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PERC 5/i RAID Card: Tips and Benchmarks - Page 201

post #2001 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockMan! View Post
Go to the Dell support page for the PowerEdge 1900 server. You'll find Server 2008 x64 drivers for the Perc 5/i that'll work in Vista x64. Note that these drivers will work even if you flashed your Perc with LSI firmware.
It says that they're not signed, so Vista won't load them.
post #2002 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast
Looking at the first post which has ICH9R vs PERC benchmarks, I imagine your performance will go up slightly, but maybe not enough to notice. Your 120GB drives are pretty slow anyway, so the boost from the PERC might not give you much extra speed. I think you really need some new drives to make the increase worthwhile.

Honestly, if I wasn't going to be using the PERC for a 4 drive RAID 6 array in addition to my SAS drives, I wouldn't have bought it (or the drives). When I need to expand my storage beyond 4 drives I will remove the SAS drives and go back to SATA OS drives.

As for 512MB cache - if you need to replace the memory, get a 512MB stick. If not, stick with the stock 256MB as you will likely not notice the difference.
so if cache - 256MB or 512MB - gives nothing - why everybody use PERC controlers ?

I thought, that when I'll move my system to hardware raid + cache - and I don't work with many large files - only system + 5-50 MB of my files - I thought that it will fit in cache - and whole system will be very fast ...

Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast
Hope this helps
thank you
post #2003 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by RobiNet View Post
so if cache - 256MB or 512MB - gives nothing - why everybody use PERC controlers ?

I thought, that when I'll move my system to hardware raid + cache - and I don't work with many large files - only system + 5-50 MB of my files - I thought that it will fit in cache - and whole system will be very fast ...
It's not that cache gives nothing - it is very important. But the change from 256->512 isn't really so important (according to the benches that have been posted here). I wouldn't recommend changing a working 256MB stick to a 512MB for normal desktop use, as it will give little benefit.

Cache is very good for helping with lots of small, random writes because they all go straight to the controller cache. But it doesn't really helps reads, and it does nothing for sustained throughput. Depending on your usage, you may see a great benefit, you may see nothing at all.

I know I sound like a bit of a salesperson here, but if you want a big boost of speed for a small drive, SSD is the way to go. If you needed a larger fast drive, SAS + PERC would be ideal. For really fast storage you can combine a RAID card with a couple of SSDs or a lot of SAS drives. But that gets expensive.

The point is - don't buy 8 of the cheap, old generation SAS drives, as the speed increase you will get won't be the most cost effective use of you money. If you have $400 to spend (as per your examples), the fastest disk would be 2 60GB Vertex drives or 1 Intel SLC drive on your motherboard controller. The next best thing would probably be a PERC and 4 of the fastest disks you can afford (maybe the 640GB WD drives?). If you only want to spend $100, get the PERC, put your current disks on it, and enjoy a slight boost.

As for the PERC - the reason people use them is the price on eBay - they are dirt cheap compared with all other hardware RAID cards. They aren't the best performing cards by any means and, like any other RAID card, they can't work miracles with crappy disks. But they allow you to strap several slower disks together to give something reasonably fast or to give some redundancy. And, because they are true hardware RAID the stability and features offered for RAID 5 is much better than any onboard fakeraid solution.
Edited by the_beast - 4/3/09 at 10:32am
post #2004 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by xToaDx View Post
It says that they're not signed, so Vista won't load them.
They loaded okay for me
    
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post #2005 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast View Post
It's not that cache gives nothing - it is very important. But the change from 256->512 isn't really so important (according to the benches that have been posted here). I wouldn't recommend changing a working 256MB stick to a 512MB for normal desktop use, as it will give little benefit.

Cache is very good for helping with lots of small, random writes because they all go straight to the controller cache. But it doesn't really helps reads, and it does nothing for sustained throughput. Depending on your usage, you may see a great benefit, you may see nothing at all.
That's not entirely true. Cache is actually very helpful when dealing with large files.

Lets use some numbers that are easy to work with here - say you wanted to copy a 1GB file from array A (500MB/s read) to array B (100MB/s write). If it was a straight copy (no cache), it would be limited by the write speed and therefore take 10 seconds. If you have 256MB cache, the first 768MB would take 7.6 sec, and by the time that much has been transferred the cache will hold the last 256MB that was read from the drive. So you just 'saved' 2.4 sec. If you have 512MB cache, then you only have to wait on the first 512MB, which takes 5.1 sec. Saving you another 2.5 sec.
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post #2006 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJZeratul View Post
They loaded okay for me

Good to know, not that it helps us a lot
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post #2007 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inuyasha1771 View Post
Good to know, not that it helps us a lot
I actually haven't had any issues loading these unsigned drivers on x64... As long as they are 64 bit drivers they go fine, it just gives me the red message that the driver is not signed, I say install anyway and it goes.

As for installing Vista onto an array and using unsigned drivers, I am not sure. I havent evever installed vista to an array on the 6/i
Edited by DJZeratul - 4/3/09 at 4:22pm
    
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post #2008 of 7150
I decided to get one of these for my file server. I bought one from eBay, and installed it (my mobo is a nForce 3600 Tyan dual socket 1207). I then found that my system did not start, even after I took out the PERC. After a long investigation I found out the BIOS chip on the mobo was fried. I had never seen this happen before. I replaced the BIOS chip and the PERC, as it didn't work in any other systems either (although it didn't cause any damage). I tried my new PERC and it did the SAME THING! the BIOS chip was fried.

Has this happened to anyone else? I'm just about to give up on the PERC if it's going to damage my other hardware!
post #2009 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Couchinator View Post
I decided to get one of these for my file server. I bought one from eBay, and installed it (my mobo is a nForce 3600 Tyan dual socket 1207). I then found that my system did not start, even after I took out the PERC. After a long investigation I found out the BIOS chip on the mobo was fried. I had never seen this happen before. I replaced the BIOS chip and the PERC, as it didn't work in any other systems either (although it didn't cause any damage). I tried my new PERC and it did the SAME THING! the BIOS chip was fried.

Has this happened to anyone else? I'm just about to give up on the PERC if it's going to damage my other hardware!
Man I hate to hear this... I am sorry that you've had so much trouble.

This is definitely not something that happens with these cards, at least i havent heard anyone have this issue before. Considering you tried 2 completely different PERC cards, it makes me want to say maybe its the motherboard or the PCI-E slot.

Which board do you have (model)? I think some of those Tyan 1207 boards already have an 8 port LSI SAS controller on them, which could cause issues with the SMBus...
    
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post #2010 of 7150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inuyasha1771 View Post
Good to know, not that it helps us a lot
xToaDx's issue was BIOS related... After reading about utnorris' BIOS flash in this thread, he flashed to a new BIOS and it ended up working. Sometimes its a specific BIOS revision that causes an issue, so if flashing forward doesnt work, try flashing backwards (as was the case with utnorris' bloodrage, going back a revision worked).

It seems as if most Code 10 errors in windows that do not allow disk arrays to show up to either the Vista Installer or an already installed OS have all been BIOS related, so that is my recommended FIRST STEP to try for all of you that think they may have tried everything and don't have a clue as to why its not working on their motherboard.
Edited by DJZeratul - 4/4/09 at 4:22am
    
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