Raid Setup Guide 865/875 LSR/FIS2R Rev 1.04

Author Svet on 24 February, 2012 | Print | Bookmark
On-Board Raid Setup MSI 865PE/875P

Revision History

Revision 1.0 (January 2004)

-   Original Raid Article

Revision 1.01 (February 2004)

-   Reformatted text and fixed spelling/grammar

Revision 1.02 (October 2004)

-   Added warnings to temporarily disconnect ALL drives including Zip drives during formatting Raid drives for WinXP.

Revision 1.03 (October 2005)

-   Reformatted text and added links to download Promise/Intel Raid floppies if user is missing them.

Revision1.04 (February 2006)

-   Minor BB reformatting




    • Intro
    • Equipment List For Tests
    • Description of Tests
    • Pre-Raid Setup Bios Tweaks
    • Raid Setup On Promise Controller
    • Raid Setup On Intel Controller
    • --->Intel- Migrating from single SATA to Full Raid Array
    Intro

    This guide is intended to help people configure their Bios and setup Windows for Raid using the Intel ICH5R controller  and the Promise FastTrak 378 controller. Although all the tests were done using Raid-0 the methods described should be virtually identical to setting up Raid-1 provided the user is aware of the fundamental differences between the two. It should be useful for anyone with an MSI 865PE/875P chipset on motherboards with LSR and FIS2R suffixes. Before continuing, please read the FAQ thread posted by Maesus and the Raid manual(s) that came with your motherboard. There's also some good info regarding Raid Here and Here and Here
    Keep in mind this guide is intended as a reference to help you. It is not a manual. I do not work for MSI and my equipment and time are limited. You will have different equipment and different versions of software.
    All the data below is based on tests that I ran and I tried to avoid using any theory that I did not test. If you feel I’ve missed something obvious or if you have something you feel should be added to make this guide clearer or simpler, please PM me with your thoughts. If you have a specific problem that this guide does not help you with, post a detailed thread in the forum on the main page.


    Equipment List For Tests


      • MSI 875P FIS2R Motherboard
      • Bios 1.8
      • Enermax EG365P-VE (350w)  PSU
      • P4 2.6c CPU
      • Kingston KHX-3200A2 2x512MB Memory
      • Radeon 9800Pro AIW Video Card
      • WD 400JB 40GB/8MB cache IDE Hdd
      • 2-Seagate 80GB 7200.7 SATA Hdd's
      • Liteon 52x32x52 CDRW
      • Floppy Drive
      Tests

      Generally, tests were as follows:

      • Configure 2 SATA on Promise controller(serial3&4) as Raid0 and install WindowsXP Home SP1a on Raid
      • Configure 2 SATA on Promise controller(serial3&4) as Raid0 and add Raid to an existing WindowsXP installation on IDE drive(IDE1)
      • Configure 2 SATA on Intel Raid controller(serial1&2) as Raid0 and install WindowsXP Home SP1a on Raid
      • Configure 2 SATA on Intel Raid controller(serial1&2) as Raid0 and add Raid to an existing WindowsXP installation on IDE drive(IDE1)
      • Configure 1 SATA on Intel Raid controller(serial1) and install WindowsXP Home SP1a on it. Then add 2nd SATA on Intel Raid controller(serial2) and migrate to Raid0 using Intel Application Accelerator-Raid edition.

      IDE drive used in these tests was pre-installed with a fresh copy of WinXP Home SP1a using default settings and the following drivers all from MSI setup CD and Raid Floppy Disks that came with motherboard:

      • Intel INF files - version 1002
      • Gigabit Lan drivers - 7.0.37.0
      • SoundMax drivers - 5.12.1.3538
      • Catalyst 3.7 & Multimedia Center drivers from standard ATI CD came with video card.
      -
      -
      Pre-Raid BIOS Tweaks

      Before I continue, I'd like to point out a few changes from the defaults that I alway make to Bios before I attempt a WinXP install or hardware change. I can't guarantee that they all apply to you but none should make things worse. If anything differs from a setting that you feel is fixing another problem you're having, by all means leave at your prefferred setting. Anything related to performance and overclocking can be raised again AFTER the Raid is all setup and everything is running smoothly.

      Standard Cmos Features
      The only thing I change here is to enable "32bit transfer mode" whenever I connect new devices to the Intel IDE controller.
      Note: Devices attached to the Promise controller and the Intel Raid(when it is enabled) will NOT appear in the standard Cmos page

      Advanced Bios Features
      Everything on defaults is usually fine except I always change the following for WinXP:
      APIC ACPI SCI IRQ - Enabled



      Boot Device select is also on this page and you'll be changing it after all the hardware is setup; more later.

      Advanced Cipset Features
      Confirm that the memory timing "by SPD" is enabled

      PNP/PCI Configurations
      Clear NVRam option I always set to "YES" before the first boot after making hardware changes. I'm not sure how important this is but I understand that's what you're supposed to do. I believe it forces the motherboard to detect hardware changes. It reverts to "NO" after the reboot.
      PCI/IDE Busmaster set to "enabled" to speed things up outside of Windows.

      Integrated Peripherals (Before Raid for most flexibilty)
      Onboard Promise IDE - Disabled if you have nothing attached to IDE3 and Serial 3&4
      ON-Chip IDE Configuration:
      Native Mode (Supported by WinXP- Allows all devices connected to IDE 1&2 and Serial 1&2 to be detected)
      SATA Only or PATA Only (select the one that you boot XP with)
      Keep SATA Active - Yes (if option available)
      Keep PATA Active - Yes (if option available)
      PATA Channel selection - Both (if option available)
      Configure SATA as Raid - No (if option available)
      Leave other settings here at default



      Note: Some older Bios versions may appear different than above

      Frequency/Voltage Control
      Dynamic Overclocking - Disabled
      Performance Mode - Slow
      Dram Frequency - Auto
      Adjust CPU Bus - 201 (for "c" type cpu's)
      DDR Voltage - 2.65 (minimum for Dual-Channel Mem stability)
      AGP Voltage - 1.55



      Note: some features above may not appear with your Bios
      Note: performance & overclocking features can be increased again AFTER the Raid array has been setup and is stable with Windows.


      Raid On Promise Controller

         This procedure should work for anyone adding a Raid array to a system already having XP installed on another drive on the Intel controller or intending to install Windows XP on the new Raid array.
      Note: IDE 3 and Serial 3&4 connectors are controlled by the Promise controller. 
      Note: It is possible to setup Raid arrays using 2 IDE drives on IDE3 or even 2 SATA & 2 IDE drives. I only tested 2 SATA drives on Serial 3&4 connectors.
      Note: It is possible to setup Raid 0+1 using 2 IDE drives on IDE3 and 2 SATA drives on Serial 3&4. See HERE for a related thread.
      Note: It is possible to setup SATA or IDE drives on the Promise controller as separate drives NOT using Raid but I did not test this. See your manual.

      - Attach the SATA drives to Serial 3&4 connectors and ensure that both power and data cables are securely connected. Most SATA drives do NOT need any changes to default jumper positions if any(check Hdd installation instructions).
      - Boot into Bios
      Integrated Peripherals:
      Set Onboard Promise IDE  - As Raid
      - Save and reboot computer
      - Use control-F keys during the boot(when prompted-goes by quickly) to enter the Promise Raid Bios.



      Note: You will only be able to enter the promise Bios if you have set the Promise controller to "As Raid" AND there are devices connected and detected by the Promise Bios.
      - Use the menus to configure the Raid for your preferences.
      Note: I can't say which settings you should use for creating the Raid. It depends on many things. Do some research. 
      - After saving the Raid array, reboot to Bios.(you should see the configured array for a second or two during the post and it should be "functional")
      - In Advanced bios Features>>Boot Device Select:
      Set the order you prefer to boot from
      - If you already have XP installed on another drive and are just adding the Raid for an extra drive, Ensure that the list is still appropriate and includes your XP drive.
      - If you will be installing XP on the new Raid, make sure the new Raid array is in the boot list and any other hard drives are NOT.



      Note: Typically, I put the disk with XP first and use F11 key during post to boot from another device. This is not required though.
      - Save bios

      Important!: If you are installing XP on the new Raid array, you should now shutdown and either disconnect or disable any other drives connected until AFTER XP is installed. This includes USB/Zip drives.(See "Bugs" below).

      If Installing XP On The New Raid Array(others skip to below):
      - Boot from the Windows XP Setup CD and use F6 key when prompted(at the beginning).
      - Follow prompts to load the WinXP Promise FastTrack 376/378 Controller from the floppy that came with motherboard(If Required Download Floppy Here). There are a number of different choices on the floppy. PICK THE RIGHT ONE.



      Note: if using Win2K with the floppy, you can scroll down to get more driver options on this screen. It's not readily apparent on the screen.
      - Continue setup and Windows should now show you the new Raid array as a single drive available to install to. If it shows other drives that you have connected, re-read the "important" note above and the related section on "Bugs" below.
      - When XP setup makes its first re-boot, make sure the floppy has been removed or depending on your settings it may give you a scary moment. Yes I did this(tries to boot from floppy).
      - After XP is up and running, you can re-connect/re-enable any drives you disconnected earlier. If they have been formatted, they should show up immediately and be assigned letters after your CD/DVD drives.
      - You can also install the Promise Array Manager software(from MSI CD utilities tab or download) which adds some array management settings.

      If XP Already Installed On Another Drive(and you're just adding the Raid as an extra storage disk):
      - Boot into WindowsXP.
      - As Windows starts, it should detect a new Raid device and offer to install drivers.    
      - Select Cancel. It will tell you that it was unable to install new device. If you want you can confirm the new device is present by checking Windows device Manager. It should show the new device with a yellow exclamation mark beside it since the drivers aren't installed yet.


       
      - Download the appropriate drivers or use the MSI CD that came with motherboard.
      Note: The MSI CD detects devices connected and shows available drivers/utilities depending on what it sees. You might not have seen the Promise drivers when using the CD before but now that you have a Raid array connected to it, the drivers will be availble from the MSI setup CD.
      - Install the drivers and re-boot
      - Device Manager should now show the Raid properly identified by XP.
      - If the Raid array was not previously formatted, you can now use Windows Disk Manager (Start > Run and type diskmgmt.msc) to Initialize and then format the Raid array. 
      - The Raid array should now show in Windows Explorer with it's own drive letter.

      Bugs/Surprises

      - Trying to install WinXP on the Promise Raid while my IDE drive was connected to the Intel IDE connector resulted in Windows installing boot files to the IDE drive and the rest on the Raid drives. This was especially bad since I had another installation of XP on the IDE drive which was overwritten. The work-around was to disable the IDE drive until AFTER XP was setup on the Raid array.
      Update: There have been a few posts on the forum since I wrote this guide where people installing XP have had problems similar to the one above with USB/Zip drives connected so i am adding them to the list of drives to disconnect while installing XP.
      - When setting "Boot Device Select", if I selected "NO" for "boot from other devices", the motherboard would ignore my selection and still boot from other devices if the ones in the list were unusable.
      - Be gentle with SATA connectors on the motherboard. They can stand firm downward pressure but not a lot of side-to-side pressure. 


      Raid On Intel Controller

      This procedure should work for anyone adding 2 SATA hard drives for a Raid array on a system already having XP installed on another drive or intending to install XP on the new Raid array.
      Note: IDE 1&2 and Serial 1&2 connectors are controlled by the Intel ICH5R controller. Only Serial 1&2 can be configured for Raid arrays.
      You can also install a single SATA drive and configure the system for Raid BEFORE installing XP on this drive if you intend to add another SATA drive later to form a Raid array. This method was also tested. I will refer to this for the rest of the thread as the Raid-Ready Method.
      Note: If you install WinXP on a single SATA drive without enabling Raid and loading Raid drivers, you will NOT be able to migrate the XP disk to a Raid array at a later date. Reinstalling XP would be required.
      Note: There is no performance advantage to having a single drive with Raid enabled. But doing so makes the disk Raid-ready and XP reinstall unnecessary.


      - Attach the SATA drive(s) to Serial 1&2 connectors and ensure that both power and data cables are securely connected. Most SATA drives do NOT need any changes to default jumper positions if any(check Hdd installation instructions).
      - Boot into Bios
      - In "Integrated Peripherals>>On-Chip IDE Configuration" set:
      Native Mode (Supported by WinXP- Allows all devices connected to IDE 1&2 and Serial 1&2 to be detected)
      SATA Only (Even if you will be booting XP from a PATA drive)
      Keep PATA Active - Yes
      PATA Channel selection - Both
      Configure SATA as Raid - Yes
      Leave other settings here at default



      Note: Some older Bios versions may appear different than above.
      - Save Bios and reboot computer
      - Use control-I keys during post(when prompted-goes by quickly) to enter the Intel Raid Bios Utility.
      NoteIf you are using the single SATA Raid-Ready Method, you can skip the steps involving the Intel Raid utility. Go to the step for setting Boot device select in main Bios.
      Note: You will only be able to enter the Intel Raid Bios if you have set the "Configure SATA as Raid" option to "YES"  AND there are devices connected and detected by the Intel Raid Bios.
      - Use the menus to configure the Raid for your preferences.

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