FYI: PX-716SA, Tyan K8SD Pro, & Windows Server 2003 x64

Hi everyone,

This is my first post here, and I’m writing at the suggestion of Plextor’s technical support. I called them originally because of trouble installing a PX-716A in a new server. The PX-716SA would show up in the BIOS of my Tyan K8SD Pro, but no CD/DVD drive would appear in Windows Server 2003 x64. They had no suggestions other than to check for help here. I looked here briefly but found nothing like my setup.

After working with the system for a while, I solved the problem myself. I’m just writing to let others know what I did in case they find themselves in a similar situation.

Essentially, the problem was that Windows Server 2003 x64 did not have drivers for the motherboad’s Silicon Image SiI 3115 SATA controller so it could not interact with the PX-716SA. The retail motherboard did not ship with drivers for the SATA controller, but x64-compatible drivers are available online at Silicon Image’s site. After installing these and restarting the system, the drive showed up and read cds and dvds well. I have not tested recording on it yet, but I would presume recording would work well with appropriate software.

One note regarding the drivers: SI offers both RAID and IDE drivers for this particular SATA controller. I chose the IDE drivers first because doing so made more logical sense to me than installing RAID drivers for an optical drive, but I can’t comment as to whether the RAID drivers would work. I can only report that SI’s IDE driver for the PX-716SA worked for me.

So here’s my set-up:

Motherboard: Tyan Thunder K8SD Pro (S2882G3NR-D)
Processor(s): 1x AMD Opteron 242
Memory: 2x Viking ECC Registered DDR 1GB PC-2700 modules
RAID Adapter: MegaRAID SCSI 320-2 Dual-Channel Ultra320 RAID Storage Adapter
Hard Drives: 3x Hitachi Ultrastar 10K 36GB Ultra320 SCA Drives (08K2477) in RAID 5 configuration (plan to add more later)
Case: SuperMicro SC742S-420 Chassis
Optical: Plextor PX716-SA

Hope this helps anyone else experiencing similar problems,

mjblay

Hi!
I need your help and guideance. I plan to buy 755SA. Is there any problems associated with SATA compared to IDE/ATAPI.
Will I be able to directly bood from my SATA DVD-drive or in case I format my PC, will I be able to load my operating system like windowds XP,XP-64 or Linux.
What is the advantage of SATA
Pls advice whic one is prefrable.
Regards
Arvind

Well, this was actually the first system I built with a SATA optical drive, so I’m no expert. I can only tell you about the experience I had in building this system, and it might not be relevent to what you’re trying to do. But to answer your questions:

  1. [I]Will you be able to boot from your SATA optical drive?[/I] I was able to boot from my PX-716SA and Tyan Thunder K8SD Pro, but after windows installed its initial drivers and before it entered setup, it crashed to the notorious blue screen of death. Initially I thought this was because windows didn’t have drivers for my SCSI RAID card, but after researching it a bit I realized that others had had trouble installing windows from a SATA optical drive so I just used an IDE CD-ROM for the install. In retrospect, I bet if I’d installed the Silicon Image SiI 3114 drivers from a floppy during the windows install, things might have worked from the PX-716SA. I cannot comment as to whether your motherboard will support booting from an optical SATA drive, and if it does whether Windows XP or Linux will install from one. I can only say Windows Server 2003 x64 encountered problems with the SATA controller on my motherboard.

  2. What is the advantage on SATA. Really, regarding optical drives, I think there’s very little advantage other that the easier interface. The server I built was pretty large, and the 5.25" drive bay in which I wanted to put my CD/DVD drive was far away from the IDE ports on my motherboard. IDE cables would have been a stretch, for sure. SATA’s cables are longer and easier to work with. All-in-all, it was probably a poor reason for me to choose SATA over IDE, but I made it work.

I hope that info helps,

mjblay