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Installing WinXp on PC with SATA/RAID...

Posted on 2006-11-11
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Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Hi,

I have a pc with a Promise FastTrack 378 controller card on an MSI 865PE Ne02 motherboard, with 2 x 120GB SATA hard drives.  I am trying to install Windows Xp (currently no OS on the system, but has had WinXp before), but for some reason, it won't recognize the hard drives.  I boot from the WinXp cd, then press F6 and put in the floppy with the correct drivers, then it's happy and I choose my partition and it starts copying over files.  Then, it gets to the first reboot, so I take the floppy disk out, let it restart with the WinXp cd still in, and it starts the whole process over and acts like it's the first boot from the WinXp cd and wants to start Setup again.

Then, if I go ahead and try to do Setup again, it says there's already an OS on the partition, and asks to overwrite it.

So I tried it with removing the cd at the first reboot and then get a message saying there's been a hardware configuration error and it can't find the hard disks.  What's wrong here?  Please help!

Mark
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Question by:mark-wa
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
ID: 17924322
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924344
Hi,

Yep.  I did that part right.  I am configuring this as RAID with striping.  I think the problem is in the BIOS setup, but I'm not sure what to change.  Any ideas?  Thanks!

Mark
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
Zuhir Elgmati earned 100 total points
ID: 17924362
this talking about issue like you have exactly : When I install Windows XP on an SATA hard drive and then reboot, the setup program asks me if I want to begin the setup all over again.
http://www.pcbuyerbeware.co.uk/HDDProblems.htm#satainstallxp
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by:nobus
ID: 17924398
i would wipe the disk first; use any of these, or Dban :
http://www.disk-utility.com/hard-disk-low-level-format.html
http://dban.sourceforge.net/      
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924419
Hi,

I'm checking out your link now zuhairGmaty.

nobus, I have formatted twice actually.

Thanks guys.

I'll be back after reading that article.

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924423
ok, that was close.  But I need the RAID stuff enabled because I have 2 hard drives configured in a RAID array.  How did you find that article?  Maybe there is one for when you are using RAID?  Thanks!

Mark
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
ID: 17924446
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924470
I did check that out.  I'm pretty sure I have the correct drivers.

I just noticed that the sata cables are in sata3 and sata4 slots on the motherboard, not sata1 and sata2.  Where do they need to be for RAID?

Thanks!

Mark
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
ID: 17924485
ok mark i understand you , i'm still searching with google there's many articles , actually i'm not familer with RAID & SATA , but i found 2 pages talking about SATA with RAID :
http://experts.about.com/q/Windows-XP-3282/Installing-WindowsXP-SATA-harddisk.htm
http://www.testmy.net/forum/t-10525

as you said the pc has winxp befor , there's article talking that meybe the MB not support SATA , but you said that is working befor .
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924496
Here's the rest of the story...

I am fixing this for a friend.  He bought the pc from another person that built the pc for him.  So it already had Windows Xp installed.

He started having problems so he figured he'd format the hard drive.  I don't know what steps he did to do that but he called me and said that it won't recognize his hard drives.  I took the computer and realized it needed additional drivers during Windows Xp setup, so I downloaded the drivers and now I'm at this point.

I don't know if he messed around in the BIOS, or switched the SATA cables around, or what.  He might not have done anything like that, but who knows.  If I don't resolve this tonight, I'll call him and ask him tomorrow.  I would like to be done with it though tonight if possible, but it's starting to get pretty late (12:47am here).

Thanks for all of your help!

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924504
Just another note, in the BIOS, the primary IDE master and primary ide slave are coming up the cdrom (master) and the zip drive (slave), in that order.  But no mention of the hard drives.  Not sure if that's the way it's supposed to be.

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17924545
ok, giving up tonight.  Will pick this up tomorrow.  Thanks for all of your help so far though!

Mark
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by:nobus
nobus earned 100 total points
ID: 17924778
your manual says to connect the drives to sata 3-4 look on page 2-20
for installing the raid devices, look page  13 of the ichr-raid manual

http://www.msi.com.tw/program/support/manual/mnu/spt_mnu_detail.php?UID=433&kind=1
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by:Zuhir Elgmati
ID: 17925234
dear mark :
ok, i wish this problem not to become nightmare, any way there's many models of your motherboard MSI 865PE Neo2  ,i entered to the MSI web site they have good support  , so you have to give us the exact model , i guess your motherboard is : 865PE Neo2-FIS2R , as you said you don't know your friend if he make change in bios or hardware this basic troubleshooting manual show you the right configruation :
http://www.msicomputer.com/support/sup_tshoot.asp#3_3 or
check the nobus link , it's the manual of your board .

good luck
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by:deadite
ID: 17925317
>  But no mention of the hard drives.
Sounds like your issue is your BIOS not detecting your hard drives, hence they do not show up to boot, so it drops to booting from the CD-ROM.

When you are doing the XP setup, does it correctly detect the drives?  Are you formatting the drive from the setup (should do full).  If you are able to read the disk and format them from the XP setup, it's probably an issue with your BIOS boot order...
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by:natcom
ID: 17925384
access your Promise FastTrack 378 setup configuration delete and re-create the Raid

in my experience with Raid if you want to boot up windows  it need to be on sata 1 and 2 not 3 and 4

also make sure you download the latest driver for your Raid controller.
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Assisted Solution

by:Yogalingam
Yogalingam earned 100 total points
ID: 17927659
There is another accepted solution for this issue or how to configure raid.

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Hardware/Top_Solutions_3.html
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17927760
wow, lots of replies!

Windows setup does detect the drives correctly and it does look like this is supposed to be on sata 3 and 4.  I did format the drives (full).  I have done a number of tests running setup and re-arranging the boot order.  I think the problem is in the Integrated Peripherals section.  I think those are the settings goofing things up.  Just not sure what to change.

Here is the exact error after running setup, then swapping the boot order back to the hard drive(s) first, after first boot part of setup:

Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem.
Could not read from the selected boot disk.  Check boot path and disk hardware.
Please check the Windows documentation about hardware disk configuration and your hardware reference manuals for additional information.

nobus and zuhairGmaty, I am checking your links now.  Thanks!

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928144
if anyone is watching this post still, can someone verify that I have the correct drivers for the sata controllers?

this indeed is an MSI 865PE Neo2-FIS2R motherboard with the onboard Promise PDC20378 SATA150 and ATA133 controllers.

Thanks!

Mark
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17928157
If you press F11 during bootup to enter the boot menu, does it list the Promise controller or the attached SATA drives as boot options?  What about in the BIOS Boot Device Select screen:  can you find the SATA drives in the list when you try to set the 1st Boot device; not sure how they will appear but could be something like BBS-0 (Bios Boot Specification), which I believe is the way the Promise controller should present the drives to the motherboard.  
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928184
hi yessirnosir,

Yes, it does list the BBS-0 and if I have it set as the first boot device, it give that Windows hardware configuration error that I mentioned a couple of posts up.  Thanks!

Also, I just changed it to have the hard drives on SATA1 and 2, which now it says there is no hard drives on the FastTrack controller, then prompts me to use Control + I  to access the RAID setup.  So I did that and set it up with Stripe 2+0, then I booted from the WinXp cd and started setup and I installed the same FastTrack drivers, but now it says there is no disk to install to.  Which I gues makes sense since I moved the hard drives, so now I need to find the correct drivers for the other controller.  Any thoughts?

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928188
The new RAID configuration utility now says it's "Intel (R) RAID for Serial ATA - RAID Configuration Utility v.3.5.6.6253

I am betting if I get the correct drivers for this controller, that it will work.  I'm just not sure where to look.  Thanks!

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928230
ok, I found the driver and I am running setup and so far, it's doing good, but we'll have to see what happens on the first reboot.... crossing my fingers!

Mark
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17928239
MSI site shows both the PRomise and the Intel Raid controllers on your motherboard.  The Intel controller looks more full featured, so I'd use that if you can.  There is a full PDF manual just for the RAID controller available for download.  Drivers are there too:  http://www.msi.com.tw/program/support/download/dld/spt_dld_detail.php?UID=433&kind=1

I noticed there is a BIOS setting for the Promise controller to set boot priority for the attached devices.  Label is "S-ATA Ports Definition" and looks like if you moved the drives to ports 1 and 2 you would have to change that setting correspondingly.
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by:Phadke_hemant
Phadke_hemant earned 50 total points
ID: 17928248
do you want only hardware RAID? software RAID is also available through computer management in win XP try this out
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928262
I would prefer hardware RAID.  

Same problem occurred.  After the setup copied files and did the first boot, it failed with the same "computer disk hardware configuration problem" error.

I followed the msi article exactly for setting up the ICH5 controller, I don't understand what is happening.  It just won't recognize the hard drives on bootup after the post test.  Yet, you go into the RAID configuration utility and you can delete and create the arrays and it recognizes the disks.  There has to be a BIOS setting I am missing.  Thanks for everyone's help.  I am still trying to work this out so any more suggestions would greatly be appreciated.

Thanks.

Mark
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928277
should the hard drive(s) be available as an option to set under the Standard CMOS Features for Primary IDE Master or any of those?  I don't have those options.  Thanks.

Mark
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by:nobus
ID: 17928326
did you check out the manual for raid set-up ?
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17928348
yes, but it's not helping.  I have followed it exactly.  This is crazy.

ok, sata1 and 2 ports seem to be for the ICH5(R) controller and sata3 and 4 are for the promise controller.

but when you go into Integrated Peripherals in the BIOS, if you set everything up for the promise controller and plug the drives into 3 and 4, it doesn't give you the option under "sata ports definition" to choose 3 and 4, it just has 1 and 2.

so then I switched the cables to 1 and 2 and then the FastTrack utility comes up and says there are no drives plugged in.  So then I go to the ICH5(R) utility and they are detected, so I set up everything in the BIOS for that and still the same problem.

I have to be missing something, I just don't know what.

Mark
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by:nobus
ID: 17929188
and the bios settings correspond to the manual?
then maybe try a bios update, or reset the bios with the onboard jumper
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by:MarkWYnne
MarkWYnne earned 50 total points
ID: 17929442
In boot order do you have an option to boot from RAID as I had the same problem when running on a siliconsomething card with sata's attached. Once I switched to boot from raid I got post then raid config screen then it loads OS


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by:
yessirnosir earned 100 total points
ID: 17930004
MSI has a troubleshooter that seems to be tailored for your situation, i.e. no boot from SATA with a board with both Intel and Promise controllers.  

One thing it says is to go into On-Chip IDE Configuration and disable the SATA functionality of the onboard Promise controller if you want to boot from Intel.  

Here's an excerpt from the MSI site:
Configuring BIOS Settings for the Intel ICH5(R)  
    • Under Advanced BIOS Features
(Fig-a)
  • Boot Sequence – Select your S-ATA hard drive
• Under Integrated peripherals
  • Onboard Promise – Disable
  • On-Chip IDE configuration (Intel ICH5(R) Only) (Fig-a)
  • Operate Mode – Select Native mode for Windows XP, Select Legacy mode for Windows 9x/ME/2000
  • ATA Configuration – Select S-ATA only
  • S-ATA Keep Enabled – Yes(Default)
  • P-ATA Keep Enabled – Select Yes
  • P-ATA Channel Selection – Both(Default)
  • Combined Mode Option – P-ATA 1st Channel(Default)
  • S-ATA Ports Definition – P0-1st/P1-2nd
  • Configure S-ATA as Raid(ICH5R Only) – Select No for single hard drive configuration  
 
You can find the rest at:  http://www.msicomputer.com/support/sup_tshoot.asp#3_1
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17930201
oops, I see I repeated a link supplied earlier by zuhairGumaty... sorry!
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17931785
Hi again,

I have indeed switched the boot order multiple time to have it boot from the array.  It gets to that hardware configuration error I stated earlier.

yessirnosir, that is the exact article I have been using.  Does anyone know if maybe Windows Xp has to be Sp1 or higher?

This cd does not have Sp1 installed.  Thanks!

Mark
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by:MarkWYnne
ID: 17932562
Is there a master IDE device?
Have you tested with 1 disk?
do you have an option like "onchip IDE device / Onchip Serial ATA mode ?, is so set to "combined mode"
Test with controller card of a different manufacturer, cant use a promise I think as it may conflict with the one on your board.
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17932657
man, I feel for you; this shouldn't be so tough!  I don't know about the SP1 thing; it seems like the failure is happening before Windows even comes into the picture, so even if there were some kind of driver problem you'd think the crash would happen when Windows was trying to load.  
  A few more random thoughts...
-I assume the array shows up as "bootable" in the Intel RAID configuration utility?
-Have you experimented with using "Legacy" mode instead of "Native".  Shouldn't be necessary, but getting desperate!
-Have you tried booting with a Partition Magic CD or similar utility just to view the disk configuration from something other than Windows to see if you spot anything unusual?
-Can you access the boot.ini file that Windows is creating on the new drive (maybe by booting with BartPE)?   The error message suggests that "Windows XP is not installed in the location specified in the Boot.ini file." (  http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=314477 ) so maybe examining boot.ini might provide some insight.  You said early on that you chose which partition to install Windows into.  Is there more than one partition on the array, and is it possible that Windows is confused about which one holds the system files?
-what about that zip drive?  I'm not familiar with they interface with Windows.  Any chance that it is somehow messing up the order of device enumeration relative to what Windows expects?




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by:mark-wa
ID: 17932994
Hi again,

MarkWYnne, the primary master and secondary master ide devices are the CDROM and ZIP drive, in that order.

I did set it to "combined mode", didn't seem to help

I don't have anything at my disposal as far as another controller card.

yessirnosir,  thanks for the sympathy.  This really is strange.  I truely feel all hardware is in good working condition.  You made mention that the failure is happening before Windows, which is what I have been thinking.  Then I read the error message again, and the first line says:

"Windows could not start because of a computer disk hardware configuration problem."

This makes me think the system is seeing the drives and trying to load Windows, but windows has a problem with the configuration.

I have seen some sort of similar issues posted on the internet and have seen at least a few people saying you need Windows Xp Sp1 on the media.  I think I may try that.

Also, I'll try Legacy mode and I like the idea of booting with something else and trying to view the c: drive.  Is there a utility that I can download and load to a cd that will make the cd bootable?  Thanks!

Mark
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17933294
you're right about my contradiction!  You wouldn't get that error message unless your system was at least reading the boot sector on your hard drive, which it wouldn't do if it couldn't find the drive.  So maybe the whole BIOS boot setup train-of-thought was a bit of a red herring, and the focus needs to be on why that boot.ini isn't working.  

To access the disk you could try the Windows XP disk itself, using the recovery console per method 2 in the Microsoft KB article.  If that doesn't work, I usually use BartPE in situations like this, but building your own BartPE disk is a bit of a project by itself that you probably don't want to launch into right now.   I've got a Knoppix CD that is downloadable as an ISO, but I don't know if that has a driver that will work with your Raid setup.  Other people reading the thread may have better suggestions.  

Good luck... I'm going to be offline now until tomorrow.
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17933449
Thanks yessirnosir!

Mark
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by:W_H
ID: 17936042
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/314343/en-us

is your XP a home?

XP home doesn't support any kind of dynamic storage however...
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17938788
Xp Pro actually

Thanks!

Mark
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17939003
Hey Mark, do you have a reference to the SP1 media issue you mentioned?  I wouldn't mind learning about that myself.

Are you going to try the service pack update?  You probably need to create a slipstreamed version of your XP CD in order to do an install with the service packs.  If you haven't done that before, there are lots of guides out there,  eg. http://www.theeldergeek.com/slipstreamed_xpsp2_cd.htm.    
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17942567
Hi yessirnosir,

I will try to find that SP1 stuff again.

I actually already did the slipstreaming of SP1 (yesterday) and with all of my hopes soaring high..... it failed again with the same Windows hardware configuration problem error.

So, just to see if it would do it, I got rid of all of the RAID settings and did a straight install with the 2 hard drives each just setup as their own standard partitions (C: and D:), each of 120GB and it went through with flying colors.

I still don't understand why it won't work with RAID.  I'm still not convinced I can't make it work.

I wish I had all of the original disks for the motherboard, because I am betting there is another piece to this that I don't have.

Anyways, still fudging around with it.  Thanks!

Mark
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Expert Comment

by:MarkWYnne
ID: 17945710
Rather than stripe the volume accross te two disks..
Can you build a mirror set after installing windows on 1 disk through raid cfg, ofcourse will mean that 50% disk space rather that 33% for a striped volume
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17957083
Mark:  I was working on something unrelated today and came across this Microsoft KB about Zip drives causing Windows to install in the wrong place.  Maybe it would be worth trying your install with the Zip disconnected.   http://support.microsoft.com/kb/326683/
0
 
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by:mark-wa
ID: 17958251
Hi yessirnosir,

Thank you for all of your help.  I'm not sure how to issue the points on this one.  I just ended up going with the non-RAID setup.  I told my friend that and he didn't even know what RAID is so he was fine with it.

Anyways, I would love to get feedback on how you Experts would like the points dispersed.  Thanks!

Mark
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by:yessirnosir
ID: 17965777
split the points anyway you like Mark... we really didn't help you much on this one, in fact I think we sent you down some dead-end streets.  woulda, shoulda, coulda asked you better questions about exact symptoms, because I think we all jumped to the conclusion it was a hardware/bios issue instead of recognizing it as a Windows configuration problem.
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