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Thread: Intel Matrix Storage

  1. #1
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    Intel Matrix Storage

    Question - I have an ASUS P5Q Pro that has 5 1TB drives in a RAID5 configuration.

    The software used to control the RAID is Intel Matrix Storage (http://www.intel.com/design/chipsets...storage_sb.htm) - my question is - I know I had to configure the RAID setup through the BIOS/MOBO utility (pre OS load) to ID which drives to add to the RAID array...will the information still be present in the RAID array if I format the C drive...the primary partition (C:\) resides on its own HDD that is not in the raid array or on the same chipset controller.

    I am not sure if I remove the Intel software by formatting the drive will inherintly remove or mess-up the RAID5 stripping info - thereby rendering the RAID array useless and needing re-built. - this would suck as I have about 3TB of data that is not backed up yet. OR - do I simply re-load the OS (Windows XP) and reinstall all drivers and Intel software and the data will still be there (just like a completely different hdd)?
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    Any thoughts? Can I reformat C and still have the raid 5 partitions / information intact - Raid drives are on Intel chipset, C drive is on sep. controller
    Fee was a buddhist prodigy...
    Long past the age of maturity...
    Someday he knew it would set him free...
    Like it did for Floyd...
    The Chimpanzee...

  3. #3
    Second Most EVIL YARDofSTUF's Avatar
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    Is this a software RAID made in windows?

    If its a hardware RAID, then you don't need to worry, though you will need to install the windows drivers to see the array.

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    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    The RIS files are kept on the controller.
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    Quote Originally Posted by YeOldeStonecat View Post
    The RIS files are kept on the controller.
    So they are kept on the Intel chipset on the motherboard and do not reside within Intel Software on O/S
    Fee was a buddhist prodigy...
    Long past the age of maturity...
    Someday he knew it would set him free...
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  6. #6
    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    Meant to say "controller and drives". In a non-OS partition on the drives..so formatting the drives windows partition does nothing to these files.

    As always though, since you're dealing with major work on drives...I would backup your data before doing any major work on them regarding RAID. Intel RAID controllers have a fancy feature sometimes seen on higher end RAID controllers..and that's the ability to add RAID functionality to drives without losing the data on a drive. Example..you can have an OS or data on a single drive...add an identile drive down the road, and create a RAID 1 mirror out of them without losing data. Pretty neat feature, because with many RAID controllers, if you go from single drive to some form of RAID, it's usually totally destructive.

    So, would be prudent to backup any data before doing changes on the RAID, "just in case".
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    ...hmm...maybe the RAID 5 setup is not the right thing for my needs like I thought it was...have about 2TB of data on various drives of various sizes that I have copied to the RAID (still on other drives..have not erased yet).

    DVD's would not be toooo ideal as it would take MANY MANY discs and time to burn the discs - thought about a tape backup drive but that is pricey for the controller and media. Should just bite the bullet and do it -

    Any other thoughts or would RAID5 be ideal----maybe a second server that replicates changed information from host to standby (sort of like Symantec VVR)
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  8. #8
    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TinyTim View Post
    ...hmm...maybe the RAID 5 setup is not the right thing for my needs like I thought it was...have about 2TB of data on various drives of various sizes that I have copied to the RAID (still on other drives..have not erased yet).
    Ahh..so your data is all still on the original source drives? If so, there's your backup?

    I gotta run, just got an urgent phone call....but to recap your goal here..
    It sounds like you have a computer, with an existing single drive that Windows is installed on? And you hope to sort of...rebuild this, add drives..and turn it into a file storage server?

    Or is this a computer with an existing single large RAID 5 volume..that you've installed Windows to a partition of....and left the rest of the volume as another large partition for storage?

    Have a bunch of un-used drives around? Turn them into a nice storage box..
    http://www.drobo.com/

    Another way of utilizing old hardware, say you have a spare older PC kicking around, stick a bunch of drives in it, and check out www.freenas.org

    Another free backup alternative, I've not tried this feature yet...but it is stated to do synchronized real time backup..
    http://backup.comodo.com/

    RAID is a way of utilizing drives and reducing loss of data due to drive hardware failure. It's not a backup method. Nothing wrong with using RAID 5 if you have a bunch of drives to work with.
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