How to Configure RAID or Intel® Optane™ Memory with Intel® RST on an Intel® VMD Capable Platform

Documentation

Install & Setup

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11/04/2020

The Intel® Rapid Storage Technology (Intel® RST) driver version 18.0 and later support Intel® Volume Management Device (Intel® VMD) technology capable platforms.

Intel® VMD is the new way to configure platforms for Intel® RST management of RAID and Intel® Optane™ memory volumes.

The proper HW and BIOS support is currently available only in mobile 11th Generation Intel® Core™ Processor-based systems only that are completely configured and ready to go.

Note
  • It is not recommended to make changes to the BIOS or RAID/Intel® Optane™ memory volumes without consulting the system vendor.
  • The steps in this article describe the steps required to configure a system with no operating system. Changes to the BIOS described should not be made after the OS has been installed, as this will result in an Inaccessible Boot Device blue screen.
  • Platforms that are noted as Intel® Optane™ Memory Ready on a sticker or vendor site do not necessarily mean they support Intel® VMD or the proper BIOS described in this article.

The steps below are required to set up and configure HW/BIOS supported systems for Intel® RST storage management through Intel® VMD. This is only a reference for system vendors and expert users.

Step 1: Download the driver
  • The Intel® RST 18.0 or later drivers come in three packages on Download Center.
    • SetupRST.exe: Full Windows installer that installs the driver, uninstalls legacy applications and provides the option to install the Intel® Optane™ Memory and Storage Management application
    • The following packages contain the driver files only and must be installed through the Have Disk process:

      • F6flpy-x64(Intel® VMD).zip: New driver package that targets VMD enabled platforms only. Driver binary is iaStorVD.sys.

      • F6flpy-x64(Non-Intel® VMD).zip: This driver package targets platforms that do not have VMD enabled, or do not support VMD. Driver binary is iaStorAC.sys.

  • Download the SetupRST.exe and f6flpy-64(Intel® VMD) packages onto a USB flash drive. (Make sure to unzip the f6 package.). Set aside for use during the OS Installation process.

Step 2: System BIOS
Note
  • Available settings and location in the menu can vary. Refer to the system manual or vendor's support site for specific information for the platform being used.
  • Intel® RST functionality requires a UEFI OS installation. The Boot Option setting should be UEFI before proceeding.
    • The Legacy Boot Option will result in failures once the OS is installed with the Intel® RST software.

The following fields will need to be updated to allow the storage devices to be managed by the Intel® VMD Controller:

  1. Locate the VMD Setup Menu for the platform and select Enable.
  2. From the available storage ports, select Enable for the ports that contain the devices to be managed by Intel® RST.
  3. Select SATA Controller to enable this to be managed by the Intel® VMD Controller.

VMD Setup Menu

Step 3: Install operating system (Windows® 10 64-bit)

During OS installation process, the proper f6flpy VMD driver will need to be installed to detect the drives being managed by Intel® RST under the Intel® VMD Controller.

With the USB drive that contains the driver downloaded earlier connected, during the OS installation at the following screen follow these steps:

OS installation

  1. Press Load driver.
  2. Press Browse.
  3. Select the USB drive that contains the F6 driver and expand the folder that contains the driver. Press OK.
  4. Make sure the iaStorVD.sys driver is highlighted and Press Next.
  5. Select the drive for OS installation and Press Next.
Step 4: In the operating system

Once in the operating system, the Intel® Optane™ Memory and Storage Management application should be downloaded from the Microsoft Store* for management of RAID/Intel® Optane™ memory volumes.

Setup.exe can be used during future installations from within Windows as needed.

Note
  • The Intel® RST VMD driver should not be uninstalled/removed after installation. This could result in an Inaccessible Boot Device blue screen and potential data loss.
  • VMD device is always enabled on a platform where VMD device is deployed. There is a possible configuration where VMD does not own any device. This is an empty VMD configuration. As a result of this, the RST VMD driver should always be installed on such a platform to avoid a yellow bang device in Window’s Device Manager.