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What I plan to do is use imaging software to copy back my Windows after I set up RAID using two new drives. Hopefully, that'll work.
Interestingly, I've managed to get AHCI mode to work by forcing a driver install from device manager. But no such luck with RAID mode b/c windows can't see it unless it's on in BIOS first. I'll give your suggestion a try when I get a chance. One question though, is the hardware device id different for different modes? A prior post mentioned id=2922 for ICH9R in AHCI mode I believe.
I have a very similar issue and after much searching this is the closest to what I'm trying to accomplish. I'm hoping someone can tell me what I need to do in my case. I have the Intel ICH9R raid controller. I'm trying to bring my old drive with XP Pro to my new PC. When I set the BIOS to IDE mode Windows starts fine but if I change it to RAID, I get the BSOD b/c Windows can't find the drivers. So in essence, I am trying to activate RAID under my existing XP installation. I have the ICH9R driver files already, but need help in getting Windows to find them at boot-up.