December 31st, 2006

My Brain Hurts

The new SATA RAID controller will only boot from the RAID array if it's connected to Port 0. For reasons unobvious to me, that's the eSATA port. I managed to get Windows XP Pro installed on the new RAID array, but it only works because there's an old IDE drive that's loading as drive C and that recognizes the array so that I have the option of booting from it.

The old IDE drive is incompatible with the working drive from the old RAID array to the extent that they can't be on the same controller, which means I can't copy the data from the old RAID drive to the new RAID array by putting it into one of my existing carriers, although I might be able to put it on the old RAID channel which I've reconfigured as IDE, except it won't know that the new SATA RAID array exists if it gets control of the boot cycle which it probably will.

Fine. I went back on line and ordered a four-port internal SATA controller -- otherwise identical to the one that I have -- and a bracket that will let me bring two of the SATA ports (2 and 3) out the back as eSATA ports so I can connect the external RAID array that I have, while using ports 0 and 1 to create -- I hope! -- a bootable array that doesn't rely on the presence of an old IDE drive so it can be found. In the meantime, if I go down to Fry's tomorrow, it looks like I can pick up a eSATA/SATA cable so that I can plug one of the drives into the external port and reestablish the array and start this all over again.

Actually, I probably don't need to start all over again, except that XP has gotten it into its head that there's a printer attached to my system and it keeps trying to install it on every reboot. There is no such printer and I can't find any way to disabuse it of the notion that the printer is there.

So I'll just start over.

Tomorrow. Or, at least, later today after I've had some sleep.

Change of Plans

This morning, I gave up on my effort to upgrade and repair the old studio computer. It's a bit over three years old, which means that it's time to give up and get a new box that does what I want. So I ended up at Fry's this morning, where I bought a new motherboard, processor, case, RAM, video card, and DVD-RW drive (cleverly forgetting to grab a floppy drive, but it turned out I had a spare at home). I've spent the afternoon assembling the beast, but I won't be trying to boot it up until tomorrow, because it's time to head off to Dave and Helen's New Year's Eve party.

I really hope this thing boots.

And I hope you all have a happy new year!