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First time install of WHS, need help with RAID using Q45 chipset. RRS feed

  • Question

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    Can I use RAID using the Intel Q45 chipset in my HP dc7900 SFF?

     

    I have a HP dc7900 SFF which supports RAID 1 using the Intel Q45 chipset.

    HP doesn’t provide drivers for Windows 2003 for this system for obvious reasons although Intel does provide a driver and RAID utility for that O/S.

    This will be my first install of WHS and the first time I’ve setup a RAID system for an O/S for about 10 years so I’m not sure how it all hangs together.

    It seems wiser to use RAID 1 for the whole system so that the O/S is protected and not just mirror the data on a second drive.

    I’m assuming that I’ll need to provide the driver during install but not sure yet if the system will accept that via a USB stick or optical media; I need to check that out.

    So I basically use the ‘32-bit Floppy Configuration Utility’ from Intel’s site and then install the Matrix Software Manager from within WHS after installing it.

    Is that all correct?

     

    I’m not sure at this point whether I’ll take the RAID path initially so my other question is whether it’s easy to migrate from a single drive to a RAID 1 setup later on. Can this be done without a fresh install? I’m guessing that the best way to do this is to install using the AHCI/RAID driver initially?

    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 7:15 PM

Answers

  • Thanks. I read the Getting Started Guide after posting this and noticed that it didn’t recommend using RAID. So I’ll just go ahead and install using the non AHCI mode as you suggested and when/if I add a second drive I can mirror the data only. Cheers.

    • Marked as answer by agharta Tuesday, July 21, 2009 9:10 PM
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 8:34 PM

All replies

  • RAID is not a supported platform for Windows Home Server. You can (usually) install Windows Home Server on a machine with a RAID array, but the fact that you're using RAID may complicate the recovery process in the event of e.g. operating system corruption requiring a reinstallation.

    For a supported configuration you would want to configure your HBA to present all disks individually. I believe Intel refers to this as JBOD mode. For easiest installation (and reinstallation if the need arises) you should configure SATA controllers to run disks in legacy IDE mode (the exact name may vary). You will be giving up a small amount of theoretical performance, but gaining a much simpler user experience during installation and use of your server.

    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 7:26 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks. I read the Getting Started Guide after posting this and noticed that it didn’t recommend using RAID. So I’ll just go ahead and install using the non AHCI mode as you suggested and when/if I add a second drive I can mirror the data only. Cheers.

    • Marked as answer by agharta Tuesday, July 21, 2009 9:10 PM
    Tuesday, July 21, 2009 8:34 PM