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Old 08-28-2005, 07:45 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default SATA question

I got a single SATA Raptor drive installed on my Abit IC7-MAX3 board. Back when I installed Windows last year, I never went through the process of pressing F6 to load drivers. Everything installed fine.. or at least the way it should have been I believe. Confused Do you even need to press F6 for SATA drives or is it a SCSI thing only?

Stupid question, but it haunts me to think if it's possible to use a SATA drive in a slower mode? *shrugs*

How can I make sure it's running at the right speeds? I feel dumb asking this question because if it installed the OS, then it's in SATA mode right.. after all, it's an SATA drive. Right?

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Old 08-28-2005, 09:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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After doing a little reading, I think I found my answer.
If the motherboard has native SATA support via the SouthBridge.. there's no need to press F6 to load any drivers while installing Windows.

This is from Abit's product page on the IC7-MAX3:

The IC7-MAX3 is equipped with features never even conceived for a desktop motherboard. For users who require MAXimum security and storage, the ABIT MAX3 features 6 channel serial ATA RAID with the Silicon Image 4-port serial ATA RAID controller plus native 2 channel support...

- 2 channel SATA 150MB/s data transfer rate with RAID function (0/1) via South Bridge
- 4 channel SATA 150MB/s data transfer rate with RAID function (0/1/0+1) via Silicon Image PCI Chip"

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Old 08-28-2005, 10:52 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah, most mobos do come with built in a hardware SATA mode onnit you can enable or disable in the bios. Now since you're using just 1 the SATA RAID functions won't matter for ya, but they are sweet if you have an extra HD kickin' around. Now, here's the downside to Hardware SATA for RAID (don't think it affects singles) is that if your mobo dies, you'll need to buy most likely the exact same mobo to be able to properly rebuild the RAID array. You can also do software RAID modes with windows, but I figure I'd be a bit slower since tha'd put a extra little (or big I'm not sure) load on the CPU.

So yeah, for a single HD, I don't think you really needed to do anything other than plug it in, but I could be wrong.. I'm sure some else more experienced in the ways of SATA HD's will post hea.
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Old 08-28-2005, 11:27 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Some MOBO's come with "hardware" SATA/RAID controllers on the MOBO. Some... Do not. The ones that do not, you'll need to install SATA/RAID software drivers during windows installation so that windows will recognize the SATA drivers during installation.

Since SATA drives are becoming more popular most for the newer (MID to HIGH) end MOBO's will come with "hardware" SATA/RAID controllers.
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