question about sata and raid


J

JM

Please excuse if this is a silly question, but I can't seem to understand
the interchangeability of the terms "sata" and "raid." They are used almost
as synonymous. But isn't "sata" a bus/transport technology which
technically has no relationship to "raid," which is a storage scheme?

The reason I bring this up has to do with the frustration I experienced
tonight replacing my IDE hard drive with a SATA one. I've put in dozens of
IDE drives, and for the most part it's a painless experience that requires
very little in the way of extra effort, preparation, etc. However, with my
new SATA drive, I couldn't figure anything out better than burning a FLOPPY
DISK and using that to load the "RAID" drivers from my motherboard
manufacturers website. I found at least two problems with this: 1) No
floppy drive on my laptop, which was the only computer with internet access
and thus able to download the "RAID" drivers, and; 2) No floppy drive in the
desktop computer that was getting the new SATA drive.

So, what am I missing? Why did I load "RAID" drivers to get serial ata
functionality? And why on earth have we moved to a hard drive bus
technology that requires such an awkward installation?

jm
 
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J

JS

No relationship, RAID can be PATA, SATA, SCSI or FIBER interface.
SATA is faster then PATA and is now more common on new PCs.
It could be your motherboard supports RAID for the SATA interface.

JS
 
R

Roger Cook

Be careful what SATA drives you use in a RAID setup. Most "desktop" class
drives do not seem to be compatible with RAID. Have a look at something like
the Western Digital RE (Raid-Enabled) series. Otherwise you could end up
with your drive(s) constantly being dropped by the RAID controller.
 
K

Ken Blake

JM said:
Please excuse if this is a silly question, but I can't seem to
understand the interchangeability of the terms "sata" and "raid."
They are used almost as synonymous. But isn't "sata" a bus/transport
technology which technically has no relationship to "raid," which is
a storage scheme?


No, they are not synonyms, and differ as you correctly point out. However
many moden motherboards support RAID on SATA drives, so people often talk
about SATA/RAID. Sometimes they correctly mean SATA plus RAID, but
somethimes they incorrectly use "SATA/RAID" to refer to only one of the two.

The reason I bring this up has to do with the frustration I
experienced tonight replacing my IDE hard drive with a SATA one.
I've put in dozens of IDE drives, and for the most part it's a
painless experience that requires very little in the way of extra
effort, preparation, etc. However, with my new SATA drive, I
couldn't figure anything out better than burning a FLOPPY DISK and
using that to load the "RAID" drivers from my motherboard
manufacturers website. I found at least two problems with this: 1)
No floppy drive on my laptop, which was the only computer with
internet access and thus able to download the "RAID" drivers, and; 2)
No floppy drive in the desktop computer that was getting the new SATA
drive.


One of the several reasons I always want to have floppy drives on my
computers.

So, what am I missing? Why did I load "RAID" drivers to get serial
ata functionality?


I assume that what you loaded was SATA/RAID drivers, where that slash means
"and/or."

And why on earth have we moved to a hard drive bus
technology that requires such an awkward installation?


Good questiion, but I can't answer it. I would assume that newer operating
system will have SATA support built-in, but we aren't there yet.
 
R

R. McCarty

SATA functions provided by the motherboard based Chipset doesn't
require user supplied drivers. The technology is automatically handled
by the BIOS itself. There are two distinct kinds of RAID, software &
hardware derived RAID(s). Just because a controller is RAID enabled
doesn't mean you have to use it. A SATA RAID controller can and
does work fine for handling individual physical drives. I have a PCI
SATA card for my external drive, While it can be used to create a
RAID array I use it just to handle a single WDC drive. Because it is
not a motherboard chipset device, I must add the driver to XP so that
it can properly work.
 
K

Kerry Brown

JM said:
Please excuse if this is a silly question, but I can't seem to
understand the interchangeability of the terms "sata" and "raid."
They are used almost as synonymous. But isn't "sata" a bus/transport
technology which technically has no relationship to "raid," which is
a storage scheme?

The reason I bring this up has to do with the frustration I
experienced tonight replacing my IDE hard drive with a SATA one.
I've put in dozens of IDE drives, and for the most part it's a
painless experience that requires very little in the way of extra
effort, preparation, etc. However, with my new SATA drive, I
couldn't figure anything out better than burning a FLOPPY DISK and
using that to load the "RAID" drivers from my motherboard
manufacturers website. I found at least two problems with this: 1)
No floppy drive on my laptop, which was the only computer with
internet access and thus able to download the "RAID" drivers, and; 2)
No floppy drive in the desktop computer that was getting the new SATA
drive.

So, what am I missing? Why did I load "RAID" drivers to get serial
ata functionality? And why on earth have we moved to a hard drive bus
technology that requires such an awkward installation?

jm

You have had a lot of good answers about the definitions of SATA and RAID
which from your post I think you already understand. To answer your question
about why you had to load the drivers:

Look in your BIOS for a setting to disable RAID. Many motherboards default
to enabling RAID on the SATA controller. Most times if you disable this in
the BIOS you will not need to load special drivers for the SATA controller.
 
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J

JM

Kerry Brown said:
You have had a lot of good answers about the definitions of SATA and RAID
which from your post I think you already understand. To answer your question
about why you had to load the drivers:

Look in your BIOS for a setting to disable RAID. Many motherboards default
to enabling RAID on the SATA controller. Most times if you disable this in
the BIOS you will not need to load special drivers for the SATA
controller.

{quoted for emphasis}
special drivers for the SATA controller.

That is fantastic information, thank you!!

jm
 

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