Hardware RAID Controller for ASUS Z97 Sabbertooth Mark 1 and/or Help with LSI MegaRAID 9240-8i


I am in the market for a hardware RAID card that is compatible with the ASUS Z97 Sabbertooth Mark 1 and Seagate Barracuda drives. I would prefer something with a simple GUI with it as well so that I can manage the profiles easier from within Windows 10. I want this thing to be as close to plug and play as I can get. I am looking to do simple RAID 1 currently but RAID 10 in the future. I will not be using any other RAID form.

I do not intend to use this as a boot device. I have an SSD for my boot drive and am merely looking to back up about 4TB of installed games. I have not had any issues with the built in Intel RAID but I will be upgrading to a new Mobo in the next year or so and want something that is easy to transfer and I have read that there can be problems when moving Intel RAID to two different Mobo's.

I had recently purchased a LSI MegaRAID 9240-8i and after fighting with it for 4 hours have basically given up. I got the drivers and firmware updated but was never able to launch the configuration tool during POST with the drives plugged in. I was able to launch the configuration without drives plugged in and once in the WebBIOS tool I was able to connect the drives and set them up in RAID 1. The user interface wasn't anything I could use and Windows didn't recognize the hard drives connected to the card or the array in either instance. I tried changing legacy/UEFI boot settings and nothing worked either.

So... help either way. Advice on how to get the LSI MegaRAID 9240-8i working with my ASUS Z97 Sabbertooth Mark 1 or a hardware card that is compatible and easy to use with said motherboard.
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More about hardware raid controller asus z97 sabbertooth mark lsi megaraid 9240
  1. Looks like the MB supports hardware raid without the need for an add on card.
  2. I was under the impression that the Intel RAID was software RAID and not hardware.
  3. Nope, software raid is when you set up a raid volume using disk manager in Windows. Hardware raid is controlled by the MB chipset. If you were to enable RAID in bios instead of ACHI you would see the option ROM message during POST and be able to enter the config and create raid volumes. Be aware, when you change to RAID you wil probably not be able to boot from your OS drive and need to reinstall windows. You won't lose your data on the other drives.
  4. I was able to set it up again without reinstalling after switching from ACHI to RAID. All I had to do was uninstall Intel Rapid Storage drivers, select reboot from safe mode, change from ACHI to RAID before Windows loads, load in safe mode, select to boot regularly, and my next boot I booted with RAID enabled and no issues what so ever. Reinstalled ITRS and am currently rebuilding my original arrays.

    I still have the problem though where I will have difficulty changing this over when I get a new motherboard. Considering all the good news I have seen around AMD it is likely one of those might be my next boards and I am willing to bet the RAID drivers aren't even close. At this point I would manually have to restart the RAID arrays and physically copy the hard drives on a back up drive to rebuild them. That is a lot of work I had hoped to avoid with getting an actual hardware RAID card.

    So my question ultimately still stands... how do I make the 9240-8i hardware card work or can someone provide a sufficient card that is simple to install, can reliably do RAID 0, 1, and 10, and is easy to manage disks in Windows?
  5. I guess you can simply connect the disks to the card, set up the array in the card's BIOS and then install Windows on it, but you might need to load extra drivers during installation, so that the Windows installer recognizes the card and the connected drives and can actually install the OS on them.

    That's all, it's not actually that difficult, and then when you move to another platform, you can simply use the configured RAID card and boot from it straight away. In theory. I haven't actually tried it with an entirely different platform, but it worked when I updated from WinServer 2012 to WinServer 2016. The OS was on a separate drive that was connected to the south bridge, so I didn't need to load drivers etc.
  6. See I am trying to avoid reinstalling anything. If it weren't for the near 4TB of installed games that I have mapped to drives already, I wouldn't have an issue with this, but I really don't feel like calling the cable company and having to explain I need to not throttle my connection because I've downloaded so much. Than and my roommates wouldn't appreciate a bogged down internet signal. I was hoping it would be as easy as the Intel RAID where the drives will just show up in Windows 10 after being initialized. Since that didn't happen I came here for help. Can't call LSI for support because they are now owned by Broadcom and can't find a freaking support number.
  7. So, what are you trying to achieve exactly?
    Because there is no way you could use the drives that have the games on them as member disks without completely erasing them. After that, with a dedicated card, it should be plug and play, as long as there are drivers for the card for the particular OS you want to use it with.
  8. My drive set up:
    -SSD with OS
    -2x 3TB RAID 1
    -2x 2TB RAID 1
    -2x 1TB Storage

    I want the 3TB and 2TB RAID to go from the on board Intel to a dedicated card. I have a third 3TB drive that I can copy the drive data to before I reset up the RAID. I am well aware that the data on either array has to be remove if I move from ITRS to a dedicated card. Hence the back up. Once I get the card working, I just copy the data from the backup drive and set the drive path of the new array to the original drive letter. This is simple and I have done it dozens of times when swapping out ITRS arrays.

    What I continue to ask is how can I make the 9240-8i work with my ASUS Sabertooth Z97 Mark1 and Windows 10 or if someone can suggest a card that will work with it. Plugging the 9240-8i in didn't work. It identified the drivers and firmware was up to date but it would not recognize the drives in Windows 10.
  9. Best answer
    If you can't see the drives at all, not even in device manager, then you might need to configure or reset the raid controller in its own BIOS. You can see when it's booting, and it tells you which key combination you should press to enter its configuration menu.

    Wait, I just realized that it uses a SAS2008 chip, which means it's not going to work with drives larger than 2TB. I have one of these integrated on my server's motherboard, and it doesn't like my 4TB drive either.

    So, I don't know if there is a firmware update that could fix it, but you might need to get another card that does work with large drives.
  10. Well that answers that question. Any other recommendations?
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