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Best Windows 7 Install

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December 30, 2012 1:42:03 AM

Im using one ssd as my boot drive for windows 7 but i dont know which way i should install it. i can either use AHCI or RAID and if i choose RAID i can specify either RST or RSTe. if i install AHCI, should i install intel's rst by loading the driver before installing windows 7 or install the rst driver after? same with RAID, should i install before or after?

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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 2:04:53 AM

Intel RAID mode also enables AHCI, so either AHCI or RAID will do.

If you have an option between RST and RSTe I would recommend choosing RST. RSTe is the enterprise version of Intel's storage controller ROM which is a little bit different but ultimately has the same functionality.

If you do not plan on installing a RAID, put it in AHCI mode. You can always enable RAID mode later on without any difficulties.

Windows 7 has native support for Intel storage controllers through the Intel 6 series chipsets. Intel 7 series chipsets, including the X79 chipset, are not natively supported by Windows 7 and may require drivers to be provided at install time. Windows 8 has full native support for all Intel chispsets as of this time
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 2:20:08 AM

Pinhedd said:
If you do not plan on installing a RAID, put it in AHCI mode. You can always enable RAID mode later on without any difficulties.


One nitpick, if you switch from AHCI to RAID you will just blue screen and can't boot. Its fixable, but it involves the registry do if you're planning to RAID Data drives at.any point, without reinstalling the OS you'll want to set the controller to RAID before installing windows
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 2:24:46 AM

unksol said:
One nitpick, if you switch from AHCI to RAID you will just blue screen and can't boot. Its fixable, but it involves the registry do if you're planning to RAID Data drives at.any point, without reinstalling the OS you'll want to set the controller to RAID before installing windows


That only applies to switching from IDE to AHCI and vice versa. You can switch from AHCI to RAID and from RAID to AHCI all you like without problems. If you create a firmware RAID volume in RAID mode and then switch to AHCI mode that volume will not be usable until RAID mode is reenabled.
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December 30, 2012 2:27:53 AM

Pinhedd said:
Intel RAID mode also enables AHCI, so either AHCI or RAID will do.

If you have an option between RST and RSTe I would recommend choosing RST. RSTe is the enterprise version of Intel's storage controller ROM which is a little bit different but ultimately has the same functionality.

If you do not plan on installing a RAID, put it in AHCI mode. You can always enable RAID mode later on without any difficulties.

Windows 7 has native support for Intel storage controllers through the Intel 6 series chipsets. Intel 7 series chipsets, including the X79 chipset, are not natively supported by Windows 7 and may require drivers to be provided at install time. Windows 8 has full native support for all Intel chispsets as of this time

Thanks a lot. it is an x79 build so il probably set the UEFI to AHCI and install rst before windows7 just to be sure. i must of reinstalled the OS more than 10 times trying to figure out why it was booting slower than it should and it came down to the asmedia 1061 sata controller slowing it up, so i had to disable it. while i was doing that though i saw all of these options so i just wanted to find the best way to install the os.... again...lol. thanks
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December 30, 2012 2:29:19 AM

Best answer selected by awhiteguy.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 2:33:49 AM

awhiteguy said:
Thanks a lot. it is an x79 build so il probably set the UEFI to AHCI and install rst before windows7 just to be sure. i must of reinstalled the OS more than 10 times trying to figure out why it was booting slower than it should and it came down to the asmedia 1061 sata controller slowing it up, so i had to disable it. while i was doing that though i saw all of these options so i just wanted to find the best way to install the os.... again...lol. thanks


oh god you should have posted earlier.

if you haven't done so already, update the motherboard firmware to the latest revision. X79 natively uses the RSTe ROM, at least my RIVE does. I'm not an expert on the difference, but I do know that the driver suites are different so pick one and stick with it.

Do not use the ASMedia 1061 ports for ANYTHING except traditional ATA hard drives that you do not plan on booting from. Do not attach ATAPI devices such as DVD drives or BluRay drives or SSDs to the ASMedia controller. If you're not planning on using the eSATA ports for hotswapping, you can disable the ASMedia OPROM. If you're planning on using neither the eSATA ports nor the ASMedia SATA-III ports, disable it completely. The newer ASMedia drivers seem to solve the slow boot, but they're not natively shipped with Windows 7 and will need to be updated manually.

As a side note, most X79 motherboards have additional power connectors to provide additional current to the unbuffered DIMMs and PCIe slots. Make sure that these are connected.
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December 30, 2012 2:43:55 AM

Pinhedd said:
oh god you should have posted earlier.

if you haven't done so already, update the motherboard firmware to the latest revision. X79 natively uses the RSTe ROM, at least my RIVE does. I'm not an expert on the difference, but I do know that the driver suites are different so pick one and stick with it.

Do not use the ASMedia 1061 ports for ANYTHING except traditional ATA hard drives that you do not plan on booting from. Do not attach ATAPI devices such as DVD drives or BluRay drives or SSDs to the ASMedia controller. If you're not planning on using the eSATA ports for hotswapping, you can disable the ASMedia OPROM. If you're planning on using neither the eSATA ports nor the ASMedia SATA-III ports, disable it completely. The newer ASMedia drivers seem to solve the slow boot, but they're not natively shipped with Windows 7 and will need to be updated manually.

As a side note, most X79 motherboards have additional power connectors to provide additional current to the unbuffered DIMMs and PCIe slots. Make sure that these are connected.

you have no idea how much of a headache this thing gave me. i wasnt even using the asm1061 for anything and i was slowing my boots by A LOT (vertex 4 is on x79 controller). after putting in as much money as i did in this new build i was expecting it not to hang over 10 seconds on the windows logo. i installed the asmedia sata3 driver from my mobo's website (asrock). for the windows 7 section they had an older driver so i went to windows 8 section, got the new driver, and the boot time was still slow. then i uninstalled the driver completely and the computer booted before the windows logo did its little twirl animation.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 3:59:18 AM

awhiteguy said:
you have no idea how much of a headache this thing gave me. i wasnt even using the asm1061 for anything and i was slowing my boots by A LOT (vertex 4 is on x79 controller). after putting in as much money as i did in this new build i was expecting it not to hang over 10 seconds on the windows logo. i installed the asmedia sata3 driver from my mobo's website (asrock). for the windows 7 section they had an older driver so i went to windows 8 section, got the new driver, and the boot time was still slow. then i uninstalled the driver completely and the computer booted before the windows logo did its little twirl animation.


It's a well known problem with the ASMedia 1061, the chip and its drivers are wonky. Personally I never turn my PC off unless I'm leaving my apartment for several days or more so I don't notice the boot times.
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December 30, 2012 4:09:24 AM

Pinhedd said:
It's a well known problem with the ASMedia 1061, the chip and its drivers are wonky. Personally I never turn my PC off unless I'm leaving my apartment for several days or more so I don't notice the boot times.

yea, ive actually been asking questions related to this issue on forums before but no one knew i guess. the wierd thing is that i never had my os or any drive connected to the asmedia controller and yet, somehow, it still affected my boot. and btw i have an x79 extreme6/gb and the only extra power insert on it is a 4 pin molex but the manual said its extra power for sli/crossfire configs, so i dont think my mobo comes with anything extra for the dimms or pcie slots unfortunately.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 4:12:51 AM

awhiteguy said:
yea, ive actually been asking questions related to this issue on forums before but no one knew i guess. the wierd thing is that i never had my os or any drive connected to the asmedia controller and yet, somehow, it still affected my boot. and btw i have an x79 extreme6/gb and the only extra power insert on it is a 4 pin molex but the manual said its extra power for sli/crossfire configs, so i dont think my mobo comes with anything extra for the dimms or pcie slots unfortunately.


I have a Rampage IV Extreme which has two. A 6 Pin Auxiliary PCIe power connector and a 4 pin FDD power connector right above it. The manual clearly states that the 4 pin FDD power connector is to provide stable power to the DIMMs, yet I run 8 DIMMs perfectly stable with out. Yet, without that FDD power connector attached, the onboard Ethernet and forward facing USB 3.0 header will not work.
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December 30, 2012 4:17:45 AM

Pinhedd said:
I have a Rampage IV Extreme which has two. A 6 Pin Auxiliary PCIe power connector and a 4 pin FDD power connector right above it. The manual clearly states that the 4 pin FDD power connector is to provide stable power to the DIMMs, yet I run 8 DIMMs perfectly stable with out. Yet, without that FDD power connector attached, the onboard Ethernet and forward facing USB 3.0 header will not work.

i noticed you run your ram at 2133. does that affect your cpu temps at all? i had mine running at that speed but it seemed to drive my temps up quite a bit. i had a water2.0 pro cooling the 3820@1.35v but my temps were going past 90C. i think im just going to get a real water loop because after replacing the water2.0 pro i still got bad temps.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 5:38:08 AM

awhiteguy said:
i noticed you run your ram at 2133. does that affect your cpu temps at all? i had mine running at that speed but it seemed to drive my temps up quite a bit. i had a water2.0 pro cooling the 3820@1.35v but my temps were going past 90C. i think im just going to get a real water loop because after replacing the water2.0 pro i still got bad temps.


Yes my CPU does get quite hot. The IMC certainly does draw a lot of power but most of the draw is by the IA cores. Keep in mind that the Sandybridge-E processors have half again as many IA cores, twice as many memory channels, two and a half times as many PCIe lanes, and much more cache than their smaller Sandybridge counterparts. Under Intel Burn Test loads my CPU draws over 230 watts with all 6 cores running at 4Ghz and it doesn't take long for the core temps to hit 90 degrees which is the throttle point.

If you want to run some empirical tests to see what kind of impact memory speed has on total CPU package power consumption or IMC power consumption you can use HWInfo64 to track all those values over time.

Right now I'm running an H100 but I'm planning on switching to a full loop soon.
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December 30, 2012 1:55:22 PM

Pinhedd said:
Yes my CPU does get quite hot. The IMC certainly does draw a lot of power but most of the draw is by the IA cores. Keep in mind that the Sandybridge-E processors have half again as many IA cores, twice as many memory channels, two and a half times as many PCIe lanes, and much more cache than their smaller Sandybridge counterparts. Under Intel Burn Test loads my CPU draws over 230 watts with all 6 cores running at 4Ghz and it doesn't take long for the core temps to hit 90 degrees which is the throttle point.

If you want to run some empirical tests to see what kind of impact memory speed has on total CPU package power consumption or IMC power consumption you can use HWInfo64 to track all those values over time.

Right now I'm running an H100 but I'm planning on switching to a full loop soon.

Exactly, and it makes sense why it would get as hot as it does, but what i dont get is how people can run their x79 systems @1.4v with an h80 an have temps lower than 75C load. either their not actually stress testing it or my cooler is ***.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 30, 2012 11:01:13 PM

awhiteguy said:
Exactly, and it makes sense why it would get as hot as it does, but what i dont get is how people can run their x79 systems @1.4v with an h80 an have temps lower than 75C load. either their not actually stress testing it or my cooler is ***.


They may be looking at package temperature rather than core temperature. There are usually 3 different thermal diodes / thermometers / themocouples which you need to pay attention to.

The first is a thermal diode which is on each of the cores. There's one per core, one for the IMC, and one for the rest of the processor. This is what triggers throttling.

The second is on the package itself and measures the aggregate temperature of the whole assembly. Sometimes this may be a weighted average rather than an actual device.

The third is installed by the motherboard manufacturer and may be calculated rather than measured. There may be additional instruments all over the board, it really varies.

The cores will always be the hottest since they are the heat generating components. The package will be a bit cooler.
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December 30, 2012 11:51:19 PM

Pinhedd said:
They may be looking at package temperature rather than core temperature. There are usually 3 different thermal diodes / thermometers / themocouples which you need to pay attention to.

The first is a thermal diode which is on each of the cores. There's one per core, one for the IMC, and one for the rest of the processor. This is what triggers throttling.

The second is on the package itself and measures the aggregate temperature of the whole assembly. Sometimes this may be a weighted average rather than an actual device.

The third is installed by the motherboard manufacturer and may be calculated rather than measured. There may be additional instruments all over the board, it really varies.

The cores will always be the hottest since they are the heat generating components. The package will be a bit cooler.

so with the given circumstances; 2133mhz ram, 4.7ghz @1.3v and a water2.0 pro using prime95 is going to hit 90C? if so i definatly will have to get a real water loop and maybe lower the memory speeds a bit to fix these crazy temps.
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a b $ Windows 7
December 31, 2012 12:14:40 AM

awhiteguy said:
so with the given circumstances; 2133mhz ram, 4.7ghz @1.3v and a water2.0 pro using prime95 is going to hit 90C? if so i definatly will have to get a real water loop and maybe lower the memory speeds a bit to fix these crazy temps.


Oh it most definitely will hit 90 degrees at 4.7Ghz. Speeds that high aren't easy to achieve on SBE processors. You will definitely want a real water loop
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December 31, 2012 12:28:21 AM

Pinhedd said:
Oh it most definitely will hit 90 degrees at 4.7Ghz. Speeds that high aren't easy to achieve on SBE processors. You will definitely want a real water loop

well at least i know now theres no problem with my cpu or anything. hey thanks a lot for your help. you've pretty much solved all the questions i had with this x79 build. props...
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a b $ Windows 7
December 31, 2012 4:21:29 AM

awhiteguy said:
well at least i know now theres no problem with my cpu or anything. hey thanks a lot for your help. you've pretty much solved all the questions i had with this x79 build. props...


Glad to help!
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January 2, 2013 2:31:32 AM

Pinhedd said:
Glad to help!

sorry, last question. one more thing came up. everything was working fine and then i installed a virtual drive. the software installed but the driver just says 'installing driver' and eventually fails, after doing this my computer gets messed up by hanging on shutting down and the booting windows logo. the only way to fix this is a system restore. this problem happens with any virtual drive (daemon tools, magicdisk, gburner). i posted a thead but couldnt figure it out. got any ideas?
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January 2, 2013 3:20:19 AM

I think I've figured it out, it has something to do with installing RST driver at windows 7 install that messess it up.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 2, 2013 3:34:59 AM

awhiteguy said:
I think I've figured it out, it has something to do with installing RST driver at windows 7 install that messess it up.


yeah that'll probably do it. There's an abstraction layer present in the RST drivers. I believe that RSTe exposes controllers as SCSI drives, but I'll have to take a closer look.

Simply providing the port controller drivers at install time doesn't constitute installing the full driver suite. That needs to be done after installation.
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January 2, 2013 8:31:19 PM

Pinhedd said:
yeah that'll probably do it. There's an abstraction layer present in the RST drivers. I believe that RSTe exposes controllers as SCSI drives, but I'll have to take a closer look.

Simply providing the port controller drivers at install time doesn't constitute installing the full driver suite. That needs to be done after installation.

ok i just installed rst (11.7) after i successfully downloaded the virtual drive but right when i install rst it get messed up like last time, not being able to boot. are you saying i should install using RAID (RSTe) and install the RSTe drive instead of AHCI and installing the RST drive?
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January 2, 2013 8:52:02 PM

i installed intel RSTe and everything works except windows booting a few seconds slower. should i reinstall the os with the bios set to RAID(RSTe) instead of AHCI.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 2, 2013 9:35:02 PM

awhiteguy said:
i installed intel RSTe and everything works except windows booting a few seconds slower. should i reinstall the os with the bios set to RAID(RSTe) instead of AHCI.


On Intel chipsets, the RAID setting is AHCI + firmware assisted RAID. Firmware assisted RAID is a conventional software RAID volume but with a firmware driver which makes it bootable in order to avoid the chicken and egg problem faced with OS level software RAIDs.

The driver suite is the same and Windows will boot a few seconds slower due to the use of enterprise drivers rather than consumer drivers, performance will still be beefy though.
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January 2, 2013 9:44:14 PM

Pinhedd said:
On Intel chipsets, the RAID setting is AHCI + firmware assisted RAID. Firmware assisted RAID is a conventional software RAID volume but with a firmware driver which makes it bootable in order to avoid the chicken and egg problem faced with OS level software RAIDs.

The driver suite is the same and Windows will boot a few seconds slower due to the use of enterprise drivers rather than consumer drivers, performance will still be beefy though.

so would you recommend me to set my bios to RAID(RSTe mode) and install RSTe and just forget about the boot time? i just never built an x79 system before, actually first build for any system lol
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a b $ Windows 7
January 2, 2013 10:14:45 PM

awhiteguy said:
so would you recommend me to set my bios to RAID(RSTe mode) and install RSTe and just forget about the boot time? i just never built an x79 system before, actually first build for any system lol


Yup. That's how I run mine
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January 2, 2013 10:36:15 PM

Pinhedd said:
Yup. That's how I run mine

sounds good, thanks again.
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