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SSD for OS in server question

post #1 of 10
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System is listed in my rig sig (Bruce). Basically a media server/nas.

I'm running one 128GB Samsung 840 Pro (OS) in Raid mode due to storage array. I'm currently expanding/changing my storage array and have always been curious if it wouldn't be better to run the SSD in AHCI mode.

Would it be worth the expense to add a raid card to run 3 x 2TB WD Red drives which would allow the SSD to run AHCI mode? Trim says it's enabled but does it actually function while in raid mode?
Just a few things i'm curious about.
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post #2 of 10

No, TRIM doesn't work in RAID Mode, but you can use Samsung Magician and run Performance Optimization once or twice a month, or just as needed.

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post #3 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by TwoCables View Post
 

No, TRIM doesn't work in RAID Mode, but you can use Samsung Magician and run Performance Optimization once or twice a month, or just as needed.


Reread his post again. He is stating his SATA mode is set to RAID mode, however, he does not have a RAID array set up for the SSD. Thus the SSD will have TRIM enabled. ;)

 

RAID mode provides all the qualities of AHCI and allows TRIM to work for single SSDs that are not in a RAID array themselves.

 

So basically, you can leave RAID enabled you're fine.

 

You can use trim check to verify that TRIM works fine for the SSD. http://www.overclock.net/t/1367737/how-to-verify-trim-is-working-in-windows

 

If you want to get a RAID card to improve your RAID array performance go ahead, especially if you have a RAID 5 or 6 array set up.

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post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Webster View Post
 


Reread his post again. He is stating his SATA mode is set to RAID mode, however, he does not have a RAID array set up for the SSD. Thus the SSD will have TRIM enabled. ;)

 

Yeah Sean, I understood that. So obviously, I didn't understand that it only applies to when two drives are in a RAID array.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Webster View Post
 

 

 

RAID mode provides all the qualities of AHCI and allows TRIM to work for single SSDs that are not in a RAID array themselves.

 

So basically, you can leave RAID enabled you're fine.

 

You can use trim check to verify that TRIM works fine for the SSD.

 

If you want to get a RAID card to improve your RAID array performance go ahead, especially if you have a RAID 5 or 6 array set up.

 

Trim check? I had to Google it. heh It looks to me like you're talking about TRIMcheck:

 

http://www.tweaktown.com/articles/5203/trim-check-overview-of-an-essential-ssd-trim-functionality-tester/index.html

 

https://github.com/CyberShadow/trimcheck

 

http://files.thecybershadow.net/trimcheck/trimcheck-0.6.exe

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post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean Webster View Post


RAID mode provides all the qualities of AHCI and allows TRIM to work for single SSDs that are not in a RAID array themselves.

So basically, you can leave RAID enabled you're fine.

You can use trim check to verify that TRIM works fine for the SSD. http://www.overclock.net/t/1367737/how-to-verify-trim-is-working-in-windows

If you want to get a RAID card to improve your RAID array performance go ahead, especially if you have a RAID 5 or 6 array set up.

While RAID mode seems okay (yes I checked your "trim is working" before original post) plus the limited functionality of Samsung Magician was the reason I was hoping for confirmation.

My current thoughts are going with RAID 5 and I freely admit my ignorance in this field. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
I have no clue how much card is necessary to see any improvement over the mobo system (haven't setup Red drives yet) but I have attempted searching for a four port internal SATA III 6.0GB/sec for RAID 5 and for the price ($100.00 and up) I need at least an idea of how much is too much and than is it really worth the cost.

Bare in mind current setup is 2 x 2TB Greens in RAID 1. Will the RAID 5 Reds be noticeably slower if I stay with mobo RAID?
If so any chance you'd recommend a card to do the job?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131655
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post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sandman View Post

Bare in mind current setup is 2 x 2TB Greens in RAID 1. Will the RAID 5 Reds be noticeably slower if I stay with mobo RAID?
If so any chance you'd recommend a card to do the job?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131655

Motherboard RAID-5 implementations suck. Linux software RAID is actually pretty decent. If you're buying an HBA for RAID-5, you're probably looking at $300+ for a decent card brand-new. I believe used Dell PERC 5/i and 6/i are particular favorites if you want something cheap.
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post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rui-no-onna View Post

Motherboard RAID-5 implementations suck. Linux software RAID is actually pretty decent. If you're buying an HBA for RAID-5, you're probably looking at $300+ for a decent card brand-new. I believe used Dell PERC 5/i and 6/i are particular favorites if you want something cheap.

Thanks for the insight and recommendation! +Rep

I've heard how on-board sucks but is this just in performance? Any idea of it's potential reliability?
Thinking/hoping performance will do for my current needs as long as reliability is there.

When you mentioned the Linux software RAID are you referring to FreeNAS?
I've been researching this as well but haven't decided which path to take yet.
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post #8 of 10
Well, ignoring the significant limitations inherent to RAID5 itself...

The biggest issue is that should your motherboard fail, or should you upgrade, there's a distinct possibility of your array not working on the new board, which is increased should the chipset itself change.
Also, parity calculations are not the least strenuous things in the world, so whenever you go to write to the array, you are relyingon tthe system CPU to perform these calculations. On a dedicated hardware controller, you have an RoC that's specifically designed for such use.
The write speeds tend to be terrible, whereas a proper hardware controller has the advantage of intelligent caching of writes, improving throughput especially when it comes to non-sequential writes.
The motherboard has a finite number of SATA ports, some/many of which are typically provided by a third party controller. Not onlyare these controllers slow, bbut again if the board fails, you will need the exact same controller if you hope to recover data.
The limit on ports also means very, very limited expansion options, and I am pretty sure that you can not RAID across controllers (even if you ca, iI would think it to be unwise). Conversely, hardware controllers utilize SAS 6Gbps or 12Gbps, and allow for use of expanders, making it simple to run many drives, and better yet you are actually able to take advantage of each individual SAS link (an expander shares the bandwidth of the port it's connected to across its drives, so if you plan ahead, you can take full advantage of even the 12Gbps links using plain old hard drives even!).

I would recommend against RAID5, tho, because disk capacity has become such that the chances of encountering a URE during a rebuild are far too high, even with just 3-4x 2TB or 3x3TB drives. RAID6 is much better in terms of data integrity, but it takes even more of a write speed hit. I personally recommend RAID10 for anything outside of Write Once, Read Many arrays, with media storage usually being an example of a WORM array in which RAID6 is the better choice (read speed matters little, as even a 5 drive R6 array will read fast eenough for uncompressed BD playback and then some, and the amount of space retained is higher than RAID10 once you surpass 4 drives, as well as being much easier to expand).
   
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post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by rui-no-onna View Post

Motherboard RAID-5 implementations suck. Linux software RAID is actually pretty decent. If you're buying an HBA for RAID-5, you're probably looking at $300+ for a decent card brand-new. I believe used Dell PERC 5/i and 6/i are particular favorites if you want something cheap.
The PERC 5/i and 6/i have a 2TB HDD limit.
Once again...
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Once again...
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post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sandman View Post

When you mentioned the Linux software RAID are you referring to FreeNAS?
I've been researching this as well but haven't decided which path to take yet.

Technically, isn't FreeNAS based on FreeBSD? That's a *nix flavor but not exactly Linux. tongue.gif As for Linux software RAID, I'm referring to the one built into the kernel. Kinda like how Windows also offers software RAID support.

Mind, for media storage, I generally prefer to use JBOD+parity solutions (e.g. unRAID, FlexRAID, SnapRAID). Saves on heat, power consumption and noise since data is not striped so it doesn't require all drives to be spinning. Another thing, beyond the fault tolerance level, data loss is limited to the drives that have failed unlike striped RAID where you can lose all your data. Since it can be cost prohibitive to do a 1:1 backup of, say, a 20TB server containing Blu-ray rips, JBOD+parity might be a better option. Caveat with this is you don't get the performance benefit of striping. Then again, most modern, single HDD's can easily saturate a gigabit connection, anyhow.
Edited by rui-no-onna - 4/27/14 at 7:54am
Garnet
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Garnet
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Lucifiel
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Metatron
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Crucial m4 256 mSATA Samsung 840 500GB Intel BXHTS1155LP Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
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G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Silverstone ST45SF 450W Silverstone Sugo SG05B 
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