How to install Raid ?

hi,

i bought a
- PCI ATA 133 IDE card (with Raid support).
(www.stlab-sg.com)
- 2 harddisks (Seagate 80gb)

4 questions...
(i) There are 2 IDE connectors: a Blue IDE, and a Red IDE. How should i connect them to 2 harddisks ? Should the Red one connects to the 1st harddisk, and the Blue one connects to the 2nd mirror harddisk ? Or Should i just use the Red one connecting to 2 harddisks, and leave the Blue one untouched ?

(ii) How to configure the jumpers of the 2 harddisks ? Should the 1st harddisk be master, and the 2nd harddisk to be slave ?

(iii) How to test and know my Raid is working ?

(iv) What other un-foreseen problems may crop up when i install my Raid card ?
collinngAsked:
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CallandorCommented:
SATA uses a separate SATA cable for each drive.  Connect each hard drive on a different cable; it doesn't matter which, because both will be combined in a RAID configuration, and both should be jumpered as master.  Boot into the BIOS of the card (it will require a special key sequence) and configure the RAID array there.  Once prepared, the RAID array should appear as a single volume to the OS, and you can treat it as such.  Just remember that striping (RAID-0) has no redundancy and a failure on one drive will prevent you from accessing data on both drives.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
It doesn't look like you're using SATA drives... so...
>(i) There are 2 IDE connectors: a Blue IDE, and a Red IDE.
>How should i connect them to 2 harddisks ? Should the Red
>one connects to the 1st harddisk, and the Blue one connects
>to the 2nd mirror harddisk ? Or Should i just use the Red one
>connecting to 2 harddisks, and leave the Blue one untouched ?

Read the manual.  It should tell you how to connect them for the RAID.  However, if you don't have the manual, I'd connect them both as MASTER drives, one drive to the Red, one to the Blue

>(ii) How to configure the jumpers of the 2 harddisks ? Should
>the 1st harddisk be master, and the 2nd harddisk to be slave ?

See above - basically, both set to master, but one per "connector" on the card.

>(iii) How to test and know my Raid is working ?
As callandor said, you'll need to boot the system and use a key sequence to get into the RAID card's setup utility.  From there, you'll create the RAID.  (Again, check the manual).  There should be configuration and diagnostic screens there.  In addition, there may be software that came with the card - if you install that, you should be able to confirm it's working.

(iv) What other un-foreseen problems may crop up when i install my Raid card ?
Well, all comments by me above assumes you'll be setting up a RAID 1 - Mirror.  If you setup a RAID 0 (as Callandor notes), if one drive fails, everything fails and is pretty much lost.  RAID 1 means you get have the total space of the two drives - so with 2x80GB, you'll only see 1x80GB.  With a RAID 0, you get faster speeds, and access to 160GB (2x80GB).  But again, one drive fails, you lose EVERYTHING.

Also, if you're installing Windows fresh on the system, Windows might not be able to see the drives unless you press f6 early in windows setup (you should see a prompt) and specify drivers for the card - Windows likely won't have them included.
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CallandorCommented:
The controller card on the link says SATA RAID, so maybe that should be clarified, to avoid any potential problems.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Indeed - I didn't check the link, but since SATA runs at 150 MB/s and ATA is 133 (and lower), I figured it was an ATA (PATA) drive.
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CallandorCommented:
Ah well, that would have been a reasonable assuption - sometimes the information we get is incorrect, and we have to "fish around" for the actual facts.
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collinngAuthor Commented:
hi, thanks for your help. I have successfully installed the ATA 133 raid.

Things didn't posted/commented ...
- The 1st harddisk is detected as PrimaryMaster, and the 2nd harddisk as SecondaryMaster.
- Press F3 to setup the Rain Utility, before/while bootup.
- Press F6 while during WinXP setup to install the card driver

just a question, non-sata is PATA, what does P means ?

also, do u think it is possible to install the RAID on an existing winXP, without formatting the winXP ?

Thanks.
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Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
P is parallel - Parallel ATA.

RAID 1, yes, RAID 0 or 5, no.
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