Need Tips on Best way To setup 960 EVO M.2, 2 - 960gb SSDs in Raid 0, 1 - 750 evo ssd & 2 - 3tb HDDs + OD on X99 Chipset

So I have my Custom PC Build that I'm working on re-configuring the Storage Drives & Need Some Help or Advice on what the right or best way to do it is? Any Tip's, Advice or Help is Greatly Appreciated. I've Racked my Brain on this & It's also my first time seting up a Raid Array too.

I Know how 2 do Most of it but That 1 Thing Stumps Me? And It's Not in any Manuals or Online Forum that I can Easily Find...

   FIRST MY SYSTEM HARDWARE:
CPU: I7- 6850K  Overclocked 4.6Ghz
MOBO: ASUS X-99 A II   -   Bios: 1701
RAM: 4 × 8Gb - G-Skillz  DDR4 (3200)
VGA: 2x [EVGA] Nvidia (GTX 1070 SC) In - SLI
POWER: [EVGA] G2-Gold Cert. 850W (Full-Mod)

STORAGE: 500Gb 960 EVO M.2 Nvme SSD(OS)
250Gb - 750 EVO  SATA  SSD (NEWER)
3TB Seagate SATA HDD @ 7200 Rpm (NEWER)
3TB Seagate SATA HDD @ 7200 Rpm (USED)
960Gb SanDisk Ultra 2 SATA SSD (NEWEST)
960Gb SanDisk Ultra 2 SATA SSD (NEWEST)
 ^I WANT THE 2 SANDISK 2 RUN IN RAID 0^
CD/DVD BURNER OPTICAL SATA DISC DRIVE

SO THATS 6 Sata Plugs Needed with only 2 Controllers and only 1 can be Raid, If I Connect the 2 SSD's in RAID 0 then which ports should I connect the other Storage Drives to? There's 4 ports on the 2nd controller & 6 on the First.

I Was Told By ASUS Tech Support That The DVD Optical Disc Drive Can Be Plugged Into The (RAID) Chipset/Drivers & Still Work Fine.

But I Also Read That the Intel SATA Control Chipset Is Better to Use then The Other 2nd Asmedia Sata Chipset. Because of the Extra Features.

In the Bios Sata Controller Setting AHCI Mode Seems 2 Say it works Best, Especially 4 SSDs?
But If I Set it to RAID so I can do my Raid 0, Then Should I Connect the Other 4 Storage Sata Cables to the 2nd Asmedia Sata Chipset Set to AHCI Mode to get the best results. Or
Would connecting any of the HDD's or SSD to the Intel Sata Controller set to Raid still be better then the Second Asmedia Chip Set on AHCI but it says with No Extra features/IRST support?
IF SET 2 RAID DO NON-RAID DRIVES REVERT 2 AHCI/IDE MODE OR SOMETHING ELSE?

I Already Have The Windows 10 x64 Educational Edition Installed on My 500 Gb Samsung 960 EVO M.2 SSD. So changing the Sata controller Setting shouldn't Corrupt my Windows.

The Thing that Tricks me up after Researching all about Raid Setup, The X-99 Chipset, The UEFI Bios Settings, IRST & ISMT, The Difference w/ AHCI vs RAID vs IDE Chipset Drivers, ect.

MY QUESTION IS:  2 Do With The 2 Different Sata Chipset Controllers on The X-99 A 2 Board & How I Should Connect Everything When The ASUS User Manual Says: Only the First [Intel] Chipset "Grey Sata Ports 0-5" Support AHCI, IDE or RAID in Bios / Drivers + (Supports TRIM & S.M.A.R.T Features). But the 2nd Seperate [Asmedia] Sata Chipset Controller "Black Sata Ports 6-9" Only Support AHCI or IDE in Bios/Drivers. NO RAID/IRST?
So What Do You Think The Best Sata Port Configuration Would be?


Since the WIN 10 EDU x64 OS is Already Installed & It's on the "500 Gb Samsung 960 EVO" M.2 NVMe [×4] (3-D V-Nand) SSD w/ the NVMe Samsung Driver Installed I'm in a unique Situation as I basicly have 3 Seperate Data Buses. And most answers don't deal with as many drives as I have.

Some reason INTEL RAPID STORAGE TECHNOLOGY (IRST) hasent worked at all so far, It always crashes & says its not working right now/Unavailable

But, I plan to use the 250Gb 750 Evo SSD for virtual machines, My Optical DVD Burner, The Two 3tb Seagate 7200 Rpm HDD's are where I keep all my important personal data. NOW I'M ADDING TWO 960 Gb SanDisk Ultra II SSD's in a Raid 0, so I can Take Full Advantage of my 960 EVO M.2. When video rendering/editing/games/ect.

I Might put the 2 HDD's in Raid 1 or maybe Even Raid 0 if I don't Need the Extra space, Eventualy But Not Now.

So Anyone who has done something simular or can Help explain which way 2 connecting all the drives which would be best 4 performance I'd Realy Appreciate It.

Also I've Imaged/Copyed(C:) into a VHD/Cloned & Made Back-up's on 2 Different External Hdd's. So Hopefully I'M Covered.

I've Run into a Few Problems & Had to Reinstall Everything 3 Times w/ Both Windows 10 Home & Edu Versions! Not A Fun Thing To Do!
Reply to anonaholic
3 answers Last reply
More about tips setup 960 evo 960gb ssds raid 750 evo ssd 3tb hdds x99 chipset
  1. You may be overthinking this....

    If you set the Intel SATA ports to RAID mode, then quite simply you can use RST to configure a RAID Array with any of the drives you connect to those 6 SATA ports. You can connect drives that you are NOT putting in RAID to those ports too, its fine. They'll just act as normal connected HDD/SSDs but will show up in Windows as SCSI drives (doesn't matter...).

    So if you're gonna just build the one RAID, a RAID-0 with the two SSDs, then put your Intel SATA ports in RAID mode and connect the two SSDs to two of those SATA ports. Connect everything else wherever you want them; doesn't matter. Then when you get in to windows & launch RST configure a RAID-0 with those two SSDs.

    I tend to connect static non-hot-swap devices to the ASMedia ports on my X99 builds, like DVD or even OS SSDs. I've heard talk of performance not being as strong on those ports but I've never seen it. As for the additional features they're referring to it could be lack of SMART monitoring and hot-swap capability.

    Fair warning: I'm not sure if you can configure multiple RAID arrays using RST & the chipset. Never tried it.

    As for RST being problematic, remove it completely and download the version that's on Asus's website under your motherboard's support/downloads section.
    Reply to marko55
  2. 960's in RAID 0 suffer from 'diminishing returns'. unless you are massively write speed challenged with a single 960 , and find 2000 MB/sec to be substandard? Sequential read speeds increase from 3200 MB/sec to 3600 MB/sec...hardly worth the risk of data loss.

    Additionally, most boards will steal lanes from SATA ports to allow M.2 to function, or, as a minimum, share the bandwidth. (my own ASUS Z270 disables ports 5/6 to give full x4 PCI-e lanes to one of the M.2 slots...)
    Reply to mdd1963
  3. mdd1963 said:
    960's in RAID 0 suffer from 'diminishing returns'. unless you are massively write speed challenged with a single 960 , and find 2000 MB/sec to be substandard? Sequential read speeds increase from 3200 MB/sec to 3600 MB/sec...hardly worth the risk of data loss.

    Additionally, most boards will steal lanes from SATA ports to allow M.2 to function, or, as a minimum, share the bandwidth. (my own ASUS Z270 disables ports 5/6 to give full x4 PCI-e lanes to one of the M.2 slots...)


    He's not RAID-ing 960s, only SATA devices, and his board does not share SATA ports with his m.2.

    On this point however, this is why I avoid Asus boards across every platform. They're infamous for sharing resources and shutting down interfaces for using other interfaces, brutally, more then other manufacturers. You really have to study their admin guides before buying if you're planning to load them up with hardware to ensure it can all even work.
    Reply to marko55
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