HOW TO: Windows Installation Thread (includes SATA III, SSD Upgrade, RAID0 Discussion)

Discussion in 'Alienware' started by Mr. Fox, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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  2. hypersonic

    hypersonic Notebook Consultant

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    Hi guys,
    I am very confused by the intel RST terms...seems a thousand things are called RST.

    Background:
    I have RAID 0 (64K stripe) with two SSDs ( Sandisk Extreme II), that was done by switching to RAID mode in BIOS and pressing ctrl + i (the F6 method?)
    Then I installed windows on it.
    After that, everytime I try to install the intel RST software downloaded from Dell's site, I get BSOD.
    So I gave up (had to reinstall windows every trials...) and ignored it completely since the rest of thing are running as they should
    But then, from what I see on every google result, some kind of driver should be installed with RAID setup?

    Questions:
    Although it has been months and my system is running fine, I can't put it into sleep (after waking up, it becomes very slow and unresponsive, a reboot fixes it). Is it the consequence of skipping the driver?
    And would I get a better performance out of my SSDs? The bro above with two samsung drives and Mr. Fox have much better performance than me. These Sandisk drives shouldn't be this bad, right?

    Note: This array has been running for almost half a year and got many stuff in it
    [​IMG]

    Any help would be much appreciated!!
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2015
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  3. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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    Those results are not bad. Intel RST is Rapid Storage Technology. You should be able to install it fine, with or without the drives in RAID as long as the BIOS is set to RAID. I am not sure why you cannot. Have you checked to see if Sandisk has a firmware update for your SSDs? Don't use the version from Dell's web site. Grab the newest version from Intel instead. Here is a link for you to download version 13.6.0.1002 of SetupRST from Intel Download Center.
     
  4. hypersonic

    hypersonic Notebook Consultant

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    Thank you very much for the reply. Unfortunately, the latest driver still screw up my system badly.
    After installing the driver and reboot, the system first stuck at "Starting Windows" screen longer as usual, and go straight to bluescreen. Then it reboots again.
    At start, the intel RAID controller screen shows the two disks are normal, but it seems the content in that array is completely screwed.
    I could not get into windows in safe mode, in command prompt, or anything. (will get stuck at loading some system file forever) Windows still recognize the array as a boot device, just cannot get past the starting windows screen.

    The blue screen is as follow:
    [​IMG]

    Now I'll try to search for a way to fix it without a clean install. Hope someone can shed some light on this!


    EDIT: Fixed it easily! It turns out to be the SCSI driver being corrupted or some sort. At boot it gets stuck at CLASSPNP.SYS. I used the windows installation DVD to perform a startup repair, though I pressed cancel midway by mistake, it was still fixed anyway.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2015
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  5. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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    @hypersonic - Hmm... this is very weird. Never seen anything like it before. You could have a hardware problem since you have already tried this more than once. What about other drives? Same exact experience, or are these the only ones you have used?

    Try booting into Safe Mode. If that works, it is possible it will correct itself. If Windows loads in Safe Mode, open Regedit and check to be sure the DWORD values are correct (see end of post #1 in this thread). If not, correct them.

    Also worth trying, break the RAID membership in the Intel Option ROM (BIOS left on RAID before starting the process) and install Windows to one SSD. When you are finished install Intel RST in Windows and use it to create the RAID membership.
     
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  6. hypersonic

    hypersonic Notebook Consultant

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    Thank you Fox bro for the advice!!
    I've fixed the problem by using startup repair. (updated at the post above) Now after a RAID integrity check I will run crystaldiskmark again to see if the driver does any good.;)
     
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  7. hypersonic

    hypersonic Notebook Consultant

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    Ok, it turns out after installing the RST driver, the performance becomes way worse than before. And booting now takes ages instead of seconds.

    [​IMG]

    :confused:LOL much worse than the number I posted before.
    "Don't fix thing when it's not broken" remains valid.:(
     
  8. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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    Wow, that is a big drop. Are you running UEFI and/or Secure Boot?
     
  9. hypersonic

    hypersonic Notebook Consultant

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    nope:(
    just normal legacy boot as usual.
    Preparing a fresh Windows install now:(
     
  10. Mr. Fox

    Mr. Fox Undefiled BGA-Hating Elitist

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    Be sure to use Intel RST F6 drivers if you haven't done that before. Install them during Windows Setup at the screen to select drives, choose the option to add drivers.

    I've never seen the problem you are experiencing before. Very unusual.
     
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