Hardware setup isn’t as straightforward as software setup. When you install an operating system on a computer, it is likely that it will be able to install basic drivers and that you will have a working system when you get to your desktop. Hardware, on the other hand, is a different story.

If you decide to build a custom PC or upgrade the hardware on an existing PC, you may need to make BIOS changes in order for the new hardware to function properly or even be detected.

How to enable AHCI mode in BIOS for a PC

What is AHCI?

A connection mode for a SATA connection is AHCI. It’s a newer, more contemporary style. IDE is an older SATA connection mode that is no longer widely used.

Over a SATA connection, the new AHCI mode allows for faster data transfer. When using an SSD drive connected via the SATA interface, this is critical.

Instead of IDE, most motherboards now default to AHCI. Even if your SATA connection isn’t active or you aren’t using an SSD, having AHCI enabled has no negative impact on the performance of your system.

Related: How To Check If Your RAM Type Is DDR3 Or DDR4 On Windows 10

1. Enable AHCI mode in BIOS

It’s a good idea to check if AHCI is enabled on your motherboard if you’ve installed an SSD or are having trouble setting it up. If it isn’t, enable it, and your SSD should resume normal operation.

  1. Shut down your system.
  2. Power the system On, and tap the F2 key to boot to BIOS.
  3. Go to System or Hardware configuration (this will differ based on BIOS).
  4. Look for AHCIor SATA mode.
  5. Enable AHCI or under SATA mode, set it to AHCI.
  6. Save and Exit BIOS.
  7. AHCI will be enabled.

2. Enable AHCI in Windows 10

Enabling AHCI in Windows 10 is generally not a good idea, but if you can’t find AHCI in your BIOS, you can use this method.

  1. Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
  2. In the run box, enter regedit and tap the Enter key.
  3. Navigate to this key:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\iaStorV
  4. Double-click the Start value on the right.
  5. Set its value to 0.

How to enable AHCI mode in BIOS for a PC

  1. Navigate to this key:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\iaStorAV\StartOverride. If this key is not present, look for this key instead:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\iaStorAVC.
  2. Select the StartOveride key.
  3. Change the value of the 0 value to 0 if you have the iaStorAV key. Set its value to 3 if you have the iaStorAVC key.

How to enable AHCI mode in BIOS for a PC

  1. Navigate to this key:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\storahci
  2. Double-click the Start key, and set its value to 0.

  1. Navigate to this key:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\storahci\StartOverride. This key may not be present on your system. If it isn’t, skip this step and the next one.
  2. Double-click the value named 0 and set its value to 0.
  3. Boot to your BIOS.
  4. Enable AHCI in it.

Related: How to check if an SSD is SATA or NVMe on Windows 10


SATA technology isn’t new, so even if your system is a few years old, it should have it. Enabling AHCI is a good idea for getting the most out of your SSD, but your SSD may still work if you’re stuck with IDE. Although the performance may not be identical, the storage device will usually function.