Feb 052010
 

I’m thinking about creating a storage box. One with a lot of disk space. It will be used for backups and stuff. I will continue to backup to tape as well.

I’m considering this case, which has 8xSATA hot-swap bays:

If I was buying a RAID card, I’d buy this one:

But I may go with ZFS instead of hardware RAID.

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  5 Responses to “Big storage”

  1. The link to the case is wrong, it’s for another RAID card.

  2. Fixed. thank you.

  3. I’ve been generally disappointed with my Areca ARC-1210, which is similar to what you’re considering. The worst of the problems I wrote up at http://notemagnet.blogspot.com/2008/08/linux-disk-failures-areca-is-not-so.html The other major problem is that Areca goes through some work to get drivers running under various open-source OSes, and then basically abandons them as far as I can see once they’re in the kernel. I’ve seen plenty of this under Linux, and it looks like the situation on FreeBSD is similar, like http://www.mail-archive.com/freebsd-hardware@freebsd.org/msg03317.html

    It’s not like there are very many other options though; I regularly run into weird problems like this on 3ware and LSI/PERC boards too. RAID drivers and their associated monitoring are just fickle.

    The main reasons to get hardware RAID are a) assurance that dropping a redundant drive will never take out your ability to boot, which can happen with badly configured software RAID; b) battery-backed caches offer a huge performance boost for apps that need fsync to work right; c) it’s usually a bit easier to deal with recovering after drive failures, software RAID rebuilds usually require at least one cryptic command to pull off. If none of those things are important to you, by all means use a couple of standard SATA controllers and ZFS. I only worry about getting them when I’m building a database server, where proper and fsync behavior is a must; every other type of system I have runs just software RAID. No reason to believe that a backup server would benefit from that hardware.

  4. I think price will stop me from buying this RAID card.

  5. Hey.
    And which one you’ll wish to buy so?