WD Red Sata III on a Motherboard that only has Sata II

Hi all

This might be a dump question…


I’m looking at getting a couple of WD Red drives which I note are Sata III drives.

The question is will those drives work in a motherboard that only has Sata II on it?

I.e. will the drives work with Sata II as well?

I’m fully aware that Sata II is only 3Gb/s but will the WD Red drives drop to that speed and support Sata II or is it a new MB time?

I wasn’t sure if Sata was meant to be backwards compatible or not

ian9000 wrote:

Hi all


I.e. will the drives work with Sata II as well?


Yes. It works. At least on my PC.

I have two SATA III and four SATA II ports (Intel Z77 chipset).

I haven’t had any problems when attaching a SATA III drive (WD20EFRX in my case) to the SATA II ports.

Shouldn’t be any problem, it’s backwards compatible, but indeed you won’t get the speed as expected.
Another issue what you need to think of is this!

REDs are in principle build for use in RAID, means their TLER setting for read and write is set to 7 seconds. That means the hard drive gives up within 7 seconds to fix a bad behaving sector, so the RAID card which is using 8 seconds can mark that sector as bad and won’t let the raid fail.

In other words, if you use the REds for ‘normal’ use, turn the TLER off, so the drives internal software will take the time to see if it can fix the sector, or re-allocate it.