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Is there any part I should delay installing until after the OS is in?

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August 31, 2009 4:50:00 PM

Like perhaps a soundcard until I turn off the onboard audio? Here are my specs.

Intel Core i7 920
Asus P6T (NOT deluxe :(  )
GTX 285
3 x 2GB Corsair DDR3
Antec 1200
CoolerMaster UCP 700W
Three 1.5 TB Seagate Barracuda SATA HD's
One aprox 100GB HD for OS (I say approx because i haven't bought it yet)
Plextor SATA DVD/DVD-DL/CD writer
SoundBlaster X-Fi Titanium PCI Express

What am I missing and what all should and shouldn't have installed during the first boot up and os install?

More about : part delay installing

August 31, 2009 5:04:58 PM

Certainly couldn't hurt to install the sound card afterwards. Maybe this is just me, but I also never connect any additional HDDs until my OS is installed and working. I've had issues with it wanting to boot from the wrong HDD even when the proper boot order is chosen in the BIOS. Probably because I'm lazy and leave the OS intact on my old HDDs that I use for storage.
August 31, 2009 5:12:10 PM

Doesn't look like you are missing anything. I will advise not to get a "100 GB HD" for your OS, unless you are thinking about going with SSD drives for your OS. Mechanical drives in the 100GB range are going to be 2 or 3 generations old, and any perceived performance gain by running your OS separate on it will be negated by the older tech of the drives. Just about every year, hard drives improve performance over last years' production models, even if capacity size does not increase. You are much better off getting a moderately priced 640 GB drive at $50 or so, rather than an ancient 120 GB that will cost about $35-40.

As for putting stuff in your case before OS install, just build the entire thing. If you want, you can disable your onboard sound in the bios before install, but it won't hurt anything if you leave it be. It's true the sound blaster might not work as soon as the OS install completes, but it should be fine once you get the drivers for it installed.
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August 31, 2009 6:13:23 PM

That's a rather interesting selection of hdd's waht is your intention with that raid? os drive?

When I do a fresh install i make sure as many things as i plan to use are installed as possible, I do go int he bios though and disable onboard sound and floppys also be sure to set your hdd boot order while your in there. Side note if you take the time to make sure the drive you want to boot from is on port 1 then the boot order will already be set and it will save you issues later when the bios battery dies
August 31, 2009 8:41:11 PM

505090 said:
when the bios battery dies


Wow, does that really happen? I thought it was a myth! :)  Seriously, I've never actually seen one die. :hello: 
August 31, 2009 9:16:43 PM

I think it can, just takes a really long time.
September 1, 2009 4:37:27 PM

AMDThunder said:
Wow, does that really happen? I thought it was a myth! :)  Seriously, I've never actually seen one die. :hello: 



Not to often but yes they do, usually long after they should have been thrown away.
September 1, 2009 5:07:07 PM

I'm gonna axe the idea of putting the OS on an SSD drive. Alot of the affordable SSD's are 1st gens it seems, like the Patriot EP Warp. It has no cache so apparently is stutters here and there. You can tweek vista and eliminate the stutters but I have no idea how it'll affect my other three standard SATA drives.

So looks like I'll just have two drives in Raid 0, on which I'll load the OS, and one drive used as an internal backup.

Oh, the newer SSD drives that HAVE the cache are just too expensive at the moment.
September 1, 2009 5:12:08 PM

If you're motherboard has onboard video, I would install the onboard video drivers first before the video card drivers, just in case your video card craps out.
September 1, 2009 5:17:22 PM

masterasia, that's actually a very good idea, and makes total sense.
September 1, 2009 5:39:42 PM

masterasia said:
If you're motherboard has onboard video, I would install the onboard video drivers first before the video card drivers, just in case your video card craps out.


Actually that can lead to driver conflicts so I would strongly advise against it.

Windows has integrated default drivers that will make any video card work at a sufficient level to work on the computer.

Any backup drive should be external and completely disconnected from the computer when not in the actual process of backing up.
September 1, 2009 6:28:59 PM

zipzoomfly has a special on OCZ agility SSDs. 60 GB for $128 after rebate. These use the higher quality indilinx controllers as found in the OCZ Vertex line, but do not use the faster, but more expensive Samsung memory modules. 64MB of cache as well. Not as much as the 128 MB cache the Summit series has, but those are built with the Samsung controller, and it is known that there are still drives out there that have old firmware with no means to upgrade at this time. This very long article goes into detail about the current state of SSDs, and is a worthwhile read. http://www.anandtech.com/storage/showdoc.aspx?i=3631
September 1, 2009 9:18:04 PM

Great article wathman. If anything I'll just do what you suggested earlier and purchase a newer mechanical drive for the os. Looks like SSD's are gonna be too high maintenance for me, at least until I can get Windows 7 which looks like it'll treat them better.
September 1, 2009 9:33:55 PM

Waiting is a good idea for now since the best drives are the Intel G2s (expensive, and sold out everywhere) or the OCZ Vertex. 60 GB is the most affordable price point right now, and it's barely big enough for most needs. In a few months, capacities and performance should be much better.
September 1, 2009 9:52:18 PM

Unless you are creating a RAID I would always only connect the boot drive when Im installing windows .
The storage drives can be physically in the case but leave the power connectors unplugged
Once windows is running then use hardware manager to partiton and format them
September 1, 2009 9:56:34 PM

Microcenter.com has the OCZ Vertex for:

30GB for $109.99 after $30 mail in rebate
60GB for $179.99 after $30 mail in rebate
120GB for $319.99 after $40 mail in rebate

I wonder how many more firmware updates they'll have, I'd hate having to reinstall windows everytime.
September 2, 2009 1:31:33 PM

Those are pretty nice prices for Vertex, just saw on the news section at Tom's that the Intel SSDs just skyrocketed in price.

As for having to reinstall windows for a firmware update there's a free drive image backup program similar to Norton Ghost that works pretty well:
http://www.todo-backup.com/

I used that and another product from Easeus (Partition Master) to get my old C: drive imaged to the new SSD. Worked pretty well when I figured out the quirks of my configuration. This way you just take an image of your entire drive's current state, do the firmware update, then restore the image in about an hour instead of half a day of reinstalls and configuring.
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