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Thread: Extreme4 Gen3 Win 7 64 bit Home Premium - adding 2x 2TB drives in RAID1

  1. #1
    DelwinHinkle is offline Junior Member
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    Default Extreme4 Gen3 Win 7 64 bit Home Premium - adding 2x 2TB drives in RAID1

    Greetings - I'm looking for some pre-project planning confirmation before I get started.

    Background
    I set up this machine 2 years ago. The focus was on a Corsair SSD boot drive, a 1TB application data drive (that I had also installed the OS on) and a 2TB external USB drive for backup.

    This worked like a champ for 2 years, but the SSD drive bit the dust last week (still under warranty, so it's in the process of being replaced).

    Drives/Ports were configured as follows:

    Port 11 SATA 3_M1 Front Panel ESATA
    Port 12 SATA 3_M2 empty
    Port 13 SATA 3_0 SSD (now empty, awaiting drive swap)
    Port 14 SATA 3_1 1TB drive
    Port 15 SATA 2_2 empty
    Port 16 SATA 2_3 DVD drive
    Port 17 SATA 2_4 empty
    Port 18 SATA 2_5 empty

    OS was installed with drives in ACHI mode in BIOS.

    The Plan
    What I want to end up with is the SSD drive being the boot device, the existing 1TB drive as a bootable image of the SSD and a 2TB RAID1 array using 2 new 2TB (ea) drives.

    I think that means the new configuration will look like this:

    Port 11 SATA 3_M1 Front Panel ESATA
    Port 12 SATA 3_M2 SSD
    Port 13 SATA 3_0 New 2TB Drive 1
    Port 14 SATA 3_1 New 2TB Drive 2
    Port 15 SATA 2_2 Existing 1TB drive
    Port 16 SATA 2_3 DVD drive
    Port 17 SATA 2_4 empty
    Port 18 SATA 2_5 empty

    From reviewing various forum posts and the doc, I think the sequence needs to be like this:

    Step 1 - Drop the new 2TB drives in the cases, but don't connect power or SATA cables
    Step 2 - Boot from the 1TB drive, download and install the Intel Rapid Storage Utility
    Step 3 - Power off, connect the cables, reboot and in BIOS set drive type to RAID
    Step 4 - Complete reboot and use Intel utility to setup RAID array
    Step 5 - Power off and in BIOS set boot order to ignore the array
    Step 6 - Reboot. This should get me up and running.
    Step 7 - Drop in the SSD drive and connect it up
    Step 8 - Reboot and use commercial software to clone a bootable image from the 1TB drive to the SSD
    Step 9 - Power off and in BIOS set the boot order to SSD, then 1TB drive
    Step 10- Reboot and I should be where I want to be.

    Am I close?

    Comments/suggestions greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Delwin

  2. #2
    parsec's Avatar
    parsec is online now Senior Member
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    Default Re: Extreme4 Gen3 Win 7 64 bit Home Premium - adding 2x 2TB drives in RAID1

    Quote Originally Posted by DelwinHinkle View Post
    Greetings - I'm looking for some pre-project planning confirmation before I get started.

    Background
    I set up this machine 2 years ago. The focus was on a Corsair SSD boot drive, a 1TB application data drive (that I had also installed the OS on) and a 2TB external USB drive for backup.

    This worked like a champ for 2 years, but the SSD drive bit the dust last week (still under warranty, so it's in the process of being replaced).

    Drives/Ports were configured as follows:

    Port 11 SATA 3_M1 Front Panel ESATA
    Port 12 SATA 3_M2 empty
    Port 13 SATA 3_0 SSD (now empty, awaiting drive swap)
    Port 14 SATA 3_1 1TB drive
    Port 15 SATA 2_2 empty
    Port 16 SATA 2_3 DVD drive
    Port 17 SATA 2_4 empty
    Port 18 SATA 2_5 empty

    OS was installed with drives in ACHI mode in BIOS.

    The Plan
    What I want to end up with is the SSD drive being the boot device, the existing 1TB drive as a bootable image of the SSD and a 2TB RAID1 array using 2 new 2TB (ea) drives.

    I think that means the new configuration will look like this:

    Port 11 SATA 3_M1 Front Panel ESATA
    Port 12 SATA 3_M2 SSD
    Port 13 SATA 3_0 New 2TB Drive 1
    Port 14 SATA 3_1 New 2TB Drive 2
    Port 15 SATA 2_2 Existing 1TB drive
    Port 16 SATA 2_3 DVD drive
    Port 17 SATA 2_4 empty
    Port 18 SATA 2_5 empty

    From reviewing various forum posts and the doc, I think the sequence needs to be like this:

    Step 1 - Drop the new 2TB drives in the cases, but don't connect power or SATA cables
    Step 2 - Boot from the 1TB drive, download and install the Intel Rapid Storage Utility
    Step 3 - Power off, connect the cables, reboot and in BIOS set drive type to RAID
    Step 4 - Complete reboot and use Intel utility to setup RAID array
    Step 5 - Power off and in BIOS set boot order to ignore the array
    Step 6 - Reboot. This should get me up and running.
    Step 7 - Drop in the SSD drive and connect it up
    Step 8 - Reboot and use commercial software to clone a bootable image from the 1TB drive to the SSD
    Step 9 - Power off and in BIOS set the boot order to SSD, then 1TB drive
    Step 10- Reboot and I should be where I want to be.

    Am I close?

    Comments/suggestions greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Delwin
    I had to look up your board, since "Extreme4 Gen3" is not a board. So it's either a P67 or Z68 Extreme 4 Gen 3.

    Are you close? Step 7 and afterwards is fine, steps 3, and 4 won't work.

    You can't switch to RAID mode with an OS installed in AHCI mode, it won't boot. If you feel up to a registry edit to perform that change, Google on "switch from AHCI to RAID mode". Microsoft had a hotfix for this for Windows 7 (your OS is a mystery), hopefully that still exists, I've never used it. With the RAID driver installation as part of the fix, it should work if done correctly. Otherwise you must install Windows in RAID mode.

    You won't be happy with the SSD's performance, at least in benchmarks, using it on the Marvell SATA controller. But we don't know what Corsair SSD you are using, so it might not matter.

    Your new 2TB HDDs for the RAID array may be called "SATA III", but no HDDs can even surpass SATA II speeds, just a reality. Plus RAID 1 is not about performance, just redundancy. Don't waste the Intel SATA III ports on HDDs, save those for SSDs.

  3. #3
    DelwinHinkle is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Extreme4 Gen3 Win 7 64 bit Home Premium - adding 2x 2TB drives in RAID1

    Thanks for the review.

    MB is the P67 (sorry, I thought E3 Gen4 would be enough to identify) OS as indicated in subject line is Win 7 64 bit Home Premium.

    I had seen other instances where the ACHI/RAID issue was discussed, but I wasn't clear if the boot failure was the result of the order of the tasks or if it would require a fresh OS install, regardless.

    I'll take a look at the registry edit approach. I just hate to reinstall the OS if I can avoid it.

    Thanks again.
    DH

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