Premium Controllers Under Scrutiny: Ultra160 RAID Adapters from Adaptec and LSI

SCSI RAID Put To The Test: It's Not Just Performance That Counts

To reduce complex arrays based on the two RAID controllers merely to data transfer rates and access times would not be doing the technology justice. Unlike the RAID modes 0 and 1, RAID 3 and RAID 5 involve comparatively high operating expenses.

Besides the usual benchmarks, we will also be looking into the special features of the two controllers. Thus, for example, a worst-case scenario would include the failure of a hard drive. What is performance like now? A complex RAID array would be completely useless if in such a case the controller were to fail to such an extent that the (server) systems only operates at an insufficient rate.

In addition, SCSI hard drives are clearly superior to IDE models when it comes to I/O performance. While IDE drives provide excellent data transfer rates, they usually cannot keep pace with high performance SCSI when it comes to demanding applications such as huge databases or file servers.

Finally, most SCSI drives come with a warranty period of five years - that gives quite a good feeling after checking the shrunken warranties of IDE drives. The majority only offers a one-year factory warranty since late summer.