Author Topic: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?  (Read 8947 times)

Offline SirMaster

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #15 on: July 18, 2014, 04:16:04 pm »
16 disks on a HBA isn't going to cause any bottlenecks.

Offline Dizzy49

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2014, 12:29:24 am »
16 disks on a HBA isn't going to cause any bottlenecks.

But would I get better performance from two HBAs with 8 drives on each?
Or when I fill my server, 3x HBAs with 8 drives each, or 1x with 16 drives and 1x with 8 drives?
Server HW: Norco RPC-4220 | Supermicro X7SPA-H-D525 | 4GB Mushkin SO-DIMM DDR3 1333 | LSI 9201-16i | Corsair TX650 | 64GB Corsair Vertex2 SSD (OS)
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Offline Brahim

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2014, 07:36:33 am »
No one can make the blanket statement of whether 3x HBAs with 8 drives each would outperform 1x HBA with 24 drives.
All comparison would have to be done against specific products.

That said, there is a potential that multiple HBAs might yield you better performance by:
  • avoiding saturation on the card itself in hosting less drives
  • spreading the load across multiple PCIe lanes

Having your drives across too many controllers can affect performance too due to controller timing aspects. In parallel operations, the slowest to respond controller will affect all other controllers.
Controller response time given parallel disk requests is one of those useful metrics that reviews unfortunately don't publish.

Offline Dizzy49

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2014, 02:15:35 am »
No one can make the blanket statement of whether 3x HBAs with 8 drives each would outperform 1x HBA with 24 drives.
All comparison would have to be done against specific products.

That said, there is a potential that multiple HBAs might yield you better performance by:
  • avoiding saturation on the card itself in hosting less drives
  • spreading the load across multiple PCIe lanes

Having your drives across too many controllers can affect performance too due to controller timing aspects. In parallel operations, the slowest to respond controller will affect all other controllers.
Controller response time given parallel disk requests is one of those useful metrics that reviews unfortunately don't publish.

That is exactly what I needed... To know that it is possible to saturate the card with more drives, and that it is possible to spread the load across multiple PCIe lanes, but that the card response time might be the limiting factor.

Is there a way to test the response time on the cards so we can test them and post results here and build up a knowledge base for the cards?  Would we need to test in a multicard environment?
Server HW: Norco RPC-4220 | Supermicro X7SPA-H-D525 | 4GB Mushkin SO-DIMM DDR3 1333 | LSI 9201-16i | Corsair TX650 | 64GB Corsair Vertex2 SSD (OS)
Server OS: Windows 7 64bit Pro
FlexRAID RAID-F 2.0 Update 12, Cruise Control [SnapShot RAID], 9 DRUs (9x3TB), 2 PPU (2x3TB)

Offline Brahim

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2014, 07:00:41 am »
You are not really testing the response time of the cards but their response time in relation to one another.

Typically, the response time will vary. So, what matter is how in sync or out of sync those variations are. Ultimately, just test the setup as a whole.

Offline Dizzy49

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #20 on: July 22, 2014, 11:36:34 am »
Ok, so it sounds like I need a test bed, a bunch of drives, and a variety of cards in multiple configurations.

I'll work on the first two then come back and see what I can come up with for cards.
Server HW: Norco RPC-4220 | Supermicro X7SPA-H-D525 | 4GB Mushkin SO-DIMM DDR3 1333 | LSI 9201-16i | Corsair TX650 | 64GB Corsair Vertex2 SSD (OS)
Server OS: Windows 7 64bit Pro
FlexRAID RAID-F 2.0 Update 12, Cruise Control [SnapShot RAID], 9 DRUs (9x3TB), 2 PPU (2x3TB)

Offline terrastrife

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #21 on: July 23, 2014, 03:35:01 am »
My SAS2008 based card (plus onboard ports) get's about 800-900MB/sec in my current set up, which used to get about 900-1000MB/sec with a Highpoint 2340 instead of the SAS2008. I suspect however that the SAS2008 will scale better when more drives are added.

Offline pclausen

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #22 on: July 26, 2014, 03:22:43 pm »
800-900MB/sec doing what?  Calculating parity in tRAID, or something else?

I'm getting right around 1TB/sec calculating parity in tRAID (IBM 1015 SAS2008 flashed to IT) and about 450MB/sec during Verify Sync, but poor performance doing everything else, including writing to the array locally in performance mode (around 30MB/sec), and copying/writing across the network (around 20MB/sec).

I'm going to add a 2nd SFF-8087 cable between each controller and its connected LSI SAS2X36 expander backplane (each has 24 drives attached to it).  Keeping fingers crossed that 8x6GBs channels for each array of 24 disk will perform better than 4x6GBs does.
« Last Edit: July 28, 2014, 04:35:12 am by pclausen »

Offline Methanoid

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Re: Which SAS Controller Card is Recommended these Days?
« Reply #23 on: August 25, 2014, 08:54:45 am »
I've been running 3x SUPERMICRO AOC-SAS2LP-MV8 SAS Controller Cards for a couple years now in my server without any issues.

I agree with the others that the LSI / IBM SAS2008 based controllers are a lot better supported though.

Which OS? With spin down WORKING? Many people say it doesnt