Configuring multiple SATA hdd's on dual boot XP system


D

Dan

This is not strictly an XP question, but I'm hoping one of the learned folks
here can provide some insights into how to configure my 4 sata hdd's to dual
boot 2 XP Pro's.

System is a new build based on an Asus P5B Deluxe mobo, which has 6 SATA
ports. The manual says by default they are "set to standard IDE mode".
None of the SATA's are raided at the moment. Manual says ports 1, 2, 5 & 6
are set as "masters", ports 3 & 4 are set as "slaves".

Drives are as follows:

1) Primary XP OS on 320 gig SATA drive, Seagate 3320620AS, connected to MOBO
SATA port 1 as master. Drive is partitioned into 3rds, 1st partition is the
OS, other 2 ar storage.
2) 2nd 320 gig SATA drive, Seagate 3320620AS, connected to MOBO SATA port 3
as slave. I will partition & install a 2nd XP as on the above drive.
3) New 500 gig SATA drive, Seagate 3500641AS, on MOBO SATA port 2 for
storage. Mobo manual says this is a "master" port.
4) New 500 gig SATA drive, Seagate 3500641AS, #2 on MOBO SATA port 4 for
storage. Mobo manual says this is a "slave" port.

In addition, I have 2 older PATA drives used as storage, both WD's, a 120
gig & a 160 gig. One is slave to the CD burner, the other is on a PCI IDE
card by itself.

I have looked at the various RAID options, While I'd like the speed
increase, I don't want to risk the data loss of RAID 0, and I don't want to
lose the storage capacity required for RAID 1. So I think I'll retain the
default IDE setup for the time being. My question is, how should the
SATA's be connected at the mobo, slave, or master? As it is I can access all
drives fine. Don't know if the slave/master thing matters beyond that, but
if so I'd like to have the connections config'd to best advantage. Perhaps
having the 2 320's as MASTER and the 2 500's as SLAVES would be right?

Thanks in advance for any help.

Fred
 
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R

R. McCarty

The SATA channels relate to the Controller chip that is serving
them, not the traditional PATA terminology of Master/Slave. On
that family of Asus boards there are two separate SATA controllers.
The normal Intel motherboard based and a separate JMicron chip
that provides additional SATA and the single channel PATA port.

With all those drives, I hope you've got adequate cooling. For top
tier PC's I'm installing drives in a Antec Drive cooler unit that has
some very good heat transfer plates and front intake fan. Some of
the newer SATA drives can and do run pretty hot.
 
D

Dan

R. McCarty said:
The SATA channels relate to the Controller chip that is serving
them, not the traditional PATA terminology of Master/Slave. On
that family of Asus boards there are two separate SATA controllers.
The normal Intel motherboard based and a separate JMicron chip
that provides additional SATA and the single channel PATA port.

So does that mean the master/slave issue is moot as far as the sata's are
concerned?
With all those drives, I hope you've got adequate cooling. For top
tier PC's I'm installing drives in a Antec Drive cooler unit that has
some very good heat transfer plates and front intake fan. Some of
the newer SATA drives can and do run pretty hot.

I'm using this case
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16811129017 which has 3
120mm fans, currently set at mid-speed. I have increased the speed of the
lowest fan, which draws air across the 4 SATA's to HI.

Thanks for your reply.

Fred
 
R

R. McCarty

Yep, All SATA channels are single device and there is no such
thing as device contention or any form of multiplexing with SATA.
With those motherboards you just have to configure the operating
mode of the controllers correctly.

Nice case - I'd get SpeedFan 4.31 for monitoring, never had
much luck with the Asus Probe utility for environmental monitoring.
 
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D

Dan

R. McCarty said:
Yep, All SATA channels are single device and there is no such
thing as device contention or any form of multiplexing with SATA.
With those motherboards you just have to configure the operating
mode of the controllers correctly.

Nice case - I'd get SpeedFan 4.31 for monitoring, never had
much luck with the Asus Probe utility for environmental monitoring.

Thanks, I have Fanspeed 4.29, but I haven't palyed with it much, probably
should. It APPEARS to be saying Sata's are running 30C & 29C for the 2
320's & 31C & 31C for the 2 500's, or an average of 86.45, which doesn't
seem TOOOOO bad assuming it's accurate, for some general internet, a bit of
file copying & some newsleecher-ing, I'd like to look into a bit of
overclocking as well, which I gather this mobo does well, once I figure THAT
out.

Fred
 

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