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Dell Optiplex 780 RAID 1 configuration

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Dell Optiplex 780 RAID 1 configuration

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I have a brand new Optiplex 780.  I purchased it with one hard drive (160GB) that I want to use for the OS.  I also want to purchase another 2 drives (2 x 2tb WD hard drives) and set them up in a RAID 1 configuration.  Is this possible (1 x HD for the OS nonRAID, and 2 x HD for storage RAID1)?

The system is being used for a 16 channel security system.

Thank you in advance


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  • If someone could help me out it would be  greatly appreciated with a simple yes it is possible or no it is not


    Thank you in advance

  • Hi Sheriffa,

    I saw your message last night but did not have time to look around much for an answer. However, I'm pretty sure the answer is no. To enable RAID, there is a BIOS setting and it's either on or off, so that wouldn't seem to leave the option of mixing a non-RAID drive with two RAID drives.

  • Begging Osprey's pardon, but it just might be possible if your 780 sets up its RAID in a manner similar to my XPS 410.  The way I set up my RAID 0 I plugged the two RAID drives into SATA 3 and SATA 4; some machines would label these ports 2 and 3, but my ports begin numbering at "1" instead of "0".  I then plugged my optical drive into SATA 1 (might be "0" in your case).  When I started the machine, I went to setup first and made certain the controller was set to RAID On.  I then exited setup and used CTRL-i to go to the Intel option ROM and made sure that the two hard drives I wanted in the RAID were selected as member drives.  In my case I don't think I need worry about selection of the third hard drive since my chipset only handles RAID 1 and RAID 0, but if the 780 chipset can handle one of the higher order RAIDs you will need to be certain that the third hard drive is not selected as a member drive; the RAID status will still report the drive as being managed by the RAID BIOS but should be listed as a non-member drive.

    The only difference I see in your case is that you would likely want to put the single drive you wish to install the OS onto in the SATA 0 (or 1) position and place your optical drive in SATA 1 (or 2); or the other way round.  Some folks, like myself, prefer to have the optical drive in the first position.  You would then identify SATA 0 (or 1) in the boot order as the first boot device.

    EDIT:  Forgot to mention that you need to be careful to select the right storage element when you install the OS.  Make sure that setup gets pointed to the single drive rather than the RAID.  The RAID will look just like a regular hard drive to setup so you might want to give the array a name you will easily recognize when you go through the ROM setup.

    Dell Forum member since 2005

  • I am is the same boat I am adding 2 2TB drives and need to have them in a mirrored. I will be using them to record cameras did the above suggestion work?