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Which RAID to pick on Intel Server Board?

Last response: in Storage
August 19, 2013 2:27:37 PM

I have an Intel server board and I want to setup the drives on it in RAID 1 but when activating RAID in the BIOS I get the choice to pick between Intel ESRT2 and Intel RST. I'm pretty sure I can use either of these but I really don't understand the difference between them. All I can really find is what it says in the BIOS itself.

-Intel ESRT2 (Powered By LSI*): Supports RAID 0/1/10 and optional RAID 5 using Intel RAID Key. Uses Intel ESRT2 drivers (based on LSI* megasr).
-Intel RST: Provides pass-through drive support. Also provides host based RAID 0/1/10/5 support. Uses Intel RST iastor drivers.

I'd like to keep things simple and really don't understand the difference since they both seem to support the same RAID modes. If someone knows what the difference is or why I might want to pick one over the other please let me know. I've currently got it set using ESRT2 and everything seems to work but I just picked that one randomly.

Best solution

a b G Storage
August 19, 2013 2:49:13 PM


I think you took the right choice using LSI controller
this is the sort of advanced hardware controller you get on servers

It does more of the calculations in hardware than the standard Intel chipset RAID controller and IASTOR driver

Personally on a small server I would use RAID 5 with 3 or 4 drives but it costs extra for raid key (and hard drives)

Without exact motherboard model I can not be more precise

usually different controllers use different sets of ports


Mike Barnes
a c 909 G Storage
a b å Intel
August 19, 2013 2:59:34 PM

The difference between the two is which controller you are putting into raid mode thus which ports you will need to connect your drives to.

Of the two I would also use the LSI (esrt2) as it is really nice to work with in the long run. Intel also works well but i prefer to use those for OS drives & opticals, saving the LSI for data drives.