Begin with the BIOS

By Loyd Case  |  Posted 2004-11-30 Print this article Print

To create Matrix RAID volumes, youll need an Intel-based system with ICH6R and two Serial ATA drives. Its generally best to use two identical drives. Although you can use drives of different sizes or even brands, that would likely waste some space. Setting up a pair of Matrix RAID drives involves three primary steps, assuming that the hardware is already in place:
  • Go into the system BIOS setup and configure the SATA ports for RAID.
  • Use the RAID BIOS screen (different from BIOS setup) to configure the drives.
  • Once the arrays are created, return to BIOS setup to ensure correct boot order.
Initial BIOS Setup Chores
The first thing to do is to ensure that the SATA drive ports are configured for RAID support.
Some BIOS setup screens also may enable or disable the RAID BIOS, even if RAID support is turned on. Make sure the RAID BIOS is enabled.
Once thats done, its time to configure the arrays in the RAID BIOS.

Loyd Case came to computing by way of physical chemistry. He began modestly on a DEC PDP-11 by learning the intricacies of the TROFF text formatter while working on his master's thesis. After a brief, painful stint as an analytical chemist, he took over a laboratory network at Lockheed in the early 80's and never looked back. His first 'real' computer was an HP 1000 RTE-6/VM system.

In 1988, he figured out that building his own PC was vastly more interesting than buying off-the-shelf systems ad he ditched his aging Compaq portable. The Sony 3.5-inch floppy drive from his first homebrew rig is still running today. Since then, he's done some programming, been a systems engineer for Hewlett-Packard, worked in technical marketing in the workstation biz, and even dabbled in 3-D modeling and Web design during the Web's early years.

Loyd was also bitten by the writing bug at a very early age, and even has dim memories of reading his creative efforts to his third grade class. Later, he wrote for various user group magazines, culminating in a near-career ending incident at his employer when a humor-impaired senior manager took exception at one of his more flippant efforts. In 1994, Loyd took on the task of writing the first roundup of PC graphics cards for Computer Gaming World -- the first ever written specifically for computer gamers. A year later, Mike Weksler, then tech editor at Computer Gaming World, twisted his arm and forced him to start writing CGW's tech column. The gaming world -- and Loyd -- has never quite recovered despite repeated efforts to find a normal job. Now he's busy with the whole fatherhood thing, working hard to turn his two daughters into avid gamers. When he doesn't have his head buried inside a PC, he dabbles in downhill skiing, military history and home theater.

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