Tip & How-To about ASUS M4A79T Deluxe ( M4A79T DLX MB PHENOM I) Motherboard
After going through some issues installing Windows onto a RAID partition using this Motherboard, I found some things that were helpful.
#1 Install hangs, or I get an error after Installing RAID Driver. Nowhere in the manual does it tell you this (or at least I didn't see it) but when you install the RAID driver during the windows install, the Motherboard automatically sets SATA connectors 1, 2, 3, and 4 to be RAID. That means if the DVD/CD Rom you are using is plugged in to any of those connections, the minute you install the RAID Driver, the Optical Drive will no longer work. You have to use SATA 5 connector on the motherboard for your optical drive
#2 Multiple Optical Drives with RAID. Because of the issue in #1, there is really only 1 internal SATA Port you can plug an Optical drive into when you have RAID configured. There are some solutions if you want more than 1 Optical Drive alongside your RAID configurations.
You can use the ESATA port on the back of the Motherboard with an extra-long SATA cable. If your case has grommets on the back for water-cooling lines, you can run the cable through there, or just in an unused PCI slot on the back.
You can use an old-school PATA DVDrom. If you are installing 2 Optical drives, and one is a DVD burner or reader, you could get a PATA DVD Burner or reader instead. This Motherboard does have a good old fashioned ribbon connection, so it's possible. Typically DVDs or CDs don't move enough data to see a difference between PATA and SATA, but when you start getting into any DVD reading/Writing above 8X or so, you will be throttled.
Get a PCIe controller card. I think of this as the last resort for this board because of it's possibility with graphics cards. Hooking up anything unnecessary to any of the PCI slots would be defeating the purpose of having 2 full 16X PCIe slots. You might be able to squeeze one in on one of the 1X connections, or maybe the bottom full slot, but it could get cramped if you have 2 or more Video cards.
#3 Windows Installation Issues. DVD Drive Stops Reading during install. I had this issue even after finding out my issue from tip #1. I found that some windows install discs mixed with some manufacturer's DVD drives don't get along well. It would start the installation OK, and get most of the way through it, then it would hang and throw up an error. It seems that during Installation, the SATA DVD drive decides that doesn't like the generic drivers anymore, and just stops working. I fixed this by pulling a PATA DVD drive out of an older PC to use until Windows was fully installed. Once Windows was installed, I pulled that drive back out, and Installed my SATA DVD drive, and Windows installed the drivers with no problems.
#4 RAID Performance. I'm not too sure that I'm getting the best performance from this RAID-0 configuration. I'm running 2 WD Caviar Black 500GB HDDs. My Windows Experience score for the drives is still 5.9. Perhaps the RAID configuration would work better with some faster drives, like Samsung drives, or WD Velociraptors... But I'm unsure.
Posted by b... on
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