In The Box
When you first crack open the box, you're greeted with an assortment of stuff. Once you manage to get it all out, you get to see the actual board for the first time, and you think, "WOW...That's PURPLE!"
Now that we're over that part, we can get into a bit more detail. With the color being a definite change from the usual, it takes a moment to get used to it. Of course, what better way to set off a windowed enclosure than an unusual color scheme? But we'll get back to the board in a bit. Lets take a look at some of the other goodies we get.
Since we seem to be drawn to the bright colors, we'll take a quick peek at our assorted SATA cables. You do, of course, get standard IDE ribbon cables as well, but they are standard fare. But the SATA cabling is a bit different if you haven't messed with them before. With much smaller connectors than a regular drive, they are already created for a streamlined wiring plan. You'll receive two sets to allow dual SATA drives which can be run either in a RAID or as a pair of individual drives.
Oh, and that little piece at the bottom is to make sure that your newly acquired SATA drives get the power they need. It is a converter that allows a standard 4-pin Molex connector to be used to power two SATA drives. While not a significant inclusion, it is nice to see that the folks at Soltek are thinking of the details of their rig.
The included software has everything you'll need to handle the installation and maintenance of your new addition. You'll find the necessary drivers for the motherboard on one disk and several utilities on the second. These utilities include PC-cillin 2002, Virtual Drive 7, RestoreIT! 3 Lite, Partition Magic 6.0 SE, and DriveImage 4.0
This should allow you to not only get everything set up on the new system, but also allow you to make backups of all your vital data from the old system as well. Also included are the SATA RAID drivers. This will be necessary in the event you use the RAID as your bootable drive.
Though not pictured, another item worth mentioning is the included mainboard manual. While every board has one, they are certainly not all created equally. The manual included with this board is like all the other Soltek manuals that I've gone through; very thorough and easy to understand. With illustrations to show you exactly what the text is explaining, it is a very simple matter to take care of any of the tasks you'll need to tackle. Other board manufacturers could learn something here!
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