VIA Chipsets slow down PCI cards

Update: VIAs official patch, Version 1.04

According to VIA, the new version of their patch will increase performance with RAID cards from ACARD, Adaptec and Highpoint and not only with Promise-cards anymore. We did a few test with all these cards. In addition to that, we also checked the new patch with the Advance 29133, another Ultra-ATA/133-PCI-Controller, which is not on VIAs list yet.

This time, the results are more satisfying. The increase in burst transfer rates is between 20 to 30 MBytes/s with all cards. This brings VIAs PCI-Bus to the level of performance found with Intels chipset. Even with the Advance card these results can be obtained.

Burst transfer rates

PCI card

No Patch [MBytes/s]

Patch 1.04 [MByte/s]

All scores taken with Maxtors DiamondMax D740X and VIAs P4XB Motherboard (P4X266A chipset)




Adaptec 29160



Advance 29133



HighPoint RocketRAID 133



Promise Ultra133 TX2



In addition to this, VIAs patch 1.04 now works with older chipsets not featuring the V-Link-Bus as well. We checked this with a KT133A and a MVP3. Burst transfers with the KT133A went up to 108,3 MBytes/s from 78,2 MBytes/s. The MVP3 even scored 102,2 MBytes/s with the patch, and 64,1 without it. We took these scores with the Promise Ultra133 TX2.

However, it remains to be seen whether the new patch also remedies some of the stability issues many readers have reported.

As of Friday, February 01, 2002, VIA has not posted the patch to either VIA ARENA or So, for the time being, tecCHANNEL.DE will be hosting the patch here.

Over the following weekend VIA posted this patch to VIA Arena here. However, the filename changed from "" to "". We did a file compare of the files in these archives, and they are identical. Just to avoid further confusion, we replaced the file on our server with VIAs.

This piece of software was made by VIA, not tecCHANNEL.DE. Use it at your own risk. However, we did not see a single crash or loss of data when doing our tests in the lab.