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Intel Smart Response and Losing Data with RAID - Help Please


New Member
Aug 3, 2012
2 (0.00/day)
Hi there,

With regard to Intel’s “Smart Response” and a Gigabyte Z77 board the manual states,

“If you have installed the operating system before configuring the Smart Response Technology, all original data on the hard disk will be lost once you enable RAID mode. It is recommended that you back up the hard disk before enabling the Smart Response Technology.”

At what point would the data become lost should you make the mistake of not enabling RAID first?
Does this mean that it becomes completely inaccessible as a result?

Hypothetically, if I was to use that same computer to clone a drive belonging to another PC and I inadvertently forgot to disable RAID in the bios before cloning it, would I lose the data on that drive too or does it have to start running into Windows first before that can happen?
I ask because I have from time to time cloned a hard drive and I would dread a mishap like that to occur, all because I forgot to disable RAID.
Is it really that easy to mess up a hard drive?

Also, if the SSD with the cached files ever became faulty, would the main hard drive become inaccessible as a result?
Would it be just a case of fitting a new SSD to put it right or would it all need setting up again from scratch?

I hope I have understood this correctly.
I have never used “Smart Response” or RAID before, so I would appreciate some information.

Thank you.

Aug 11, 2011
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I'm not versed in the techonology involved but as far as I understand you actually don't lose the data, it's just that if you set an HDD as AHCI first and then switch to RAID the voulme becomes inaccesible because of the different structure but if you set AHCI back then you can read the volume again. That is unless ISR does a full reformat by default or something.

I would ask Gigabyte for more info on this as their boards are supposed to have the benefit of enabling ISR even if you already installed the OS (i think there's a program in the setup disc for this) so if you actually lose the data that would defeat the purpose (Intel states that ISR must be set up before installing the OS).
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Aug 2, 2011
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If you don't want to reinstall Windows after adding an SSD for SRT caching, you simply need to change a key in the registry, then go in your EFI settings and set to RAID mode. See the below Microsoft KB article on how to enact this change yourself. Be aware you need to make the change in your registry BEFORE making the change in your EFI/BIOS.


If you lose the SSD, the main HDD will continue to work normally.


New Member
Aug 3, 2012
2 (0.00/day)
Thanks for your quick replies.
You'd hope it wouldn't be so drastic as to cause the wiping of a hard drive, but in this review of the Gigabyte motherboard (link below) the writer suggests otherwise -

"To use Smart Response you have to set your motherboard's SATA controller to RAID mode, but, unlike on Asus's P8Z77-V Pro, doing so wipes your hard disk so you'll have to reinstall Windows. The manual mentions this, but only in the small print, which we missed to our cost. We would have preferred the option to add an SSD cache later without having to back up and start a Windows installation from scratch."

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