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Alan_A

Compatibility issues: Asus P6T Deluxe and 3ware 9650SE - any workarounds?

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Am building an FSX system per NickN's advice (a Nick-spec system?) Just ran into a hardware snag. It seems that the 3ware 9650SE RAID card isn't compatible with the ASUS P6T motherboard. To configure the RAID card, it's necessary to enter the 3ware BIOS at boot-up. But when I try to do that, I'm told that there isn't enough PMM RAM to load the BIOS. As a result I'm unable to configure the drives and load the OS (the drives are recognized but don't have drive letter designations). I've checked on the Internet and found out this is a known issue. According to forum posts, there's no solution short of an ASUS BIOS revision. I'm following up with ASUS and 3ware but thought I'd ask here whether anyone else has run into this and whether there's a workaround that others have missed. Please advise. Thanks in advance.Alan

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Am building an FSX system per NickN's advice (a Nick-spec system?) Just ran into a hardware snag. It seems that the 3ware 9650SE RAID card isn't compatible with the ASUS P6T motherboard. To configure the RAID card, it's necessary to enter the 3ware BIOS at boot-up. But when I try to do that, I'm told that there isn't enough PMM RAM to load the BIOS. As a result I'm unable to configure the drives and load the OS (the drives are recognized but don't have drive letter designations). I've checked on the Internet and found out this is a known issue. According to forum posts, there's no solution short of an ASUS BIOS revision. I'm following up with ASUS and 3ware but thought I'd ask here whether anyone else has run into this and whether there's a workaround that others have missed. Please advise. Thanks in advance.Alan
I wish I had an answer for you....I don't use Raid but am aware of the issues on the P6T....I have my own issues with the board...SoundMax onboard sound.....Asus is aware but I don't think anything is going to happen. My issue is not on all P6 boards.....but I think ther may be some kind of Raid issue on all P6 boards but not sure. I do know on the Asus forums there are plenty of posts about it and if you do a Google it will show up also. You can post on the Asus forum but be aware that Asus does not respond to that forum they just give us a venue to post. Regards

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I wish I had an answer for you....I don't use Raid but am aware of the issues on the P6T....I have my own issues with the board...SoundMax onboard sound.....Asus is aware but I don't think anything is going to happen. My issue is not on all P6 boards.....but I think ther may be some kind of Raid issue on all P6 boards but not sure. I do know on the Asus forums there are plenty of posts about it and if you do a Google it will show up also. You can post on the Asus forum but be aware that Asus does not respond to that forum they just give us a venue to post. Regards
Thanks. I tried flashing the motherboard BIOS but that didn't help. Am wondering if another RAID card might work (Arcea?) Wasn't planning to do a RAID setup - just wanted the extra performance lift from the hardware card. I guess I can fall back and run the drives (Velociraptors) in motherboard SATA, which by all acounts would give very decent performance (and it'd be simpler), but I was hoping for more of an edge. Will keep hunting and see what I can come up with. Other insights and suggestions still welcome, of course....Alan

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Thanks. I tried flashing the motherboard BIOS but that didn't help. Am wondering if another RAID card might work (Arcea?) Wasn't planning to do a RAID setup - just wanted the extra performance lift from the hardware card. I guess I can fall back and run the drives (Velociraptors) in motherboard SATA, which by all acounts would give very decent performance (and it'd be simpler), but I was hoping for more of an edge. Will keep hunting and see what I can come up with. Other insights and suggestions still welcome, of course....Alan
Alan, I am certainly no expert on FSX but I have read that if you do not use the hardware card a Raid setup will not do any good in FSX...however I do know FSX set up on it's own VelociRaptor will scream. I keep hoping Asus will come out with a new driver for the on-board sound but I read somewhere that SoundMax was either out of business or had been sold...either way when going to their web site one is told you can only get drivers from the maker of your M/B.

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Am building an FSX system per NickN's advice (a Nick-spec system?) Just ran into a hardware snag. It seems that the 3ware 9650SE RAID card isn't compatible with the ASUS P6T motherboard. To configure the RAID card, it's necessary to enter the 3ware BIOS at boot-up. But when I try to do that, I'm told that there isn't enough PMM RAM to load the BIOS. As a result I'm unable to configure the drives and load the OS (the drives are recognized but don't have drive letter designations). I've checked on the Internet and found out this is a known issue. According to forum posts, there's no solution short of an ASUS BIOS revision. I'm following up with ASUS and 3ware but thought I'd ask here whether anyone else has run into this and whether there's a workaround that others have missed. Please advise. Thanks in advance.Alan
AlanI am not on the P6T with that card and was not aware of an issue with it and that board. I would have to check into it myself to advise however if you have confirmed this through Asus or 3ware I doubt there is anything I could suggest. I would say at that point a different card or a BIOS update would be required

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Alan, I am certainly no expert on FSX but I have read that if you do not use the hardware card a Raid setup will not do any good in FSX...however I do know FSX set up on it's own VelociRaptor will scream. I keep hoping Asus will come out with a new driver for the on-board sound but I read somewhere that SoundMax was either out of business or had been sold...either way when going to their web site one is told you can only get drivers from the maker of your M/B.
Plan A is the Velociraptor on the hardware card, but not in RAID. Plan B is the Velociraptor on motherboard SATA. No RAID in either case - am going for simplicity here (well, relatively speaking) and also, I want to use the Veliciraptor as a dedicated FSX drive and hold the second for a limited number of other programs. It was going to be home to TrainSim 2 but that traffic's no longer a factor, as they say...I understand the Veliciraptor on motherboard SATA should be pretty amazingly fast - was just hoping for one more degree of amazing. Maybe on another RAID card if I can track down a good one.Alan

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AlanI am not on the P6T with that card and was not aware of an issue with it and that board. I would have to check into it myself to advise however if you have confirmed this through Asus or 3ware I doubt there is anything I could suggest. I would say at that point a different card or a BIOS update would be required
Thanks, Nick - wasn't expecting you'd be up on every piece of hardware in every possible combination. Or am I being too easy on you...?Am still waiting for official word from Asus and/or 3ware, but after reading a number of forum comments, I'm not optimistic that the 3ware will fly. As noted, motherboard BIOS update did no good.I know you're a big supporter of the 3ware cards. If you had to nominate a second choice, what would it be? Or am I better off just going with the FSX Velociraptor in motherboard SATA?Let me know, when you can.Alan

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Thanks, Nick - wasn't expecting you'd be up on every piece of hardware in every possible combination. Or am I being too easy on you...?Am still waiting for official word from Asus and/or 3ware, but after reading a number of forum comments, I'm not optimistic that the 3ware will fly. As noted, motherboard BIOS update did no good.I know you're a big supporter of the 3ware cards. If you had to nominate a second choice, what would it be? Or am I better off just going with the FSX Velociraptor in motherboard SATA?Let me know, when you can.Alan
With the Vrap coming off the motherboard port is fine... The card will allow the drive to have everything it needs without the CPU overheadIts not that I favor 3ware.. its just for the price and the perf one gets its a good investment. 3ware has one of the best support systems around. They will go 1 on 1 with you to resolve issues if you contact them directly. I would go that route first because they may have better information for you to make an informed decision around a fix or replacement. As for replacing with something else.. at this point its very possible the problem would trickle down to other cards as well. I can tell you the Asus Rampage II (x58) works fine with the 3ware card so I can not see this being a chipset hardware issue but something in the BIOS of the P6T or something in support construction of the board off the PCIe port. It may also be a conflict with the motherboard SAS/SATA controller which again would indicate BIOS.

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With the Vrap coming off the motherboard port is fine... The card will allow the drive to have everything it needs without the CPU overheadIts not that I favor 3ware.. its just for the price and the perf one gets its a good investment. 3ware has one of the best support systems around. They will go 1 on 1 with you to resolve issues if you contact them directly. I would go that route first because they may have better information for you to make an informed decision around a fix or replacement. As for replacing with something else.. at this point its very possible the problem would trickle down to other cards as well. I can tell you the Asus Rampage II (x58) works fine with the 3ware card so I can not see this being a chipset hardware issue but something in the BIOS of the P6T or something in support construction of the board off the PCIe port. It may also be a conflict with the motherboard SAS/SATA controller which again would indicate BIOS.
Thanks yet again. Once I'm off the road - in a couple of days - I'll see about getting one-on-one help from 3ware. If that doesn't work I'll see about Asus again. But from what I'm hearing it doesn't sound like there'll be an easy solution to this. Good to hear that the worst-case scenario (motherboard SATA) will at least be decent.I should clarify - I didn't mean to imply that your support of 3ware was favoritism - was just noting that you've supported it in the sense that you've recommended it several times on the merits, for reasons that make complete sense. I'm convinced. If I can get it working, I'll be a happier camper...I guess I could also swap the P6T for a Rampage II - not eager to tear down the motherboard and start over but if it's a better long-term solution, I'll think about it. It'd keep me off the streets, at least...Alan

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Update - problem solved. The 3ware card needed a firmware update - I don't have the exact number handy but it came with the 3-series firmware installed and it had to be flashed to the 4-series. Credit to 3ware's (excellent) tech support for the suggestion. It was a complicated process. I couldn't get my other computer to recognize the card at all, so I had to connect a hard drive via motherboard SATA, load Vista, install the 3ware card, update the firmware, then connect the drives to the 3ware card, load the 3ware BIOS (in the process wiping out my Vista install), then tweak the P6T BIOS to move the card to the top of the boot order, load the 3ware drivers, load Vista, then work with the system management tools to get Vista to recognize the drives connected to the 3ware card. Fortunately the 3ware manual is extremely clear on all these points. So now I'm initializing and formatting the Velociraptors and will be able to move forward. A very good outcome - I wasn't looking forward to using the 3ware card as a paperweight. Am, however, looking forward to the performance boost.For anyone else dealing with the problem - the firmware update is the answer and it's worth the hassle to go through it.Will report again from the scene of the next crisis....Alan

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