I have a few questions about the RAID/HDD setup that I want to do with the P5N7A-VM, particularly because I want to know if it will work at all. I want to have Windows installed onto a 120GB SSD, and I want to have a 3 drive RAID 5 for my general data storage. I understand that the black SATA ports are on a separate controller from the red ones, though, and unlike the red ones they are currently not showing up in the BIOS like the red ones do. Since they're on a different controller, as I understand it they can't be used as part of a RAID with the red ones, and since I need 3 HDDs for Raid 5 that means I won't be able to use the black SATA ports for RAID 5, correct?
So, let's cut to the chase-- is it possible to boot Windows 7 from one of the black SATA ports? I would assume that this all hinges on making the black Sata ports appear in the BIOS, and I'm not yet sure if that's even possible. If there's no way to boot from the black sata ports, then the only way to make my desired setup work will be to run the a cable from the ESATA port to the inside of my computer so that I can connect it to either the windows SSD or one of the RAID drives. I'm not very keen on that idea, because it seems like it would be a not-so-secure solution in addition to being ugly, but if I can't boot windows from one of the black SATA ports I don't really know what other option I'd have.
Also, I'd like to add a Blu-Ray drive to my setup at some point, but I'm pretty sure that's only going to happen if I can connect it to one of the black Sata ports (my current DVD burner is connected via the IDE port, and all the Blu-Ray drives I'd want are SATA). If anyone can comment on that too, I'd appreciate it.
It's at times like these where I often ask myself "why did I drop $200 on an old Core2 Extreme, and not just buy a new mobo and CPU upgrade combo from Newegg?" Even so, I'm hoping to get as much mileage out of this mobo as I can, so any help making this rig work is appreciated!
Edited by Timstuff - 9/11/12 at 1:49pm