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Help with my first Raid setup!

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February 1, 2006 1:55:42 PM

Hi, just bought 2x 80 gb Seagate SATA hard drives. I am able to setup the array as Raid0, then when I go to install windows xp, it says I have no hard drives installed. I have a backup drive of 120gb i'm going to add on but i wanted to get the raid setup done first and then add that afterwards. Can anyone point me in the right direction?

*I have a Gigabyte K8ns pro board and am trying to use the Silicon chip raid off of the mobo, i'm able to access it after bios and set it up*

Thanks!

More about : raid setup

February 1, 2006 2:09:16 PM

Since you don't mention what motherboard/add in card you have, I can only give a broad recommendation.

When you set up your RAID array in the BIOS for the array, not only do you have to mark the drives for the array, and type of array, you have to choose one as your "boot" drive, even though you are using a multi-disk setup. Generally this is the first drive listed. Don't forget to finalize the array by having it "created".

When installing Windows XP, make sure during your setup, that you enter "F6" when it asks if you have other storage drivers to specify (that is your way of telling it that you do have extra drives to specify). At the appropriate time, the installer will ask you to insert the floppy disk that contains these drivers. Insert, and confirm the drivers Windows needs.

These drivers should be on a floppy that was included in your motherboard's packaging, a floppy creator on your motherboard's support/software disk, or even an updated one from the manufacturer's website.
February 1, 2006 2:32:07 PM

lol, my board doesn't have a place to plug in a standard 3.5" floppy to the mobo. so it looks like the floppy method isn't an option?

*sigh, nevermind it was hidden by an ide cable, lol...i'll give this a try thanks*

but i have to setup in bios that I want to use the raid setup as a boot?
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February 1, 2006 2:41:08 PM

maybe a USB floppy will be able to be seen by the XP installer? You may want to contact Gigabyte and see what kind of USB floppy support they offer on a board with no floppy connector!

Seems a bit odd, considering it's pretty well known that XP will require the RAID drivers during the installation off a floppy disk.

***EDIT:

Ha! Nevermind, you do have one!

You need to go into the RAID setup utility and make sure that the RAID you have created is bootable. Your mobo manual should tell you how to do this. When you reboot, you and go intot the bios, you should see your RAID array listed as the hard disk boot option at that point.
February 1, 2006 3:10:07 PM

Ok, so I have my array setup correctly. I checked to make sure the array is bootable in bios and it shows both drives. I insert the mobo manufacturer cd-rom to get to my raid controller files so that I can create the boot disk that windows needs (I understand how all that works now). But when I start up the computer with the mobo cd rom in the drive and it goes to boot the cd rom, I get a message saying something to the effect: no hard drive supported HPA. Anyone know what this means?
February 1, 2006 3:29:52 PM

It still appears that the OS isn't recognizing the array. Press F6 when Windows setup starts and make sure you have the correct driver on a floppy for your version of Windows. Insert it when prompted. The array has been created and is bootable, so the only other thing would have to be to make sure to load the correct RAID driver. Without it, Windows doesn't recognize it.

Also, there should be no need to startup the computer with the mobo's driver disc, it should be a Windows disc. The only reason the mobo driver disc is bootable is to give you the option of creating the Windows RAID driver floppy (or on some mobo cd's that have anti-virus software, you can run a virus scan from them). So create your RAID floppy (make sure you choose the correct one for your version of Windows) , then take out the mobo cd and insert a Windows CD. Press F6 when setup starts, have your floppy with the RAID driver on it and follow the prompts.
February 1, 2006 3:46:10 PM

Thats what i'm trying to do now is create the raid boot disk using the mobo cd rom. But I get a hard disk not supported HPA, msg.
February 1, 2006 3:50:36 PM

OK, First off: your mobo DOES have a floppy connector! It is the black connector directly to the left of the ATX power connector, or below the main IDE connectors (white and green). You NEED a floppy to install Windows XP this way, or you have to integrate the SATA RAID driver into your install disk (beyond a simple forum post thread).

You will need to make your driver floppy disk on another computer. Your SATA manual tells you how. If you like, the instructions are Here.

Once you make your floppy, boot off your WinXP install CD, Press "F6" when you see the "specify" screen... wait for XP to do it's thing, then asks you to insert the floppy, insert the floppy, and follow instructions.
February 1, 2006 4:05:41 PM

Yeah I found the port on the mobo for the floppy a while ago, it was hidden by a cable, lol. I was starting to think that I was making this too hard, which I was. I thought for some reason I had to make the boot disk outside of windows (figured the boot disk contained some info on the 2 drives as well as the controller for raid). So anyway I've created the boot disk in windows and am now going to try and install it by hitting F6 at the initial windows install. Thanks all for the info, think I got it now! I'll post back if i'm sucessful.
February 1, 2006 8:50:16 PM

Ok, got it working fine everything looks right. Now my only concern is to add my backup drive, a maxtor 120 gb SATA drive. But when I go to plug it into a sata port (my board has 4 sata ports) it doesn't show my raid drives in the bios bootup and i'm afriad to load up windows with it connected. So anyone know how to resolve this?

Again thanks to all who gave me feedback on how to resolve me initial raid setup problem!
February 2, 2006 12:15:10 AM

Wonderful! Now when I play a game like BF2 the game will crash after I get into a game and this is what error reporting says is happening:

C:D OCUME~1****LOCALS~1TempWER4c83.dir00Mini020106-04.dmp
C:D OCUME~1****LOCALS~1TempWER4c83.dir00sysdata.xml

I've already reinstalled my video drivers, taken out my ram one stick at a time and retested and reinstalled this specific game. And it still does it. Anyone have any idea what is going on? Would this be raid related?
February 2, 2006 1:06:07 AM

Could be any number of things. Please list your complete configuration; ie: motherboard, cpu, memory brand and type, hard drives, optical drives, video card, and power supply.

As far as your hard drives... the boot order, or what controllers are "enabled", has a major influence on your drive letter designations and such. Don't connect any extra HDDs till you get your base install done... or you may find you have installed windows on a different HDD then what you had planned!

Have you done all your Windows updates? Are you using the drivers for the NForce3, not 4 (makes a difference... system will get unstable if using wrong RAID/chipset drivers). Make sure ALL your drivers are the latest, the ones on the CD were outdated the day the CD was made. You can find most of the updated drivers HERE. Have you plugged in BOTH power supply connectors to motherboard. If your vid-card has a power connector, is that hooked up?

This is a new system... have you "burned it in"? Doubtful... Without knowing the stop error for the blue screen... we can't help you.

Have you checked for an updated BIOS for your motherboard? Most manufacturers have a windows based BIOS flash utility that makes BIOS flashing much easier. You can find the BIOS utilities HERE, and the BIOS files HERE.

Blue screens are usually caused by driver problems, or memory problems. Have you run memtest + on the machine for at least 4-6 passes? If not, go HERE, and download the floppy maker for v1.65, or iso for burning a bootable floppy.
February 2, 2006 2:32:58 AM

Here is my setup:

Gigabyte GA-K8NS PRO Socket 754 NVIDIA nForce3 250 ATX AMD Motherboard (contains 3 memory slots)

AMD Athlon 64 3200+ Newcastle 800MHz FSB Socket 754 Processor

GeIL Value 1GB (2 x 512MB) 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200)
+ and extra stick of Crucial pc2100 512 mb (the amd socket 754 doesn't support dual channel so i don't care about running in pairs).

ATI x700 256 mb AGP

Creative Audigy LS

Unsure of the brand PS but it's 400w

2x seagate 80 gb SATA hard drives RAID0

As I said before I've pulled one stick of ram at a time, uninstalled my video drivers (and used Driver Cleaner to get rid of all the misc files). Uninstalled BF2. I have tried to update my bios using the live utility you mention but after it had downloaded the update to the bios fix and after rebooting. My computer just sat there and continuously beeped. Long story short I figured out that if I let it beep a while it would start and just recently since I added the stick of crucial (pc2100 I think) 512 ram, in the 3rd and last vancant spot on my mobo it has since stopped beeping entirely and I can now restart my computer (which I couldn't do before, I actually had to shut the computer down..wait a minute and then start it again). I am actually really sure this has something to do with ram, but I haven't been able to pin point it for certain. I hope this is enough info for you to help, lol. I'm half tempted to just buy a new mobo! I have since disconnected my raid drives and am now using a just 1 hard drive in a normal setting and am going to see if I have any problems. Because I didn't have any problems until I setup the RAID.

---------------

ACK just crashed on me again when in BF2 without the raid setup. This might be a ram issue or....my have something to do with my audigy sound card? Going to watch my cpu temp too since I have stock fan/heatsink. D/L the latest chipset drivers too.

--------------

Just updated drivers on both my raid setup and my stand alone hdd setup. I also did an update of the bios. I am still crashing with the raid0 setup but the stand alone 120gb drive seems to be stable, I ACTUALLY GOT TO PLAY SOME BF2 TODAY! LOL. So i'm not sure what this means but now it maybe sounds like my raid has something going on with it?
February 2, 2006 2:50:01 PM

Memory is your problem! Don't mix speed grades, and TRY to stay with one manufacturer!

Just because you have 3 slots, doesn't mean you can use all three. You can only populate with 4 sides of RAM ie: 2 double sided, 1 double and 2 single, or 3 single sided.

Use only your Giel, use slots one and two first. if unstable, try slots 2 and 3. In your BIOS, try upping your Vdimm .1 volt. Check Giels recommended timings versus what your BIOS is setting!

PLEASE, download and run Memtest + 1.65 to verify your RAM stability! 2-4 passes minimum! No further help can be given, until you have done the memory settings, and verified with Memtest!
February 2, 2006 2:57:58 PM

Please stop placing "lol" after mistake like having not seen rhe floppy connector because it was hidden by a cable.. That may you look more stupid than you may really be...

Anyway, Is RAID enabled for the nvidia SATA connector? You have a manual, look at the BIOS section and disable RAID for the nvidia controller, NOT THE SIL ONE
February 2, 2006 3:11:07 PM

Ok, i'll give that a shot.
!