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fmp4m

Moving from 16 bay to 42 hot swap bays --- case check?

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So,   I just did a thing..... A thing I may love or hate myself for.

 

I currently have a Norco 16 bay case that I loved at the time and now hate due to how cheaply it is made.  While it has served me well for a year, its time to move on.

 

I found a 8U-42bay case that has great design qualities, but little following.   So it may be junk or it may be gold.

 

I wanted to be able to use ALL of my PRO license capable drives as currently 16x4tb is not enough.  When I get close to filling up 28 data drives with 2 parity,  I will just add a second server.  But for now, I want my cache drives to be expandable, unassigned available for VMs and well a couple of dockers I want on independent drives.

 

What better way than 42 bays?  And I can add my 5.25 to 6 2.5" ssd into the 5.25 bay.   I am posting here because I will be moving my current threadripper into it, and wonder if any one here uses or used istarusa cases?

 

Product Link

http://www.istarusa.com/en/istarusa/products.php?model=E8M42 

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Well, I found out why I was able to discover why the case was available at an amazing price of 350.00.  there is no power supply.   It takes a special 1U power supply and it's 1000.00+ by itself.  I got lucky yet again and Newegg had a reconditioned one for 275.00. So overall still a great price.   Until it comes in I am at a stand still.   The construction of this case is amazing though.  It's like a tank and decently heavy like most supermicros I've dealt with.  Rolled steel.   I imagine it will weight as much as a tank when done also. So I checked and rails are not recommended due to weight, they recommend a heavy duty sliding tray.  I wonder how that will work with my rolling 18u chassis.

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The PSU part really headache, so special, all redundancy type PSU price so crazy. I never think own such tank. ( USD350 for new ? )

How you connect 48drive ? By native 8087 / 8643 cable, it need 10+ ... I would like go to expander blackplane solution more.

 

For me if really like that tank, I won't spend 1000 for PSU, so the only option will be reconditioned one or DIY ( may be lost some bays ).

 

USD350 for 8U case was good deal.

Edited by Benson

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The case was business purchased and then returned.  I got it as a "returned - new" condition.   It looks new and only missing the PSU which I lucked out and got with the newegg deal for 275.   so USD 353+275    $628 total for the case.  When the PSU comes in I will know more and post pictures as well.   Its SFF8087 mini sas backplaned with built in expander.  I dont yet have a plan for enabling all 42 bays but will see.  

 

My biggest desire is enabling the following:

2 lower bays = parity drives

28 data drives for the max allowed on Pro

4 drives for individual VMs

2 drives for individual dockers (SQL dbs and Nextcloud)

6 (ssds in a 5.25 to 2.5 converter) for cache.

Total functioning drives: 42

 

But will start with:

18 Data drives

2 Parity

6 SSDs in the 5.25 converter

Total: 26

 

Anyone with insight on the best way to enable all 42 drives?

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Wondering how to tell if that 40 port would work with unraid or not. Don't mind spending the money if it will.  Would hate it if not.

 

Side note, this case is a beast.  Far superior to the Norco I have now.

 

 

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4 minutes ago, fmp4m said:

Wondering how to tell if that 40 port would work with unraid or not.

Work, yes, recommend no, besides being a Marvell chipset, same as the SAS2LP, and a known source of issues, it also uses 4 SATA ports multipliers, another no-no, also performance won't be good.

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If the budget allows it and assuming you have another PCIe slot, get a SAS3 LSI like the 9300-8i plus a SAS3 expander like the Intel RES3TV360, that together with your existing LSI will give you enough ports with lots of bandwidth.

 

If that's too expensive get another SAS2 HBA like the 9207-8i and an Intel SAS2 expander like the RES2CV360, a little less total bandwidth but miles better than the RocketRAID, both in terms of speed and more importantly much more reliable.

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Right now I have "LSI SAS 9201-16i".  The new case only has "SAS I/II & SATA I/II/III" according to specs.  So with that, do you still recommend the SAS3?  If so,  Would it be best to go with 2 of those and the expander?

 

Either solution, how exactly does one properly use those expanders,  I have never had one?

 

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SAS3 HBA + SAS3 LSI expander would give you a little more bandwidth, but not that much more and it's much more expensive, you'll be fine with SAS2.

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Ok, so in addition to my 9201-16i I need another 9201-16i and a RES2CV360?

 

How does one connect all of this?

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5 hours ago, fmp4m said:

I need another 9201-16i and a RES2CV360?

An 8 port HBA would be enough, preferably a PCIe 3.0 one, like 9207-8i, both miniSAS ports connect to the expander and the expander connects to the backplane, up to 28 devices total, together with the existing 9201-16i you can connect up to 44 devices.

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That makes sense however,  wouldnt the expander card be sharing the bandwidth of the 8 sas ports into the 28ports?  If thats the case, I would imagine to get equal bandwidth across the case, I would be better with 2x8i with both being connected to expander cards.  Unless there is some sort of trickery I am not aware of that would allow the drives to all talk at the same speeds otherwise?

 

You know way more than I do,  so I am looking for advice, This will be a long term build so I have the budget for it, just want to make sure I get the right stuff so I can upgrade from 4tb to 8-10tb later each bay.  Having the Threadripper keeps it in my line of use life for quite a while, so I want the same with the 40 sas connected bays.

 

Since the SAS3 cards will provide more bandwidth and work with the case,  I am sourcing those now (posted in WTB here first).  Just wanna make sure I am grabbing the right quantities for best overall design.

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1 hour ago, fmp4m said:

wouldnt the expander card be sharing the bandwidth of the 8 sas ports into the 28ports?

Yes, but with a SAS2 PCIe 3.0 HBA it still has 4400MB/s usable total, so around 157MB/ per disks if fully loaded, a SAS3 HBA + expander would give you around 6000MB/s total.

 

1 hour ago, fmp4m said:

I would be better with 2x8i with both being connected to expander cards. 

Yes, if you can afford it, just divided 4400MB/s (if using the same PCIe 3.0 SAS2 HBAs) by the number of disks connected to see how much more.

 

1 hour ago, fmp4m said:

Since the SAS3 cards will provide more bandwidth

Yes, but only if used with a SAS3 expander from LSI.

 

Edit: See here for some real worlds tests:

 

Edited by johnnie.black

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Thank you.   Is the 9340-8i the same or better?  I found a couple those cheaper.

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