I am wondering if anyone can shed some light on some strange behaviour I am getting when booting the server after creating a RAID array?
The server has the following hardware/software:
- Intel S1200BTS MB
- Intel Xeon E3-1220 CPU
- OCZ SSD 2.5" SATA3 120G Primary HDD
- 2 x DDR3-1066 4GB ECC RAM (tested and working with S1200BTS)
- HighPoint RocketRaid 2340 Controller
- Xigmatek 1000W 80+ Modular PSU
- Windows Server 2008 R2 Std OS
I know the HighPoint RocketRaid 2340 controller is not on Intel's test list but it appears to work fine with one exception.
After I create a RAID array in Windows Server 2008 R2 using HighPoint's WebGUI and reboot the server it boots past the RR2340 BIOS and the Intel S1200BTS BIOS to a black screen with a white flashing cursor and just sits there and will not progress.
I have checked in the Intel BIOS and the boot order for the drives is DVD then HDD and everything else is disabled. When I check the HDD list it shows both the primary HDD (OCZ SSD) and the RR2340 RAID controller.
The OCZ SSD drive is connected to the Intel S1200BTS SATA port and so is the DVD.
I have removed the RR2340 controller from the HDD list and rebooted but I still get the black screen and flashing cursor.
It is almost like the server is ignoring the Intel BIOS boot order settings and continuing to try and boot on the newly created RAID Array. But since the RR2340 BIOS is loaded first then the Intel BIOS is loaded second I don't understand how this can happen.
The only way I can get the server to boot back into Windows Server 2008 R2 is to "ctrl-h" into the RR2340 BIOS and delete the RAID array. Then the server boots fine!
Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. I have submitted a support request to HighPoint but have not heard anything back, which is why I am also posting here to see if there is something going on with the Intel S1200BTS BIOS that I am missing.
Just a quick update in case others are experiencing similar issues.
I plugged the primary SSD HDD into the RR2340 and flagged it as the boot device in the RR2340 BIOS, checked the S1200BTS BIOS and made the RR2340 the primary boot device and I got the same result. It makes no difference what is flagged as the boot device as soon as any device is detected on the RR2340 the server will not boot, regardless of what boot settings are put in the Intel BIOS. It also seems that the Intel BIOS automatically detects what is plugged into the MB and changes its settings ignoring what the user had put in. For example I disabled the RR2340 in the Intel BIOS but as soon as I unplugged the SSD HDD from the Intel MB and put it in the RR2340 the RR2340 magically reappears in the Intel BIOS as the primary boot device.
I have resolved the issue. For some reason the Intel S1200BTS board keeps taking information from the RR2340 BIOS and resetting its boot priority. After using the hptflash utility to reflash the RR2340 BIOS with EBDA and INT13 disabled everything works great.
So for anyone out there wanting a 16 port RAID card to work with the Intel S1200BTS MB I have tested it and it works with Windows Server 2008 R2, with the driver downloaded from the HighPoint Global site and with EBDA and INT13 disabled on the RR2340 card.