I currently have four Seagate Barracuda 2TB SATA3 drives (ST2000DL003) running in RAID5 in a Thecus N4100 Pro NAS. The NAS is fine and all, but performance is not what I was expecting and I've decided to build a home server instead.
What I'd like to do is build a mid-tower server to handle all my media storage, Subsonic, Minecraft server, etc. I'd have one boot drive running Windows Home Server and the four 2TB drives in a RAID5.
Where I'm running in to trouble is with finding a motherboard or RAID controller that can handle four SATA3 drives in a RAID5 configuration. So far, I've come up with a couple options but none seem ideal yet.
Well, I believe ALL of the 900-series chipset AM3+ boards support RAID-5; my Asus Sabertooth does, BUT (and this but is big enough to be a keister, or at least a butt), mobo RAID-5 typically does not offer anywhere near the performance of a dedicated card. If performance is the issue here, you may not find it acceptable.
RAID 10 isn't as slow on mobo controllers. You may not need an add-in card. You could always start without one, benchmark it, and if you're not happy, get a controller. That means redoing the RAID, but that's why you benchmark it first before loading all your stuff on it.
You also lose 2TB of capacity, but I'm sure you knew that.
I was looking at the MSI P67A-GD65 (B3) but the wording on all of these motherboard specifications makes it difficult to determine if they offer what I'm looking for.
Below is taken directly from MSI's website...
• SATAII controller integrated in Intel® P67 (B3) chipset
- Up to 3Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports four SATAII ports (SATA3~6) by P67 (B3) PCH
• SATAIII controller integrated in Intel® P67 (B3) & Marvell SE9128 chipsets
- Up to 6Gb/s transfer speed.
- Supports two SATAIII ports (SATA1~2) by P67 (B3) PCH
- Supports two SATAIII ports (SATA7~8) by Marvell SE9128
- SATA1~6 ports support RAID 0/1/5/10 mode by Intel P67 (B3) PCH
- SATA7~8 ports support RAID 0/1 mode by Marvell SE9128
If I understand that correctly, ports 1-6 can be RAID'd in a 5 or 10 configuration but only ports 1&2 actually support SATA3.
Been digging some more and I believe I've found my setup. Ended up going the AMD-route. Now, I plan on using the onboard RAID controller.
I've never setup a RAID5 onboard before. From what you've said and what I've read myself, this will obviously hit the CPU harder due to the parity. So, now I'm considering RAID10 to avoid the hit. Obviously, I lose out on storage space.
I'll more than likely still go the RAID5 route unless anyone has anything to say that's truly pro-RAID10 in this case.