- typically my "computer speeding" consists of using cleaners to clear all temp files and defragging often, getting rid of unneeded startup tasks... more like preventing it from slowing down than speeding)

Do you think maybe the difference could be caused by something else...? On another forum people said they got overall improvements from using their SSD for caching :/ I mean how else do I use it, more anime/music/game storage?

If you don't think the SSD is my problem, then what do you think is? I mean there isn't really a "problem" so to speak, I just notice certain tasks are slower and I wonder why and how to fix it and make it the same. The whole "resuming windows" thing takes longer than my computer took to wake up in 8. And it does take a bit longer to move files.... I guess I could look into tweaking other settings. But I dont want this sitting there doing nothing...

I think the SSD probably did help loading programs, certain files & booting/waking up but I have a hard time seeing how it would affect writing

maybe i should suck it up and call those Lenovo *#&*^$'ers again
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #5

Windows 7 Pro x64 Windows 10 Pro x64

You mean like this

Why do I have to explain anything ? It`s your computer, you know what you bought.

When we see an ssd that small it`s usually just part of the hard drive.

Best of luck to you
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

Yes like that lol. My eyes are bad >_> And because you were the one trying to say something contrary, you were making an argument :/ Just saying you think somebody is wrong doesn't tell them why and doesn't give them a good reason to believe it and change their course of action, if that was indeed your point in saying that, and I don't see why you would even bother to say it if you didn't want to convince me. (wouldn't that be spam?) Plus since that isn't the case it could lead someone/me (if I believed everything people typed on a forum without screening it) to seek incorrect advice based on something you felt like blurting out :/ It just seemed very abrupt and authoritative.

I guess I just took it the wrong way, I'm sorry. I realize you were trying to help & that help is free. I don't really want to start my first thread arguing with people... who generally DO know more than I do (which I believe you do, from lurking, just maybe not about whats personally in my computer)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #7
Microsoft MVP


We've already established you have an MSATA-type drive with SSD cache. Did the tutorial I linked before address the actual settings you see in BIOS and a way to enable it?

What Product Key? The only Product Key I've ever heard of for any OEM reinstall is the Win7 key on the COA sticker which you used to activate Win7, as described and pictured in Clean Reinstall Windows 7.

I strongly doubt there's any extra key to use the Express Cache, only a setting in BIOS or some software you need to reinstall after the OS is reinstalled to enable it.

Again, what does the Manual on the Lenovo Support Downloads webpage for your model say? Report back on every suggestion made so far so we can point you further correctly. Do not become distracted by others or lose focus on following every suggestion I give you as I will not leave you until you have it resolved, same as I've done for hundreds of others with these caching drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

I was talking about a 3rd party program that you can use to extract product activation keys from the registry, for if you need to install them again and have lost the box. I was saying I wished I used something like that on this program before I uninstalled Windows 8.

And there is an 'activation code" you need to key in. It's one of those things with 6 little boxes. I guarantee it's there and other people have had the same problem and had to call the company. I don't have warranty anymore so I don't think they'll help me. I was seeking other solutions, other programs? If they don't exist feel free to say so... I won't argue.

The manual says this:
Note: Make sure you are logged onto an account that is a member of the Administrators group. The ExpressCache installation is typically fast and simple. Here are the basic steps: 1. Double-click the ExpressCache installation file 2. Follow the screens displayed, answering the questions asked as prompted. "

It's just a short read me.... I tried that long before I came here. it says nothing about a key.

Edit: I didn't use a COA on the bottom of my computer for windows 7. It came with windows 8 and I used a USB stick and activation code from my brother's copy to put win 7 on it. I had to download the software separately this time after the clean install, as opposed to before when the computer came with it all activated as part of the pre-installed package. See what I mean now?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2015   #9
Microsoft MVP


It also explains how to extract a retail (not factory OEM like Lenovo) key in Clean Reinstall Windows 7.

I have never heard anything about a key used for caching drives and I've probably dealt with every model PC out there during the six years since Win7 beta.

If you have the ExpressCache installation file and its instructions then what is the exact problem with installing it? Did you rightclick the .exe to Run as Admin?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
24 May 2015   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64

No problem installing, never was... if you still don't beleive me about the key, here's a screen shot.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Get SSD Working again after downgrade to Win 7

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