Setting up RAID 1 (mirror) on Non-Boot Drive

I just bought 2 new identical Western Digital drives, and I want them to run in RAID 1 (mirror) mode. They will not be my boot drive - they are just a storage drive.

-Vista 64bit
-EVGA 780i mobo
-1 existing 500gb drive with Vista installed

What I've done so far:

I hooked up the new drives, went into the BIOS and enabled RAID and selected the new drives to use. Saved the settings and then when my comp restarted, I entered the RAID Setup window. Selected which 'style' (or whatever its called, RAID 0, RAID 1, etc..) and added the two drives. I was then prompted to 'Clear the MBR'. I was hesitant because I wasn't too sure what it meant, so I hit No. This didn't seem to be a problem, I was able to see that they were properly mirrored and 'healthy'. Completed that and let the comp restart and load Windows. Everything seems to be okay, Windows loaded fine, but the new drive didn't show up in My Computer.

So I went into Computer Management -> Disk Management.

I can see the new mirrored drive as 'Disk 1' and its 'Unallocated'. So I tried to create a 'New Simple Volume' (only option), went through the wizard and right at the end when I try to finish I get this error: 'The operation cannor be completed because the disk is not initialized.'

The only thing that I can think of is that I should have hit Yes to 'Clear the MBR'. But I'm still hesitant, because I'm still not sure what MBR is - and what problems it could cause.

Could someone fill me in? Is it safe to go back to the RAID Setup and clear the MBR?


Edit: Could I be missing drivers or something aswell? I checked the motherboard CD and there was something related to RAID drivers, but they were for use on a floppy disk (which I don't have), and I think more related to trying to install an OS onto a new RAID drive. Any other possibilities?
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More about setting raid mirror boot drive
  1. MBR is matre boot record which has information about OS & its location on the hard drive..if you are sure about that you installed vista in 500gb hdd, then you ca do anything with other 2 drives. for sake remove the 2 WD HDD & try to boot your PC, if it goes fine & shows yous desktop..
    for regular model hdd hooked with ide or sata port doesn't need any drivers for making raid with windows..
  2. Hmm, strange that these two new drives would even have a MBR, they've never had anything on them, especially an OS.

    But it sounds like its safe to clear the MBR off of these drives. Is there anyway I can backup the MBR, just in case something does go wrong? And is it likely that this is the reason that I can't format or setup a 'simple volume' on the drive?
  3. Uhg. I was originally so keen on having a RAID 1 setup to just avoid the tedious act of backing up. I didn't do much research on it, and was blindly assuming that it would be the ultimate solution, but after reading some of the threads here (for ex. ) I'm now thinking of just avoiding any of the extra problems that may come along with a RAID setup. Not to mention that I still don't have the RAID working yet.

    So I'm thinking... I've got the two drives already, why not just use the second one as a 'manual' online backup. Although I'd like to avoid the 'manual' part of that, and just get some software to do that for me on a schedule.

    What I'd like to ask, is if anyone has any suggestions on what software to use to achieve this. I'm looking for something fairly simple, but reliable. I assume this is pretty standard, but I'd also want it to only 'update' the backup with new files and not just copy every single file every time.

    Any thoughts?
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