need advice for hba/expander

Discussion in 'RAID Controllers and Host Bus Adapters' started by caplam, Jul 9, 2019.

  1. caplam

    caplam New Member

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    I've been searching a das enclosure for a long time with no luck.
    I can't afford a rack enclosure so i'ill go for the well known silverstone ds 380.
    My "server" is a hp Z620.
    I've found the parts i need except for the sas part.
    I need an hba with external port which will match with mobo.
    I need an expander which will match with the hba.
    I will put 8 spinners in the hotswap bays and i have 3 sata ssd that lie around so i'd like to maximize bandwith.
    Would you have suggestion for a hba/expander couple ?
    The expander doesn't have to have an external port i can use a bracket with 8088 to 8087
    The hba has to have external port (not much room left in my z620).

    I was thinking to lsi 9207-8e hba. For the expander i've not find the right model which has not issue with sata disks and can function at sata 3 speed.
     
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  2. Spartacus

    Spartacus Active Member

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    Have you checked here under the expanders section?: https://forums.servethehome.com/ind...and-hba-complete-listing-plus-oem-models.599/

    First are you using SAS drives for the spinners or just sata (ie will you need all 16 ports for the ds380 backplane) ~ I'll proceed assuming Sata and only 8 are needed.

    The 9207-8e would work well, as another option you could either do dual 9207-8e or a 9206-16e if you just wanted to go direct pass-through rather than pony up for an expander.
    It's about 90$ for a intel 6gb/s expander by itself (plus $40 HBA cost).
    The dual 8e or 16e are about 2/3 the cost $40/8e ~ $80/16e, you'd just need a 3rd pass-through pci-e slot.

    I have a das enclosure that I'm just running external to breakout cables to rather than spend the extra 70$ on sff-8644 to 8643 adapters and its half as many cables.
    2 meter: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KSQL41Q/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_n2yjDbKP7TYKE
    1 meter: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KSQNGBT/ref=cm_sw_em_r_mt_dp_U_n2yjDbGEYHT45
    You could do the same with the 8088 external to breakout if you wanted too, I prefer the smaller form of the 2308 controller with 8644 ports.
    But it' would allow you to run 3 ext breakout cables to the drives instead of 7 (2 ext, 2 internal to expander, and then 3 breakouts to your drives) it'd save you about 150$ if you went this route.
    You could then cut a hole for a grommet, or leave a pcie bracket open for the breakout cables to get in the case.
     
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    Last edited: Jul 10, 2019
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  3. caplam

    caplam New Member

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    thank you for your answer.
    Correct, the spinners will be sata.
    I have not room for 2 hbas.
    I have 1 pcie2 x8, 1 pcie3 x8: one is holding a 2 gig network card and the other is holding a nvme port with room for 2 m2 sata ssd.
    2 pcie3 x16: one has a basic graphic card. I keep the second for later to passtrough a graphic card to a plex docker.
    I will probably remove the network card and use only integrated ports.
    The nvme port is not very useful, i'm ok with the 2 m2 sata ssd and will add sata ssd in the enclosure.
    So given that i can at best use one pcie3 x8 card so only one 9207-8e.
    Starting with that i have to use an expander. My point is to find the right one which will match with the hba and permit to use sata ssd with no bottleneck.

    edit: my bad the LSI 9206 16e uses a pcie3 x8 but it's relatively expensive.

    edit2: found cheaper cards but apparently goes very hot (it has 2 sas2308 controllers) and thus not meant to go in the Z620.
     
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    Last edited: Jul 10, 2019
  4. gregsachs

    gregsachs Active Member

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    I run a 9286cv-8e in hybrid megaraid/jbod mode, it ix pci3x8, 2 sff-8088, and as mentioned will do drives in jbod mode where they get passed through. I had some issues when using a 9285(same but pci2) with the hp expander, none with the intel res2v240 expander. Note that both of these cards have cache and option of battery backup module you need to find space for, but a 9286 is ~$25 on ebay.
    I've only used on h-v and esxi, can't comment on unraid or similar.
     
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  5. kapone

    kapone Active Member

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    I'm confused...

    The Silverstone is an 8 bay NAS style chassis. If you get an HBA with two 8088 connectors (external SAS), and you're only connecting 8 drives to it, why is an expander needed??

    SAS 6gbps HBAs with two 8088 connectors can be had for dirt cheap, like $20-30.
     
    #5
  6. caplam

    caplam New Member

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    I will throw 8 spinners in bays but there is also a cage for 4 2,5" devices. And as there will not be any mobo there would be room for more 2,5" with velcro.

    edit: i guess i could begin with 2 4sata breakout cables and later add an expander.
     
    #6
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2019
  7. caplam

    caplam New Member

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    thank you for your answer.
    I was looking at ibm expander which could give me 16 ports with the lsi 9207-8e i just bought on the bay.
    The intel one seems very nice in term of compatibility. Hard to find in europe at a decent price. Currently i see one or 2 but at 350€. At this price i would go for a 12g hp expander at 260€.
    Does the chinese on ebay are real ones or counterfeits?
    I'll be on holydays soon so i don't have time to buy one before i leave.
     
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  8. kapone

    kapone Active Member

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    I'm not sure what you intend to run for software, but have you considered Adaptec RAID cards? The 7 series and above have pure HBA mode that allows complete pass through of disks (including SMART data). And the adaptec cards come in relatively high port counts, while consuming a single slot.

    For e.g. the Adaptec 78165 has 8 internal SAS ports and 16 external SAS ports, for a total of 24 6gbps SAS ports. However the external ports are 8644 not 8088. But 8644 to 8088 cables are not that expensive if you look hard enough.

    With something like the 78165, you still don't need an expander...:)
     
    #8
  9. caplam

    caplam New Member

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    I completly miss adaptec in my research. I looks interesting.
    As i just bought lsi 9207 i will stick with that one. The seller already shipped it 2 hours after.
    For now it's for running unraid but i don't exclude to return to proxmox with zfs as i have plenty of ram.
    To be completly fair i change my system form time to time as i like learning new things.
    I started like many with windows and usb disks and had systems with hyper-v, esxi, proxmox in cluster or not with a bunch of different vm. Now i'm on unraid.
     
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  10. gregsachs

    gregsachs Active Member

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    I don't know about the ones on ebay. I ran one of the cheap HP expanders for a bit, but I had some glitches so moved to the intel sourced here on forum.
     
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  11. Spartacus

    Spartacus Active Member

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    The HP ones are decent if on the latest FW and you only need 3gb/s, but can be temperamental as you found.
    Hard to pass up for like $15 though.
     
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  12. caplam

    caplam New Member

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    You're right. I'll grab an hp connect it to one port of the hba. I'll use the second port without expander directly with ssd. Later i could change the expander.
     
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