SSD install for Precision T7910

Hi.  I'm new to GreenPCGamers and really appreciated the list of upgrades you supply us.  A lot of great content.   I'm not well versed on the computer skills, so please forgive me if i don't know some terminology/functionality.

Background:   I was gifted a Precision 7910 with a single E5-2620 v4 2.10ghz processor, 16gb mem.  I want to use it for gaming (not high end stuff...just some light-med gaming.  I installed a decent Nvidia Geforce card).  It had 3 drives in Raid5, each 3tb, running off what seems to be a higher end dedicated Raid card.  My goal is to install an SSD just for my win10pro OS and a 2nd SSD for programs and such.  For the life of me I couldn't find a power cable to plug my SSD into...just the Raid ports using the slide trays, so that's what I did.  I removed the existing three 3tb HD's, used a tray to hook up an SSD, and slid it into bay 0.  I did the same thing with the 2nd SSD into bay 1.  In bay 2, I put in one of the 3tb HDs.  Bay 4 is blank.  The 3tb would just be for storage if i wanted.  I booted up, went into bios, changed ASA to AHCI (i think that's how the SSD can be seen), kept UEFI instead of Legacy, Boot order DVD drive then Raid card.  Afterwards, I went into the Raid card.  The Raid card sees only 2 drives...the one in bay 0 as Non-Raid (my OS), and the 3tb in bay 2 as Needed Configuration.   I erased the data on 3tb drive and made it into a Non-Raid device....so both the SSD and the 3tb are now in Non-Raid format.  

Booted up into windows and i see the SSD in bay 0 and the 3tb HD in bay 2.  

Here are my questions.  Am I an idiot for doing this or am I on the right track? (have mercy on me please).  I basically want to run this machine using SSD with no Raid config, but I can't find power to the SSD outside of the Raid card slots.  And...windows isn't showing my SSD in bay 1 at all (not even in creating partition screen).  So...  

Is there a way to run SSD without using the Raid ports?

Am I still running the SSD efficiently using the Raid ports or did i seriously downgrade it and reduce its life? 

Is there a way to make this beast see the 2nd SSD in bay 1?

I really appreciate any help given.

(ps...I don't want to do the original 3 Raid5 hookup because my past experience with Raid is that they fail in time and I don't have back up drives to replace them...and i don't want to purchase new replacement drives.  Did that too often on my other machine and i'm kinda over that now).

Thanks again.

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  • Hi there,

    There is no need for the "idiot" thing. We all had our beginnings here. :)

     

    As for your machine, adding a SSD was the wise choice. Depending on which raid card you have, having it in there is a plus compared to using straight sata. Some raid cards can work as a regular controller card with the added benefit of having a onboard CPU and ram to speed things along. If your drives are showing and working, then there is nothing else you need to do or remove. The power cables for that machine's drive bays is supplied by the rails that you slide the drives into. Keeps from having to fumble with cables. That was the design of the machine. 

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  • As for not seeing the second Ssd try moving it to a different slot location. It's possible that the slot connection you plugged into may have loosen over time (a common thing for the 76/79xx series)

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      • Steve G.
      • Steve_G
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      stormson weathers 

      Hi Stormson.  Thanks so much for replying and your encouragement.  I worked on it till 5am this morning and feel like i made more headway.  The 2nd SSD i put in wasn't being seen for whatever reason.  I took it back out and reseated it.  I then went into the Raid controller and there it was...waiting to be configured, which i configured to Non-Raid disk to match the other 2 drives.   I see all 3 drives in Windows.  

      The Raid controller in my PCI slot uses SAS cabling.  I took that cable off and plugged it into the board, thinking i can power the SSD via board without using Raid.  Turned out i was just plugging it into the integrated Raid controller.  LOL.  So, i went back to the PCI controller.  IT looks like a really good controller, so i went with that for the time being.  I still have no clue how to just run Sata SSD drives straight without going through a Raid controller in this beast.  The card is ideal if one has SAS SSD drives which are 2 times faster than normal SSD drives, but that a bit over my budget. 

      I guess my new concern is reducing the life of my SSD drives since the Trim feature seems to be gone now.  Any thoughts on getting Trim to work on SSD drives in non-raid config running through a Raid controller?  

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    • Steve G. You're fine with that card. Yes with SAS ssds you can get double or more speed but SAS is backwards compatible with SATA and will not harm your drives. In fact the controller can make better use of those drives then the actual SATA itself since it's not relying on the cheap SATA controller that's on the motherboard.

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    • Steve G. Oh I forgot to add that trim is handled by the operating system so it's not really dependent on the controller itself even if it was in RAID mode. And newer SSDs handle trim internally so regardless if you have an order SSD or newer SSD you're covered either way by either the operating system or the firmware on the SSD.

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      • Steve G.
      • Steve_G
      • 5 mths ago
      • Reported - view

      stormson weathers 

      Thanks so much Stormson for your feedback and answers.  Super helpful!  My next task is to plop another CPU (E5-2620 v4 2.10ghz) in the 2nd spot and add ram at that time.  I hate seeing it sit there going to waste.  lol.  Thanks for making my first experience with GPCG a great one.

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