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Windows 7: RAID Installation Problems ASUS MB and etc.


28 Nov 2009   #1

windows 7
 
 
RAID Installation Problems ASUS MB and etc.

I have a computer I built using an ASUS MB A8N-SLI Premium card. This card is a was purchased in 2007 and is one having two RAID chipsets. The first is a NVIDA and the second is a Silicon Image. The OS was XP Professional.

When I set up to install Windows 7 Professional Upgrade, I found that a) there were no ASUS drivers for Windows 7 and the "generic" Nvida and SII Raid drivers would not work with this ASUS card. So, says I, lets try and see if the VISTA drivers will be accepted by Windows 7... Nope.. Win 7 error says "can't find any drivers compatible with your hardware". OK.. So.. I have to buy a completely new motherboard.. I chose the Gigabyte MA790GPT-UD3H with AMD Phenom II Quad-Core 3ghz CPU. The M B is excellent with dual output video for two CRTs, and all the I/O I needed including IEEE1394 port for my FlexRadio.. But I get ahead of myself! So.. Let the buyer of Windows 7 be aware that he should check his MB and insure that Windows 7 drivers are available for his particular model. Otherwise, upgrading to Windows 7 can be more expensive than you planned!

So now, I set about to


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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28 Nov 2009   #2

windows 7
 
 
Problems installing Win7 on RAID computer with 5 drives

As noted in a prior thread, I had to buy a new MB to get around no Windows 7 drivers for my 2 year old MB. But the problems were not over.

The first computer I upgraded was a RAID 1 equipped machine with three other large HDs for data storage. I got all ready and got my Win 7 RAID driver floppy ready and set to work. I put in the Windows 7 upgrade disk and "off it went". It asked me if I had the RAID driver disk, and I stuck it in as requested. Windows 7 installer chugged along and lo and behold, Win 7 came up running just fine.. or so I thought.

After I began loading the other drivers, I noticed that the boot screens included a screen that appeared to be a "dual boot" option window.. But I did not know I had a dual boot option.. So I proceeded for awhile and then I noticed that the machine would not boot up at all if I took the Windows 7 install disk out of the CD drive! What is this, I say.. Well, to make a long story short, Win 7 (in its great wisdom) had decided to install Windows 7 onto one of the SINGLE DRIVES and not onto the RAID pair as I had intended. I do remember that a) the RAID drives were the #1 priority boot drive selection and b) No other drives were selected in the boot sequence in the bios except the CD and floppy drives. So WHY did Windows 7 decide to install on a non-RAID drive which was not in the bios list at all? Well, perhaps it was because that drive happened to be an Acronis Clone Copy of the image from my RAID pair.

In any event, I then unplugged all the HDs except the RAID pair and went through the update install for the second time. This time, the Windows 7 installer installed the OS on the only drive(s) it could, that is the RAID 1 drive.. So.. That was it? Well, not quite. The new install would not accept the Windows 7 key! I phoned up MS tech support and over an hour or so, we decided that the reason the new key was not accepted was because it was already used on one of the other drives in my kit.. Go buy another key I was told.. NO WAY says I.. In the end, the tech was kind enough to use their remote access tools and delete the key from my single drive and their records and thus allow me to enter the registration key.

Now I am Up and Running fine on Windows 7 and it seems to be a very nice OS.. But.. see my next thread..
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Nov 2009   #3

windows 7
 
 
Windows 7 and UNattended Operation

I got my Windows 7 upgrade installed and set about installing my radio remote control programs into the machine. This unit operates UNattended most of the time and it is essential that it a) operate reliably and b) be able to automatically recover to normal operation should there be a power failure and c) It has to be able to send and receive files over the LAN to other computers HDs as needed.

With Windows 7, some of this turned out to be problematical. As delivered, Windows 7, when booted, comes to the LOGIN icon and waits for the user to input a password and press the button. This is totally incompatible with UNattended operation. So.. I set about trying to input the old XP/VISTA trick of running "control userpasswords2", then going to the Users window that pops up and UNclicking the "users must login to access this computer" option. UNFORTUNATELY, this option does not work in Windows 7 Professional Edition.

So.. I phone up MS Tech Support and am lucky to find a very cooperative and fairly knowledgable Technician. He understands my problem immediately and tells me that what I want to do is not possible. Says he, USERS MUST click the login button but we can elimiate the password.. Not good enough says I.

If you eliminate the password, then (at least on XP) you cannot access disk drives on networked computers. But I decided to let that one go for awhile.

The Tech set about to try dozens of things. We verfied that the "control userpasswords2" function did not work. Then he went off for awhile and came back and, using remote access, thrashed about for half an hour trying many things. Finally he said, NOW.. Try the control userpasswords2 command again. I did so and THAT TIME it worked. I Unchecked the "users must login....." feature and exited. I found that a) The machine would boot up and no password input was required and b) No one had to press the login icon and YES! I could still access the remote computer's disk drives even though my administrator user name had no password!

So.. All this is possible in Windows 7, but the Windows 7 folks (in their great wisdom) have made it impossible for ordinary system builders to do what we need to do.

I build a lot of computers for a) video security systems, b) mail servers, c) building automation displays, and d) even my own ham radio computer. All these need to be able to boot up UNattended without human intervention.

Since the TECH went away, the "control userpasswords2" command has been inoperative. Does anyone know how to repeat the above and have the functionality above come alive in Windows 7 WITHOUT having to spend an hour on the phone with MicroSoft Tech Support?

Thanks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 RAID Installation Problems ASUS MB and etc.




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