How does one describe the predicament of needing to restore functionality to a mobo that was the victim of the embarrassing act of having "Restore Defaults" performed on it without realizing that it would also restore the Boot settings?
I DONT WANT TO RISK LOSING ALL MY DATA BY SETTING UP THE RAID 5 IN THE BIOS LIKE IT WAS BEFORE! (right?) I posted this in the Windows 7 category because I had a hunch that I will turning to my install disc for the answer. BTW, everything on the four drives should be as fully functional as before. Here's my hardware:
i7 920 6GB-OCZ-mem Megalehelms and a pair of EVGA Geforce 275GTXs on a ASUS P6T mobo along with (4) 500GB Samsung Spinpoint HDs in a RAID 5 config running 64 bit Windows 7.
It seems like it would require the same procedure as replacing the mobo, which I recall is a scenario that RAID 5 accomodates easily. If this is right, I think it might call for an installation of the OS that would preserve the user's apps and files.
Turning the SATA controller back to RAID mode should allow the BIOS to see the current RAID configuration. If memory serves, you only need to rebuild a RAID array when replacing the motherboard (and thus the RAID controller).
I have a P965 based motherboard in my server system which occasionally f**ks itself, including the BIOS settings, but when I go into the BIOS and set the SATA controller back to RAID mode, the RAID configuration is detected and my server boots normally.
Unless someone else can say for sure, I think you're probably going to be ok here... unless I've misinterpreted your post?
Edit: I should note that the RAID array in my server in my example above is a RAID 0 array, not RAID 5.
I've just tested it on the workshop server here - D975xBX2 MB with ICH7 running a raid5, it would seem that so long as the drives haven't been altered or an attempt to boot individually, and you connect all 4 before switching the SATA ports over to RAID5 this will work fine. I didn't even need to rebuild, though maybe i was lucky.
You will be ok to switch the ports to RAID in the BIOS. The only thing i will say is don't change anything on the RAID settings (Ctrl-I) after the RAID bios status loads, it should show the RAID members and a RAID5 being active. Everything should boot normally.
Hope all goes well.
Edit: I meant to say a change from D975xBX2 ICH7 to DX48BT ICH10
As long as you have not moved any of the drives around (changing the specific ports they were plugged into) or changed out the motherboard you should be able to renable the RAID array in the BIOS as Prophecy says. I have done it myself successfully (darn that Set Defaults option)
Success! Case solved! Thanks, The_Prophecy, that was just what I needed!
As you indicated, merely setting the Storage Configuration in the MAIN tab to RAID, saving and exiting/restarting (F10 + return) booted me right up! I even recognized the complete RAID setup flash briefly during the post, before the Windows screen.
As it turns out, those settings were preserved in the Intel® Matrix Storage Manager Option ROM utility, accessed during POST by pressing <Ctrl+I>.