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N54L - how should I install my drives?


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New Microserver owner here, forgive the basic question..


I want to run a RAID 1 setup for storage purposes, I have the shipped 250GB drive for the OS, plus two 1TB drives for data. Does it matter which bays these drives go in?


I had planned to run WS2012 - would you guys go for hardware RAID or the OS's drive virtualization? Or some other option?


Appreciate any tips, pointers or links to relevant material..




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I am new too but give my shot since I happen to start exact setup as yours . there are more experienced person on the forum .


1 which bay ? -- doesn't matter , I booted from internal onboard usb but I don't see any difference as long as you set the boot sequence in bios .

2 RAID level ? -- hardware RAID : costs extra and took a precious PCIe slot space ( YMMV but I need  network card and  video card)

                            firmware OS:  no extra software required but if MB controller goes busted it's hard to find another N54L box to restore data , but I guess the argument is that one should keep extra data backup somewhere.

                            I went with the windows one since it's easier to restore data in case something happened and pretty straightforward to set up a mirror and shares in windows

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If you want RAID-1, I'd use the B120i onboard controller for RAID mode.


Many of us here are leery about Windows Storage Spaces.  A lot of technical people (moreso than us) have found issues or caveats.




Note that Microsoft has had some bugs regarding it too that risk data corruption.




While the above bug has been fixed, I'd trust the software RAID of the B120i first.  Alternately, I'd look at a solution like Stablebit DrivePool.

Edited by LoneWolf
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My dimes worth


Play with the box for at least 3 months first.... might seem mad but hear me out



Look through these forum threads


Extract the wisdom of Lonewolf, Ikon and the veteran guys here... some contributers have real life server room experience as well....


Don't be afraid to disagree


Take another look at the box


Make a assessment of your present AND future needs


You have 2 PCIe slots to use... use them wisely to suit your goal (for instance I have opted for a upgraded NIC and a combo eSATA/SATA III card(s) )


Above all... remember it's name.......  MicroServer.... it does have limitations and you must plan to use it within those limits. At some point you'll have to invest in secondary hardware (another Server or retire and replace the Micro) to achieve all your goals



Edited by Essexraptor
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  • 1 month later...

I have a similar situation.

I have a new Gen 8 microserver - 16 GB RAM

I have connected a 120 GB SSD card to the CD port on top.

I have 2 Sata drives going into the internal bays.

I want to install Hyper-V server core onto the SSD via a USB key.

I have pulled the 2 internal sata drives out temporarily to force the installation to the SSD.

When I turn it on, it starts the install of Hyper-v from the USB but it does not find the SSD drive.


When I change the BIOS setting to SATA AHCI controller, I can use the SSD but not the internal drives.


Can someone please help me with the correct BIOS settings.





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