7 Replies Latest reply on Sep 16, 2011 9:21 AM by john_s@intel

    RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives

    Spunek

      First of all - Hello everybody, I am new to the Intel forums.

       

      I have a question. I think what I want to do is possible but I am not 100% sure. I would like to use RS2WC080 controller to connect 8 x 3TB drives and make a RAID 5 from them. It is stated that all of the Intel controllers based on LSI 2108 (RS2WC080 is based on it) will be able to support HDDs >2TB while LSI 1xxx series will only display first 2TB.

       

      I am I right? Or better - did someone built similiar configuration?

       

      And is it possible to connect 12 drives to that controller using expander cables?

       

      Regards,

      Peter

       

      update:

      Forgot to mention I would like to use Seagate Barracuda XT 7200rpm 3TB hdds if that matters.

        • 1. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
          john_s@intel

          Spunek,

           

          The RS2WC080 supports 3TB HDDs. In fact, you can find 3TB SATA and SAS HDDs on the RS2WC080 Tested Hardware and Operating System List (THOL). We highly recommend using HDDs off the THOL.

           

          Yes you can use 12 drives with the RS2WC080 controller using expanders. See the web article on How many drives, virtual disks and arrays does the controller support? for more information.

           

          You can find quite a bit of infrmation that you might be looking for on the RS2WC080 support page.

           

          Regards,

          John

          1 of 1 people found this helpful
          • 2. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
            Spunek

            Thank you, John

            Sorry for so late feedback. This issue was postponed for me for a time, but now I will have to get back to it.

             

            Your answer was really helpful. The last thing that confuses me is that in the accessories list for that controller there is no special expander cable. How should I make a connection for 12 drives? I will have 2 x 4 ports expander calbes shipped with the controller. Which additional expander should I order?

             

            The quick quide manual does not show any option above 8 drives:

            http://download.intel.com/support/motherboards/server/rs2wc080/sb/e64398002_rs2wc080_qsug_front.pdf

             

            I was also wondering whether I can use inbuild RAID on the Intel motherboard ( S5500 or S3420GPRX) to run 2 drives in RAID 1 and 12 drives connected to the RS2WC080 as a 11 drives RAID 5 volume + 1 drive as a hot spare ?

             

            Regards,

            Piotr

            • 3. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
              john_s@intel

              Spunek,

               

              The RS2WC080 will support 12 drives with the use of expanders. See the following information articles off the RS2WC080 support page:

              RAID controller and module specification information

              and

              RAID controller and module backplane compatibility list

               

              Intel expander backplanes have two data port connections that support four or six disk drives. For our expander backplanes you could connect one or two data lines to the backplane. That's what expander backplanes do, expand the number of drives supported by fanning out the data lines. Like a network switch per se.

               

              Regards,

              John

              • 4. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
                Spunek

                Dear John,

                 

                Again thanks for your help. I am still a little bit confused about 12 drives vs midplane vs 8 port controller. Can I achieve connecting 12 drives to RS2WC080 without using active midplane? e.g. if I would not be using SR2612URR chassis? If yes, how can I achieve that?

                 

                 

                Regards,

                Piotr

                 

                PS:

                I know that recommended 3TB Seatage drives are the ones from Constellation series, but they are too expansive for my solution. Does anyone tried to run Seagate Barracuda XT 3TB with RS2WC040/080 controllers ?

                • 5. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
                  john_s@intel

                  Piotr,

                   

                  In the most general sense a rack system active midplane is equivalent to a pedestal system expander backplane. The signal(s) provided to the midplane or backplane can be expanded to multiple signals to support an increased number of hard disk drives. Like a network switch, one in and many out.

                   

                  On the other side a passive midplane is equivalent to a non-expander backplane. Just one to one.

                   

                  So for the RS2WC080 with it's eight ports to support 12 disk drives you need an active midplane or expander backplane. Remember that the RS2WC080 can support up to a maximum 16 disk drives in RAID mode.

                   

                  To use the RS2WC080 in another chassis, the chassis would have to have "expander" capabilities as discussed above to increase the drives beyond the one to one capabilities of the controller alone. The chassis you choose would also have to be able to support 12 drives. Standard chassis are few and far between that support that many drives.

                   

                  Regarding the drives you use, we strongly recommend using validated and tested hard drives to avoid compatibility issues during or after integration.

                   

                  Regards,

                  John

                  • 6. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
                    Spunek

                    OK, I get it. So without actibe midplane or expander system that is usually integrated with the chassis I am limited to only 8 drives. What I am curious about is a possibility of using RS2WC040 4 port RAID card. The datasheet of SR2612URR states, that the midplane is "single port", so I guess that my 2nd port in RS2WC080 will not be populated anyways. Will the RS2WC040 lack of performance while working with 12 drives? It seems to be a recommended entry solution.

                     

                    Can you elaborate on that?

                     

                    Regards,

                    Piotr

                    • 7. Re: RAID Controller RS2WC080 + 3TB drives
                      john_s@intel

                      Piotr,

                       

                      The RS2WC040 would seem to make more sense because of the unused port of the WC080 you mention. The midplane "single port" you refer to on the SR2612UR is a 4 port SFF-8087 connector, the same that you have on the RS2WC040. So a SFF-8087 to SFF-8087 cable would be used to connect the two devices.

                       

                      See the SAS-2 Entry Level vs. Mainstream Guide(.pdf) for performance and competitive data that includes the RS2WC040/080.

                       

                      Regards,

                      John