Difference Between AHCI and SATA (With Table)

The Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) is a technical standard defined by Intel that specifies the operation of Serial ATA (SATA) host controllers in a non-implementation-specific manner in its motherboard chipsets while SATA, fully serial advanced technology attachment, conjointly referred to as serial ATA, associate degree interface for transferring knowledge between a computer’s central circuit card and storage devices. SATA replaced the long-standing PATA (parallel ATA) interface.


The main difference between AHCI and SATA  is that SATA could be a Serial ATA interface that’s meant to interchange the aging PATA technology and the Advanced Host Controller Interface or unremarkable referred to as AHCI, could be a new programming commonplace that defines a brand new mode of operation for SATA that adds two additional features; NCQ and hot-plugging.

Difference Between AHCI and SATA 1

The Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) is a technical standard defined by Intel that specifies the operation of Serial ATA (SATA) host controllers in a non-implementation-specific manner in its motherboard chipsets.

AHCI is separate from the SATA by 3 G bit/s standard, although it exposes SATA’s advanced capabilities (such as hot swapping and native command queuing) such that host systems can utilize them. For modern solid-state drives, the interface has been superseded by NVMe.

Stands for “Serial Advanced Technology Attachment,” or “Serial ATA.” it’s Associate in Nursing interface wont to connect ATA laborious drives to a computer’s motherboard. SATA transfer rates begin at 150MBps, that is considerably quicker than even the quickest 100MBps ATA/100 drives.

For this and different reasons, Serial ATA is probably going to switch the previous commonplace, Parallel ATA (PATA), that has been around since the Eighties.

Comparison Table Between AHCI and SATA

Parameters of ComparisonAHCISATA
ApplicationsIt specifies the actions of various host controllers like SATA.It passes the knowledge between storage devices and host controllers.
Latest versionThe latest version is one.3.1, launched in 2011.the newest version is 35, established in 2020
Creation              It was created and launched by Intel.      The Serial ATA working party had made it.
VersionIt could be a newer version of SATA.It’s comparatively older than AHCI.  
ImplementationSince it’s a complicated version of host controllers, it’s not filmable to all or any operative systems.It is enforced operative techniques altogether.


What is AHCI?

 In 2004, Intel freed the AHCI The Advanced Host Controller Interface specification to outline the purposeful behavior and software system interface of AHCI. The specification describes a system memory structure for computer hardware vendors to exchange data between host system memory and attached storage devices. AHCI gives software developers and hardware designers a standard method for detecting, configuring, and programming SATA/AHCI adapters.

The specification was developed by the AHCI Contributor cluster, which comprised hardware, software system, and OEM vendors, and was chaired by Intel. The group included AMD, Dell, Marvell, Maxtor, Microsoft, Red Hat, Seagate, and Storage Gear.

AHCI was a significant part of building momentum for SATA II technology, providing a commonplace a a regular a familiar controller interface that optimizes advanced SATA options that weren’t obtainable with the older Integrated Drive natural philosophy (IDE) standard interface. Version 1.3.1 is the most up-to-date iteration of the AHCI specification.

What is SATA?

SATA was proclaimed in 2000 to produce many benefits over the sooner PATA interface like reduced cable size and price (seven conductors rather than 40 or 80), native hot swapping.

Quicker knowledge transfer through higher signal rates, associate degree additional economical transfer through a Queuing protocol Revision 1.0 of the specification was discharged in January 2003.

Serial ATA business compatibility specifications originate from the Serial ATA coalition (SATA-IO). The SATA-IO cluster collaboratively creates, reviews, ratifies, and publishes the ability specifications to look at cases and plug fests.

Serial communication transfers knowledge one bit at a time, instead of in many parallel streams. Despite the apparent advantage of the parallel model, in follow serial transmission is a smaller amount prone to interference, permitting SATA to control at considerably higher speeds than PATA. The serial model conjointly permits for easier and slimmer cabling.

Besides quicker transfer rates, the SATA interface has many blessings over the PATA interface. For one, SATA drives every have their own freelance bus, therefore there’s no competition for information measure like there’s with Parallel ATA. They additionally use smaller, diluting cables that permit for higher flow within the pc. SATA cables is as long joined meter, whereas PATA cables attain at 40cm. this offers makers a lot of liberty once coming up with the interior layout of their computers. Finally, Serial ATA uses solely seven conductors, whereas Parallel ATA uses forty. This suggests there’s less doubtless to be magnetic attraction interference with SATA devices.

Main Difference  Between AHCI and SATA

  1. AHCI may be a host controller interface, whereas SATA is AN interface that connects storage devices.
  2. AHCI specifies the actions of a number controller, whereas SATA may be a host controller itself that connects storage devices.
  3. AHCI supersedes the SATA, whereas SATA supersedes the PATA.
  4. AHCI supports additional options like NCQ and hot-plugging, whereas SATA doesn’t support such options.
  5. At times, AHCI is troublesome to implement in some operational systems, whereas SATA are often simply enforced all told operational systems.


Hence, AHCI and SATA are  completely different interfaces utilized in operation systems. AHCI may be a host controller that assigns tasks to completely different host controllers, whereas SATA connects the storage devices and host controllers.

Though the previous is a lot of advanced than the latter, each of those interfaces offer extensive speed and perform with reputable  Potency. Each the interfaces have completely different options and may be evaluated.


  1. https://sata-io.org/sites/default/files/images/NVMe_and_AHCI_as_SATA_Express_Interface_Options_final.pdf
  2. https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/2631-8695/ac44fd/meta?casa_token=Gs7BrELtp5QAAAAA:QZNtCAneIk4R8CH77ZU7-AI9kLWoaYzuuVZALaVgc7ZsftgBFAamTW0MVwU0HM0IDaKaDPURysCHXHUW