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Old July 16, 2010, 04:25 PM
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Default Cheap RAID 5 controller recomendations please

My current Synology single drive NAS is out of date and space. I am thinking of reusing my P4 Intel chip set PC for the job but would like RAID5 likely using FreeNAS. Its just collecting dust anyhow. Primary use is for backup data, FTP, Media Streaming.

Can anyone recommend a good, affordable RAID5 controller that will control up to 4 sata 2 drives (up 2 2tb each) that is also highly compatible with Intel chip set?

Thanks!
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:23 AM
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i'd recommend raid 10 over "affordable" RAID 5.

NCIX.com - Buy Adaptec 1430SA 4 Port SATA II RAID 0/1/10/JBOD Low Profile Controller Card PCI-E4 RoHS - 2240900-R In Canada.
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Old July 17, 2010, 11:36 AM
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Originally Posted by grinder View Post
RAID10 really is a silly idea IMO.

If you are going to use 4 drives it is much smarter to use something like 2 drives in RAID0 then use the other two drives for backup. RAID != backup. A lot of people forget this.

Also that is a software RAID card.

And catnhat, look for a used Dell PERC 5i on ebay. You should be able to snag one under $100 if you look around for a while. Still the cheapest hardware RAID card you will find.
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Old July 17, 2010, 12:58 PM
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Or a 2ware 9650LE-4 - snagged one for 150 on ebay 2 weeks ago.
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Old July 18, 2010, 08:19 PM
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Thanks for pointing out that adaptec card is a SW RAID. Its hard to know which are or are not true Hardware RAID cards.

I am not sue I understand the RAID-0. I have a RAID-0 on my PC for video editing performance. But on the NAS are you recommending RAID-0 for video streaming performance?

On the Dell PERC 5i, I thought I read somewhere they have compatibility issues with Intel chipsets and work best on Nvidia chipsets.

My original approach was going to be JBOD but then I thought about what a pain it would be to repopulate the backup drive should any drive fail. That is why I was leaning towards RAID5. I also don't necessarily have the same size drives in this RAID which is why RAID10 wouldn't work for me.

Thanks!
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Old July 18, 2010, 08:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catnhat View Post
Thanks for pointing out that adaptec card is a SW RAID. Its hard to know which are or are not true Hardware RAID cards.

I am not sue I understand the RAID-0. I have a RAID-0 on my PC for video editing performance. But on the NAS are you recommending RAID-0 for video streaming performance?

On the Dell PERC 5i, I thought I read somewhere they have compatibility issues with Intel chipsets and work best on Nvidia chipsets.

My original approach was going to be JBOD but then I thought about what a pain it would be to repopulate the backup drive should any drive fail. That is why I was leaning towards RAID5. I also don't necessarily have the same size drives in this RAID which is why RAID10 wouldn't work for me.

Thanks!
You need the same sized drives in RAID5 as well.

I only suggested using RAID0 if you have a solid backup setup.

And yes the PERC5i does work better on Nvidia chipsets. But it is still possible to get it to work on Intel chipsets w/ a bit of electrical tape.
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Old July 18, 2010, 10:17 PM
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holy mis-information batman. It's not a software RAID card... that raid card does not do RAID 5.. hence the lack of a parity computational chip. I own that card (among many RAID cards) and it most certainly is hardware raid.

If you can get a quality hardware RAID 5 card with onboard cache jump all over it! You will thank-yourself in the end. Tho to most folks, hardware RAID 5 cards are not affordable (like you asked).
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Old July 18, 2010, 10:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowfat View Post
it is still possible to get it to work on Intel chipsets w/ a bit of electrical tape.
Not sure about the electrical tape. Can you elaborate?
I found a number of them on ebay, but some have a battery pack. is that necessary?

Thanks again.
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Old July 18, 2010, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grinder View Post
holy mis-information batman. It's not a software RAID card... that raid card does not do RAID 5.. hence the lack of a parity computational chip. I own that card (among many RAID cards) and it most certainly is hardware raid.

If you can get a quality hardware RAID 5 card with onboard cache jump all over it! You will thank-yourself in the end. Tho to most folks, hardware RAID 5 cards are not affordable (like you asked).
It is an HBA. However it definitely isn't a hardware RAID card. It has no I/O processor. It has no cache. I guess software RAID isn't the right word, 'Fake RAID' may be better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by catnhat View Post
Not sure about the electrical tape. Can you elaborate?
I found a number of them on ebay, but some have a battery pack. is that necessary?

Thanks again.
PERC 5/i RAID Card: Tips and Benchmarks - Overclock.net - Overclocking.net

A good guide on the PERC 5i. You don't need a battery back if you have a UPS or turn off write-caching. But w/o write caching, your write speeds will be considerably lower. And don't pay too much for them. There are some people selling them for like $200+. I wouldn't pay more than $100 for one.
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Old July 19, 2010, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowfat View Post
RAID10 really is a silly idea IMO.

If you are going to use 4 drives it is much smarter to use something like 2 drives in RAID0 then use the other two drives for backup. RAID != backup. A lot of people forget this.

Also that is a software RAID card.

And catnhat, look for a used Dell PERC 5i on ebay. You should be able to snag one under $100 if you look around for a while. Still the cheapest hardware RAID card you will find.
Unless your building a SQL backend :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by lowfat View Post
It is an HBA. However it definitely isn't a hardware RAID card. It has no I/O processor. It has no cache. I guess software RAID isn't the right word, 'Fake RAID' may be better.



PERC 5/i RAID Card: Tips and Benchmarks - Overclock.net - Overclocking.net

A good guide on the PERC 5i. You don't need a battery back if you have a UPS or turn off write-caching. But w/o write caching, your write speeds will be considerably lower. And don't pay too much for them. There are some people selling them for like $200+. I wouldn't pay more than $100 for one.
The perc5i and 6i are both great cards as in the second hand market they are quite affordable. You will normally have to do some modding as they are designed for a forced air cooling system and generally don't have a fan attached to the HSF. But other than the used perc's (which are dell branded LSI cards) you do get what you pay for.
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