SB850 and >2.2TB?

GMScribe

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Hi guys,

Has anyone confirmed if the on-board RAID controller on the SB850 will support individual disks beyond the 2.2TB mark? I'm specifically interested in the new WD 3TB drives.

Otherwise could someone recommend a good cheap multiplier bridge so that I can connect 4 drives to the included 2 port RAID controller? As I'm hoping to run RAID 5.

Many thanks
 

sub mesa

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You need GPT partitions to exceed 2.0TiB (TB is a strange unit for the PC).

Which controller you use should not matter; older chipsets will be able to do >2.0TiB just fine i think; but not on Windows. Windows has quite poor support for GPT; read about it before you jump 3TB disks.

Besides the new 3TB from WD is quite slow; i would strongly recommend waiting and picking a good Samsung F4 2TB for example instead; which is faster and alot cheaper per GB.
 

sub mesa

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Oh, and running onboard RAID under Windows requires RAID edition disks which feature TLER. Without it, disks encountering bad sectors causing them to spend 10 seconds or longer in recovery, will cause to be marked FAILED/FREE/NON-MEMBER. Onboard RAID5 is very unreliable and without TLER disks it is very easy to lose your data. Do not consider your data to be safe when using this setup.
 

GMScribe

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Hi sub mesa,

I'm not after anything high performance, I'm bottlenecked by my 300Mbps wireless-n to other devices in the house. The reason for RAID-5 is purely integrity. So I'd rather go for a cheap low power solution but do understand finding these drives with TLER is not so easy.

Currently I actually use 4x1TB Spinpoint F1s (I've had my current system a while). One issue I'm likely to encounter with 2TB is that I'll run out of space and start racking up a large number of extra drives, each making heat, noise and eating power to the point I replace the whole array. So even if the initial cost is higher I think a better density would benefit me in the long-run in regards to upgrades and running costs.

Let's hope Samsung get the F4 out in 3TB, or for now just the F4, The F4EG has been around for a long time now.
 

sub mesa

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So you're after high gigabyte-per-idle-watt ratio? In that respect the 3TB does very well at 5.0W; almost 50% better than 2TB disks.

But i would reconsider using RAID5, or RAID at all. You may use them as normal disks without RAID just fine on Windows, or build a NAS where you centralize data and run a non-windows OS which can use RAID5 just fine on those non-TLER disks, and those RAID implementations are much more reliable than Windows onboard RAID.

F4 uses 666GB platters; Samsung would need to get to 750GB platters before they can make a 3TB disk. WD wanted to be the first, they succeeded but their performance is weak. Wait for Samsung F5? 750GB platter drives to hit 3.0TB and you should see 150-160MB/s transfer rates, extremely good for a 5400rpm disk.
 

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