Bootcamp on UMBP w/ RAID-0 - working

Discussion in 'Windows, Linux & Others on the Mac' started by johnnj, Mar 29, 2009.

  1. johnnj macrumors 6502a

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    #1
    According to everything I've read, this shouldn't have worked, but it seems that Win7's ability to boot from GPT volumes makes it possible.

    I just replace the optical drive in my 2.66 MBP with a 2nd Seagate 500g drive and wanted to see what the OSX soft raid could do.

    Long story short:

    1. Each of the pair of disks contained a member of the larger OSX raid volume, plus a smaller partition intended for Windows.

    2. The win-intended partitions stayed independent and formatted as FAT32.

    3. Booted off of Win7 media. In setup, selected 1 of the FAT32 partitions and reformatted it NTFS. Installer accepted the partition as valid and installation proceeded normally and completed with Win7 as a valid boot option. OSX still works, of course.

    Windows installer wouldn't accept the drives as a raid volume and although Vista is supposed to support GPT for data volumes, it wouldn't accept it as a system vol.

    Don't bother with Bootcamp Setup Assistant. It simply says there's no valid disk and is of no help at all. This has to be done manually (which isn't exactly rocket surgery).

    John
     
  2. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #2
    woah woah woah... back up a sec.

    are you saying you have a format something to like this:

    Disk 1 (500GB)

    Partition 1 (500GB)

    Disk 2 (500GB)

    Partition 2 (250GB)
    Partition 3 (250GB)

    --

    Partition 1 + Partition 2 = RAID 0
    Partition 3 = Windows

    ?

    Wouldn't that put RAID into a 500GB total space and not 750GB total space? I'm a little confused here.

    I'm trying to perform a similar setup to yours but I'm not sure how.
     
  3. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    Ok...

    Here's how the disks are set up:

    Disk 1:
    Partition 1A - 376 gigs, OSX, member of RAID-0 (striping)
    Partition 1B - 90 gigs, Win7 system (formatted as FAT32 during initial Disk Utility setup, reformatted as NTFS during Win7 install)

    Disk 2:
    Partition 2A - 376 gigs, OSX, other member of RAID-0
    Partition 2B - 90 gigs, Win7 data (formatted as FAT32 during intitial Disk Utility setup, reformatted in Storage Manager after Win7 was up and running)

    So... this gives me a 2 member striped RAID volume totalling 751.5 in usable space.

    My original plan was to have 2 RAID sets, one for OSX and one for Windows. I was able to get the 2 sets configured, but no version of Windows would accept it as an installable volume.

    As for Win7 being a requirement to getting this to work, I understand that Vista install media that comes pre-updated as SP1 will allow installation on GPT partitioned drives. However, all of my original media is pre-SP1 and even the vlited disk I made with SP1 slipstreamed wouldn't do it.

    I wonder if Server 2008 would also work. Maybe I'll give that a shot later in the week.

    Let me know how you make out of if you have any questions.

    John
     
  4. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #4
    Okay, I understand what you did and Im surprised I didn't think of this earlier.

    I do have a few more questions, for Partition 1B and 2B, is it 2 different partitions viewed in Windows 7 or is it merged as a software RAID?

    If its merged in a software RAID via Windows, can you still boot the "boot camp" partition(s) via VMWare Fusion or Parallels?

    Thanks for all the help.
     
  5. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    No problem, man.

    Yeah... the two regular partitions are just seen in Windows as separate volumes, which is fine with me.

    As for VMWare, I never load my native install of Windows in VM. I have a dedicated regular guest install of XP that I config as my work environment with the various stuff I need such as specific JVM's and apps. I only reboot it like once a week and the rest of the time I keep it suspended. By the way, suspending and resuming with the raid is like lightning.

    The native Windows is only for gaming so, I'd never VM into it.

    Good luck... PM me to let me know how it turns out.

    John
     
  6. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #6
    I tested out your RAID-0 method using a Post-SP1 Vista Full Install DVD and it failed.

    It seems like Windows 7 is the only viable OS that allows this type of install.
     
  7. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    That's interesting... I got ahold of a SP1-integrated install disk last week (64 bit Ultimate) and it worked fine. I actually did it again on Friday night and learned something else...

    I wanted to see what the performance was like (and noise/heat) with a pair of 7200rpm drives compared to my original 5200 pair. When I set up the raid pairs, I made a 2nd raid set so could have a 2nd OSX (10.6 beta) install area. With the 2 raid sets, neither Win7 nor Vista would install, complaining that the partition type GPT was unsupported. When I re-did the partitions/raid as what I'd been doing before, the Vista install went through normally.

    Incidentally, I returned the pair of 7200rpm drives because the heat/noise/battery drain was too much for me. Performance was a bit better, though.

    What's happening with your install? The "don't like the GPT" error?

    I know this'll work, because I've been able to repeat the process with different drives.

    John
     
  8. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #8
    yes. I got the GPT error.

    THis is interesting. I tried the install with Windows 7 and I got a similar error.
     
  9. jons macrumors 6502

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    #9
    This is AWESOME.

    And you kinda insulted us rocket surgeons..... :cool:
     
  10. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #10
    And you, sir, have an awesome rig!

    Many apologies for any insult to the profession of Rocket Surgery. It was unintended and should only be interpreted as an indication of head being made mostly of bone.

    In any event, here's a screenshot of my Disk Utility setup with info on the Vista boot partition:

    [​IMG]

    Hope this helps in some way.

    John
     
  11. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #11
    Okay, I attempted installing Windows Vista on the partition where you have "Win Data". This time, I was able to get the "copying files" phase through. However, after restart, I got a "Disk Error, press any key". I'm attempting to reinstall it on the other disk's partition to see if that has anything to do with it.

    Edit: Okay, installing Windows onto the 1st disk, 2nd partition worked. It seems like during restart, the 2nd drive shuts down before the first which causes a "crash". I know thats what happened when I had OSX in the 2nd drive and a data disk in the 1st. Every time I tried to sleep, the system crashes.
     
  12. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #12
    Oh, ok... cool... Interesting that's what made the difference. I used to have a previous generation MBP with a Patriot SSD in the sata port and an IDE drive in the Optibay. I couldn't install bootcamp with the optibay drive attached because the storage controller saw it first and that pissed pissed Windows off. I had to disconnect the drive, get Windows going, and then reconnect it.

    All this stuff is very funny, when it finally works....

    John
     
  13. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #13
    Its kinda interesting how picky our system is, especially since both connection is SATA. However, I noticed that the optical drive loses power first, so that would be a cause. I partitioned my drive like this (see attached image) and it works perfectly now.

    John: your screenshot was the jackpot to making this work. Thanks.
     

    Attached Files:

  14. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    Picky, but VERY cool!

    Sweet... glad I could help. Now I'm thinking of bagging the RAID and replacing one drive with an SSD, similar to my old MBP config. Have to re-examine the benchmarking on the current config, though....

    John
     
  15. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

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    #15
    I've redone the partition table (I have everything backed up on time machine and winclone so it saves me from reinstalling everything). I've set the disks up as:

    Disk 0 (Internal) - Install/Boot OSX
    Disk 1 (OptiBay) - Install/Boot Windows Vista

    Now I run into a problem. Vista determines that my BIOS isn't capable of installing onto Disk 1, only Disk 0. If I install into Disk 0, I lose OSX. However, if I were to reverse this:

    Disk 0 (Internal) - Install/Boot Windows Vista
    Disk 1 (OptiBay) - Install/Boot OSX

    It works. But sleep function is broken in OSX because the OptiBay loses power during the shutdown process before the entire system is shut down.

    However, to fix this is kinda annoying. I have to physically move the Disk 1 to the Disk 0 location, install Vista, then replace it back into the Optibay. After Windows Vista is installed, I can boot off the drive regardless if its in the Internal Bay or the OptiBay. Haven't tested the sleep function yet in Vista but I almost never put the system to sleep in Vista anyways.
     
  16. johnnj thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    I see... so you're not using the software RAID anymore?

    I must admit, the limitations of the boot order, etc with the sata port that the optibay uses are kind of annoying.

    I actually bagged the RAID myself today. I pulled the trigger on the Vertex 120g SSD and that's now the OSX boot drive. The optibay 500g is the osx data/vista drive now. Xbench reports 201 mb/sec reads on the system drive, which I think is pretty damn cool. Blows away my old 2x Raptor RAID0 on my PC.

    Anyway, at first I dis-remembered that Windows pukes on itself when you try to install it on drive 1 (internal). I wanted a smallish partition on the SSD for Windows to boot from, but it wouldn't have any of that.

    I guess Apple never *really* meant for us to be jamming a hard drive where the dvd drive is supposed to go....

    John
     

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