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post #4571 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJZeratul View Post
Frys has the Hitachi Deskstar 2TB 3.5" Retail Kit 32MB Buffer, 7200RPM, Hard Drive HD32000IDK7/7K for $104.99, limit 2. But you can always run through a couple times. As of this evening, the frys near my house has "1 available" so I am going to wait until Friday morning to see if they get more in stock for this weekend, and hopefully pull the trigger on 4 more of these suckers.
These are CCTL enabled?

Well I am in Canada but still looking for CONSUMER hard drives that have TLER/CCTL/ERC enabled.
post #4572 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by diehardfan View Post
These are CCTL enabled?

Well I am in Canada but still looking for CONSUMER hard drives that have TLER/CCTL/ERC enabled.
CCTL is set to 0 on these drives from the factory. I haven't found a utility that can set the CCTL to 7 seconds and have it retain that number after a cold boot, but you can set the CCTL via SMART and it will remain for warm reboots. Cold boots require a reissue of the command via SMART.

If anyone has any ideas on how to retain the setting, let me know. I'd be happy to test it out.
    
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post #4573 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJZeratul View Post
Frys has the Hitachi Deskstar 2TB 3.5" Retail Kit 32MB Buffer, 7200RPM, Hard Drive HD32000IDK7/7K for $104.99, limit 2. But you can always run through a couple times. As of this evening, the frys near my house has "1 available" so I am going to wait until Friday morning to see if they get more in stock for this weekend, and hopefully pull the trigger on 4 more of these suckers.
Hey fellow San Diegan...

Word of caution about those Hitachi drives.... there's apparently a bad batch of them going around. I've been in discussions with some clients that are seeing them fail left and right right now. SMART error counters start incrementing and then they don't stop and poof the drive dies. I've had good experiences with Hitachi drives in the past, even when they were IBM; but things change... (like, I never thought Western Digital would get into enterprise drives and do as well as they have...)

If you do get them anyway, burn them in hard for 48-72 hours before you put important stuff on them. If you get past the infant mortality stage, you might be ok.
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post #4574 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLinux View Post
Hey fellow San Diegan...

Word of caution about those Hitachi drives.... there's apparently a bad batch of them going around. I've been in discussions with some clients that are seeing them fail left and right right now. SMART error counters start incrementing and then they don't stop and poof the drive dies. I've had good experiences with Hitachi drives in the past, even when they were IBM; but things change... (like, I never thought Western Digital would get into enterprise drives and do as well as they have...)

If you do get them anyway, burn them in hard for 48-72 hours before you put important stuff on them. If you get past the infant mortality stage, you might be ok.
Sounds like ill have to do some benchies before I put any data on em. I got 4 of these about 2-3 months ago and they seem to be OK so far. Thanks for the words of warning.
    
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post #4575 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJZeratul View Post
CCTL is set to 0 on these drives from the factory. I haven't found a utility that can set the CCTL to 7 seconds and have it retain that number after a cold boot, but you can set the CCTL via SMART and it will remain for warm reboots. Cold boots require a reissue of the command via SMART.

If anyone has any ideas on how to retain the setting, let me know. I'd be happy to test it out.
Can you set the CCTL setting through the PERC? I wasn't aware this was possible, and thought it was only possible via a non-RAID controller.
post #4576 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast View Post
Can you set the CCTL setting through the PERC? I wasn't aware this was possible, and thought it was only possible via a non-RAID controller.
Nope. Has to be via a Highpoint SATA or similar interface and using HDAT2 via DOS boot disk. Which is why it really sucks that the setting is not retained, you have to issue the command via SMART, then swap the SATA cable to the PERC in order to get it onto an array. Then as long as the power is not removed from the drive (warm reboots), the setting will remain. But as soon as you lose power on the drive, you have to perform the swap all over again... gets pretty tedious with multiple drives.

I was reading a tech spec document from Hitachi that has the exact location in firmware that controls the CCTL timeout (Hitachi calls it Error Recovery Control command). I am kind of scared to try modifying the firmware though, because I don't want to brick a drive. Another option might be to flash the Deskstar with the similar spec Ultrastar firmware (Ultrastar A7K2000), which has its ERCc set to 7 seconds factory. But again, I would rather not brick a drive.

I have attached an image of the Tech Document pertaining to the Firmware Location of Hitachi's ERCc in case it has any significance to anyone that might know what we can do to change the setting permanently. It may not be possible, as the bottom of the doc clearly states that the timers are volatile.

Apparently also, You can use this utility (smartmontools) to check/set ERCc/CCTL/TLER on drives connected to a PERC, but only in Linux. It does not support windows at this time. http://sourceforge.net/apps/trac/sma...ID-Controllers

Edited by DJZeratul - 9/17/10 at 2:59am
    
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post #4577 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by DJZeratul View Post
Apparently also, You can use this utility (smartmontools) to check/set ERCc/CCTL/TLER on drives connected to a PERC, but only in Linux. It does not support windows at this time. http://sourceforge.net/apps/trac/sma...ID-Controllers
smartmontools, and the smartctl command in Linux is indeed able to access SMART data of the individual drives behind a PERC5/6 card as of version 5.39 and above. However, I've never seen an option to "write" to the firmware of the drive, and hence set the ERCc/CCTL/TLER timeout value.

i think it is much easier just to buy enterprise grade drives.... no? they are not that much more expensive if you know where to shop, and you get longer warranty, TLER, etc...
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post #4578 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLinux View Post
I don't remember right now, but I thought PERC 5 supported RAID-6? I deal with so many PERC 5/6 cards, I don't quite remember...
PERC 5/i handles RAID5 but not RAID6.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BLinux View Post
TLER is an issue with large drives and RAID in general. Error recovery processes take much longer with large drives, hence something needs to be done to "limit" that process so that RAID controller knows the drive is still alive; otherwise it might assume it is dead and mark it as failed. This is not an issue if your drive is small ( less than 250GB? ) or you're not running on a RAID controller. One option, is to use a good software RAID, such as that implemented in Linux or Solaris operating systems, but I assume most people here are concerned with Windows.
TLER is always potentially an issue with consumer-grade drives. If you want to run an enterprise-grade array, you need an enterprise-grade budget with enterprise-grade equipment. Don't try to be cheap when money is on the line. Most of the posters in this thread are enthusiast users who want enterprise-type features at a less-than-enterprise point-of-entry. We want to play with fun toys we get to see at work or read about online without needing to spend thousands to do it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BLinux View Post
The other "reliable" RAID is RAID-10. With 4 drives, RAID-10 may give you better performance than RAID-6 and provide decent redundancy, albeit slightly less. (in RAID-10 w/ 4x HDD, you can survive 2 drives failures as long as they are *not* part of the same mirror, in RAID-6 w/ 4x HDD, *any* two drives can fail and the array can survive.)
RAID-10 is only better because it uses less processing power to achieve similar results, but at the cost you already specified. In reality, no major enterprise uses RAID-10 when a mirrored RAID6+hotspare is an option. Problem with this is that it requires a minimum of 8 HDDs and nets you (n - 3) / 2 performance+capacity. Basically, it is horribly expensive and really hard to destroy, but ultimately not worthwhile outside of mission-critical (i.e. life-threating, potential financial ruin) operations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BLinux View Post
Regarding Kaishi's comments: it all depends on how important the data is for the individual or organization that owns the data. I deal with businesses that could stand to lose a lot of money or future income should certain data be lost and not recoverable. people could lose their jobs over this data, so the criticality is probably higher than your average home user. on the other hand, just "being aware" of the URE problem isn't enough. That's a little bit like saying "well, i know i can get in a car accident with serious injury, but I haven't had a car accident in 15 yrs so I'll chance it and not buy auto insurance..." We all know, insurance doesn't seem necessary until you actually need it. So, just because "everything is fine so far" isn't good enough.... when you actually run into a problem, and you lose something that is really is important, your tone will completely change. But, if the data is "just data" and not that important, then it really may not matter.
If you are working with businesses, please do yourself a favor and don't buy a used RAID controller from ebay. Please don't buy workstation-grade HDDs. Please get everything you use on a support contract. Yes it will cost you an arm and a leg but you will have reliability and accountability.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BLinux View Post
My general message is this: the seriousness of protecting against data loss is only fully understood when you've actually *had* to deal with it once or twice. a single person's "it hasn't happened to me" is statistically irrelevant, and I would NOT use such statement to make my own decisions.
Losing data sucks. I think we've all been through it from time to time. Data loss cost me a grade in college, so I learned from that lesson.

Say it with me: RAID IS NOT A BACKUP. RAID IS NOT A BACKUP. You can use a RAID as a backup IF you have your data in another place as well! NEVER store important data in a single place, even if that place is fault-tolerant. Fault-tolerance is not fool-proof and not able to survive, say, a fire, hurricane, or other unforeseen disaster.

What I was trying to say is, outside of businesses that run massive databases of mission-critical, financially-backed information, Data is just data. Photos are sentimental but they don't cause you to lose your house. To users on this forum who are either experimenting for fun, or to help their small-businesses thrive: a PERC 5/i is a great choice! I'd highly recommend it. But please don't back yourself into a corner using the wrong equipment, believing that it is eternally rock-solid.

Ebay PERCs don't have a real warranty, generally. Battery backups are like insurance. UPS units are like another whole layer of insurance. BUT insurance doesn't prevent car accidents. It just helps you clean up after them with a minimal loss. Some misery is inevitable

I hope this makes my position more clear. I'm not disagreeing with anything anyone who has said, DO NOT RUN RAID on NON-TLER DRIVES. Just because I do it doesn't mean anyone else should. I have a friend who built an 8TB array with a hotspare on WD Caviar Green drives..... it failed when he tried to expand it and now he's sad. That's what happens, and what could he have expected going that route?
Edited by Kaishi - 9/17/10 at 9:06am
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post #4579 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaishi View Post
RAID-10 is only better because it uses less processing power to achieve similar results, but at the cost you already specified. In reality, no major enterprise uses RAID-10 when a mirrored RAID6+hotspare is an option. Problem with this is that it requires a minimum of 8 HDDs and nets you (n - 3) / 2 performance+capacity. Basically, it is horribly expensive and really hard to destroy, but ultimately not worthwhile outside of mission-critical (i.e. life-threating, potential financial ruin) operations.
I can assure you that RAID10 is often used. Try running a high transaction database with a high ratio of writes to reads on a RAID6-based array and you will soon learn why...

Regarding users wanting a cheap way to get enterprise kit - this is all well and good, but it is important to educate those people so they know what they are letting themselves in for. The PERCs are a great way to get a high performance array on a budget, but because of TLER and other issues for many people it actually isn't really the best way to go if you goal is a network storage system. For similar cost running mirrored drives (using WHS or RAID1) will often give better real-world data protection for similar financial outlay (as no dedicated controller is used reducing costs, and multiple drive failures doesn't result in everything being lost making your data more secure). If you just want a fast boot or scratch drive, then a PERC plus a few consumer grade drives is great. However if you want peace of mind for your file server then maybe you should look elsewhere if on a budget.
post #4580 of 7178
Quote:
Originally Posted by the_beast View Post
This (kinda) confirms that the PERC 5 acts the same as the PERC 6 - both (seemingly) support expanders. However the PERC 6 firmware cannot address more than 8 drives - and your experience seems to indicate the 5 is the same.

The firmware on the 6/e (and presumeably the 5/e) can support more drives despite the hardware on the i and e versions basically being identical. Whether it is possible to flash the e firmware onto the i is another matter - anyone care to try?
The firmware is the same for both.
I have always used the LSI firmware for my 6E and the 1078 family of their firmwares all use the same release file.

I've been using 6E for almost 2 years now and have owned many 5i's in the past.
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