Monday, June 04, 2012 8:53 PM
I recently downloaded Windows Server 2012 RC and am trying to install it on a UEFI RAID5 boot drive that is composed of 5 x 2 Tb drives (8 Tb available).
AMD FX-8150 CPU
MSI 970A-G46 Motherboard
Using the exact same hardware I was able to install WHS 2011 on a single RAID5 UEFI boot drive. During the installation process I am prompted for the MSI RAID driver and once that is provided I see a single 8 Tb drive. The installation of WHS 2011 then completed normally.
I have not actually installed Windows Hyper-V Server 2008 R2 SP1, but the initial installation screens look correct to me. (I do not see the drive problem mentioned below.) So I believe this should work.
I was under the impression that Windows Server 2012 might require UEFI to boot? From looking at the ISO provided by Microsoft I saw BOOTX64.EFI in the EFI boot directory.
But when I try to install the Datacenter Core version I get to the point of choosing a drive and even without providing the MSI RAID driver I see all 5 of my 2 Tb drives listed individually. This does not happen with either WHS 2011 or Hyper-V 2008. (In those cases I initially don't see any drives, but after installing the MSI RAID driver I see a single 8 Tb drive.)
I tried using Hyper-V 2008 R2 SP1 to initialize the RAID5 drive and it setup the 3 partitions. (I believe they were System, MSR, and Data?) Then I stopped the installation and went back to trying to install Windows Sever 2012 RC.
This time I still saw all 5 drives listed (even before providing the MSI RAID driver), but the first drive showed up as 8 Tb in size (rather than 2 Tb as it had before). Even though this did not look right I tried to install anyway, but it failed.
When installing WHS 2011 I found I had to boot to the MSI EFI shell and from there I loaded an xxxx.EFI file in order to complete the WHS 2011 installation. I tried renaming BOOTX64.EFI on the Windows Server 2012 installation and booted the system to the MSI EFI shell, but none of the various xxxx.EFI loaders I had (from several versions of Windows) worked correctly. Each attempt at installation failed.
In searching for a solution I found that you can enter Shift-F10 during the installation process and get a DOS prompt. From there I started DISKPART. I am not 100% sure of this, but I believe when I installed WHS 2011 that DISKPART showed a single GPT volume that was 8 Tb in size? When I use DISKPART during the Windows Server 2012 RC installation I see all five 2 Tb drives individually listed. (Which matches what the GUI installer was showing me.)
At this point I am not certain if the problem is with the MSI UEFI BIOS? Or a problem with Windows Server 2012 RC? I'm guessing that the motherboard is not correctly identifying the RAID5 drive to Windows and that is why I see all 5 individual 2 Tb drives during the installation process (rather than being prompted to load a RAID driver)?
Can anyone help me resolve my particular problem? Or have you been able to get a similar UEFI boot to work with Windows Server 2012 RC (using a drive that is larger than 2.2 Tb in size)? If so I'd like to know what CPU and motherboard you were using.
Thanks for any help you can provide.
- Edited by Theokrat Monday, June 04, 2012 8:57 PM
Tuesday, June 05, 2012 3:46 AM
I got access to another system.
Intel Core i5-2400S CPU
Intel DQ67EP Motherboard
On this system I setup a RAID5 drive that was over 2.7 Tb in size. I was able to use the same boot process that I initially tried on the MSI 970A-G46 motherboard. This time I was successful at getting a UEFI installation of Windows Server 2012.
I assume that likely means my initial problem is due to a problem with the MSI UEFI BIOS itself? I opened a ticket with MSI since earlier today, but have not heard back from them yet.
If anyone has a resolution to be able to use the MSI 970A-G46 motherboard (RAID5 > 2 Tb UEFI boot) and install Windows Server 2012 I would appreciate hearing from you.
Tuesday, June 05, 2012 9:51 PM
MSI responded to my trouble ticket and said Windows Server 2012 has not been validated on the 970A-G46 and is not supported. I am hopeful MSI will provide a UEFI BIOS update before Windows Server 2012 is release to the public, but at the moment there doesn't appear to be any alternative.
One thing I found a bit surprising was that with the Intel motherboard I was not prompted to provide RAID drivers. I don't know if that is true of any other motherboards, but that looks like an enhancement to Windows Server 2012 that will simplify RAID installations.
If anyone has a solution, other than waiting for MSI to provide a UEFI BIOS fix, for my 970A-G46 RAID5 problem then I would appreciate hearing from you.
Thursday, November 29, 2012 7:09 AM
I had no issues installing on this motherboard with the latest pre-install drivers from AMD. You just have to refresh after adding them during the installation sequence.