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PLEASE - DESPERATE - ASUS P9X79 - Windows 7 HELP

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21 June 2012 07:35:35

Hi All,

I am almost in tears now. Well I don't feel ashamed. I have just spent almost £1600 on getting the ASUS p9X79 Deluxe with Intel LGA 2011 i7 3930k CPU, Corsair Vengeance 16 GB of Memory and the PNY NVIDIA GTX 580 Video card with 1.5 GB of RAM.

I have read that putting an SSD Hard disk will give the best performance. Hence I brought myself a Samsung 830 256 GB SSD.

I have assembled everything.

I could not install Windows 7 from the DVD because it says "Please choose a driver" and I could not browse or select anything apart from seeing a device called "Boot X".

I read in the forums that I should create a USB based installation disk and I am struggling because all I have is a Mac at home and none of the methods of creating a bootable USB disk has worked.

I am so frustrated that I might actually burn the whole setup.

PLEASE, HELP. I need a laymans version of step-by-step Windows 7 installation on the P9X79 Deluxe with the Samsung SSD.

Best regards,
Will
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
21 June 2012 19:58:30

Here's a simplified version for NEW installs:

Before installing any OS I strongly recommend that you run Memtest86+ for a minimum of 1-2 passes, 4 passes is preferred. The X79 has a lot of DIMM slots and the risk of errors are effectively double, and I've seen several installations that were corrupted from RAM related issues. Create a bootable CD/DVD/USB of Memtest, use the latest version found here -> http://www.memtest.org/#downiso

** Safest option, especially if your OEM does offer the latest Intel RSTE drivers:
ASUS & perhaps others - as of the (edit date) ASUS seems to have updated their Intel Rapid Storage Technology enterprise driver software V3.0.0.xxxx (e.g. 3011) package so use ASUS drivers rather than accidentally using the wrong drivers.

Important note: I strongly recommend setting SATA -> RAID even if you plan to change to AHCI later. This completely avoids Windows from injecting wrong drivers during OS installations and that the procedure is followed properly.

Important note: I strongly recommend not loading the drivers from (2) different sources this is a KNOWN issue (e.g. Windows DVD + Flash Drive for drivers only). The problem 'might' be fixed if you reinsert the USB back where it was during the install, but to me this is a very bad way to correct a problem creating a dependency.

REVIEW FIRST - MBR/GPT/Windows 7 Install Guides -> http://www.overclock.net/t/1156654/seans-windows-7-inst...
Requirements:
* Windows 7 ; all my installs have been using SP1 but I see no reason the original Windows 7 wouldn't work
* Flash Drive 4GB or larger, I recommend an 8GB+

Preparation MBR:
* Backup data and any registered Apps deauthorize if possible
* Use the latest BIOS and you must use a minimum BIOS version which supports your components.
* Create Bootable Flash Drive MBR USB installer
** Flash Drive -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4CdEZPTPzk
* Create a folder on Flash Drive e.g. 'RAID' containing extracted Intel F6 RST drivers

Preparation GPT:
* Backup data and any registered Apps deauthorize if possible
* Use the latest BIOS and you must use a minimum BIOS version which supports your components i.e. 2TB+ HDD(s).
* Create Bootable Flash Drive GPT USB installer
** Flash Drive -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4CdEZPTPzk
** Windows Installer for GPT -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=39qPm1rNnWk
* Create a folder on Flash Drive e.g. 'RAID' containing extracted Intel F6 RST drivers


Preliminary:
1. BOOT/BIOS:
A. BIOS, change Intel SATA -> RAID ; options may include Hot-swap (fine for data, never boot drives)
B. Ctrl + I -> Setup RAID; before OS if boot drive ; only required if the primary drives are in RAID
C. Save and Exit = Yes

2. Before Installing:
A. Shutdown and physically unplug ALL SATA cables to any non-boot drives
B. Boot & Pressing F8 Select Memtest86+ location (CD/DVD/USB) it will start automatically and allow to run 1-2 passes minimum, 4 passes preferred. If NO ERRORS proceed:

3. Installing: Press F8 and Boot from USB, select 'Install now ->'
A. Select Custom (Advanced)
B. Click on Load Driver, Browse RAID drivers from 'RAID' folder; examples:
'Flash Drive':\...RSTe_V300xxxx_XPWin7\RSTe_V300xxxx_XPWin 7\Driver\Disk\64bit\iaStorA.inf
'Flash Drive':\...RSTe_3.0.0.xxxx_F6-Drivers\RSTe_f6_iaStorA_64\iaStorA.inf
C. Delete any partitions, and reformat
D. Install Windows
E. Finish Windows installation
F. Once in Windows: Install Chipset, Intel RST software/Drivers, and the remainder drivers.
TIP: drivers - use the latest per MOBO's website not the included drivers on the CD/DVD. Copy to primary drive and install.
TIP: drivers - place latest unzipped drivers on Flash Drive in a folder e.g. 'DRIVER PKG', at minimum the Chipset and NIC drivers.


4. Shutdown and reattach all SATA drives

5. BIOS:
A. Ctrl + I -> Setup RAID; if data drives

6. Windows:
A. Registry {note Start values must = 0}:
Either manually verify and change the following registry values or run 'Fix It' - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/922976
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\Msahci
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\IastorV
B. Management, Disk Management -- add drives and format; if data drives
Related resources
22 June 2012 12:26:10

Did you connect your SSD to SATA_6GB_1 port? I have P9X79 PRO & this is how I installed windows 7. Since this motherboard have UEFI BIOS, I chose windows UEFI installation. The steps are very easy.

1) Format a 4GB USB thumbdrive with FAT32 filesystem
2) Copy all the contents of Windows 7 installation DVD to the USB thumbdrive
3) In USB thumbdrive, in "efi" folder, create new folder called "Boot".
4) Copy "sources\install.wim" to, for example, Desktop
5) If you're in windows, you can open "install.wim" using 7-Zip (Open archive). I don't know similar utility in Mac.
6) After you open "install.wim", navigate to "\1\Windows\Boot\EFI\"
7) Copy "bootmgfw.efi" to "\efi\Boot" folder you created earlier in USB thumbdrive.
8) Rename "bootmgfw.efi" to "bootx64.efi"
9) Plug the USB thumbdrive to your P9X79 computer (USB 2.0 port).
10) Boot your computer & press F8 (it will display list of available disk drive)
11) In the list, choose your USB thumbdrive (it start with "UEFI: [the name of your thumbdrive]").
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
22 June 2012 19:37:02

First, you only need GPT if any drive is larger than 2TB, otherwise use MBR. If you have a SATA3 drive then yes use the white SATA3 (6Gb/s port).

Reread exactly what I posted and make no modifications e.g. "A. BIOS, change Intel SATA -> RAID" - RAID or not change it and after installation change it back to AHCI if you want.

Everyone who has done their 'own thing' ends up in trouble, look at what I posted above and the original Guide. The items in bold aren't there by accident...
22 June 2012 20:31:06

It has been two weeks now & windows running without any problem. Regardless of the HDD size, when installing Windows 7 in UEFI mode, the HDD will automatically formatted to GPT. You don't need >2TB HDD to use GPT.

The reason why testofwill got "Please choose a driver" when trying to install Windows 7 is most likely he connect the SSD to "SSD Caching" port. This port is connected to Marvell SATA controller. So, will need to load the driver when installing Windows 7. The driver can be found in download section:-
http://www.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_2011/P9X7...

P9X79 PRO & Deluxe have identical SATA controllers. I can boot with Windows 7 DVD up to welcome window but I didn't continue to install since I want to install windows in UEFI mode. Strangely, I can't boot Windows 7 DVD in UEFI mode. The "Starting Windows" screen appeared but show error after that. The only way to successful install Windows 7 in UEFI mode is by using USB thumbdrive which I described in my previous post.

Prior installing windows I didn't change any settings in the BIOS. The only thing I did is load default/optimized settings.
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
22 June 2012 22:09:56

@ kizwan - The 'problem' with GPT is incompatibility. Also, I don't recommend "SSD Caching" and certainly not on the X79 with a third-party chipset - First, the Intel RSTE is much more reliable and there's NO shared PCIe to the third-party chipsets i.e. Intel SATA ports receive FULL bandwidth - Second, unless the Cache SSD is over provisioned Caching tears-up the SSD, and if you want faster caching then use the RAM i.e. FancyCache - http://www.romexsoftware.com/en-us/fancy-cache/ <or> over provisioned 'cache SSD' i.e. OCZ Synapse Cache - http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

You are kidding to 'school' me on the X79...

Here's the reason to do it 'my' way on the X79; I've tested it both ways (Windows default AHCI vs Intel RSTE):
22 June 2012 22:55:09

What "incompatibility" you're talking about? GPT is a must for Windows 7 in UEFI mode. Furthermore, in my previous post, I only explain why testofwill got "Please choose a driver" when booting with Windows 7 DVD. Please read my post carefully. I didn't recommend connecting SSD to "SSD Caching" port.

The only reason I post reply here is because I have P9X79 board. Not other X79 board but P9X79 board.

Please keep on topic. testofwill problem is unable to install windows. Not problem after installing windows. In my first post, I did asked testofwill "Did you connect your SSD to SATA_6GB_1 port?" I asked this because he should connect SSD to SATA_6GB_1 port.
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 01:01:52

RE: "Please choose a driver" - ditto can be true if the Intel SATA -> RAID. I agree to use the Intel SATA3 ports with an SSD particularly if that SSD has a SATA3 interface, but in reality your OS and Apps are mostly 4K random R/W bound and the only real benefit is a benchmark; most folks aren't transferring large files back and forth from one SSD to another SSD and if it's SSD <=> HDD then none of it matters.

There's no difference in the X79 implementation on any ASUS X79 or any X79 MOBO. Further the 'Guide' has worked with no issues on every ASUS, ASRock, Gigabyte, and MSI X79 who has used it. The problems are when folks get creative installing Windows 7 on the Intel SATA ports.

GPT vs MBR (search compatibility) - http://www.rodsbooks.com/gdisk/hybrid.html GPT & MBR FAQ (search mixing) - http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/hardwar... First, in my Guide I offer both MBR & GPT install options, but for now unless you really need GPT I and everyone with experience will (should) say the same -- use GPT only if needed.
23 June 2012 01:18:38

jaquith said:
GPT vs MBR (search compatibility) - http://www.rodsbooks.com/gdisk/hybrid.html

This article discuss Hybrid MBR in GPT disk. The GPT disk created by Windows 7 installation have Protective MBR. The only reason you will only consider Hybrid MBR if you installed older OS. Windows 7 is EFI-aware OS. Therefore, Hybrid MBR is not needed. Also, the article mainly concentrated on the Apple/Mac OS X. EFI on older Apple computer is not comply with Intel EFI specification. (I use "older" because if I'm not mistaken newer Apple computer able to boot Windows in UEFI mode). So, they can't boot windows using EFI. This is where Hybrid MBR come in play. Hybrid MBR will make windows "see" the disk like normal MBR disk & windows will be able to boot using standard boot manager (bootmgfw.exe).
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 01:28:43

On my Sabertooth X79 I run: Windows 7 Pro, OS X, RHEL, and XP -- it would be a nightmare.

My advice is to eliminate problems and not have something bite someone in the 'backside' down the line.

SIMPLE = BETTER!
a c 125 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 01:29:10

To answer the Original poster directly, I think you are getting this prompt because your BIOS has AHCI selected for your SATA ports instead of IDE. For the windows installation, this setting needs to be set to IDE. It can later be set back to AHCI.
Go into the BIOS and find every instance where AHCI is set, and set it to IDE (there could be 2 or 3 places where this is set). Then reboot and try the installation again. Report back here what happens.
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 01:34:23

Either Intel SATA -> AHCI or IDE won't require a driver to be loaded in Windows 7, so that message wouldn't present itself.
23 June 2012 01:36:20

jaquith said:
On my Sabertooth X79 I run: Windows 7 Pro, OS X, RHEL, and XP -- it would be a nightmare.

My advice is to eliminate problems and not have something bite someone in the 'backside' down the line.

SIMPLE = BETTER!

Again, please keep on topic. The original poster only want to install Windows 7.
a c 125 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 01:37:35

I just had this same prompt when I was installing W7 recently on a machine that only had 1 hard drive, an SSD on the Gray 6GBPs SATA port.. Changing the SATA port to IDE got rid of the prompt and allowed the install to proceed normally. Or, at least as far as I can tell, that's the only thing that changed between install attempts.
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 02:12:36

kizwan said:
Again, please keep on topic. The original poster only want to install Windows 7.

Then stop arguing with me! I could say the same about your intrusion. The proven GUIDE is the BEST way to install Windows 7 on an X79 - period.
23 June 2012 03:07:17

LOL
a c 715 V Motherboard
a b $ Windows 7
23 June 2012 05:07:43

I feel the same.
28 June 2012 06:05:08

Thank you all for helping me out. I have followed the instructions and have been able to get everything up and running. I will post all my steps in a day or two and provide a link below so that it will be useful for others too.

Best regards,
Will
2 July 2013 07:04:27

Hi Test of Will..... I noticed you asked for lay mans terms and then you get all the tec guys blurbing which confuses me also as I am a newbee. I have the same set up as you and never installed or built a PC before... The first thing I did when I built the PC from watching Youtube and reading the manual, was loaded Win 7 cd and told to load to the SSD and then alter loaded the drivers from the ASUS CD, then once completed, rebooted and updated etc,, all worked fine...it was simple,,,,, If it don't work, format the SSD and start again..
21 August 2013 11:19:54

edit, somebody already replied the same.