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data storage System build cheap raid controller?

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#1
Planning on building a media storage server but im having trouble coming up with solutions, ive done some research into raid controllers and while i continue doing so i thought perhaps some experts on here could help me out. the case is a norco 4224 and im going to use 24 x 2tb wd green hard drives in raid 5. The case uses sas connectors, the drives are sata2 so it narrows it down a bit. Ive seen 6 connector sas controllers for upward $600+ was wondering if there are cheaper solutions, 3 cards x 2 connectors working together? a controller with expander? what i got so far was while looking was ibm br10i but is not raid 5,
HighPoint RocketRAID 2680 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16816115096
SUPERMICRO AOC-SASLP-MV8 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16816101358
HighPoint RocketRAID 2760A http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16816115095
HighPoint RocketRAID 3560 http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16816115067


do the 2 connector cards work together to form a bigger raid? features of them, software, etc. suggestions / recommendations are very much appreciated :)
 

kciaccio

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#2
You system might be over kill for media server. I have a 8tb media server using Unraid. I stream multiple HD streams at once without issue.

http://lime-technology.com/

Try not to make things over complex, only causes you more headaches in the long run. Remember when hardware raid breaks, and it will, you have to replace with the same hardware and that could be hard to find in even the short future.

Do your homework.
 
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#3
With the given drives, I'd be looking at a software solution as well. Unless you can find someone with experience using WD Greens and a specific controller, it's a crapshot whether or not they'll play well together.

Before getting down to specifics, were you planning on Linux or comfortable enough with Linux to use it? Or Windows/Windows Server? Or other?
 
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#4
I would most likely be using windows server 08, the reason for the drives and the number is that i found a deal which would cost me $46 per drive instead of the $85-$90 after taxes etc. The huge amount of space is for my blu-rays (planning on going full sized rips, 40gb per) rips shows etc etc, i already have alot. The norco 4224 is cheaper then other company's and i have yet to find a tower case that would be able to do 24 hard drives. The case uses sas connectors so im thinking i got to get controllers to hook that up. so it limits me a bit on that end. i could take of the backplanes off and get molex extensions and do a wackload of sata connectors to the 24 drives. i would find it a pain to network drive 24 drives to my media machine, unraid has given me something to think about and look into. maybe having 3 cheaper sas controllers like i had linked would be good, 3 raids. maybe running each drive seperate would be good and just raid them software side as i see fit, but i still would need sas connectors to hook them up with the norco 4224 case. the best but cheapest way is what im looking for. what kciaccio said about failing drives is a pain indeed. again suggestions / recommendations are greatly appreciated
 

Kreij

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#5
I have a server running WS 2003 with a HighPoint controller that has 2 SAS port-> 8 SATA drives.
I have them set up as 4 x Raid1 Arrays. It works perfectly.
 

kciaccio

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#7
I would most likely be using windows server 08, the reason for the drives and the number is that i found a deal which would cost me $46 per drive instead of the $85-$90 after taxes etc. The huge amount of space is for my blu-rays (planning on going full sized rips, 40gb per) rips shows etc etc, i already have alot. The norco 4224 is cheaper then other company's and i have yet to find a tower case that would be able to do 24 hard drives. The case uses sas connectors so im thinking i got to get controllers to hook that up. so it limits me a bit on that end. i could take of the backplanes off and get molex extensions and do a wackload of sata connectors to the 24 drives. i would find it a pain to network drive 24 drives to my media machine, unraid has given me something to think about and look into. maybe having 3 cheaper sas controllers like i had linked would be good, 3 raids. maybe running each drive seperate would be good and just raid them software side as i see fit, but i still would need sas connectors to hook them up with the norco 4224 case. the best but cheapest way is what im looking for. what kciaccio said about failing drives is a pain indeed. again suggestions / recommendations are greatly appreciated
That was the next thing I was going to bring up - breaking it down into multiple arrays. Twenty-four drives in RAID-5 gives me a bit of a shudder :)

For cheapness, and ease of connectivity. I'd probably explore the route with 3 of those Supermicro cards, which are really just HBAs. Their RAID support seems to be entirely from the OS, judging by the manual on Supermicro's site and the list of supported OS.

3 x 8-disk* (still makes me feel a little weird)
6 x 4-disk* (six of your 24 disks for parity, but I feel much better! ;))
24 single disks.

* May change depending on if you want to use one or more of those drives for the OS, or if you install a separate drive for the OS inside the case.

Regardless of how the end configuration turns out, it could just be a single share with the drives under it as each one could be mounted as a folder under your share. Test case: I have an old 80GB drive mounted as /temp under D:. When I share D:\, I can access D:\temp.
 
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#8
Does it have to be RAID 5? I'd imagine that writing the parity for a RAID 5 array would take a while, and if a drive ever goes down it'd take forever to rebuild it. You'll loose some storage space but I think RAID 10 would be far better in the long run.
 
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#9
mounting a drive as a folder could ultimately work for me. I wanted to have a big areas for my files but this can work as well. the raid cards, im assuming can run the drives by themselves, 24 independent drives. Im thinking i may go with a highpoint rocketraid 2760 as a controller.