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I have a Dell Inspiron 1721 laptop running windows vista. I have installed Windows 8 onto it but when it comes to finishing the setup it says that the device isn't compatible in Windows 8 and I should contact the manufacturer. The issue that flags up is the AMD AHCI compatible raid controller.

Doing some research this seems a common problem when trying to install. I have spoken to Microsoft and Dell both of which were not helpful.

I did some additional research and there is a way of changing this setting in bios but I don't know how! Can anyone tell me how?

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From what I have seen, DELL machines are pretty good, however, their disk controller drivers are not always included in a Standard Windows release. This could be your problem. However, get on the Dell Website and find the needed drivers, load them during the Windows startup phase (before installation) and you should be fine.

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Inspiron 1721 has a second hard drive built in as optional. Please make sure this isn't the case. 'RAID controller' error shows up as RAID may not be configured properly. If your system has been shipped with a single 'hard drive', try disabling 'RAID' in system BIOS; else switch the SATA mode from ATI to AHCI. You may also find the following steps useful:

  1. Power off the laptop
  2. Power it back on and when Dell splash screen appears, repeatedly tap < F2 > (If Windows logo appears please repeat the steps)
  3. BIOS screen appears (Use the arrow keys to select and expand 'Onboard Devices' and navigate to the option 'RAID operation'.

(helpful image and original post/source here)

  1. If a single 'hard drive' was shipped with the system, set RAID to 'Off'; else set SATA operation to AHCI mode
  2. Tap < ESC > to exit BIOS and ensure that you 'Save Settings'
  3. Restart the laptop and recheck results

Note: if you run into an error "Your PC ran into a problem and needs to restart", let it restart, press F12 and repair the installation using your Windows DVD.

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Only posting links is not encouraging on SU please provide the important information in your answer and use the link as reference. Hope you don't mind it. :) – avirk Jan 9 '13 at 3:09
@avirk Yes, it makes sense. I was kind of on a rush and was interrupted by a phone call when writing the answer so i left it as it was, since the help content was on the link. Thanks for your comment, there's always room for improvements. – Lorenzo Von Matterhorn Jan 9 '13 at 14:19
Yes I can understand it, I had face this kind of situation once myself. ;P – avirk Jan 9 '13 at 14:23

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