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Old 20th July, 2003, 09:00 PM
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ASUS P4C800 DELUXE-UAY RAID 0 SATA HDD Detection Problem

I am trying to configure a RAID 0 array for my new ASUS P4C800 DELUXE - UAY Motherboard.

I have two (2) new Maxtor DiamondMax Plus9 160GB SATA 6Y160MO hard drives connected to Serial Connectors SATA1 and SATA2, as shown in Paragraph 3. at the top of page 2-23 of the P4C800 User Guide.

The only other devices I have hooked up to the P4C800 now are a new TEAC Floppy drive (which is shown as being detected in the BIOS Setup Utility Main Screen as "Legacy Diskette A [1.44M, 3.5 in.]") and a new Plextor PlexWriter CD-R, which I have hooked up as the Secondary IDE Master, and which is shown as being detected in the BIOS Setup Utility Main Screen as "[Plextor CD-R Pre]".

I followed steps 1., 2. and 3. on page 5-28 of the User Guide to create a RAID 0 array using the two (2) Maxtor HDDs.

As indicated in step 4., when I rebooted, the MBFastTrack378 BIOS indicated that the array was functional.

However, step 5. on page 5-28 states:
5. Once the array is created, use the FDISK utility to format
the array as a single hard drive.

The User Guide does NOT give any indication how to get to FDISK !!!!!!!

I cannot find any key to use from within the ASUS FastBuild Utility to get to FDISK, and I do not know how I can stop the boot sequence to get into DOS, to use FDISK. Also, since there is no operating system installed yet on the Maxtors, how exactly can I get into DOS, so I could then get to FDISK ?

I then tried to install the W2000 Advanced Server OS without having first used FDISK. I changed the boot drive sequence to boot from the PlexWriter CD-R. I restarted and booted with the W2000 Advanced Server CD already in the PlexWriter CD-R drive. I thought I could try to use F10 when it got to the Welcome Screen, to get into the Recovery Console, so I could format and partition the Maxtors from there.

However, once Setup had detected my configuration and had loaded all the W2000 drivers, I got a message stating that no hard drives were detected, so Setup could not continue. Also, the computer emitted a continuous high-pitched scream while this message was displayed.

I then changed the boot sequence back to the default settings: Floppy first; array second; and, PlexWriter CD-R third. Thus, the Boot Device Priority Screen of the BIOS Setup Utility indicates the "1st Boot Device" as "[1st Floppy Drive]", the "2nd Boot Device" as "[FT 378 Ary 1]", and the "3rd Boot Device" as "[SM-Plextor CD-R]".

I think that "[FT 378 Ary 1]" must be the RAID 0 array, so the BIOS seems to know that there are two (2) HDDs installed (otherwise, it would not detect the array).

Currently, the Main Screen of the BIOS Setup Utility indicates that both the Primary IDE Master is "[Not Detected]" and the Secondary IDE Master is "[Not Detected]".

The Main Screen does NOT indicate anywhere that there is a RAID 0 array.

The IDE Configuration Screen of the BIOS Setup Utility Main Screen indicates:
Onboard IDE Operate Mode [Enhanced Mode]
Enhanced Mode Support On [S-ATA]
IDE Detect Time Out (Sec.) [35]

Questions:

1. Exactly how can I get to FDISK, so that I can I format and partition the Maxtors as one RAID 0 array (but I thought the BIOS already knows there is one RAID 0 array, so why do I have to do the partitioning through the BIOS, rather than through the Windows 2000 Advanced Server Setup?) ?

2. If I manage to format and partition the Maxtors as one RAID 0 array using FDISK, will the BIOS and Windows 2000 Advanced Server detect that there is a "hard drive" or hard drives installed, so the W2000 Advanced Server Setup will then continue ?

Please respond with advice as soon as possible.

Thank you very much.

Marc
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Old 20th July, 2003, 10:34 PM
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Sounds a bit like the instructions aren't very good to be honest with you. The SATA RAID array should appear as a single disk to the OS.

As you correctly worked out, FDISK is a DOS program, which would require you to boot the system into DOS using a boot floppy or something similar.

However, the Windows 2000 CD you were using does not know how to talk to the array, and hence can't see any hard disks. Normally, there is something like a driver disk (or files you can copy to a floppy disk) that can be used during the start up of the Win2K install. There will be a prompt (F6 I think) to allow you to load additional drivers from a floppy disk, so that the setup program can locate your hard disks. If you have not done this step, the setup program will fail to see the array!
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Old 20th July, 2003, 10:45 PM
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Hi Marc, maybe I can help. Sounds like you created the array correctly, but if you don't press F6 as soon as you boot from the win2k cd you won't be able to specify the promise raid drivers from the floppy, and consequently win2k won't detect the array because it doesn't know how to talk to the promise chip on the mobo. I did something similar with my board, except I was providing the wrong drivers to windows and it would of course say that no hard drives were detected just like your scenario. You need to download the promise ata RAID drivers from the Asus site. Unzip that file and use the included "makedisk" utility. That will create the floppy with the raid drivers. Then you can boot from the win2k cd, hit F6 when prompted. Setup will keep loading files for a bit, then stop and ask if you want to specify additional drivers. Hit S and then insert the floppy and hit enter. Select the windows 2000 promise drivers and hit enter. Once you have done that you can let setup continue, and it should detect your array once it finished loading files. At that point you can use setup to make partitions and format the array. There's no need to boot from a floppy into dos and run FDISK. As to why your cdrom drive is no longer detected - your ide settings look correct, so I would try resetting the cmos to default settings and see if it shows up again. I had something similar happen once and my settings looked correct, so I finally cleared the cmos and started over again, and that worked.
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Old 21st July, 2003, 12:23 AM
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Hello Aedan and Cole:

I went to the ASUS site, to see about the Promise Drivers. I found only five (5) Promise driver files:

378ATA100130.zip - Promise Fast Track 378 ATA Driver V.1.00.1.30 06/30/03 961k (I had to use the MAKEDISK.exe file to get the W2000 driver files onto a separate floppy)

ata100.zip - W2000 Promise Ultra 100 IDE Controller Driver V2.00.0 01/31/02 702k (No MAKEDISK.exe file, so I put this on a separate floppy)

raid0ort1.zip - w2000 Promise Ultra 33/66 IDE Controller Driver V1.30 (Build 60) 05/23/02 750k (No MAKEDISK. exe file, so I put this on a separate floppy)

raid.zip - W2000 Promise Fast Rack 100 Controller Driver V2.00.0 01/31/02 4.5Mb (I had to use the MAKEDISK.exe file to extract the W200 driver files to a floppy)

pdc20276.zip - W2000 Promise Fast Track 133 Lite (tm) Controller Driver V2.00.0.21 01/31/02 575k (No, MAKEDISK.exe file, so I put this on a separate floppy)

Do any of these look right to you? I also have the P4C800 manual sections relating to the Promise and VIA SATA drivers and setup, if you would like to see them. I am going to re-read them, again and again! Let me know at ABow344@hotmail.com. Thanks for your support!

Marc
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Old 21st July, 2003, 02:27 AM
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For the P4C800 there are two sets of promise drivers. One is used if you only want to connect single drives to the controller. The other is used if you have it set to raid mode - which is what you need. The version depends on which bios version your board has. The driver version needs to match the promise bios revision. Here's the link to the correct driver. Your mobo needs to be bios 1008 to work best with this driver version:
http://www.asus.com/support/download...30.zip~zaqwedc
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Old 21st July, 2003, 02:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cole
For the P4C800 there are two sets of promise drivers. One is used if you only want to connect single drives to the controller. The other is used if you have it set to raid mode - which is what you need. The version depends on which bios version your board has. The driver version needs to match the promise bios revision. Here's the link to the correct driver. Your mobo needs to be bios 1008 to work best with this driver version:
http://www.asus.com/support/download...30.zip~zaqwedc

Hello again, Cole:

Yes, that is one of the files I got, and I already used the MAKEDISK.exe utility to put it on a floppy. I shall try it now (after checking the BIOS to make sure it is 1008 or higher), and I'll let you know how it turns out.

Thanks again!

Here's hoping it works!

Marc
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Old 21st July, 2003, 04:01 AM
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Hello Cole:

Well, we have to go back to the drawing board, I'm afraid.

When W2k setup commenced, I hit F6 when prompted, then I loaded the driver you mentioned above, I proceeded with Setup, and when I got to the Welcome screen, I hit the option to setup W2k, and immediately got the message that no hard disks had been detected. This despite the fact that every time I boot up, the RAID 0 array is detected as "Functional"! Go figure!

I also tried the same procedure with the SATA drivers I got from the ASUS CD, using MAKEDISK, but they didn't work either.

I'm sure there's some really simple and obvious solution that I'm missing!

Can I copy FDISK onto a floppy from one of my other computers, and then boot the ASUS computer with the FDISK floppy in the drive, so the ASUS goes directly to FDISK rather than completing the boot sequence?

Thanks again for your support and suggestions!

Marc
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Old 29th July, 2003, 04:49 AM
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Problem Solved !

Hello All:

Thank you for your support!

The problem is solved!

Sorry I did not post sooner, but we have had some severe thunderstorms this past week, that knocked out my cable internet access. It is now restored.

The advice that the Asus tech support people gave me, specified in the paragraph immediately below, almost worked flawlessly.

From the 378RAID folder on the Asus CD, I made a floppy, by using Send To (not MAKEDISK.EXE). There were only two (2) files and one folder that needed to be copied. The two (2) files are: fasttx2k (this will not show a file extension, but it is a .sys file); and, txtsetup.oem. The one folder is the W2000 folder.

I then changed the boot sequence so the CD drive was first. I inserted the Windows 2000 Pro CD and rebooted. I booted from the CD, and the blue W2k Setup screen appeared. I pressed F6, and setup went on, until a screen message appeared, and giving me the option to install other drivers. I pressed S, and then another message appeared, telling me to put in my floppy with drivers.

I did so, and hit Enter. The two files and a folder were copied to my C: drive, after I hit the option to install the "Promise Fasttrak 378 (tm) Controller".

Here is where there was a slight deviation from what the Asus tech support people had told me (that the floppy made using the procedure above was the only one I needed). Setup continued fine, until all of a sudden, another message popped up, telling me to insert the "Manufacturer's Driver Disk", or something like that, into the floppy drive.

I did not have any such floppy, so I went back to the 378RAID folder on the Asus CD, and took a chance on activating MAKEDISK.EXE function in the folder, to make a whole new floppy. I inserted the new floppy I had just made with MAKEDISK, hit Enter, and Setup completed successfully.

Paragraph 5. on page 5-28 of the Asus P4C800 Deluxe User Manual, should be eliminated, and a new Paragraph 5. should be inserted, outlining the procedure noted above, and emphasizing that all Promise drivers must be entered manually (using only the procedure noted above), using the floppies created as above.

It should be clearly noted that the Promise drivers cannot be installed in any other manner, or they just won't let the OS recognize any HDD they control. I tried to install a new Promise SX4000 controller in another computer, and I did not use Setup to load the drivers (as noted above). I used the Autorun function of the Asus CD to install the drivers, as you would normally install software. The HDDs working off the SX4000 were not recognized until I re-installed the Promise drivers using the procedure I noted above.

I should also state that the second floppy (made with MAKEDISK) was only required on the initial boot up. However, the first floppy (with the two files and a folder) is required each time you use the Setup (for example, to repair a corrupted copy of the W2k Pro OS) noted above. Why the second floppy was never required after the initial boot up I don't know, but it is not important.

The Asus tech support people were excellent, and ever called me back personally after a few days, to make sure that my problem was solved.

Thank you all very much!

Marc
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