Hardware RAID card recommendations

I am currently running software RAID 0 on a KT333 board. I am upgrading my computer and I want to run a hardware raid card so that it won't take any of my CPU cycles. I'd preferably like it if newegg sold it, but just any advice would be great. I read here and other places that most promise and hipoint cards are good.

Also liunx support might be nice but not completely necessary.

Is your system stable enough you'd run your own life support on it? ---mine is. Soyo KT333 + AXP 1900+
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  1. When you say you're upgrading your computer, are you replacing the motherboard too? How far are you gonna go with this upgrade?

    Those who live in glass houses shouldn't take showers. :tongue:
  2. Yeah, depending on how far you want to go with the upgrade, there are actually many different types of raid cards available. The cheapest cards provide raid 0 & 1 support while the most expensive ones might be those used by servers.
  3. yeah, I am getting a nForce2 based board and I will be running RAID 0. I am currently running RAID 0 with the onboard RAID of my Soyo KT333 platinum. But this is software RAID so it taxes the CPU cycles of my processor. BTW I have 2x wd800jb. Anyway, I want to run the hardware RAID card to take the load off of my processor to increase overall performance.

    Is your system stable enough you'd run your own life support on it? ---mine is. Soyo KT333 + AXP 1900+
  4. I don't know what your definition of software RAID is, but shouldn't all onboard RAID controllers are hardware RAID? Anyway, you can consider Promise which makes good RAID controller cards as well as onboard chip.
  5. The onboard RAID is hardware RAID. Is your RAID volume used for OS and to boot the system ? If yes you already have hardware RAID because you cannot boot from a software RAID.
    Anyway the onboard RAID chip are generally cheap solutions derived from more expensive RAID PCI card.
    If you have to buy a RAID ATA card I suggest to choose between the Promise TX2000 and the Promise SX4000. I believe them the best choices within their price class.
    The more expensive SX 4000 allows a cache memory on board (up to 256 MB) and, more important, you can realize RAID 5 array (with up to four hdds on four channels).
    Consider that a PCI ATA RAID card cannot deliver more then 110 MB/s as for transfer rate because of the limitations of the 33 MHz 32 bit PCI bus and because of the bandwidth reserved for the USB 2.0 devices.

    Principle of the highest harassment for engineers says: having two events, one bad and one favorable, with the same probability to occur, it is most probable that the bad event will occur
  6. IMHO 3Ware RAID cards are the best, but they're also the most expensive.
    Highpoint and Promise are cheaper and are also good.

    It's not important to know all the answers, as long as you know how to contact someone who does.
  7. AMEN to 3Ware!! I have a 7500-8 with 2 WD800JB's in RAID1 and 6 WD1200JB's in RAID5 and this thing ROCKS!! Smokingly quick for IDE and I've been using it for close to a year now with not a single problem (from the drives either). Its under constant use since it's a file server, and its relatively quiet for what its got in it.

    3Ware also has a web based diagnostic tool that you can run locally or over the internet to administer and monitor your arrays. They are really top notch and left out no small detail when making these cards. If 3Ware keeps up this level of quality and attention to detail, then they have a customer for life in me.

    By the way, don't just take our word on it, check out one of Tom's most recent articles about the <A HREF="http://www.tomshardware.com/storage/20030425/index.html" target="_new">University of Tubingen</A> and the backup solution they implemented using 3WARE controllers and 576 Maxtor 160GB Drives!!!
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