Thanks for the recommendation. Btw, have you set the disks up with RAID? And if yes, then in what configuration? Real or software RAID and where are your disks connected? (eg. one to MB the other to PCI card etc.)
Also.. still wonderig if it is possible to boot from a SATA add-on card.
I'm running Windows Home Server on my D510MO. No RAID configuration, I use the PCI card for drives in the Storage Pool. Port 0 on the motherboard is the OS drive, Port 1 is the first storage drive. Ports 0-2 on the card for storage pool drives and Port 3 for eSATA.
The board's BIOS recognizes the additional drives and, in fact, allows changing the boot order to put an add-in drive first. To help answer your question, I changed the boot order for an HDD on the card to boot first. It allowed those settings to be saved. It bypassed booting that drive, probably because it is not marked Active nor is there an OS on it. This particular card can be flashed to either a SATALink Controller or a SATARaid controller. The latter allows an F4 at boot to configure RAID on the card. All of this information leads me to believe this motherboard could be booted to a RAID array on the card. Not absolutely sure but it seems like it should.
Awsome answer... I was wondering about BIOS...
I just wanted to post my final results here in case someone else needed the information.
Ended up using this SATA card: Sunix's SATA4000
It works just fine, but I needed to flash both the motherboeard BIOS and the PCI card BIOS. Now I am booting from an Ubuntu 9.10 installation on a separate disk attached to PCI SATA card port 1. I have a software RAID 1 array with disks connected to PCI SATA port 2 and motherboard SATA port 1. So - I have room for additional disks should I want to expand the array.
The BIOS gives no problems, allowing to boot from USB, motherboard- and PCI SATA drives. However without flashing it, I could not boot into Ubuntu - su an update is a necessity.
That's it - have a good day