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Thread: Intel RAID Driver, where?

  1. #1
    ARDAvonWOOLF is offline Junior Member
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    Default Intel RAID Driver, where?

    ASRock Z87 Extreme4 Socket LGA 1150

    OK, established in a previous post that I don't have the Support CD that came with the motherboard.

    I cannot, therefore, run the RAID driver utility in the UEFI.

    The RAID Installation Guide states:

    STEP 1: Copy Intel
    RAID drivers into a USB flash disk

    You can download the drivers from ASRock's website and unzip the files into a USB flash disk or copy the files from ASRock's motherboard support CD.

    I've done a LOT of searching around, here, the ASRock website, the Internets. NADA

    Where are they?

    I have a RAID1 mirror on a pair of SSD's for the OS (Win7 x64), and another SATA hard drive for data, and neither is found during the standard install. I need to load the RAID drivers, apparently.

    -AvW



  2. #2
    ARDAvonWOOLF is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Intel RAID Driver, where?

    As usual, I find the answer 10 minutes after "giving up" and posting.

    Went to the Intel site and searched for the "Intel Rapid Storage Technology Driver" for z87.

    Not exactly an obvious choice but got there thanks to Tom's Hardware.

    If these driver files were available on the support site, I would've got it. But it merely yielded a SetupRST.exe file.

    -sc

  3. #3
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    parsec is online now Senior Member
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    Default Re: Intel RAID Driver, where?

    First, the RAID configuration utility available in the UEFI (more on that shortly) is not a driver or program that you can download and install, it does not exist in that way on your or any ASR board's download page. It is actually part of the UEFI itself.

    Second, the RAID configuration utility available in the UEFI is only available if the CSM option in the UEFI is set to Disabled. However, and this is critical, you can only set CSM to Disabled if you have installed Windows for true UEFI booting. If you are not familiar with UEFI booting, then you have some studying to do.

    But all is not lost. You apparently have created a RAID 1 array somehow, and my question is how? With the Intel IRST Option ROM utility that is started by pressing the Ctrl and i keys during POST? On another PC?

    Is your SATA mode set to RAID now? Windows 7 should not need the basic Intel RAID driver installed during its installation, but that may be your problem for some reason. I see now that ASRock does not have that driver on your board's download page for Windows 7.

    The Intel RAID driver that is copied to a USB flash drive and loaded during the Windows installation can be found here:

    https://downloadcenter.intel.com/Det...ST%29&lang=eng

    The file you need is, f6flpy-x64.zip. Don't worry about the "flpy" floppy disk part of the name, that is the old Windows XP naming convention that is still being used for some reason. The six files created after unzipping the download file are copied to the USB flash drive.

    I'm concerned about how you created your RAID 1 array, but that may be just due to details you did not include in your first post.

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    ARDAvonWOOLF is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Intel RAID Driver, where?

    Thanks parsec, as I replied, I did find the driver files needed (f6flpy-x64.zip) to run the Windows install. I too, was surprised that this was necessary as I expected the default driver set on the Win7-SP1 installer to have a sufficient driver. I also found it odd that it did not offer the standard SATA disk drive as a possible install point until the RAID drivers were loaded.

    It would defeat the purpose of RAID configuration to require the OS install in order to configure the array, especially if the OS is to be installed on the array. The MB docs never mentioned that RAID is only supported on non-OS volumes.

    I would like to point out, however, that RAID configurations are possible in the UEFI. It's possible also to use the BOIS setup, but I didn't delve there, so I won't say anything else about that. You do need to set a couple of config options in the UEFI (Advanced/SATA Mode Selelection=RAID, Boot/CSM/Launch Storage OpROM Policy=UEFI Only) and reboot, then the Intel Rapid Storage Technology option is available--which was used to create the array. If this is a concern, then the ASRock documentation doesn't indicate as such (and shouldn't, therefore, document this RAID setup).

    The RAID driver utility I mentioned in the original post is a utility run from within the UEFI that can create the required RAID drivers disk (floppy/USB) by extracting them from the Support CD, which I didn't have. Nothing in the documentation indicated what driver set it needed, the RST set was not obvious to me and the downloaded driver update contained only a (SetupRST.exe) installer and not an extraction (perhaps available with a command switch, I guess), I wouldn't run it to completion on another workstation. Once I found that the RST contained the RAID driver set it was a quick resolution.

    -AvW

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    parsec's Avatar
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    Default Re: Intel RAID Driver, where?

    You are right about using the Boot/CSM/Launch Storage OpROM Policy=UEFI Only option, I forget that will actually work. Usually the user... abuses that option. But frankly while that option did give you the RAID utility in the BIOS, it also likely caused your RAID installation issue. I don't understand exactly why, but it happens.

    I did not try or trust the automatic RAID driver utility. The F6 driver must be on the disk, or is downloaded during the process. The Windows IRST driver package does not contain the F6 driver package AFAIK, and Intel provides both on their download page.

    The documentation is lacking, no doubt about that. The F6 driver is MIA on all the ASR Z87 board download pages. Are we compelled to use the automatic RAID driver utility, unless we can source the drivers ourselves? Apparently so.

    Glad you got it working. Sorry for the overkill guide earlier, the forum has been flooded with ignorance lately, and I've assumed everyone is in the same boat, my apologies.

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    ARDAvonWOOLF is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Intel RAID Driver, where?

    It would appear that the RAID utility does extract the F6 drivers from the support CD, and there is no way to get another CD.

    The RAID1 setup is more of a musing at this point, we had an SSD failure and I was thinking a mirror would help protect against that. But I get the feeling this is much less a stable option than it is on a server with a dedicated RAID controller. It's a no-brainer on a server.

    One thing of note, I did run the BIOS update after the Windows install and these RAID settings were reset to the default. Basically the end of the mirror (saw no options to import the foreign configuration) and I had to start over.

    We're coming around to the conclusion that maybe the safer way to go is to just keep them as standard disks and volumes (twice the SSD drive space!).

    This is for a workstation my son uses at school, and I'm the remote tech support, the more we can do to limit the downtime the better. This is the third rebuild on this thing and I'm a little tired of it.

    Thanks
    -AvW

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    parsec's Avatar
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    Default Re: Intel RAID Driver, where?

    Unfortunately, every BIOS update resets all BIOS options to their defaults, which is AHCI for the SATA configuration. If you did not format the RAID 1 drives yet, setting the SATA mode back to RAID will bring it back. RAID 1 is for backup purposes so you just get half the total drive space.

    A BIOS clear will reset settings, so if the PC is accessible to prying hands, a BIOS reset is possible.

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