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Integration of AMD / ATI SB7XX textmode RAID / AHCI drivers on an XP

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#1
MikeD

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Integration of AMD / ATI SB7XX textmode RAID / AHCI drivers on an XP install CD

I recently purchased an ASUS M4A78-EM motherboard with an integrated RAID controller. My goal was to build a low power home RAID server.

I used the following components,
1 x ASUS M4A78-EM AM3/AM2+/AM2 AMD 780G HDMI Micro ATX AMD Motherboard
2 x Seagate Barracuda LP 1T HDDs ST31000520AS
1 x Samsung 500 G HDD
1 x IDE Optical Drive
1 x AMD Athlon 64 X2 5050e Brisbane 2.6GHz 2 x 512KB L2 Cache Socket AM2 45W Dual-Core
1 x Kingston HyperX 2GB 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800
1 x APEVIA X-QPACK

The Mobo came with no written instructions for setting up RAID and installing Windows XP and the documentation on the included CD also made no mention of this :realmad: After much searching and research I learned I'd need to use a tool like nLite to create an XP install CD with textmode RAID drivers for my mobo "slipstreamed" onto the install CD. Too bad the ASUS support web site makes no mention of any of this. In fact when you search downloads for this mobo it doesn't even include the textmode drivers for this motherboard. After about a dozen attempts I managed to track down the correct drivers and create an XP install CD that worked.


In summary you'll need to do the following to create an XP install CD with drivers for this mobo.

1, Download and install nLite

2, Download the ATI Catalyst 9.6 Motherboard/Chipset RAID drivers for XP from the link below. This includes the textmode drivers and txtsetup.oem file you'll need to include on your XP install CD.

http://game.amd.com/...ed/xp32-chipset

3, Start up nLite and be sure (at the least) to select tasks "Integrate Drivers" and "Create a Bootable ISO"

4, Use the nLite "Integrate Drivers" screen to "Insert" the textmode RAID drivers you downloaded at step 2

5, Use the direct burn option to burn a bootable install CD

6, Go into the mobo's BIOS and under "SATA Configuration" set "OnChip SATA Type" to "RAID." Save your BIOS settings and exit. (Your HDD's will no longer appear in BIOS.)

7, When prompted hit CTRL-F to set up your RAID array in the Option ROM Utility. I set my PC up with the 2x1T HDDs in a RAID 1 array (for my data, music, pictures etc) and the 500G HDD as a standalone for the OS and Apps.

8, Boot up the PC with the install CD inserted. Do NOT hit F6 when prompted. If you added the correct drivers to your install CD XP Setup will recognize your HDDs :thumbup If they don't show up you've done something wrong, either included the wrong drivers (most likely) or made some other mistake. I took me about 10 attempts to get this right.

I think these drivers and this approach will work for other M4A78 (maybe even M3A78) mobo variations and other AMD motherboards that use the South Bridge 700 / SB700 / SB7XX / 780G chipset.

-Mike D


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#2
Fernando 1

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@ MikeD:
Welcome at MSFN Forums and thank you for your short guide.

@ all:
To make the integration of the needed AMD/ATI textmode drivers into a bootable Windows XP (32/64bit) CD easier and safer for you, I have prepared 2 small sized driverpacks, which can be downloaded here:
for Windows XP:
32bit AMD/ATI SBxxx AHCI/RAID Textmode Driver v3.3.1540.29 mod by Fernando
for Windows XP x64:
64bit AMD/ATI SBxxx AHCI/RAID Textmode Driver v3.3.1540.29 mod by Fernando

Just unzip the appropriate package and integrate it as textmode driver by using nLite.

Remarks:

  • The INF and OEM files of the linked 32/64bit AMD textmode drivers have been customized by me to make them usable with nearly all AMD chipsets from SB6xx up.
  • I have reorganized the driver folder structure and the content of the TXTSETUP.OEM file to minimize the failure risk during the XP installation.
Have fun!
Fernando

EDIT: This post and the download links have been updated on 11/18/2012.


Edited by Fernando 1, 18 November 2012 - 12:36 PM.


#3
bigheart

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Hello i doing the samething that slipstream AMD AHCI deriver and SP3 into my xp installation CD.
however, the CD boot up but not recognize my HDD which connected to the SATA port with AHCI enabled.

in nLite, i just insert the ahcix86.inf. do i need to select more file in the driver pack?

please advice, thanks!!

#4
MikeD

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Bighart,
I don't think you're pointing to the correct driver. Do some reading about 'textmode drivers'. I think you're looking for a file called txtsetup.oem.

-Mike

#5
bigheart

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Hello Mike,

thanks, i see textmode.oem in the driver pack, but can i insert it in nLite? as i understand only the inf file can be open.

bigheart

#6
Fernando 1

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Hello i doing the samething that slipstream AMD AHCI deriver and SP3 into my xp installation CD.
however, the CD boot up but not recognize my HDD which connected to the SATA port with AHCI enabled.

in nLite, i just insert the ahcix86.inf. do i need to select more file in the driver pack?

No, nLite will copy all other files of the folder too.
You only have to make sure, that a TXTSETUP.OEM file is present.
If you have done everything the right way, but the XP Setup will not detect the SATA hdd running in AHCI mode, you obviously have integrated a textmode driver, which is not suitable for the Southbridge chip of the mainboard.

#7
Phenomic

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Thank you all for sharing. I too have an Asus mobo with 790GX / SB750 chipset.

I have 2 questions:

(1) How do you enable AHCI mode AFTER you have installed XP?

(2) How do you do the same thing in Windows 2000? I slipstreamed AHCI SATA drivers into the installation CD but Win2K will still not install.

#8
johnhc

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Phenomic, I have not done this yet (next build), but I think it is enabled in your BIOS. Typically you hit the Delete key early when booting. Enjoy, John.

#9
cdob

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How do you enable AHCI mode AFTER you have installed XP?

Copy file ahcix86.sys to system32\drivers. Import this reg settings
REGEDIT4

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\CriticalDeviceDatabase\pci#ven_1002&cc_0106]
"Service"="ahcix86"
"ClassGUID"="{4D36E97B-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ahcix86]
"Type"=dword:00000001
"Start"=dword:00000000
"ErrorControl"=dword:00000001
"Tag"=dword:00000021
"ImagePath"="system32\\drivers\\ahcix86.sys"
"Group"="SCSI Miniport"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ahcix86\Parameters\PnpInterface]
"5"=dword:00000001
Goto BIOS, set AHCI. Reboot.

How do you do the same thing in Windows 2000?

Basically do the same thing as in XP.
However: does ahcix86.sys support Windows 2000?

#10
Phenomic

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Thank you! I hope this helps many people because mobo makers have poor software support.

XP

This looks easier and faster than creating a slipstream CD. In other words, it seems better to install XP in default IDE mode and install AHCI driver after? Right-click on the AHCIX86.INF and select "Install"?

But doesn't XP need a text mode driver as well? I noticed that the Recovery Console tales MINUTES instead of seconds to load, something wrong here.


How do you do the same thing in Windows 2000?

Basically do the same thing as in XP.
However: does ahcix86.sys support Windows 2000?


2000

That's a very good question. NVIDIA chipsets do support Win2k. XP and 2000 are the same kernel, so it should work, but so far i can't get Win2k to recognize SATA hard drives even though the install CD loads on a SATA optical drive.

Do you have a 790GX / SB750 chipset? I'm willing to experiment. Maybe the thing to do is install 2000 on an IDE/PATA hard disk and install AHCI drives after?

#11
johnhc

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I am really not sure what kind of problems you guys are having and what kind of solution you are looking for. In order to install XP on an AHCI SATA drive, you need to have AHCI SATA text mode drivers and have AHCI enabled in the BIOS. NLite can install the drivers for you or you can use F6 and a floppy at the start of Setup. If you use F6 then you must disable OEM Preinstall in the nLite Unattended Task. The text mode drivers must be for the OS you are installing and are distinguished by having a textsetup.oem file. I suspect some are for XP and 2000 but some may only be one or the other. Normal mode drivers can also be installed by nLite or after Windows install by executing the driver installer. These drivers are usually part of the chip set drivers and again are for the OS (XP or 2000) you are installing. SATA support for optical drives seems to be different than HDD and whether you can boot from a SATA attached Optical drive seems to be dependent on the make/model. Enjoy, John.

#12
cdob

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In other words, it seems better to install XP in default IDE mode and install AHCI driver after?

It's another approach.
Actually there are different ahcix86.sys versions. A driver version may support your hardware or not.
Changing may fail. Windows dosn't boot anymore.
If you set IDE mode at BIOS, windows should boot again. Or may fail.

If you integrate driver to installation media, correct AHCI driver are active always.
That's the more secure approach.

Changing IDE to AHCI is a emergency approach.
A second boot environment is nice too, e.g. a PE.

Right-click on the AHCIX86.INF and select "Install"?

This won't work. Booted with IDE emulation mode, there is no AHCI hardware available.

But doesn't XP need a text mode driver as well?

I don't understand the question.
Ahcix86.sys is the text mode driver. This driver is loaded at first black windows, at text mode graphics.

Maybe the thing to do is install 2000 on an IDE/PATA hard disk and install AHCI drives after?

In doubt try the official approach: a F6 floppy.

I'm using a 780/SB700 chipset.

#13
johnhc

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I think if you will read my reply above your questions will be mostly answered. One of the main reasons for using nLite is to eliminate the F6/floppy method. Also, above in the Sticky section are two threads by Fernando 1 (local expert on text mode drivers) about AHCI drivers. Please read the appropriate one(s). Enjoy, John.

#14
Sp0iLedBrAt

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Copy file ahcix86.sys to system32\drivers. Import this reg settings
REGEDIT4

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\CriticalDeviceDatabase\pci#ven_1002&cc_0106]
"Service"="ahcix86"
"ClassGUID"="{4D36E97B-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ahcix86]
"Type"=dword:00000001
"Start"=dword:00000000
"ErrorControl"=dword:00000001
"Tag"=dword:00000021
"ImagePath"="system32\\drivers\\ahcix86.sys"
"Group"="SCSI Miniport"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ahcix86\Parameters\PnpInterface]
"5"=dword:00000001
Goto BIOS, set AHCI. Reboot.

A great thank you for this excellent advice. I was baffled on what to do, since I didn't have an XP CD with AHCI drivers when I bought a new laptop (AMD processor, AMD chipset and AHCI and ATI graphics), and I had to install it in IDE mode. AHCI drivers were included in the Driver support CD. Most people I know told me I would have to reinstall XP if I wanted to integrate AHCI, but your thing really worked. After rebooting, it recognized the device and simply asked me to point to the folder with the AHCI driver. Another reboot and here I am :-) Thanks again.

Edited by Sp0iLedBrAt, 26 August 2009 - 01:42 PM.


#15
Fernando 1

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(2) How do you do the same thing in Windows 2000? I slipstreamed AHCI SATA drivers into the installation CD but Win2K will still not install.

Windows 2000 does not fully support AHCI.

However: does ahcix86.sys support Windows 2000?

Not really (see above).

#16
actor

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:whistle: Hi! I'm brand new to this forum, but sure glad I found it. I have a new ASUS M4A77TD-PRO motherboard with AMD 770/SB710 chipset. I was surprised to find no floppy drive capability on the mobo, and went looking for a way to install XP on a RAID set. All roads seemed to point to nLite slipstreaming, so that's what I have tried, but with no success until I read this forum. I think the problem stems from the version of RAID "F6" software provided on the mobo support DVD. When I read about Fernando 1's package he provided (see his post above), I downloaded it and tried it, and it worked! I presume the 9-4 and 9-6 he refers to are the Catalyst version numbers, and I don't know which Catalyst version would have the files on my support DVD. I do note that the latest Catalyst version is 9-8, and at the risk of burning another coaster, I may try that one. But the 9-4 version provided by Fernando works, and I just wanted to pass that info on for anyone else out there who may be struggling with this mobo. :thumbup
Incidentally, the RAID drivers that didn't work came from this folder on the DVD:
Drivers\RAID\Driver\WinXP\x86
I also ran the "makedisk" utility and wrote the results to a local hard drive and used that folder for the slipstreaming, but that didn't work either.

#17
Fernando 1

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@ actor:
Welcome at MSFN Forums and thanks for your feedback.
You are right regarding the SB driver versions. 9-4 means Catalyst 9.4 and 9-8 would be part of the Catalyst 9.8 series.
It would be interesting to know, if the newest ATI SB7xx AHCI/RAID drivers named WHQL_SB7xx_RAID_XP_WS03_3.1.1540.127.zip
a ) really are as new as the Catalyst display driver v9.8 and
b ) will support your special SB7xx chipset.
ATI's SB7xx AHCI/RAID drivers v9-4 natively do support much more SATA Controllers than the later ones.

EDIT: I'm sorry, I was wong regarding the name of the ATI AHCI/RAID driver.

Edited by Fernando 1, 28 August 2009 - 11:54 AM.


#18
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I believe that the files on my support DVD correspond to the Catalyst version 9.8, since both refernce the same miniport number:
Microsoft Windows miniport driver 3.1.1540.127

#19
Fernando 1

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I believe that the files on my support DVD correspond to the Catalyst version 9.8, since both refernce the same miniport number:
Microsoft Windows miniport driver 3.1.1540.127

I am not sure about that, because the actual ATI AHCI/RAID drivers (download link) are dated 05/22/2009.

#20
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Remarks:

  • Contrary to the v9-6 RAID drivers the v9-4 ones do support nearly all available AMD/ATI SB7xx RAID Controllers.
  • I have reorganized the driver folder structure and the content of the TXTSETUP.OEM file to minimize the failure risk during the XP installation.
Have fun!
Fernando


Hi Fernando, I can almost kiss you for the (for me) most usefull post in the history. :thumbup

Yesterday I was installing Windows 2003 Server R2 after I got my server a new motherboard (Asus M4A785TD-V EVO). Then I ran in so much troubles getting AHCI to work. First I tried to slipstream the drivers from disk but that only resulted in BSOD's.

Then after 7 CD's (don't ask) and lots of frustration I ran into your ZIP with x64 drivers. I tried them.. and I got so surprised they worked! So thanks! And I thought I just had to register also to tell people the same zip was also working for me using Windows 2003 x64.

Grtz,

Oscar

#21
Phenomic

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(2) How do you do the same thing in Windows 2000? I slipstreamed AHCI SATA drivers into the installation CD but Win2K will still not install.

Windows 2000 does not fully support AHCI.

However: does ahcix86.sys support Windows 2000?

Not really (see above).





Thank you. Are you saying that Windows 2000 cannot be installed on a machine with AMD 790GX/SB750 chipset?

Have you tested for sure?

Does that include all of the new socket AM3 mobos from Asus & Gigabyte. Would Win2k run in IDE mode as I mentioned above?

#22
Fernando 1

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Are you saying that Windows 2000 cannot be installed on a machine with AMD 790GX/SB750 chipset?

No, that is a wrong conclusion of my post. It is no problem to get Windows 2000 installed onto such system, but the AMD/ATI SATA Controllers should be set to "IDE Mode". That means, that the AHCI support of the SATA Controllers have to be turned off within the BIOS.

Have you tested for sure?

No, my post is just a logical conclusion of the fact, that no AHCI supporting W2k drivers are availble. W2k is an OS, which was developed at a time where AHCI support was not actual at all.

Does that include all of the new socket AM3 mobos from Asus & Gigabyte. Would Win2k run in IDE mode as I mentioned above?

Double answer: Yes.

Edited by Fernando 1, 22 September 2009 - 02:19 AM.


#23
Phenomic

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Are you saying that Windows 2000 cannot be installed on a machine with AMD 790GX/SB750 chipset?

No, that is a wrong conclusion of my post. It is no problem to get Windows 2000 installed onto such system, but the AMD/ATI SATA Controllers should be set to "IDE Mode". That means, that the AHCI support of the SATA Controllers have to be turned off within the BIOS.

Have you tested for sure?

No, my post is just a logical conclusion of the fact, that no AHCI supporting W2k drivers are availble. W2k is an OS, which was developed at a time where AHCI support was not actual at all.

Does that include all of the new socket AM3 mobos from Asus & Gigabyte. Would Win2k run in IDE mode as I mentioned above?

Double answer: Yes.




I used IDE mode in BIOS and slipstreamed Win2k with 2 different versions of AHCI driver, but Win2k would not recognize disks connected to the SATA controller. (Although I assume Win2k would work with disks connected to the 40-pin IDE controller.) Thatís disappointing because Win2k works fine with NVIDIA chipsets.

I assume that Win2k must have a SATA driver since none is included with the original OS. What version of AHCI works with Win2k and AMD/ATI SB7xx southbridge?

#24
Sp0iLedBrAt

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Phenomic, I think Fernando_1 answered your last question with this sentence: my post is just a logical conclusion of the fact, that no AHCI supporting W2k drivers are available. W2k is an OS, which was developed at a time where AHCI support was not actual at all.

So officially there are no AHCI drivers for Win2000; however, see if THIS could do anything for you.

#25
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How do you enable AHCI mode AFTER you have installed XP?

Copy file ahcix86.sys to system32\drivers. Import this reg settings
REGEDIT4

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\CriticalDeviceDatabase\pci#ven_1002&cc_0106]
"Service"="ahcix86"
"ClassGUID"="{4D36E97B-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ahcix86]
"Type"=dword:00000001
"Start"=dword:00000000
"ErrorControl"=dword:00000001
"Tag"=dword:00000021
"ImagePath"="system32\\drivers\\ahcix86.sys"
"Group"="SCSI Miniport"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\ahcix86\Parameters\PnpInterface]
"5"=dword:00000001
Goto BIOS, set AHCI. Reboot.


I believe that the files on my support DVD correspond to the Catalyst version 9.8, since both refernce the same miniport number:
Microsoft Windows miniport driver 3.1.1540.127

I am not sure about that, because the actual ATI AHCI/RAID drivers (download link) are dated 05/22/2009.


So after I installed the drivers from Fernando 1's post according the guide of cdob, only exchanging x86 with x64, I managed to make my Win XP x64 boot with AHCI mode enabled in bios on my M3A H/HDMI mobo (BIOS version 1702) but the result was not what was expected. After the successful first boot it found new hardware and i pointed the driver folder for the AHCI driver and everything was installed correct after one more restart all was working normally, but i could not determine wether the hot swaping function is active nor NCQ or something went wrong. When i opened the device manager i found this:Attached File  ahci.JPG   43.14KB   47 downloads

I managed to find info about Intell chipset systems and how windows recognizes drives there HERE but nothing like that appeared in my case.

Also Everest and HD Tune could not read the hard drive smart info or thermal sensors. So what went wrong and how should i fix it?

Edited by Volt, 07 October 2009 - 05:31 PM.





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