780i SLI Motherboard and Windows 7 Professional 64-bit RAID Install


My motherboard is the 780i SLI with: Northbridge NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI SPP rev. A2
Southbridge NVIDIA nForce 780i SLI MCP rev. A3

I currently have a Windows XP Pro 32-bit install on a single Western Digital 500gig HDD, and I just ordered and received a second WD 500gig HDD.

I will be doing a clean install of Windows 7 Pro 64-bit OEM and would like to install both of these drives in a RAID 0 Striped configuration, but I cannot find any information on how to install the RAID drivers during the Windows 7 OS install. Nvidia has nForce driver package 15.35 on their website for Windows 7 64-bit, but it is an executable installer package, and I dont have the knowledge of how to extract just the RAID drivers from the installer package since I am currently on WinXP 32-bit. I am very knowledgable about my BIOS, but have never setup a RAID 0 configuration before.

Where do I get just the 780i RAID drivers, and how do I install them when I install Windows 7 64-bit?

Many thanks in advance.

You can use a tool to extract the installer like 7-Zip, or you can just run the installer up until the point where nothing is actually installed, by then the drivers will be decompressed to C:\Nvidia I believe.

When installing Win7 do a custom install and it will give you the option to load drivers from a USB device. If you have the NVRaid drivers on a USB drive you can point it to that location and it should load.

Ok, I ran the 64-bit installer until it extracted the files to C:\Nvidia\nforce\64bit\ide\win764\sataraid

The \sataraid folder has a “nvraid.cat” file, a “nvrd64.inf” file and several .sys and .dll files. Do I put the \sataraid folder on my USB drive, or just the contents of the folder at the root level on the USB drive?

Do I need to format both drives prior to the Win7 custom install, or will I be given that chance before installing the raid drivers?

Also, since I’m going with a Striped array for performance reasons, what should I use for block size? 64…128??

Many thanks for your help!

@ Mankxp:
Welcome at Win-RAID Forum!

I recommend to copy all files, which are within the "sataraid" folder, into the root of the USB drive.

Since I suspect, that you want to install Windows 7 x64 onto the RAID0 array, you should create the array before you start with the OS installation.

If you want the best all-over benchmark scores, I recommend to use a block size of 128 KB.

Good luck!

Good luck!

Ok, pardon this newbish question, so both drives will be formatted during formation of the array? I have WinXP Pro 32-bit on one of the drives, so I was wondering at what point I would format that drive, and the new drive, in preparation for the Win 7 64-bit install…??

And thanks for the welcome and your help!

You can do a quick format of both HDDs, before you are going to create the RAID array, but you will not be able to format the current system drive from within Windows.
So I recommend to create the RAID array as first step. At the beginning of the OS installation you will get the opportunity to do a quick format of the complete RAID array.