SATA – Serial Advanced Technology Attachment. A computer bus interface connecting mass storage devices such as disk drives and SSDs to a host commuter system. It followed an earlier PATA (Parallel Advanced Technology Attachment) protocol. Compared to PATA it uses smaller and cheaper cables (serial paired lines), with 7 conductors as opposed to 40 or even 80. It is also faster, having higher signalling rates, and supports drive hot-swapping and IO queueing. There have been several generations of the SATA protocol;

  • SATA I (previously called SATA 1.5Gb/s) with bandwidth input of up to 150MBps and running speed was 1.5Gbps.
  • SATA II (previously called SATA 3Gb/s) with bandwidth of 3Gbps and throughput of 300MBps.
  • SATA III (previously called SATA 6Gb/s) with bandwidth of 6Gbps and throughput of 600MBps.

In general SATA has been superseded by the even faster SAS protocol for connecting storage drives to array controllers and other host systems.