New SATA-Only PC Installation Q's

vbimport

#1

Sorry this is long - yes I have searched various forums for this info, but I still need clarification - this message was also posted to thetechguide.com, but I think this is a great place to look for some of these answers.

I am assembling a new PC which will have two SATA hard drives, each divided into multiple partitions. There are also two optical drives and a plain old floppy drive. I have some questions regarding the connection and first bootup procedures. It seems that SATA-only systems are pretty new, most of the installation instructions assume that you are adding the drives to an existing system, and it seems that BIOS and/or the Windows setup may not auto-detect SATA as a primary bootable drive. So I’d rather understand the issues before I start everything up.

[B]Hardware:[/B]

  • Motherboard: Intel 865PERLK w/built-in 2 x SATA, 8 x USB2, Firewire, Ethernet, Sound
  • CPU: Intel P4 2.8 GHz
  • RAM: 2 x 512MB PC3200 DDR
  • Video: ATI All in Wonder 9800 Pro w/128MB
  • HDDs: 2 x 160GB Seagate SATA drives (see below for desired setup & some questions)
  • No IDE hard drives at this time (or probably ever)
  • Optical 1: NEC 2500A DVD burner
  • Optical 2: Lite-On SOHC-5232K CDRW / DVD-ROM combo drive (see below for some questions)
  • Floppy drive
  • Internal memory card reader (works off of USB2)
  • Antec case with (hopefully) plenty of power and fans
  • No PCI slots used at this time due to plenty of Mobo built-ins

[B]Desired result of setup:[/B]

  • First SATA HDD will have 3 partitions called as C: D: E: drives
  • Windows XP Pro will be installed on the C: partition of the First SATA HDD
  • Second SATA HDD will have 1 or more Windows-accessible partitions
    (mostly intended as a backup repository for the First SATA HDD)
    Those partition(s) should be called F: G: etc. in Windows
  • Second SATA HDD will also have multiple Linux partitions which will not be
    formatted for a Windows file system. (Linux may not be installed for a while yet).
  • Optical drives should be called O: and P:
  • USB Memory card reader slots should be called H: I: J: K: (assuming F: and G:
    are used on the Second SATA HDD).

[B]Hardware connection Questions:[/B]

  1. Since there is no IDE HDD (at this time anyway),
    A. Should I use the Primary IDE or the Secondary IDE connector on the
    motherboard for the two optical drives?
    B. Will either choice affect my ability to assign drive letters the way I described above?
  2. The instruction sheet that came with the Lite-On recommends making it the Master.
    The NEC drive did not come with an instruction sheet, but perhaps if I had one it would
    say the same thing.
    Is there a reason to choose one of these as Master or Slave vs. the other?

[B]Initial boot-up and Windows installation Questions:[/B]

  1. Should I postpone connecting either or both of the SATA drive cables at first boot-up?
    Some of the installation info suggests that I’ll need to run disk driver & setup utilities from
    either a CD or floppy before I even hook up the SATA drives. Is this true?
  2. Especially if I postpone the SATA hookup, what do I have to do to ensure that Windows
    does not assign the letters C: and D: to the optical drives? Should I postpone hooking up the
    optical drives also (maybe use the floppy for booting & disk utilities until I get the SATA drives
    established - but I can’t begin Windows installation until at least one optical drive is hooked up!).
  3. Should I connect the memory card reader last (I think so, to keep it from using lower drive letters)?
  4. Anything else I should know that I didn’t ask?

Thanks very much in advance for your help!


#2
  1. Should I postpone connecting either or both of the SATA drive cables at first boot-up?
    Some of the installation info suggests that I’ll need to run disk driver & setup utilities from
    either a CD or floppy before I even hook up the SATA drives. Is this true?

yes it’s true you will need to install the drivers for SATA during the first part of windows setup otherwise windows setup will stop saying there are no drives connected. If you didn’t get a floppy with the drivers on it I suggest having a look on your motherboards driver cd for SATA drivers and copying them to a floppy. After you agree in the first part of win setup by pressing F8, it will ask “Press F6 to install 3rd party SCSI OR RAID DEVICE” press F6 then slip in the floppy with the drivers on it and that will be it setup will continue as normal.

  1. Especially if I postpone the SATA hookup, what do I have to do to ensure that Windows
    does not assign the letters C: and D: to the optical drives? Should I postpone hooking up the
    optical drives also (maybe use the floppy for booting & disk utilities until I get the SATA drives
    established - but I can’t begin Windows installation until at least one optical drive is hooked up!).
    No windows will not give an optical drive the letters C: or D: they are reserved for Hard drives.
  1. Should I connect the memory card reader last (I think so, to keep it from using lower drive letters)?
    you can always go into the administrative tools after its installed and change the letter to whatever you want it to be.

#3

Please help - for ages i was wondering why winXP setup kept saying there are no hard drives installed, but i finally got it that i need to install drivers.
so i pressed F6 like slayerking said above, but after i put my floppy in, the bottom bar says “please wait” and then brings up the ‘put your floppy in’ screen again. I tried changing the floppy cable, and i tried the floppy drive in a different system and it works fine. The floppy drive seems to be recongnised in bios ok aswell. Without doing this i cant start windows.

Someone please tell me if i’m doing something wrong. my mobo is the MSI s754 neo fis2r and processor is the 3400+. By the way i am only trying to install the 1 SATA maxtor drive.

Thanks


#4

1,
A. Do as you wish
B. No

2,
Matter of preference

1, Connect them before powering up
2, It wont so you can have them connected from the start
3, Doesn’t matter

Last post,
Get a proper driver floppy
//Danne


#5

In fact, the floppy cable was installed the wrong way (which i didn’t know was possible, as it isn’t possible with IDE cables).
My problems are solved thank god!
Shueb.


#6

SATA IS recognised when booting from winXP CD (as long as it isnt RAID, if it is hit F6 and install driver).
Connect everything, tell winXP to install on drive of your choice.
You can swap drive letters to ur hearts content by using the disk management snap in (r click my comp, select manage, select disk management)
Hope this helps


#7

@ jsteele
It depends on chipset and newer southbridges aren’t supported.
//Danne


#8

like mine