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I think this is more an operating system issue than a motherboard/BIOS issue with SATA drives. The hardware risk is based on properly disconnecting the drive so nothing shorts out. The operational risk is to make sure buffers are cleared for any writes to the drive. The visual issue is clearing the drive from the screen when it is remove.

Be careful not to confuse the term "hot-swap" with RAID (though RAID arrays frequently use hot-swap drives).

Not sure about how to interpret SSD question, but I do know there are significant performance differences between different SSD models. I'm not sure how to "make them faster" in your system context (other than maybe making sure you are using the newest BIOS version for your MB).

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