Thanks Brian, Kevin, and compwizrd,
Within the SuperMicro lineup, e.g. the SC846 or SC847 line, there are different models; the A models have a SAS port on the backplanes for every drive, the E16 models have a single 8087 connector for four SAS ports, the E26 models have two 8087 connectors on multipath-capable backplanes for eight SAS ports. (I think up to this point my understanding is solid enough.)
I'd really like to use SATA drives because they fit my budget better.
I don't think I need the performance that I could get from the A models -- I certainly don't need 24 in-flight reads or writes at once. I wonder if there is value to me in buying the E26 model, because there's a lot I just don't understand:
- Can SATA drives do multipath on backplanes like this?
- Can more than four SATA drives on one of these backplanes see performance improvements with multipath? i.e. could I have eight reads/writes in-flight on one of these E26 backplanes?
I don't know where I'd go to find the information I want, my usual sources (wikipedia and manpages) just don't cover things this far above normal consumer grade equipment, and most of the more advanced sources assume this is all introductory material.