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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 30th June, 2005, 01:48 PM
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What Now?? Computer parts all in spanking new boxes

Hey folks....everything's still boxed; i newegged everything.

this is what i have:

Antec Sonata II Case
64 Venice 3500+ Retail
64 Venice 3000+ (couldn't make up my mind, got both) Retail
Zalman 7700 AlCu Retail
Epox 9NPA+ Ultra Retail
2x512 Corsair ValueSelect DDR400 PC3200 RAM Retail
Audigy 2 Zs Platinum Retail
Asus X800XL PCIe VIVO Retail
Pioneer DVR-109 OEM
2 x 250 GB OEM SATA NCQ Seagate 7200.8 Hdds (for the RAID0 configuration; supposedly together they perform as well as the 10K RPM hdds)

Arctic Silver 5 + Arctic Cooling Cleaner Kit

NO FLOPPY DISC DRIVE.


Um, as i haven't built a computer since the Athlon THUNDERBIRD came out, i'm a little lost.

In fact, i don't even know how to slap that huge-normous heatsink fan onto my CPU as i can't find the exposed core on the ath 64...
And i'm not quite sure what to do with the cleaner kit (there weren't any instructions).

also, i don't plan to OC yet so i'm not worried; but can someone tell me what's the first step to do after i've finished putting it all together and turn it on for the first time?

should i go upgrade my bios first? or install windows XP? should i use the seagate HDD tools to format my HDDs? How do i configure the Bios so that RAID0 is on? for that matter, how do i get RAID0 to work? what's the diff between RAID 0 and RAID 1?


In other words, if you folks were putting this together, what steps would you take?
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Old 30th June, 2005, 02:55 PM
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Hi louedwards,

If I'd be in this situation..I wouldn't bother with a Bios update unless you have problems with the Bios recognizing your CPU.

In a few words: Raid 0 -> stripping, Raid 1 -> mirroring.

In other words: Raid 0 means you use those 2 hdds as one big hdd with a greater speed than an usual hdd. When you write data on the hdd the raid controller splits the data in half, sending one part on a hdd and the other part on the second hdd. The same if for reading. That is why the time you wait is allmost half than writing on a single hdd. A raid 0 setup is the fastest option you can have...but...there is a big BUT if one of the hdds fail...you loose all the data from both hdds, because if one hdd fails, the raid 0 setup will be unusable.
Raid 1: everything you write on a hdd will be written also on the second one for backup purposes (the second hdd is a mirror for the first one). This setup has the same speed at writing as a single hdd and usually, will be faster at reading data, because the controller will read from both hdds. This setup is more reliable when you have important data that you don't want to loose. If one hdd fails it can be replaced and the Raid 1 setup will work without problems.

Information about configuring a Raid you'll find in the Bios manual and after that you'll be able to install an OS without a problem.

Good luck
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Old 30th June, 2005, 03:14 PM
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The athlon64 processors don't have an exposed core. Instead, there's a heatspreader on the top. If you're looking for a manual for the heatsink, you can find it on Zalman's site here.

If you're using heatsink grease, then you just need to apply a thin layer over the top of the heatspreader. Ideally you want this layer to be thinner than the thickness of a bit of paper, yet still cover the heatspreader.

Personally, I'd put the system together first, get the thing up and running and install XP. Once you know things work, then you can consider updating the BIOS if necessary.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 03:21 PM
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The HDD's in raid are the biggest step... the heatspreader on the CPU is new to you. It stays on... treat it as if it is the core, and cover the entire contact area(with the HS) with AS5. The cleaner is only necessary if the contact area is dirty or has material that does not want to come off, like the gummy TIM.

For RAID on SATA, nose around in the mobo bios.. You will have a setting to enable sata (of course) and another to enable the RAID function & boot function. Once all connected, and you boot up for the first time, after the bios loads, for a second or so, the SATA bios should be on screen. Hit the appropriate key (usually F4) to go into the sata bios. There you should be able to see the HDDs detected, and you can turn on the RAID function there as well as do the stripe... Think of it as FDISK'ing the RAID partition. (I am not familiar with your particular board. If it has SATA ports controlled by the southbridge, you may have RAID functionality in the mobo bios as well.)

EDIT: As previously mentioned, be advised that RAID0 has significant risks. Yes it gives you significant performance. Given that the max size of the partition is doubled, you can store twice the data. Since if either drive fails, the risk all data being lost is about DOUBLE that of a normal HDD config. If these are the only 2 drives to be used, that's an aweful lot of risk without recourse. I had a RAID0 that I enjoyed a couple of years back... Worked flawlessly for about a year, when one of the drives started to go.... I tried to recover, but it was too late. Not only the data, but the hassle of reinstalling all the SW was a major PITA.... If you run RAID0, get a third drive and configure it to store all of your data... Trust me.... Murphy's law. (Too bad RAID 5 is not typical in these cut down raid mobos).
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Last edited by SteveI; 30th June, 2005 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 05:34 PM
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LoL....you just need to ship one of the staff your pc, let them set it up for you play with it a bit, and then you'd be done! LOL.

go buy a floppy so you can load the sata driver while installing windows, or you may not get far at all.


build the system outside the case. maybe on the mobo box. make sure everything works, and then mount it in the case. cpu and mem can be installed prioir to the motherboard going into the case.


HAVE FUN!!!!
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Old 30th June, 2005, 05:37 PM
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Lol cadaveca, if he's after Raid...I believe he needs the Raid controller driver and not the Sata one
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Old 30th June, 2005, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoinar
Lol cadaveca, if he's after Raid...I believe he needs the Raid controller driver and not the Sata one

same thing.


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Old 30th June, 2005, 07:08 PM
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you will need a floppy drive to set up the raid i would have thought
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Old 30th June, 2005, 07:09 PM
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Unless you are familiar with slipstreaming, get a floppy as cadaveca mentioned... so obvious, I totally missed it.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveI
Unless you are familiar with slipstreaming, get a floppy as cadaveca mentioned... so obvious, I totally missed it.

slipstreaming? no, not familiar with it. i went to seagate and DL'd their boot-up install drivers and their HDD Tool onto a bootable CD.

But i'm not sure if that's the raid drivers....

hmm so confusing.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 09:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoinar
Hi louedwards,

If I'd be in this situation..I wouldn't bother with a Bios update unless you have problems with the Bios recognizing your CPU.

In a few words: Raid 0 -> stripping, Raid 1 -> mirroring.

In other words: Raid 0 means you use those 2 hdds as one big hdd with a greater speed than an usual hdd. When you write data on the hdd the raid controller splits the data in half, sending one part on a hdd and the other part on the second hdd. The same if for reading. That is why the time you wait is allmost half than writing on a single hdd. A raid 0 setup is the fastest option you can have...but...there is a big BUT if one of the hdds fail...you loose all the data from both hdds, because if one hdd fails, the raid 0 setup will be unusable.
Raid 1: everything you write on a hdd will be written also on the second one for backup purposes (the second hdd is a mirror for the first one). This setup has the same speed at writing as a single hdd and usually, will be faster at reading data, because the controller will read from both hdds. This setup is more reliable when you have important data that you don't want to loose. If one hdd fails it can be replaced and the Raid 1 setup will work without problems.

Information about configuring a Raid you'll find in the Bios manual and after that you'll be able to install an OS without a problem.

Good luck
damn, i wish i knew this earlier, i would've just bought the WD 74 Gig raptor...

PS anyone know a quiet 10K 74 gig Hdd? i might just go buy another one and use the 250s for storage on a regular non RAID format.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 09:22 PM
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PS, thanks for the help and replies....hopefully i'll see you all tonight in battlefield 2!

(that's the whole reason i bought the computer...hehe)
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Old 30th June, 2005, 09:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by louedwards
damn, i wish i knew this earlier, i would've just bought the WD 74 Gig raptor...

PS anyone know a quiet 10K 74 gig Hdd? i might just go buy another one and use the 250s for storage on a regular non RAID format.
There's only 1 out there that would work in your system... WD 74 gig Raptor, but I don't know if it is quiet. Runs about $180 or so.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 09:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by louedwards
damn, i wish i knew this earlier, i would've just bought the WD 74 Gig raptor...

PS anyone know a quiet 10K 74 gig Hdd? i might just go buy another one and use the 250s for storage on a regular non RAID format.
The only 10K HDD out there in SATA/IDE is the Raptor, as far as I'm aware. Some people complain a bit about it's head noise though, however it's supposed to be fairly quiet when idle. Still, nowhere near as quiet as some of the Seagate drives.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveI
There's only 1 out there that would work in your system... WD 74 gig Raptor, but I don't know if it is quiet. Runs about $180 or so.

out of curiosity's sake, why is there only 1?
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Old 30th June, 2005, 10:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by louedwards
out of curiosity's sake, why is there only 1?
10K is no big deal really... SCSI drives running 10K have been around a while. For IDE, none of the drive makers thought there was much of a market. However, WD took the plunge a couple of years ago with the Raptors (they make 2, 36gig, and 74)... I guess sales are good enough for them to keep making them, but not good enough for everyone else to jump in...

When people think of IDE/SATA drives, they think desktop... quiet, moderate performance, and low cost. Raptors are definitely pricey, unless you are familiar with the pricing of similar SCSI units.
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Old 30th June, 2005, 10:35 PM
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For the increase in spindle speed(~39%), you don't get the corresponding increase in drive performance, but you do get the increase in power consumption and heat output.

Raptors are not necessarily the fastest IDE/SATA drives out there, dependent on application some of the 7200RPM drives can outperform them.
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Old 1st July, 2005, 09:34 AM
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well, i guess this is all too late. i splurged on a raptor (i still have my other 7200.8s). so i guess i have 3 hdds now...

PS, i got everything together, but i can't find my windows XP cd...LOL!!!!
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Old 1st July, 2005, 09:36 AM
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my zalman is too big for my case!

the sonata II's molding (some big tube that directs heat/air from the CPU fan won't fit in my case. any suggestions?
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Old 1st July, 2005, 11:32 AM
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Use a stock cooler, until you work something else out.
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