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Booting Win7 64bit pro with a corsair 80gb SSD (will install programs on here as well). The BIOS is set to IDE boot for my chipset. I tried AHCI initially because corsair recommended it, but ran into many problems after that. The main one being that when I added any other drives the BIOS would give me disk errors and wouldn't boot the OS.
Since you installed Windows with the BIOS set to IDE mode for your boot drive, the AHCI drivers are disabled; they're installed on the system, but made inactive to shorten boot times. Typically, you'd install Windows after enabling AHCI mode, so the proper drivers are enabled.
This can be repaired after the fact, and I'd recommend using AHCI mode. Read the following link for more information, background, and the fix (from Microsoft): Error message when you start a Windows 7 or Windows Vista-based computer after you change the SATA mode of the boot drive: "STOP 0x0000007B INACCESSABLE_BOOT_DEVICE". After you enable the drivers, you can enable AHCI mode in the BIOS and you'll be in good shape.
Currently have 2 samsung f4 2tb drives for data. I want to use this as my RAID 0 setup for video and photo editing. I do not have a raid controller card. I ran into many many headaches using the MOBO's raid controller card with the BIOS and just gave up. I got my system to boot normally after resetting the BIOS and just created a Striped Volume / dynamic disk in Win7 disk management using the two drives. I never realized you could do this just in windows without using a raid controller card in the BIOS. Is this problematic?
There really is no reason to use software RAID when you have hardware RAID available. The problem with using software RAID in Windows is that it incurs some processing overhead--the OS already has enough to do, and you'll unnecessarily slow down the entire system, especially when you have a capable built-in RAID controller. I'm curious what problems you ran into with the built-in controller that caused you to give up on it?
Further to that point, with the shortage of hard drives you have in this system, putting everything on a large software RAID 0 is a recipe for disaster and heartbreak. Should one of the drives go down in a RAID 0, you lose EVERYTHING--not just the data of one drive. It took one time for me to lose everything on a RAID 0 (didn't know much then) before I decided to go another route. With only two drives, you're probably much better off not putting then into an array at all, and instead just use them as two individual drives.
Thank you very much for your quick reply Colin and thank you for the link to the microsoft website.
I actually installed the OS with AHCI enabled, but I think the drivers were still not working/installed correctly/who knows. In your link, the directions mention altering two lines in regedit.exe and to set both "start" figures to 0
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Msahci (this is already set to 0 in my registry)
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\IastorV (this is set to 3 in my registry.. I could change it to 0 as well)
I knew it was too good to be true! Now I realize I had heard of software RAID versus hardware RAID. I guess I won't give up on it yet. The problems I ran into (with my registry settings above) include:
Even though I installed the OS with AHCI enabled, the OS Corsair SSD drive and bios gives me an error message during POST, if there are other drives connected to the motherboard (this is with the bios set to AHCI and without the windows registry alterations). The error message says something like 'drive read error, press ctrl+alt+delete to restart," and then my usb drivers stop working (no keyboard or mouse), thus I cant enter the bios or even restart... which forces me to reset the CMOS and BIOS settings.
To answer your other question, I'm not opposed to using a RAID 1 internal setup. But I will also be using an external "Drobo-S" redudant storage system to backup my files. Do you still think a RAID 1 setup is better?
So here is my proposed plan:
I have 3 internal drives. The OS corsair SSD 80gb drive. Two separate/identical 2tb samsung drives. They are formatted, healthy, NFTS and windows explorer/dsk management see them and the BIOS sees them in with IDE mode.
Should I go ahead and modify both registry settings, reboot, go into the BIOS and change the mode back to AHCI?
If the above is correct, I'm sort of unsure what to do after to utilize my hardware RAID controller. Within windows, I have a Gigabyte RAID configurer (which I think I need to install the drivers during the OS installation). I also have the Intel Matrix Storage Manager/Console, which currently doesn't work because it says "plug-ins failed to load."
Should I use the Intel Matrix to create my hardware RAID? I think it will work if I change the BIOS (and registry) back to AHCI.
Went ahead and modified the win7 registry to accept AHCI/raid booting and everything went smoothly (so far, whew)
Currently have my OS on the SSD and I attempted to create a RAID 0 using the two 2tb samsung drives using the bios intel raid controller.
When I went to setup the drive in windows, the Disk Management utilitiy sees the one raid drive, however there are two partitions created (one around 2 tb and the other around 1.7 tb). Is this normal? Should I create a raid setup using disk management with those two partitions? I'm a little confused.
Windows requires that the GUID Partition Tables be used in place of the standard Master Boot Record (MBR) partition tables to address more than 2 TB. You have to select other than the MBR when you format.
Well after googling around about 2tb max size for RAID setups in windows 7 and my current MOBO hardware controller, it seems like it's not worth the effort. I should either just use a single 2 TB drive for my working drive, or use a raid 1 2tb setup
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