SATA2 Hard Drive Install

  fredhead40 11:42 23 Feb 2006

I am about to complete a PC build by installing an Hitachi Deskstar 250Mb SATA 2.

I have 3 questions that would help me.

1. Do I have to FDisk the drive prior to formating.

2. Is it worth partioning it into 2 or 3 drives.

3. Should I run this on the raid connection or the standard sata connection. I have an Asus A8N SLI Deluxe. Theres a good chance I would only ever install this single physical drive. Are there any benefits to connecting via the raid socket.
Any Coments would be helpfull.



  Totally-braindead 11:48 23 Feb 2006

I have the same board as you, I use the RAID and have it set for RAID 0 striping for performance using 2 Seagate 80 gig SATA drives. If you look at your manual Page 5-21 it gives details of the different RAIDs and their advantages. There are no seperate connections for the RAID if you use it, you either set it on or off in BIOS.

  fredhead40 13:32 23 Feb 2006

Totally-braindead I think the board has two sets of 4 connections. One set is raid and the other set isnt.
I will only have one physical drive.


  Totally-braindead 16:42 23 Feb 2006

I stand corrected, having looked at the manual, I can only presume because I was using RAID I never paid attention to the others.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 16:44 23 Feb 2006

1. Yes you wwill need to Fdisk if you want to partition

2. Partioning Guide
click here

3. Run on standard if only one drive.

Installing XP on SATA drive
Once you have the drive(s) connected you are ready to start installing XP.
Master and Slave
Remember since it's serial you can only have one device per SATA port/cable so SATA drives don't have jumpers. On the Motherboard SATA1 Port is for the primary device, SATA2 port is for the secondary device etc.

SATA controller driver
Your Motherboard or SATA controller card requires a driver to work properly. If you did not get a Floppy Disk with the SATA driver included with your Motherboard you will have to make one. The SATA drivers can be located on the installation CD that came with your Motherboard or preferably, download the latest SATA controller drivers from the manufacturers site. Once you have located the drivers copy them to a formatted floppy disk. Make sure they are in the root directory i.e. not contained within any folders.

BIOS settings
When you turn on the PC hit the Delete key when prompted and you will enter the BIOS (Basic Input Output System). Here you set the first boot device to be the CDROM drive, the option is usually found under the Advanced Options section but this depends on your BIOS and you may have to look around for it. Once you have done this save and exit.

Installing the SATA controller driver
Once you have set the PC to boot from the CD make sure the XP CD is in the CD drive and start the installation as per usual. Within the first minute or so of the installation Windows will prompt you to press F6 to install RAID or SCSI drivers, do this. Windows will continue to install then ask you to locate the driver. now with the floppy disk created earlier in drive A: select the driver and hit Enter.
With the SATA drivers installed you can now continue the Windows installation as usual.

BIOS settings revisited
Once Windows has finished installing you will need to make sure the PC is set to boot from the SATA drive. To do this make the first boot device SATA if the option is available.If not you have two options: HD0 - If there are no IDE HDs present, or SCSI if you do plan on running an IDE HD as a secondary device.

  fredhead40 22:27 24 Feb 2006

I am now led to believe that a fresh install of windows XP from CD will start by allowing you to make partitions. If this is the case then is there still a need to use FDisk via DOS.


  fredhead40 09:42 26 Feb 2006

Just to update and finish off.
I desided not to use the DOS FDisk and instead check out the Windows XP (Home) disk.
After changing the boot to the DVD drive via bios I booted from the Windows CD. My drive was recognised as a new drive and it offered me the option of partitioning the drive at that time which I did. I set the 'C' primary partition to 20GB and the balance of the 250GB to the second partition.
Windows was then installed to the Primary partition following the format. However the second partition doesnt get formated at this stage so had to be formated once windows was installed. I hope this is enough info for others looking to do a fresh install.

Thanks to TB and fruit Bat for info.

Asus A8N SLI Deluxe
AMD64 3800+
Galaxy GEForce 6800XT 256MB PCI-E
1GB Cruicial Ballistx
Hitachi T7K250 250GB SATA2/300

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