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For the same computer that I tried fixing Windows XP on, though the installation was successful, it kept blue screening so I've decided to switch to Ubuntu.

The problem is that Ubuntu is also having trouble with my Intel Matrix Storage Controller (the controllers were ICH7R/DH SATA RAID Controller, ICH7MDH SATA RAID Controller, Desktop/Workstation/Server Express Chipset, or Mobile Express Chipset on Windows XP). When I type sudo fdisk -l it says something along the lines of (if I can get the output on a flash drive I'll update the output):

/dev/sda 160 GB
/dev/sda Does not have a valid partition table.

/dev/sdb 160 GB
/dev/sdb Does not have a valid partition table.

/dev/mapper/abc_defghijk_RAID 160 GB
/dev/mapper/abc_defghijk_RAID Does not have a valid partition table.

So... Ubuntu recognizes both the member disks of the RAID and the RAID disk itself. Even stranger was that I accidentally burned 12.04 onto a disk when I meant to burn 12.10 so I installed Ubuntu twice (first 12.04, then 12.10), resulting in a sum of partitions greater than 320 GB.

How do I make Ubuntu only recognize the RAID array, and can I get a name other than the random numbers and letters under mapper?

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See FakeRaidHowto –  cpast Mar 22 '13 at 3:00
    
Note that if you don't plan on using Windows on the machine, Linux software RAID is generally better than the motherboard controller. The controller you have is really just a bit of firmware, and doesn't handle the processing itself, so you gain no advantage from the hardware. The hardware makes you lose the general support available for software RAID. –  cpast Mar 22 '13 at 3:03
    
@cpast What if I am planning on creating a virtual machine running the same Windows XP? –  NobleUplift Mar 22 '13 at 3:40
    
Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't a VM just use the host OS's standard file read/write system to deal with the virtual hard drive? If it does, I can't see your RAID mattering to the VM. –  cpast Mar 22 '13 at 4:17
    
Yup, I would be installing Windows on a logical volume and Linux would take care of the RAID backend, just wanted to make sure. –  NobleUplift Mar 22 '13 at 4:41
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1 Answer

up vote 1 down vote accepted

The Intel ICH7R and ICH10R onboard SATA controllers are not true hardware RAID controllers; they are actually software controllers. The problem you are experiencing is that the RAID functionality is only supported under Windows, not Linux.

Instead of letting the ICH7R manage the RAID volume, switch the controller to AHCI (instead of RAID) in the BIOS and create a software RAID volume in the Ubuntu installer. You will get the same or better performance. Linux software RAID, usually with dmraid or mdadm is usually better than the onboard Intel controller anyway (I cannot remember which one Ubuntu uses by default off the top of my head; both are good though).

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Thank you! I asked a question asking what ICH7R/DH and ICH7MDH were, but it was voted down and closed as non-constructive (or off topic, I don't remember which). –  NobleUplift Mar 22 '13 at 7:05
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