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2120 posts

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#150711 31-Jul-2014 14:42
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Please help me pick a cost effective controller card for my low cost NAS build I just picked up a complete Dell Optiplex 740 enhanced system from Grays Online, It runs an AMD chip on a Nvidia chipset (nforce 430)  It's got 4GB ram, and an Athlon 5000B dual core CPU, so hopefully will be fine performance wise.

I need help picking a cost effective controller card though, as the board will not have sufficient SATA ports to run a NAS large enough for us.

Freenas seems to be sweet when it comes to it's capability, but I'm really unsure which PCI-E SATA/SAS card is my best bet?

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  #1099423 31-Jul-2014 15:57
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How many ports do you need? I'm currently looking at purchasing a LSI 9211-8i and then flash it to IT mode so that it's just treated as 8 ports. You can get them for around $US110 off eBay.



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  #1099430 31-Jul-2014 16:08
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meesham: How many ports do you need? I'm currently looking at purchasing a LSI 9211-8i and then flash it to IT mode so that it's just treated as 8 ports. You can get them for around $US110 off eBay.


8 would be great, to flash the LSI card does your motherboard need to support booting to an EFI shell?

 

 

 
 
 
 


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  #1099432 31-Jul-2014 16:13
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macuser: 
8 would be great, to flash the LSI card does your motherboard need to support booting to an EFI shell?  


I'm not sure of the process, I'll probably just buy one already flashed: http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/301248225311 and then pick up some cheap SAS splitters from Aliexpress. I've only briefly looked into this and this was the card that was recommended, at the moment I'm not short on SATA ports (I currently have 10 in my server) but once the 4TB Reds start dropping in price I'll be building a new array.



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  #1099436 31-Jul-2014 16:20
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meesham:
macuser: 
8 would be great, to flash the LSI card does your motherboard need to support booting to an EFI shell?  


I'm not sure of the process, I'll probably just buy one already flashed: http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/301248225311 and then pick up some cheap SAS splitters from Aliexpress. I've only briefly looked into this and this was the card that was recommended, at the moment I'm not short on SATA ports (I currently have 10 in my server) but once the 4TB Reds start dropping in price I'll be building a new array.


Brilliant, thanks for the link

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  #1099442 31-Jul-2014 16:26
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macuser:
meesham: How many ports do you need? I'm currently looking at purchasing a LSI 9211-8i and then flash it to IT mode so that it's just treated as 8 ports. You can get them for around $US110 off eBay.


8 would be great, to flash the LSI card does your motherboard need to support booting to an EFI shell?  


http://linustechtips.com/main/topic/104425-flashing-an-lsi-9211-8i-raid-card-to-it-mode-for-zfssoftware-raid-tutorial/

looks like it, for ease, ild look for a IT model.


regardless of what you go with, your gonna want one in IT mode, or JBOD to directly access the disks rather than an array.


as an alternative, M1015s are also solid cards, when i get around to a rearrangement on my fileserver, gonna be getting one for there.




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  #1099490 31-Jul-2014 17:38
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pbtech are sourcing one of these for me:

http://www.supermicro.com/products/accessories/addon/AOC-SASLP-MV8.cfm

admittedly for my unraid server - but very well regarded by that community

ps: I also understand pbtech will soon be carrying supermicro products.  


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  #1099521 31-Jul-2014 18:24
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driller2000: pbtech are sourcing one of these for me:

http://www.supermicro.com/products/accessories/addon/AOC-SASLP-MV8.cfm

admittedly for my unraid server - but very well regarded by that community

ps: I also understand pbtech will soon be carrying supermicro products.  



will be interested to hear how that goes with your machine, and if pb start stocking sm gear, ill be certainly shopping around there more often!




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  #1099566 31-Jul-2014 19:10
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Freenas manages it's own 'RAID' with ZFS...so I think I can get away with a JBOB/IT Mode controller.

Though they recommend 8GB ram to begin with, jeeze!

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  #1099596 31-Jul-2014 19:46
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macuser: Freenas manages it's own 'RAID' with ZFS...so I think I can get away with a JBOB/IT Mode controller.

Though they recommend 8GB ram to begin with, jeeze!


How much storage space are you planning on having with ZFS? I don't think 4GB will be enough, it's usually recommended to have at least 8GB - there's some calculation based on number of TBs (maybe 1GB RAM per TB, need to confirm). It's also recommended you use ECC memory. I'm by no means a ZFS expert though, I'm a Linux person and use mdadm (although I'm currently researching btrfs and might build a small array with it as a test).

Awesome news about PB looking to source SM gear, I'd been looking at buying some from the US but I'd rather get it locally for any warranty issues.



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  #1099690 31-Jul-2014 21:41
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meesham:
macuser: Freenas manages it's own 'RAID' with ZFS...so I think I can get away with a JBOB/IT Mode controller.

Though they recommend 8GB ram to begin with, jeeze!


How much storage space are you planning on having with ZFS? I don't think 4GB will be enough, it's usually recommended to have at least 8GB - there's some calculation based on number of TBs (maybe 1GB RAM per TB, need to confirm). It's also recommended you use ECC memory. I'm by no means a ZFS expert though, I'm a Linux person and use mdadm (although I'm currently researching btrfs and might build a small array with it as a test).

Awesome news about PB looking to source SM gear, I'd been looking at buying some from the US but I'd rather get it locally for any warranty issues.


Yea all correct,  the cheap pc I bought is looking fairly useless in ZFS mode.

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  #1099700 31-Jul-2014 21:48
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toss a few more ram sticks in it?




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  #1099703 31-Jul-2014 21:51
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hio77: toss a few more ram sticks in it?


More the non-ecc ram it uses, looks like it will be more likely to cause a catastrophic failure.

The people I'll be setting it up for will no doubt treat it as a 'back up' system, so when a failure happens it will be a disaster!

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  #1099705 31-Jul-2014 21:53
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macuser:
hio77: toss a few more ram sticks in it?


More the non-ecc ram it uses, looks like it will be more likely to cause a catastrophic failure.

The people I'll be setting it up for will no doubt treat it as a 'back up' system, so when a failure happens it will be a disaster!


in terms of if your wanting to go for ecc then yes defiantly.


its my understanding that you can get by without ecc though!




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  #1099706 31-Jul-2014 21:53
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macuser:
hio77: toss a few more ram sticks in it?


More the non-ecc ram it uses, looks like it will be more likely to cause a catastrophic failure.

The people I'll be setting it up for will no doubt treat it as a 'back up' system, so when a failure happens it will be a disaster!


What sort of data will be stored on it? If it's pretty static you could go for something like snapraid instead.

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  #1099707 31-Jul-2014 21:54
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meesham:
macuser:
hio77: toss a few more ram sticks in it?


More the non-ecc ram it uses, looks like it will be more likely to cause a catastrophic failure.

The people I'll be setting it up for will no doubt treat it as a 'back up' system, so when a failure happens it will be a disaster!


What sort of data will be stored on it? If it's pretty static you could go for something like snapraid instead.


or unraid ;)


although they charge a licence for a larger array.




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Any comments made are personal opinion and do not reflect directly on the position my current or past employers may have.

 


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