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Thread: AR Z68 Extreme 4 Setup decisions ? ? ?




  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Atlanta
    Posts
    7

    Default AR Z68 Extreme 4 Setup decisions ? ? ?

    I am in the process of building a new system (Specs in Signature below) and have installed all the hardware and booted the BIOS.
    Everything appears to be working normally at the moment, but I have yet to install Windows 7 Pro. My dilemma is how to best configure the drives and in what order do I do so.

    My original plan is to install the OS on the SSD drive and not cache a portion of it to the Hitachi 7K3000 drives. But utilizing 20 GB of the SSD as a cache intrigues me. (One danger is that if I decide to undo the cache in the future, the OS disappears and I will have to rebuild it).

    My second dilemma is to RAID or not to RAID, and if so RAID, which? 1 or 10? How does RAID perform with the SSD cache if there is one?

    Finally, do I try to set everything up with the initial install of WIN 7 or do I just do a basic install on the SSD only, not even hooking up the Hitachi drives, and then go out to download new firmware and install it first. Then clear the SSD and re-install WIN 7 and configure the Hitachi drives? Would I reserve the 20 GB for cache while formatting the WIN 7 install?

    I invite those with experience with the ASRock Z68 MB's to share their thoughts.

    Thanks in advance.

    JAFE43
    Currently building:
    Intel i7-3770K LGA1155
    ASRock Z77 Extreme 6 MB
    16 GB (4X4GB) Corsair Dominator-GT DDR-3 with Airflow cooling fans
    OCZ Vertex3 2.5" SSD 120GB SATAIII MLC Flash Memory with Trim Support
    (2) Hitachi Deskstar 7K3000 2TB 64 MB Cache 7200 SATA III 6Gb/s
    Currently using on-chip graphics but NV 580 in future
    Asus 24X DVDRW SATA OEM
    Asus 12X Blu-ray Burner BW-12B1ST/BLK/G SATA III
    Antec Earthwatts 650 Watt ATX 12V V.2.3
    Vantec 58 to 1 Internal card reader - USB II + separate 3.5: internal floppy drive
    Corsair Obsidian 650-D Case
    Windows 7 Professional, Office Pro 2010, Nero 10, Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Atlanta
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: AR Z68 Extreme 4 Setup decisions ? ? ?

    Well folks, I waited almost 4 months and have yet to receive a reply. I don't know what to think of this forum, other than disappointment. I still haven't completed my system, partly due to being busy, but also wanting to make an informed decision before final configuration decisions. I was hoping someone would comment on my questions.
    Currently building:
    Intel i7-3770K LGA1155
    ASRock Z77 Extreme 6 MB
    16 GB (4X4GB) Corsair Dominator-GT DDR-3 with Airflow cooling fans
    OCZ Vertex3 2.5" SSD 120GB SATAIII MLC Flash Memory with Trim Support
    (2) Hitachi Deskstar 7K3000 2TB 64 MB Cache 7200 SATA III 6Gb/s
    Currently using on-chip graphics but NV 580 in future
    Asus 24X DVDRW SATA OEM
    Asus 12X Blu-ray Burner BW-12B1ST/BLK/G SATA III
    Antec Earthwatts 650 Watt ATX 12V V.2.3
    Vantec 58 to 1 Internal card reader - USB II + separate 3.5: internal floppy drive
    Corsair Obsidian 650-D Case
    Windows 7 Professional, Office Pro 2010, Nero 10, Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    166

    Default Re: AR Z68 Extreme 4 Setup decisions ? ? ?

    1. Use your SATA-3 OCZ SSD on one of the native Intel SATA-3 ports ( 0 or 1 ) as the OS drive - update the SSD firmware if there is an update BEFORE you install windows
    2. Once windows is fully installed and updated then add 1 at a time your 2 Hitachi SATA-3 HD's --> one to the native other Intel SATA-3 port and without looking at your manual I am guessing that you also have a 3rd party provided SATA-3 port for the second Deskstar.
    3. There is no real advantage to using your SSD to cache and install your OS to a 2TB drive. The SSD will perform the best by itself on the native Intel SATA-3 port asnd make sure you install the latest Intel RST
    4. There is no real advantage to RAID-ing your 2 X 2TB storage drives. Be it a RAID-0 or JBOD in fact if you do decide to lets say RAID-0 using the 2 native Intel SATA-3 ports that would leave only the native Intel SATA-2 port(s) for your SATA-3 SSD. or you could use 2 ports of the 3rd party SATA-3 ports to RAID-0 the 2 Deskstars leaving the SATA-3 SSD on one of the native Intel SATA-3 ports but there is no redundancy with a RAID-0 or a JBOD if either one of the drives fail you lose everything...
    5. You cannot RAID between the native Intel SATA port and one of the 3rd party SATA ports

    Hope this helps
    SaphireX
    ASRock™ Z68 Extreme7 Gen3 LGA 1155 Intel Z68 Intel™ Core i7-2600K LGA1155 Corsair™ Hydro Series H100 Extreme Performance Liquid CPU Cooler (CWCH100)
    G.SKILL™ Ripjaws X Series 16GB DDR3 2133 Model F3-17000CL11Q-16GBXL (2) ASUS™ ENGTX560 TI DCII TOP/2DI/1GD5 GeForce GTX 560 Ti in SLi
    OS Drive: Mushkin™ Chronos Deluxe 120 GB SATA 6.0 Gb/s SSD(MKNSSDCR120GB-DX) Storage: 2-Western Digital™ WD2002FAEX 2TB SATA III 7200 RPM 64 MB Cache Hard Drives
    Optical: HP™ Multiformat DVD Writer SATA Model 1260i Plextor™ Blu-ray writer PX-LB950SA Viewsonic™ V3D245 3D LED display @120hz
    PC Power and Cooling™ Silencer Mk II 950W Inwin™ DRAGON RIDER case APC™ BR1500LCD UPS 1500VA w/AVR Win7™ Ultimate 64

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