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Configuring Storage Controller settings in Windows 7 to successfully install Full Disk Encryption (FDE)

    • Updated:
    • 24 Nov 2016
    • Product/Version:
    • Endpoint Encryption
    • Platform:
    • Windows 7 32-bit
    • Windows 7 64-bit
When you try to install Endpoint Encryption FDE on a Windows 7 machine, installation fails. A message in the Pre-Install Checker states that the failure is caused by an incorrect Storage Controller settings.
For example, when the FDE fails to install hardware encryption on a Seagate SED drive, either of the following occurs:
  • The FDE completes the installation but the initial reboot results to a black screen with a blinking cursor.
  • The initial reboot hangs while loading the preboot.
During setup, Windows disables unused storage drivers to improve startup time.  If the necessary drivers are not enabled prior to changing the BIOS storage controller setting, Windows will not boot properly.
To install Endpoint Encryption FDE, you need to change the storage controller setting from RAID to AHCI in the BIOS of a computer with installed Windows 7.
For example, a Dell Latitude E4310 needs a BIOS configuration change from RAID to AHCI.
When the storage controller is set to RAID in the BIOS, it is installed in Windows Device Manager as a RAID Controller under the Storage Controllers category. The driver being used is iaStorV.sys.
To change the storage controller setting in the BIOS to AHCI:
  1. Enable the AHCI drivers so Windows can reinstall the storage controller using those drivers.
    1. Open the Registry Editor and navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services.
      Important: Always back up the whole registry before making any modifications. Incorrect changes to the registry can cause serious system problems.
    2. Locate the following keys and change the DWORD “Start” from “3” to “0”:
      • atapi
      • msahci
    3. Restart the computer and enter System Setup (BIOS).
    4. Set the storage controller to AHCI.
    5. Save BIOS settings and exit.
    When Windows loads, it will install new drivers for the storage controller.
  2. Reboot the computer when prompted. The BIOS should now be set to AHCI and Windows should have an AHCI controller driver installed in the Device Manager.
  3. Install the FDE again.
For additional information, refer to this Microsoft article: Error message occurs after you change the SATA mode of the boot drive.
Configure; Troubleshoot; Install
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