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First time RAID1 w/ Samsung F3s

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hello gentlemen,

I don't usually wander into the HDD section, but my search-fu is weak tonight, so I wonder if you have any advice. Here's the situation:

I just got my computer back from a 3-year hiatus, sans the HDDs. I found a Western Digital Caviar Green 320GB drive that I pulled from my TIVO, reformatted, and used that to get the computer checked out. Everything is gravy, and after a thorough cleaning (and an upgrade from an 8800GTX to a GTX 560 Ti), I installed two, 1TB Samsung Spinpoint F3s. So, right now I've got three HDDs installed, the two Spinpoints, and the WD. The F3s are bare, and I haven't even booted them up yet.

I'd like to put the Spinpoints into a RAID1 configuration, and use the WD as supplemental storage. Having never been down this route before, is this a good idea?

I've been reading up on configuring the RAID setup through my BIOS, and I think I understand how it works, but are there any tips and tricks threads, or pearls of wisdom you've learned that might help me out on my first trek? This is my sig rig. Any help would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 9
Basic process:
1. Enable raid under the sata config section of bios
2. Press proper key combination on boot when raid screen appears (usually ctrl+I)
3. Follow instructions to setup raid 1.

Once you have your raid setup I would recommend installing Intel Matrix Storage Manager, (that is if you're on an intel controller) to monitor your raid from your OS. It will also let you do rebuild, verify, and expanding operations as well. Have fun!
    
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post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Ah, what a pain this is being!

I can enable a RAID configuration, but I only have XP full-install discs (my Vistas are XP->Vista upgrades) and my system BSODs when I configure the raid and try to boot from the DVD. It seems I have to install the JMicron RAID driver BEFORE installing windows. Usually this is done by floppy drive, but I haven't used floppies in a decade...

So I'm trying a few different things now - I might try and use Slipstream to include the driver onto a USB jumpdrive and designate that s a Floppy
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post #4 of 9
Why are you using the Jmicron controller? The intel one should come as a standard driver for windows. You can also double upgrade with your vista discs. Install vista without a product key, then as soon as its installed do an "upgrade" with the same vista disc. Then enter your upgrade key and you should be good to go. I don't know how it will work on vista but on win 7 it works like a charm.
    
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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Klue22 View Post
Why are you using the Jmicron controller? The intel one should come as a standard driver for windows. You can also double upgrade with your vista discs. Install vista without a product key, then as soon as its installed do an "upgrade" with the same vista disc. Then enter your upgrade key and you should be good to go. I don't know how it will work on vista but on win 7 it works like a charm.
You're right about the JMicron controller...I realize now that is for e-SATA RAID, and the Intel controller is for internal SATA RAID configuration. Unfortunately, my Vista won't install w/o a pre-existing XP OS. And it is the XP OS that is being a pain because it wants to install the RAID drivers via Floppy disk, and won't recognize USB devices..unless I further jump through other hoops that may or may not work.

So, rather than burn the calories (and hours) trying to get that solution to work, I went ahead and purchased a Windows 7 Pro 32/64-bit full retail kit for $70. That supposedly will allow the drivers to install via DVD so I can get the RAID array up and running. . Good excuse to upgrade the operating system I suppose...
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post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Klue22 View Post
Basic process:
1. Enable raid under the sata config section of bios
2. Press proper key combination on boot when raid screen appears (usually ctrl+I)
3. Follow instructions to setup raid 1.

Once you have your raid setup I would recommend installing Intel Matrix Storage Manager, (that is if you're on an intel controller) to monitor your raid from your OS. It will also let you do rebuild, verify, and expanding operations as well. Have fun!
This^^^^

What I have to do is enable RAID, press Ctrl + I to get into RAID setup.

Now I have to go and select create new raid volume. Select the drives you want, select RAID1, save.

Go into windows, go right click computer and click Manage.

Then select the unformated hard drive you got (it will only show up as one). Format it and you now got RAID1
 
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Gsvlip Dudyrm
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post #7 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeltaUpsilon View Post
You're right about the JMicron controller...I realize now that is for e-SATA RAID, and the Intel controller is for internal SATA RAID configuration. Unfortunately, my Vista won't install w/o a pre-existing XP OS. And it is the XP OS that is being a pain because it wants to install the RAID drivers via Floppy disk, and won't recognize USB devices..unless I further jump through other hoops that may or may not work.

So, rather than burn the calories (and hours) trying to get that solution to work, I went ahead and purchased a Windows 7 Pro 32/64-bit full retail kit for $70. That supposedly will allow the drivers to install via DVD so I can get the RAID array up and running. . Good excuse to upgrade the operating system I suppose...
Ah, I'm sorry to hear its being such a pain. If you're unable to install with the win 7 disk then reboot and try it with all extra peripherals disconnected. For some reason it helps. I had to do that just recently when I reinstalled windows on my file server (had to unplug my dedicated raid card to install to o- board raid).
    
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post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 
Klue,

Thanks for helping me work through this problem, buddy! My Windows 7 discs arrived and I went through what I tried before:

Go to BIOS:
Set my 2 F3s to a RAID 1 set through the ICH9R chipset(~940GB of the 1TB available as space)
Disabled the JMicron Controller (Since I'm not using the e-SATA)
Installed Windows 7 as per usual

I couldn't verify the discs were properly mirrored within the Windows 7 environment, but after downloading the above-mentioned Intel Matrix software, I was able to see both HDDs in the RAID 1 array, working properly.

I also get a nice message on my startup from Windows which says something like "Your hard drives are protected against a single-drive failure..." That's nice to see .
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post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by DeltaUpsilon View Post
Klue,

Thanks for helping me work through this problem, buddy! My Windows 7 discs arrived and I went through what I tried before:

Go to BIOS:
Set my 2 F3s to a RAID 1 set through the ICH9R chipset(~940GB of the 1TB available as space)
Disabled the JMicron Controller (Since I'm not using the e-SATA)
Installed Windows 7 as per usual

I couldn't verify the discs were properly mirrored within the Windows 7 environment, but after downloading the above-mentioned Intel Matrix software, I was able to see both HDDs in the RAID 1 array, working properly.

I also get a nice message on my startup from Windows which says something like "Your hard drives are protected against a single-drive failure..." That's nice to see .
Sounds like you did everything flawlessly.
Good thing about the matrix software is that it automatically rebuilds/verifies the array if something goes wrong.
    
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