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Vista & RAID/SATA setups

R

Ron O'Brien

#1
I am about to install Vista Home Premium on my PC which has a 160g PATA hard
drive as the C:/ drive (which I want to continue to be the C: drive with
Windows on). It also has two 30g SATA drives with RAID 1 configuration for
back-ups.

I am told that if I wipe my C drive when I go to install Vista, Vista will
try to install on the SATA drives and may not let me install on th PATA
(current C) drive. - is that true?

Also, I am told that Vista will not recognise the RAID1 set up on my SATA
drives - so how will I get Vista to access the data on that drive?

Any help appreciated

Ron
 

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N

Nick Mason

#2
"Andy C.(never #)" <acamfield@xxxxxx> wrote in message
news:9de65bc6-0bff-4c3b-b482-653d20e2e11c@xxxxxx

> On Dec 28, 8:34 am, "Ron O'Brien" <castc...@xxxxxx> wrote:

>> I am about to install Vista Home Premium on my PC which has a 160g PATA
>> hard
>> drive as the C:/ drive (which I want to continue to be the C: drive with
>> Windows on). It also has two 30g SATA drives with RAID 1 configuration
>> for
>> back-ups.
>>
>> I am told that if I wipe my C drive when I go to install Vista, Vista
>> will
>> try to install on the SATA drives and may not let me install on th PATA
>> (current C) drive. - is that true?
>>
>> Also, I am told that Vista will not recognise the RAID1 set up on my SATA
>> drives - so how will I get Vista to access the data on that drive?
>>
>> Any help appreciated
>>
>> Ron
>
> Hey, Ron. Not sure I understand what you are trying to do here... If I
> remember correctly, RAID 1 has to do with pairs of drives setup in a
> mirroring configuration. That means everything written to the first
> drive gets written to the second drive. It is the most reliable form
> of backup, but in years past it was a little finicky in that the drive
> pairs had to be pretty much identical right down to the model number
> or it would not work. Don't think it is that bad anymore, but pretty
> sure trying to mirror a 160GB drive onto a 30GB drive is not a good
> idea.
>
> Hope this helps.
>
The mirror is one of the 30Gb pair mirrored on the other 30Gb so that if one
disk fails all your data is mirrored on the other drive.
 

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K

Kerry Brown

#3
Before you start this backup to external media. This could be CD, DVD, USB
drive whatever. Even though you have a RAID 1 array a backup that is stored
on your computer is not really a backup but a convenient way to recover
something quickly. There are many things that could go wrong while
installing an OS that could corrupt any drives that are installed.

Much depends on the BIOS. With some BIOS' Vista will always see the first
SATA drive as the boot drive no matter what you do. You can still install
Vista on the PATA drive if this happens but the boot sector will be on the
first SATA drive. This only seems to happen on some older motherboards. Make
sure the BIOS is set to boot from the PATA drive and you will probably be
OK. If you are not dual booting. Delete the partitions on the PATA drive and
recreate one partition to install Vista on. Do this from the Vista
installation. If you need more partitions leave room for them and create
them later once Vista is installed. Note that this will erase everything on
this drive so make sure you have anything important backed up,

Whether or not Vista will see your RAID array is hard to tell from your
description. You will probably have to install the RAID driver during the
Vista install. Make sure you have the appropriate Vista driver (32 bit or 64
bit) on a floppy, CD, or USB drive before you start. On the screen where you
tell Vista which drive/partition to install on load the driver before you
specify which drive/partition to install on.

--
Kerry Brown
Microsoft MVP - Shell/User
http://www.vistahelp.ca/phpBB2/



"Ron O'Brien" <castcall@xxxxxx> wrote in message
news:dX6dj.17350$745.1770@xxxxxx-win.ntli.net...

>I am about to install Vista Home Premium on my PC which has a 160g PATA
>hard drive as the C:/ drive (which I want to continue to be the C: drive
>with Windows on). It also has two 30g SATA drives with RAID 1 configuration
>for back-ups.
>
> I am told that if I wipe my C drive when I go to install Vista, Vista will
> try to install on the SATA drives and may not let me install on th PATA
> (current C) drive. - is that true?
>
> Also, I am told that Vista will not recognise the RAID1 set up on my SATA
> drives - so how will I get Vista to access the data on that drive?
>
> Any help appreciated
>
> Ron
>
 

My Computer

T

the wharf rat

#4
In article <9de65bc6-0bff-4c3b-b482-653d20e2e11c@xxxxxx>,
Andy C.(never #) <acamfield@xxxxxx> wrote:

> [ simple mirroing ]
>It is the most reliable form of backup
It's not backup because errors on one drive (accidentaly deleted
files, for instance) are propagated to the mirror. It's really disaster
recovery, as in whoops lost a drive well ok...

> but in years past it was a little finicky in that the drive
You've always been able to mirror partitions. Drives didn't have
to be identical but should have roughly similar performance. If one drive's
much larger you just mirror a partition equal to the smaller drive. Maybe
that doesn't work on those cheap-ass home ide controllers, I dunno.,

>sure trying to mirror a 160GB drive onto a 30GB drive is not a good
You do it the other way around, 30GB->partition on the 160.
 

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R

Ron O'Brien

#5
Hi Everyone,

Thanks for the advice given so far. To explain a little more in depth....

The PATA drive is my day-to-day drive - mine is a simple need! The SATA
drive(s) is what I use to back up everything in my My Documents folder to
and I also use it when I do some video editing (which isn't often, but I'm
told saving the video files on a SATA drive and working on them is faster
and generally better.

So, yes there are in fact 2 identical 30g Western Digital Sata drives in the
PC that are connected to an on board Via controller configured for RAID 1
(the mobo is an Asus A8v deluxe).

My real concern is if when I install the SATA/RAID drives where Vista will
see them, I remember doing this in XP and when the RAID driver was installed
through XP it insisted on configuring the drives and warned me that in so
doing all data on the drives would be erased.

A further question..... is there any benefit to me disconecting the SATA
drives, installing Vista on the PATA then adding the SATA drives after
everything is installed and working?

Thanks


Ron
 

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T

the wharf rat

#6
In article <_s9dj.7300$ou3.5322@xxxxxx-win.ntli.net>,
Ron O'Brien <castcall@xxxxxx> wrote:

>
>My real concern is if when I install the SATA/RAID drives where Vista will
>see them, I remember doing this in XP and when the RAID driver was installed
>through XP it insisted on configuring the drives and warned me that in so
>doing all data on the drives would be erased.
>
If you use hardware (well, firmware) RAID supplied by the controller
then chaging the OS shouldn't matter; the controller will present the array
as a single physical drive. If you use software RAID supplied by the OS then
changing the OS is very likely to completely break the RAID volumes.

>A further question..... is there any benefit to me disconecting the SATA
>drives, installing Vista on the PATA then adding the SATA drives after
If you're using software RAID you're hosed anyway. Back up the
array data to an external device, let the OS do what it wants during the
install, reconfigure to be the way you want afterwards and then put the
data back.
 

My Computer

N

Nick Mason

#7
"Ron O'Brien" <castcall@xxxxxx> wrote in message
news:_s9dj.7300$ou3.5322@xxxxxx-win.ntli.net...

> Hi Everyone,
>
> Thanks for the advice given so far. To explain a little more in depth....
>
> The PATA drive is my day-to-day drive - mine is a simple need! The SATA
> drive(s) is what I use to back up everything in my My Documents folder to
> and I also use it when I do some video editing (which isn't often, but I'm
> told saving the video files on a SATA drive and working on them is faster
> and generally better.
>
OK, so you back up your main drive to the SATA RAID disks.

If it's performance you're after then you should be using RAID 0 - striping,
rather than RAID 1 - Mirroring.

As someone else has said RAID 1 doesn't give you an additional software
backup, it gives you hardware redundancy. Your two 30Gb disks perform as 1
drive if one dies you still have the files as the remaining drive still
works. It doesn't give you any performance increase.

If you delete a file it gets deleted from the mirror as well. Obviously if
the files you are backing up to the RAID array are extremely important then
hardware redundancy is maybe what you want.

Regards
Nick
 

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T

the wharf rat

#8
In article <D914F706-BCDF-4FDF-9A16-8921AA947523@xxxxxx>,
Nick Mason <noemail@xxxxxx> wrote:

>
>works. It doesn't give you any performance increase.
>
Strictly speaking it gives you ~2x read performance
and ~.5x write :-) If you're heavily read-biased a simple mirror can
actually help.
 

My Computer

K

Ken Blake, MVP

#9
On Fri, 28 Dec 2007 06:20:13 -0800 (PST), "Andy C.(never #)"
<acamfield@xxxxxx> wrote:

> RAID 1 has to do with pairs of drives setup in a
> mirroring configuration. That means everything written to the first
> drive gets written to the second drive. It is the most reliable form
> of backup,

I couldn't disagree more. It is not only *not* the most reliable form
of backup, it is not really any kind of backup at all.

RAID 1 (mirroring) is *not* a backup solution. RAID 1 uses two or more
drives, each a duplicate of the others, to provide redundancy, not
backup. It's used in situations (almost always within corporations,
not in homes) where any downtown can't be tolerated, because the way
it works is that if one drive fails the other takes over seamlessly.

Although some people thing of RAID 1 as a backup technique, that is
*not* what it is, since it's subject to simultaneous loss of the
original and the mirror to many of the most common dangers threatening
your data--severe power glitches, nearby lightning strikes, virus
attacks, theft of the computer, etc. Most companies that use RAID 1
also have a strong external backup plan in place.

--
Ken Blake, Microsoft MVP Windows - Shell/User
Please Reply to the Newsgroup
 

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R

Ron O'Brien

#10
To clarify.

My PATA (C:/ )drive is 160gig and I have two SATA drives each 30gig set as
RAID1, which is why I use them as a back-up for important files stored on my
main C: drive. I DO NOT use the RAID1 configuration as a secure back-up
solution for the many reasons already given by others in this thread, it's
just added insurance incase one of those drives should fail.

I just needed to know if, when I install Vista, my SATA drives (as RAID1)
would be instantly recognised and readable, because the last time I
re-installed XP Pro, I had to re-configure RAID1 which then wiped everything
from the disk (or at least made it unreadable).

Also would there be any benefit for me to set up Vista on my PATA C: drive
and then add the SATA drives after Vista is up and running?


Ron
 

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A
#11
On Sun, 30 Dec 2007 15:31:18 GMT, "Ron O'Brien"
<castcall@xxxxxx> wrote:

>To clarify.
>
>My PATA (C:/ )drive is 160gig and I have two SATA drives each 30gig set as
>RAID1, which is why I use them as a back-up for important files stored on my
>main C: drive. I DO NOT use the RAID1 configuration as a secure back-up
>solution for the many reasons already given by others in this thread, it's
>just added insurance incase one of those drives should fail.
>
>I just needed to know if, when I install Vista, my SATA drives (as RAID1)
>would be instantly recognised and readable, because the last time I
>re-installed XP Pro, I had to re-configure RAID1 which then wiped everything
>from the disk (or at least made it unreadable).
Even if you break the raid 1 array, it's possible to recreate it
without losing data by copying the source drive to the mirror. You are
using the Via Bios routine to create the array, aren't you?

Vista setup will see the two SATA disks as separate non-raid drives
until you load the Via Raid driver. Download the latest Via VT8237
drivers from
<http://www.viaarena.com/default.aspx?PageID=420&OSID=36&CatID=2920&SubCatID=143>,
unzip them, and make them available on a flash drive or something else
during Vista setup.

>
>Also would there be any benefit for me to set up Vista on my PATA C: drive
>and then add the SATA drives after Vista is up and running?
It can be done. You have to install the Via raid drivers when Vista is
running.

>
>
>Ron
>
 

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