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TweakTown's Ultimate Windows SSD Performance Installation Guide

By: Jon Coulter | Guides | Posted: Nov 5, 2014 11:05 pm

Creating Arrays using Intel OROM Utility


Either you can create arrays using the IRST control panel in Windows or, you can create an array utilizing Intel's Option ROM utility built into your motherboards BIOS. I recommend creating your array for the first time by using the Windows utility, and preformatting the partition prior to installing Windows, so you can get rid of the boot partition. Here is an example of my dual boot array's disk layout:




I have removed disk access to the other OS partition, and from the USB drives I only want to access via a boot menu. After you have an Image with everything on a single partition (no boot partition created), there is no need to preformat when you re-image to a drive or an array to prevent the boot partitions from being created.


Almost immediately after powering on your computer, hit "Ctrl" and "I" simultaneously, and you will enter Intel's Option ROM control panel.




Here you can create arrays without needing to do it from within a Windows environment. Select one "Create RAID Volume" by hitting "enter" when it is highlighted. Give your volume a name if desired, then hit "enter." Select the RAID level you want to create, RAID 0, and hit "enter."




Now use the spacebar to select the disks you want to use for your array.




Press "enter" when you have finished selecting the disks for your array. Next, select the stripe size you want. For two and three drive arrays, select a 64KB stripe size; for four to six drive arrays, select a 32KB stripe size.




Selection of proper stripe size has a great deal of impact on overall array performance, so it is important that you utilize the stripe sizes listed above. We have extensively tested which stripe sizes perform the best, so you don't have to experiment on your own. Next, select the capacity of your array; it's just best to use the entire capacity available, and shrink it later in Windows if you want to create another partition, or use unallocated space for overprovisioning purposes. Hit "Y," and then "enter" to create your array.


Exit the utility by hitting "Y".




Now you have created an array that is ready to receive an image or install Windows, without ever entering Windows.

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