[conspire] Re: Recommendations for SATA RAID controller under Linux

Rick Moen rick at linuxmafia.com
Fri Apr 1 10:06:04 PST 2005

[Moving this over to conspire.]

Quoting Roland Krause (rokrau at yahoo.com):

> Brian,
> thanks for your input.
> --- "Brian J. Tarricone" <bjt23 at cornell.edu> wrote:

> > Sorry to not really answer your question, but have you looked into
> > Linux 
> > software RAID?  
> Having to pay someone, or myself, to set this up costs more than a RAID
> card :-). Also, I still need a RAID card to connect the drives - right?

No, you don't.  You can use any host adapter with Linux software RAID
(kernel "md" driver and matching utilities); that allows you (if you
wish) to use cheap host adapters and retain your ability to move the
array to any other adapter at any time -- with the minor drawback of
greater processor load, because the host CPU must take care of the RAID
logic.  (For most Linux servers, the processor loading isn't a problem,
because they have gobs of unused CPU capacity -- except during rebuild
operations following drive failure, when the system would become very
bogged down.)  

However, since you mention that this is just a failover server to be
swapped into service during emergencies, you don't really care about the
array's dataset being portable to arbitrary host adapters.  Moreover,
since you're leaning towards the 3Ware 9xxx SATA series, you get genuine
hardware RAID with that at no extra charge.  So, use that and be happy.

> Maybe I didn't mention this but the card is needed to connect 8 x 320G
> drives. I am not even going to do RAID5, just striping. 

3Ware 9500S-8 cards are fine for that.  

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