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setting up raid on dell precision 390

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setting up raid on dell precision 390

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  I recently bought a dell precision 390 and want to install a raid 1 on it with winxp pro.  I have been reading this forum and google'ng for information.  But am still confused.   Do I need anything in addition to the sas driver from dell and then set the bios to support the raid??




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  • Hi jamby

    To begin with I would like you to first ensure:

    There must be at least two hard drives installed in the computer to set up a RAID configuration.

    One of two methods may be used to configure RAID hard drive volumes. One method uses the Intel Option ROM utility, and is performed before you install the operating system onto the hard drive. The second method uses the Intel Application Accelerator, or Intel Storage Utility, and this method is performed after you have installed the operating system and the Intel Storage Utility. Both methods require that you set your computer to RAID-enabled mode before starting any of the RAID configuration procedures using the following steps:

    1. Enter system setup by hitting the F2 key when you see the Dell Logo on the startup.

    2. Use the up- and down-arrow keys to highlight Drives, and then press <Enter>.

    3. Use the up- and down-arrow keys to highlight Drive Controller, and then press <Enter>.

    4. Use the left- and right-arrow keys to highlight RAID On, press <Enter>, and then press <Esc>.

    5. Use the left- and right-arrow keys to highlight Save/Exit, and then press <Enter> to exit system setup and resume the boot process.


    You will lose any data on your hard drives when you create a RAID configuration using the following procedure. Back up data you want to keep before continuing.

    1. Press <Ctrl><I> when you are prompted to enter the Intel RAID Option ROM utility.

    2. Press the up- and down-arrow keys to highlight Create RAID Volume and press <Enter>.

    3. Enter a RAID volume name or accept the default and press <Enter>.

    4. For RAID 1, ensure the option "RAID1 (Mirror)" is selected and press <Enter>.

    5. If multiple Hard Disk Drives are available, press the up- or down-arrow keys and then the spacebar to select the two drives you want to use for your RAID configuration, and then press <Enter> to continue.

    6. Insert the desired capacity for the volume and press <Enter>. The default value will be the maximum available size for this configuration.

    7. Press <Enter> to create the volume.

    8. Press <Y> to confirm that you want to create the RAID volume.

    9. Confirm that the correct volume configuration is displayed on the main Intel RAID Option ROM utility screen.

    10. Press the up- and down-arrow keys to select Exit and press <Enter>.

    14. Install the operating system.


    1. Click the Start>Programs>Intel Application Accelerator>Intel Matrix Storage Manager to launch the Intel Storage Utility. ( If you do not see an Actions menu option, you have not yet set your computer to RAID-enabled mode.)

    2. On the Actions menu, select Create RAID Volume to launch the Create RAID Volume Wizard.

    3. Click Next at the first screen.

    4. On the Configure Volume screen, in the Volume Name box type, the name of your volume, and then press <Enter> to advance to the RAID level field.

    5. In the RAID Level box select the type of RAID array you wish to create RAID 0, 1, 10, or 5 and then press <Enter> to advance to the Strip Size.

    6. Confirm the volume name, select RAID 1 as the RAID level, and then click Next to continue.

    7. On the Select Volume Location screen, click the first hard drive you want to use to create your RAID 1 volume, and then click the right arrow. Click a second hard drive until two drives appear in the selected window, and then click Next.

    8. In the Specify Volume Size window, select the appropriate volume size, and then click Next.

    9. Click Finish to create the volume, or click Back to make changes.

    Hope this helps. In case you need any more help please feel free to reply to this.

    Thanks & Regards
    Zohaib R
    To know more about Dell Product Support, Drivers & Downloads, Order & Dispatch status -> choose
    your region US Customers; India Customers. For Dell support videos click Here
  • Ok i read but could you tell me if there is a way to use the drive without Raid?. What i mean is if i can use the second Hard Drive as just another storage area?.

  • Po..

     Yes you can have two hard drives and use both outside a raid. 


  • OK, thanks.. I have a Dell precision m6500  and I run windows 10. I wanted to do that but a raid configuration utility came up at start up. I dont know what settings in the bios i should set to make it work. It registers in the bios but not in windows

  • sorry, not sure how a m6500 is configured but in the 390 you have to force the raid by adding a sas driver.

    Look at the Dell website and look for the manual on your computer,  then look for info on a raid.  You should be able to shut it off.


  • Do you have a SAS 5/iR controller? It supports both RAID and non-RAID, but in EITHER mode, you must feed Windows the drivers. If you are using XP (WHY?!??!), this is the driver you need:

    You must download and run the file to extract the contents before use. You must either put these files on floppy or use (recommended) to integrate the drivers into your installation media. Your media must also be SP2 or SP3.

    CTRL-C is the command to get into the SAS 5 utility. Left unconfigured, the drives will be used in non-RAID mode, or you can configure a RAID 0 (Integrated Stripe - IS (not recommended)) or a RAID 1 (Integrated Mirror - IM).

  • I just noticed you have an M6500. That has no place at all in this thread. Completely different hardware and technology. Create your own thread next time.