4 Replies Latest reply on Jul 20, 2015 4:44 PM by jonathan_intel

    What RAID controller enables SED of DC S3700s?


      I have Dell R610s into which I am trying to place a RAID controller that will enable me to use the SED capability of Intel DC S3700 SSDs.  I initially tried the Dell PERC 6/i.  That did not work.  I bought a Dell PERC H710P.  It enables the SSDs to operate, but does not recognize their encryption capability.


      Does anyone here have any experience getting these drives to work on a RAID controller that enables the SED and secure erase capability to be used?

        • 1. Re: What RAID controller enables SED of DC S3700s?

          Hello Ras72,


          As I understand you would like to be able to run Secure erase and use SED capability on your Enterprise SSD's when they are connected to a RAID adapter.

          Full compatibility of the Intel® SSD DC S3700 series and 3rd party RAID controllers depends on multiple factors. Some RAID controller manufacturers may even release compatibility guides that include the drive models and firmware versions they have tested with a determined RAID card.


          We will do additional research about your inquiry, for more accurate recommendations please provide the following information:


          - SSD model number and firmware version

          - Please elaborate on the encryption capabilities/features you plan to use.

          • 2. Re: What RAID controller enables SED of DC S3700s?

            Greetings, Jonathan.  Thank you very much for your reply.


            Yes, I seek to use the built-in full-drive encryption of the DC S3700s.  I'm used to this process with laptops and desktops using the ATA hard drive password.  But with the RAID controller it's a different method.  The Dell PERC H710P has the capability of creating a secure drive array.  It handles the key management with each of the SSDs.  I just create a secure password at the RAID controller management interface and then it talks with the SSDs.  Then, if someone takes a drive out and puts it in another computer, if they don't use the same password, they cannot see the decrypted version of the information on the drive.  Also, if I want to use the secure erase function to decommission a drive, I can go into the RAID card's management interface and do so.


            My challenge is that the H710P only supports certain "certified" SSDs.  I've read in other forums where people have added other brands of SSDs and their Dell server will show an amber light and throw up errors.  At least with Intel SSDs there aren't errors screaming at me all the time.  So I can use these drives with that RAID controller in a few installs where the SED capabilities aren't a requirement.  But for at least one client, their industry requires them to have FDE on this server.


            For the purpose of the community - because there have to be others trying to do this, too - I contacted support at Avago for the LSI RAID cards with this same question.  The reply I received was, "At this time these drives are not on the compatibility list.  They may be added in the next quarter or 2."


            I am surprised that these data center drives that have been out for two years and whose successors have now just been released haven't been certified on any of their RAID controllers.  But I'm willing to go with another manufacturer's RAID card that has made these drives work with their controller.  I do hope that you are able to find a controller with which this functionality works, Mr. Jonathan.  I figure that Intel had to at least test this functionality with at least one RAID controller before it was released, right?  What was that RAID controller?


            I'll have to pull one of these out of the server and hook it up to a computer on a SATA port in order to run Intel's SSD Toolbox to see the firmware version.  But to get the ball rolling, the Product ID as reported from the H710P's management interface is INTEL SSDSC2BA20 Revision 0270.  If that tells you what you need to know, then please let me know and I'll leave that drive installed in the server.


            Again, thank you so VERY much for your assistance with this challenge.  I feel like I'm so not on the leading edge of technology, but I'm honestly quite surprised how I have yet to find someone report or review how they have used the SED capabilities of these SSDs on a RAID controller in an enterprise environment.  It simply cannot be that I am the first one to be trying to get this done with these drives.  I figure the information is out there and I just haven't used the correct combination of search terms for a search engine. 

            • 3. Re: What RAID controller enables SED of DC S3700s?

              Hello Ras72,


              We will check with our resources about your inquiry, for this reason, we have sent you a private message requesting some additional information.


              The thread will be updated once we get more details about this topic.

              • 4. Re: What RAID controller enables SED of DC S3700s?

                Hardware RAID such as LSI MegaRAID* "safestore" uses TCG-enterprise storage specification. At this time Intel® SSD's do not support this method of managing drive encryption.


                As we understand, software RAID can manage security on individual drives. Intel® RST is and example of this.