I bought a brand new XPS 8700. It comes with one 1TB HDD. I bought an identical 1TB HDD and hoping to create RAID1 for data protection.
I also tried reverting from RAID mode to ACHI in BIOS. Windows booted fine. Where am I missing? Note, I don’t mind wiping out the entire HDD and do a fresh install because I don’t have any personal data on it yet. If there was a “known working” process, please let me know. Thanks in advance.
To setup RAID 1 on the system you may follow the steps below after changing the SATA Mode from AHCI to RAID in BIOS:
*Note: Back up any important data before entering the RAID mode. The RAID configuration procedure can result in loss of all data from the hard drives.
Hope this helps. Please feel free to reply for any further assistance.
Amogh, Thanks for your quick reply. I tried what you suggested and here is what I got-
- I configured BIOS SATA mode be RAID.
- I went in Ctrl+I and created a RAID 1(mirror)
- Booted off a Windows 7 installation DVD and started installation. All went well till "Finishing Installation...." It errored out saying "Windows cannot be installed on this computer..."
- I did some research and looked like I needed to load the Intel Rapid RAID controller driver during Windows install.
- I downloaded the iRST_Intel driver for XPS 8700 from Dell.com and started install again.
- I went all the way till "creating partitions..." Clicked on "Load Driver" and point to my USB drive where the iRST driver is located. Loaded driver fine.
- Now after I creating a primary partition, it says "Windows cannot be installed to Disk0 Partion1" Error code 0x80300001.
The only thing I can think of is that I'm using a Windows 7 (SP1 not included) installation disk. Do you think that could be the cause of the issue?
I've got it working myself. The short answer is that you need UEFI enabled in BIOS, even installing Windows 7. I had it disabled. For those who are going down the same path, here is the step-by-step.
-In BIOS, configured SATA mode be RAID, and keep UEFI boot but disabled Security.
-During POST, press Ctrl + I and configured RAID1 (mirror).
-Boot the system off Windows 7 (non-SP1) DVD.
-When get to Partitioning the hard disk, I loaded Intel Rapid Storage Technology driver from a external USB drive.
-The partition that I want Windows installed was still showing some warning message that I need to load/use the correct controller in BIOS. I proceeded by clicking "Next".
-Windows installed without issue.
Thank you for the response. I really appreciate your technical expertise. You are absolutely correct. The ‘Boot Mode’ should be set to UEFI to setup RAID in XPS 8700.
Please feel free to reply for any further questions. I will be glad to assist you.
I am having MAJOR problems setting up RAID 1 with a Dell XPS 8700. (Core i7-4th gen, 16G ram, 2x2TB seagate drives, Win7 Pro)
Note: I am a computer engineer with 30 yr experience and I have setup 3 other Dell XPS 8700 this month so I know what I am doing, but this has me stumped.
With all my installations, I always download the latest drivers and start with a clean installation of Windows, I also always partition the drives (OS, data, etc.)
Here is the problem....
While Windows 7 64 bit SP1 installs perfectly, I can't get the Intel RST RAID utility to function. In all combinations I tried so far, Windows will freeze up and I have to do a cold boot, then the RAID gets screwed up and Windows won't loads as it asks for a repair/restore.
Here are some of the things I have tried over the past week: (10+ complete reinstalls and none are stable)
- Updated BIOS from A01 -> A03 didn't help (I did this first, maybe A03 is bad?)
- tried Legacy mode boot but similar results, most threads say to use UEFI with secure mode disabled, most of my tests used that configuration
- in the BIOS, configured SATA as RAID, used Control + I to setup a RAID 1 configuration (two identical Seagate 2TB drives)
- I pulled both hard drives out of the Dell box and tested them in a "known to be good" PC (my 'test' computer) used SeaTools testing tool. Both the short and long tests passes so drives are fine.
- I have read that Intel RST 12.6 is buggy, I know RST 12.7 is worse as Intel released that version and quickly pulled it from the web. Intel recently released RST 12.8 (Aug 2013) so I tried that one first. I have all the versions: RST 12.6 from Intel site and Dell site (different file sizes, not sure why), 12.7 and 12,8 -> in ALL cases, the system FREEZES after installing RST.
- Tried installing Dot Net 4.0 FIRST, installed Windows Updates (including many for Dot Net), rebooted and THEN installed RST but same problem.
- Sometimes I can get RST to work for many hours: Clean install Windows 7, updated drivers but no Windows Updates, then I can run RST and initialize and verify the RAID (take 1/2 day with 2TB drives), then I install Windows Updates and reboot and the RAID becomes degraded - actually the POST shows only one drive exists?!! If I shut down the system and re-power up, I then see both drives but the RAID is degraded and rebuilding starts.
- Power options: I always set this to high performance (client will need remote access so this avoid sleep mode). Without RST, I can use power saving mode and system will go to sleep, wake up and everything is normal
- Without Intel RST (any version 12.6-12.8) everything is fine and the POST always shows the expected GREEN normal status and shows both drives on line.
- Should I deliver the system without RST? I've blown a week of my own time trying to get Intel RST working but I am about to give up on the idea of RAID.
Any suggestions would be greatly appeciated.
I also need to change a new XPS 8700 from pre-installed Win 8 Pro to Win 7. I have generated recovery media for the Win 8 installation, I have downloaded Win 7 drivers for my machine from Dell support site, and I have a Win 7 Upgrade disk with a product Key. But your instructions for Phar1 don't seem to match my machine.
It has a large conventional disk (1,863 GB) and a smaller SSD (238 GB). When I start the Intel Rapid Storage Technology application I don't see an Accelerate tab, and the Manage tab seems simply to report the status - no option to change anything. I checked the BIOS settings: SATA mode in the Advanced settings is set to AHCI, not RAID. Boot mode is UEFI, and Secure Boot is enabled. F12 options include Legacy boot or UEFI boot, both with Secure Boot OFF.
If I simply put WIN 7 disk in the DVD drive and let the auto run take over will I have an opportunity to load the correct Dell drivers?
Not sure if this has been asked before, but when configuring RAID for the Dimension XPS 8700, is there a way you can select specific drives to be pooled into a single RAID?
Here is what I'm trying to do:
SATA 0 = Primary OS drive no change, left OEM with Win7
SATA 1 & SATA 2 = RAID 1
I know this can probably be done on a software level, but would prefer to do it on a hardware level i.e. BIOS
I'm hoping someone here may have noticed those options and can advise me before I compromise the OEM installation.