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drugdoctor

How to expand your server externally (DAS)

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Hello Fellow Unraiders!

 

My first post...I think.  I've been on Unraid for a few years now, upgrading and improving my server over time.  My specs are below.  I'm running out of places to store drives.  I still have 1 opening and I know I can upgrade the 2TB's...but I would rather not.  I'm looking to add a small form factor external DAS.  I know it is possible, but how? I have 1 and can make 2 (if needed) of the 4 PCI-E 16x slots available. I'm looking to add 6 to 12 more drives over time. So, external SAS controller?...then what? Know of a guide? I searched on the forum, but didn't see much. Unless my search foo failed me.  Any help would be appreciated and thanks to ask that try.  Please no rack mounted ideas. Cheers!

 

Case - NZXT H440 Black (holds 12 drives)
CPU - Intel Xeon E3-1225 v5, 3.3GHz, 8M
Ram - 32GB UDIMM, 2400MT/s
Motherboard

- Asus P10S WS ATX DDR4 LGA 1151
- Quad PCIE3.0 x16 slots (3 used)
- Dual onboard NVMe slots
- 8 on board sata ports
Graphic

- Intel integrated
- Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB
SAS

- Dell H310 6Gbps SAS HBA (8 sata ports used)

Cache - Dual 500GB WD black NVMe drives (2)
Parity - Dual WD 4TB Red (2)
Array -  WD 4TB Red x4 = 16TB
         -  WD 3TB Red x2 = 6TB
         -  WD 2TB Red x3 = 6TB
                            Total = 28TB
Unassigned device 
- 500gb AData NVMe S7000np (PCI-E adapter) vm's
- WD 1TB Green SSD (games)

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Based on what you have + what you want to add = 24 drives <--- that's a 4U server chassis (or close to it). DAS is possible but seems rather hack-y. You need an external case with its own power and then you need to run a cable from your existing server to the external case (usually using a controller card that supports an expander card of some sort).

Frankly, seems like a lot of headache.

Why add drives and not upgrade size of existing drives?

 

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Thanks for the comments!!  I do understand I can upgrade, however, I don't want to loose the capacity of the other drives.  They are good red drives.

On 12/3/2019 at 10:59 PM, whipdancer said:

Based on what you have + what you want to add = 24 drives <--- that's a 4U server chassis (or close to it). DAS is possible but seems rather hack-y. You need an external case with its own power and then you need to run a cable from your existing server to the external case (usually using a controller card that supports an expander card of some sort).

Frankly, seems like a lot of headache.

Why add drives and not upgrade size of existing drives?

 

I would love to do a homemade DAS.  Would this only be 1 cable going from Server to DAS?  Also, can you please add give some specs and links your set up above.  Thanks in advance.

 

On 12/4/2019 at 2:53 AM, johnnie.black said:

You can use an homemade DAS, e.g.:

 

649376580_2017-08-2413_30.07-Cpia.thumb.jpg.b6dd1acd9af6650b41b539528dd1ba4d.jpg

 

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13 minutes ago, drugdoctor said:

Would this only be 1 cable going from Server to DAS? 

You can use one cable for single link and two cables for dual link.

 

13 minutes ago, drugdoctor said:

Also, can you please add give some specs and links your set up above.

On the main server you need one SAS HBA with external ports (or with internal ports and one SFF-8087 to SFF-8088 adapter).

 

On the DAS side (besides the normal hardware):

-SFF-8087 to SFF-8088 adapter

-SAS expander, I use the Intel RES2SV240

-SFF-8088 to SFF-8088 cable to connect DAS to server, because of the expander it can be up to 10 meters long even with SATA disks, but use one as small as possible (expander to SATA disks cables need to be 1 meter max ).

 

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