hombrewdude

Will a 4 port SATA card only support 4 drives?

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I am looking for a RAID SATA card.

I have been seeing mostly 2 and 4 drive cards.

Do the cards only support one drive per channel?

Or can I get cables with multiple connectors?

If I run raid 5 with 4 drives, then I have no room to other drives.

The RAID 5 is for data, and I want 1 drive without raid for my OS.

Would I just buy another simple PCI SATA without RAID for my other drives?

Any problem with this?

Do most cards have a bootable bios that can handle booting direct from the SATA drive?

I have never used SATA, I am currently running SCSI RAID, which I would like to upgrade.

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The SATA spec only allows for one device per channel/cable, so a 4-port SATA card can only handle 4 devices maximum. When using PATA cards for RAID, you usually would only want one device per channel anyway for best performance, so this isn't all that different.

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If I run raid 5 with 4 drives, then I have no room to other drives.

The RAID 5 is for data, and I want 1 drive without raid for my OS.

Would I just buy another simple PCI SATA without RAID for my other drives?

212444[/snapback]

Doesn't your motherboard have a SATA controller?

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My motherboard is older, and only has IDE - which I don't use.

Will I have problems booting with a PCI SATA card?

If I run raid 5 with 4 drives, then I have no room to other drives.

The RAID 5 is for data, and I want 1 drive without raid for my OS.

Would I just buy another simple PCI SATA without RAID for my other drives?

212444[/snapback]

Doesn't your motherboard have a SATA controller?

212448[/snapback]

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Really does depend on the particular motherboard and the particular sata card, but it will generally be fine. Type your motherboard model and sata card model into google with the word "problem" and see what if it brings up lots of links.

Nox

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You can certainly get 8 port SATA RAID, but its pricey.

You could use system ATA for the single drive. Then you just need 4 ports for RAID 5.

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You might be able to use port multipliers to get more than 1 drive per port.

However, please make sure you really do your homework on multiplier support before purchasing equipment.

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As someone suggested above, I vote for putting an ATA disk for Boot/OS, etc. on your motherboard's ATA port, and then simply using the SATA for your RAID array. That way you KNOW you will not have a problem loading the SATA card's drivers upon boot - because they will be on the ATA boot drive, which we know you can boot 100% of the time. You can't get a 100% non-ATA system anyway, because you will be using it for your optical drives, so what's one more cable.

My only question was you think that SCSI -> SATA is an upgrade. In terms of raw performance, it is not likely to be unless your SCSI setup is fairly old. In terms of reliability, again, SCSI drives are usually made a bit better and have longer warranties to back them up. There are exceptions - Raptors (and to a lesser extent MaxLine IIIs) are supposedly speced at near SCSI reliability. You might want to post your old config and what you are exchanging it for and see what comments people might make. There have been a number of threads on this board discussing this topic, so the search function may also prove valuable...

Future Shock

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I am 100% SCSI now, even my CD drives.

These are older drives, I will post my current benchmarks for the single OS drive and the SCSI RAID.

I was planning on the following:

I think I am going to shy away from RAID now..

1 raptor 73GB for the OS

1 raptor 73GB for programs

1 Maxline III 250GB for data and storage.

Here is my current SCSI RAID 5 setup:

HD Tune: MEGARAID LD 0 MEGARAID Benchmark

Transfer Rate Minimum : 42.0 MB/sec

Transfer Rate Maximum : 48.7 MB/sec

Transfer Rate Average : 46.0 MB/sec

Access Time : 8.0 ms

Burst Rate : 50.3 MB/sec

CPU Usage : 2.8%

Here is my current OS drive

HD Tune: MEGARAID LD 2 MEGARAID Benchmark

Transfer Rate Minimum : 22.5 MB/sec

Transfer Rate Maximum : 41.1 MB/sec

Transfer Rate Average : 30.1 MB/sec

Access Time : 6.4 ms

Burst Rate : 50.2 MB/sec

CPU Usage : 2.0%

As someone suggested above, I vote for putting an ATA disk for Boot/OS, etc. on your motherboard's ATA port, and then simply using the SATA for your RAID array.  That way you KNOW you will not have a problem loading the SATA card's drivers upon boot - because they will be on the ATA boot drive, which we know you can boot 100% of the time.  You can't get a 100% non-ATA system anyway, because you will be using it for your optical drives, so what's one more cable.

My only question was you think that SCSI -> SATA is an upgrade.  In terms of raw performance, it is not likely to be unless your SCSI setup is fairly old.  In terms of reliability, again, SCSI drives are usually made a bit better and have longer warranties to back them up.  There are exceptions - Raptors (and to a lesser extent MaxLine IIIs) are supposedly speced at near SCSI reliability.  You might want to post your old config and what you are exchanging it for and see what comments people might make.  There have been a number of threads on this board discussing this topic, so the search function may also prove valuable...

Future Shock

212540[/snapback]

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Most of the replies in this thread are incorrect, with the exception of #7. You can get SATA port multipliers, and these are supported in the SATA-II protocol level. I have one of these that I am experimenting with, a 5-port multiplier, and it has so far worked flawlessly on an Areca 8-port RAID controller and Seagate disks.

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Here is my current SCSI RAID 5 setup:

HD Tune: MEGARAID LD  0 MEGARAID Benchmark

Transfer Rate Minimum : 42.0 MB/sec

Transfer Rate Maximum : 48.7 MB/sec

Transfer Rate Average : 46.0 MB/sec

Access Time          : 8.0 ms

Burst Rate            : 50.3 MB/sec

CPU Usage            : 2.8%

Dude, you can beat all those numbers with a single 15k SCSI disk on your old controller nowadays. Unless you need to keep data mirrored in real time, it is simpler to back data up to a cheap IDE disk via Ghost or USB.

Raid is for maximizing uptime, and if uptime is critical, SCSI is the way to go. And if programs need to be reinstalled when the OS drive is wiped anyway, then keeping them on the same disk is fine. That way they can be restored all at once from your image on the cheap IDE disk.

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So are you still limited to 8 drives on the controller or can you connect 40?

Most of the replies in this thread are incorrect, with the exception of #7.  You can get SATA port multipliers, and these are supported in the SATA-II protocol level.  I have one of these that I am experimenting with, a 5-port multiplier, and it has so far worked flawlessly on an Areca 8-port RAID controller and Seagate disks.

212650[/snapback]

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