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Need help on reinstalling PC without RAID 0

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June 13, 2010 5:21:49 PM

Hey i've been having problems with my PC due to being configured in RAID 0.

Basicly i've been getting BSOD's and freezes due to bad drivers, I've tried them all but i keep on getting raid errors and BSOD's so i've decided to try and get rid of it due to all the hassle and very minor performence increase.

just a heads up i didnt build the pc myself or i'd have no problem doing this but i ordered it custom built a few years back with RAID 0 already installed, So it was just plug in and play ready.

If anyone can give me a step by step guide on how to:

-get rid of RAID 0
-format my hardrives (backed up any data i want already)
-then reinstall my OS and anything else i'll need on just one HDD, Or if possible a diffrent config of RAID such as the one where the 2nd HDD is used to backup the other one.

I have all the disks i'd need such as vista, Mobo disk, GPU driver disk and my wireless router disk.

i'd be very greatful as im intutitive with pc's but never done anything like the above.

ASUS P5K WS
4870X2
quad core Q6700
2GB RAM
2X Hitachi SATA 250GB

I've run tests for RAM and HDD problems so im sure the intial trouble is just software related.

thank you.

More about : reinstalling raid

a b B Homebuilt system
June 13, 2010 6:27:30 PM

This board comes with integrated RAID 0/1/0+1/5

If you want to get rid of RAID0 then you must get into the BIOS and delete the RAID setup. Please read and familiarize yourself with BIOS and how to make modifications. After you get rid of RAID, you can setup these disks as "non-RAID" disks and go from there.

Be forewarned that you will have to do a complete re-installation of your OS, and depending upon whether you have a "retail" version or an "OEM" version, you will have to get the OS authenticated. The system will walk you through these steps. I had to re-install my OEM Win 7, and get it authenticated when I upgraded my motherboard.

It's good that you backed up all your data.

After you do all this, you will have a new system.
a b B Homebuilt system
June 14, 2010 3:24:23 AM

Within the RAID management system that is accessible via a specific key press during the POST you can Delete the RAID array. When that's done your machine will not be able to boot from the old array that no longer exists. Reboot and go into BIOS Setup immediately. Go to the the place where your SATA drives are configured. Near there is a place to set your SATA Port Mode, and it is probably set to RAID right now. Change that to AHCI if possible (native SATA is another option), because the Vista you will be installing can use those device types via its own built-in drivers. Now go to Boot Priority Sequence and ensure that the sequence uses your optical drive to boot from first, then the first SATA unit. Save and Exit, and the machine will try to boot and fail because there is no OS on any HDD.

For the installation I recommend you disconnect the second HDD so there is only one available. Put your Win Vista Install CD in the optical drive and boot - it will load from there and start the Install. Look for an option to Delete any and all Partitions that might be on the HDD already. When that is done, proceed with the Install.

As you anticipate you will also have to re-install all your application software after Vista in installed and updated. With that done you can restore all your data files from your backup.

When everything is working, it's time to get the other SATA unit back into the picture. Reconnect its wires and boot into Windows. You will use Disk Management to wipe the second drive and set it up as a data drive.

Click on Start and then RIGHT-click on My Computer. In the mini-menu choose Manage. In the new window that opens, expand "storage" if necessary and click on "Disk Management". You will see on the right two horizontal panes. The Upper Right pane shows you all the storage devices Windows can use right now - probably you'll see here your C: drive and your optical unit. The LOWER RIGHT pane will show those units as pieces of hardware, PLUS the second SATA drive that Windows can't use yet. It will have a small label block on its left end, and to the right probably one block representing a Partition that can't be used. RIGHT-click on that Partition and choose to Delete it. If there is more than one Partition showing on this HDD unit, Delete them all. Now this HDD should show all its space as "Unallocated Space".

RIGHT-click on the Unallocated Space and choose to Create a Primary Partition and make it active, if that has to be set separately. Set the size you want - probably all of the space available. You do NOT need this HDD to be bootable - it's just for data. Under Format options you set two things. Choose a File System - almost always NTFS, unless you know you need something else. Opt for a Full Format (not Quick). This will Format the new drive and then exhaustively test every sector on it, marking off any bad ones so they are not used. That is a good practice for used HDD's. BUT it will take a few hours, so don't wait around impatiently. When the process is done, back out of Disk Management and reboot so the Registry can get all the new details straight. You now should see your C: boot drive and your second HDD as separate drives in My Computer ready to use, as well as you optical drive.
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June 14, 2010 1:08:56 PM

Wow thanks just the kinda help i was looking for, Very thorough. Ill try it later and hopefully dont get stuck anywhere. thanks
a b B Homebuilt system
June 14, 2010 2:25:08 PM

Paperdoc, well written post!
June 14, 2010 7:23:27 PM

Well i've done it and everything you said worked fine. Got alot of backup space now.

I didn't do ACHI i used IDE which is fine right?

thanks for the help you made it sound so simple (which it was) But for somone who has never done somthing like that it helped.
a b B Homebuilt system
June 14, 2010 8:12:10 PM

Glad it all worked. Setting the SATA Mode to IDE (or PATA) Emulation will work just fine. Doing that means you will not be able to take advantage of a few extra features of AHCI devices that have to do with optimized queuing of pending operations and stuff like that. They are useful for minor speed-ups in performance on busy systems (like a server), but not essential for many individual users. So it'll be just fine.

If you ever decide in the future to change to AHCI, read up on the process first. Sometimes it takes a few tricks and backup and restore operations. But most people would never bother with the effort for the VERY small change it makes for them.
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