Server Drive Setup

To Anyone who has Experience in Setting up RAID Arrays,

I am planning on building a home server with Window Home Server 2011. I recently purchased an ASUS MB (P8H67-M PRO) that has 4 SATA II headers and 2 SATA III headers. I also purchased 3 Hatachi HDS723020BLA642 SATA III 2 TB drives and a single WD SATA II 1 TB drive. The MB was dead on arrival so I decided to see if I could get a better understanding of setting up the drives while waiting to get the new MB.

My plan is to install the WHS 2011 OS on the WD SATA II and then set up a RAID 5 array the the 3 Hitachi drives for storage. Two of the Hitachi drives will be connected to the SATA III headers and one will be connected to the SATA II header. I understand that WHS will now rely on RAID vs. its prior DiskExtender approach.

Here i what I think I need to do and some of the questions that I have on the set up.

I assume that before installing the OS I first need to go into the BIOS and set up the WD as a RAID 0 (nor non-RAID?) array. The WD drive is on the first SATA II header. I then want to set up a second RAID 5 array and assign the 3 Hitachi drives to the array. After I have completed that I assume that I reboot using the WHS 2011 intall disk (currently in final beta) to load the OS and hopefully find the RAID 5 array.

Will the OS automatically install on the Raid 0 drive or is there something I need to do to make sure it does?

Is there any problem mixing SATA III and SATA II drives in a RAID 5 array? All three drives are the same size (2TB). Do I lose any disk performance in setting up this way? I recognize that the 3rd SATA III drive will be going into a SATA II header and will operate at that level.

In looking at the intallation instructions for the MB it inidcates a SATA Contoller 0 and 1 does that mean that there are two controllers on the MB? Some of this may become clearer once i get into the BIOS. Thanks for any thoughts and assistance that you may be able to offer.
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  1. It doesn't matter if you mix SATA II and SATA III drives, but you probably won't be able to have one RAID volume that spans SATA II and SATA III ports since they will probably be connected to different disk controllers.
  2. I will find out this week when the new MB arrives and hopefully works.
  3. fred_k said:
    I will find out this week when the new MB arrives and hopefully works.

    Were you able to install WHS 2011 with that motherboard? No driver problems?
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