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Motherboard RAID v RAID Controller any difference?

Discussion in 'Storage' started by Xazax, Aug 29, 2009.

  1. Xazax

    Xazax

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    Im kicking around the idea of getting together say 4-6 150/160GB Raptors' and putting them in RAID 0 and i was wondering if the motherboard onboard RAID would be enough at all, would a RAID controller be better? if so which one i look on newegg and im totally lost, looking at Controllers.

    Im just trying to go for insane HDD speeds as a pet project of mine.
     
  2. DrPepper

    DrPepper The Doctor is in the house

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    Why so many raptors, why not two SSD's for insane speeds.
     
  3. Xazax

    Xazax

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    Used raptors run 50-80 SSDs run $300....
     
  4. DrPepper

    DrPepper The Doctor is in the house

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    Sorry I was assuming the raptors were new.

    Erm well I'd personally run hardware RAID because it eliminates any possiblilities of comprised performance. I've seen a few tests though that say motherboard RAID is as good as hardware raid in raid 0 and 1 but I believe motherboards can't do RAID 10 or 01.

    Disclaimer: I am sleep deprived at the moment please check up on whatever I write.
     
  5. Homeless

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    For raid0 the integrated solution will be good, but still not as fast as a hardware solution (assuming you don't get a $10 controller).
     
  6. FordGT90Concept

    FordGT90Concept "I go fast!1!11!1!"

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    The performance is virtually the same between the Intel ESB2 chip on my server motherboard compared to a HighPoint RocketRAID 2300 card. The hard drives themselves are more of a limiting factor than the controller.

    You'd need a very large RAID array for a dedicated controller to really be necessary. I mean, integrated will support up to 6 so if you don't exceed that amount, I don't see why there would be a problem.

    Because SSDs are much higher bandwidth, it is more important to get a dedicated card with those than HDDs. The only real advantage of having a dedicated card with HDDs is that you can transfer the array to another computer with less risk of losing data.
     
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  7. Xazax

    Xazax

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    Well as someone pointed out to me, it seems AMD RAID on SB750 is the worst of all onboard between Nvidia and Intel's RAID, these will of been going on a Gigabyte 790X mobo

    http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/ich10r-sb750-780a,2374-11.html

    So i think i may give up on the Raptor's and just get a single Velcioraptor or something of the like and be content.
     
  8. devguy

    devguy

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    Hey, if you're going to be doing RAID 0 or RAID 1, the SB750 is decent enough. If you're going to be doing any multilevel RAID, or RAID 5, forget it, though. I have done some benchmarking myself with dual Seagate 7200.12s, which while not raptors, they do tend to beat them in everything but access times.
     
  9. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    the only real difference is bandwidth. most onboard stuff gets anywhere from a 1x link to a 4x link, while addin cards can go upto full PCI-E 16x for the high end stuff. (each 1x link can do 250MB/s each way, which gives you a good idea on bandwidth)

    If you're running 4 drives or less, onboard RAID can cut it (particularly if its intel raid, they're pretty decent)
     
  10. REVHEAD New Member

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    Guys another limiting factor to account for is system memory bandwidth, you can have all the Hardrive speed you can muster, but apart from high benchmark scores, your still going to be limited to how fast programs or games load by the speed of your ram, you can get a sustained read of 400 mbps but if your ram is running as duel channel 1600 or 1333 mhz your going to suffer.

    You want Triple channel 2000 mhz or above DDR3 if you want to smash loading records.

    I have 4 veloci raptors in Raid 0 and I notice massive differances in how fast windows loads, Vantage, 3damarks 2006 and countless games with the speed of my ram, 1866mhz 1600mhz and 1333mhz, duel and triple channel both on a P45 and I7 x58 platform, for this very reason I have purchased some 2000mhz stixs for me to play with.

    Trust me , benchmark speeds with HD tach and Everest for HDD speeds do not equate to real world performance.

    Get some super fast tripple channel ram and then go for your Raid setup.
     
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  11. suraswami

    suraswami

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    I am always NVidia Fan when it comes to RAID performance and overall stability of boards when compared to any amd chipset ones. Only raid card I have used is a cheap 1x PCI-E JMicron chip based card. With 2 x WD 160GB SATA Blue I get about 175 MB/s max read and 115 MB/s average read performance in RAID 0. While the same drives with a SB700 did 285MB/s max speed and 125 MB/s average read. So I guess the mobo is only interfacing somewhere in the 2x to 3x PCI-E lane speed.

    With NV Raid on RAID 5, 3 x 160 WD SATA Blue I get 350 MB/s Max and 120 MB/s average speed, that too with the Parity calculation penalty for RAID 5. If I went RAID 0 I get 243 MB/s MAX and 116 MB/s Average speed on relatively full disk RAID group.

    Gerenal file transfer speed within RAID Group seems faster on NV.

    Also the speed of RAID depends on CPU speed.

    Unless you get hardware based RAID card with math co-processor for calculations and >4x speed you won't see much difference in performance between Onboard or RAID card solutions.

    My colleague said he saw somewhere a SAS 4 port 4x PCI-E for under $50 brand new. If I get more info I will post it.

    FYI - SAS cards can be used for SATA drives too.
     
  12. theeldest

    theeldest

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    The difference between onboard and dedicated RAID controllers is the smallest when you're doing RAID1 or RAID0.

    If you want something nested or 5 or 6, then do the dedicated.

    You can get a pretty good dedicated at a pretty low price so you might as well do that (talkin used here)

    Ebay PERC 5i

    If you're unfamiliar, the PERC is Dell's PowerEdge Expandable RAID Controller.

    Intel IOP333 Processor (11w TDP, 110Tj(max))
    256MB 400MHz ECC Registered DDR2 memory (upgradable*)
    RAID levels 0, 1, 5, 10, and 50
    PCIe x8
    2 (SFF-8484) SAS internal connectors (support for 8 drives)
    LSI Manufactured (and flashable)
    Xp, Vista 32/64 Supported

    * 400MHz ECC-registered DIMMs with x16 DRAM components. Installing unsupported memory causes the system to hang at POST. You have to buy x8 or x16 Memory Modules:
    x8 = 9 Chips (1 ECC)
    x16 = 5 Chips (1 ECC)
     
  13. department76

    department76 New Member

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    i think a raid controller would be well worth it.

    from experimenting with my two old 7200.10's on my board with the SB600 vs. the Promise Fastrack (SAS capable) controller that's also on the board, the onboard gets about 110mb/sec in hdtune whereas the same drives in raid 0 get 130ish mb/sec on the Promise controller.

    given that might change with the SB750 or ICH10R, i think the slight improvement would be worth it for 4x raptors!
     
  14. Bundy

    Bundy

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    Can you elaborate a little on this - I have DDR2 running at 1020. My memory bandwidth is over 10 times 400MB/s - to be precise 6112 MB/s. Is it possible the total amount of RAM is influencing the results via page file usage?
     
  15. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    It's called placebo effect. The RAM is fast enough to not be the bottleneck in almost any scenario at 1333 or 1600Mhz, especially in triple channel. It has been shown time and time again not to make much of a difference at all, in all but the most ram bandwidth sensitive apps.
     
  16. REVHEAD New Member

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    I am just going off my experiance with apps, games and windows loading, with the differant setups I have had over the last 12 months. When I was running DDR3 @1333 things would load slower. As I moved to some 1866 mhz stixs and played with speeds and timmings, I noticed massive improvmants on how fast windows would load with my V raptors, allso the FSB had something to do with this allso. Now I am on a i7 @ 1333mhz ram things are loading really fast for me, its this reason I am eager to get my 2000mhz sticks to play with.

    Placebo or not, this is what I notice, I have run through this since my X38, X48, P45 and i7 days, I have used and still use Intel Ich9 and ich10, this uses the system ram as Cache, maybe that could have something to do with this, I know my Burst speeds have allways been through the roof.
     

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  17. Wile E

    Wile E Power User

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    Yeah, ICH9R also has writeback cache, but that doesn't help anything but burst. It can't sustain those speeds.

    But as far as loading, ram has little effect. The hard drives are still the slowest link in the chain as far as that's concerned. If you use the apps a lot, it conceivable the superfetch has them preloaded, and the ram might help, but it still needs to pull the superfetch files from the hard drive to cache them. So it takes longer at boot for the machine to fully settle the more it has to cache. Ram won't help that. It also won't help for loading levels, or anything like that.

    And even if your are talking about superfetched apps, the differences shouldn't be super noticeable, unless there was something amiss to begin with. Triple channel already has so much bandwidth, it's almost excessive.
     

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