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RAID 5 on a N54L?


mehtaman
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Hi all,

 

I am after some information about setting up RAID 5 on the N54L, can someone please point me in the right direction.

 

I have Windows Server 2012 Essentials installed on a 128GB SSD, housed in a Icy Dock Hot Swap ODD bay caddy.

The end goal is to have 5 x 2TB drives running in RAID 5 (waiting for HDDs to be delivered).

 

Reading up on WS2012 there is the Storage Pool feature that can configure RAID 5:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/yungchou/archive/2012/08/31/windows-server-2012-storage-virtualization-explained.aspx

 

My main question is;

Do I need any additional hardware (e.g. RAID Cards) or BIOS configurations in order to get the above to work?

 

Thank You

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If you're talking about Storage Spaces, you might want to re-think it. From the reports by other forum members, Storage Spaces has pretty poor performance, particularly with RAID5. You might want to look at using a hardware RAID card, or one of the pooling programs such as DrivePool, DriveBender, or PoolHD.

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Hi all,

 

I am after some information about setting up RAID 5 on the N54L, can someone please point me in the right direction.

 

I have Windows Server 2012 Essentials installed on a 128GB SSD, housed in a Icy Dock Hot Swap ODD bay caddy.

The end goal is to have 5 x 2TB drives running in RAID 5 (waiting for HDDs to be delivered).

 

Reading up on WS2012 there is the Storage Pool feature that can configure RAID 5:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/yungchou/archive/2012/08/31/windows-server-2012-storage-virtualization-explained.aspx

 

My main question is;

Do I need any additional hardware (e.g. RAID Cards) or BIOS configurations in order to get the above to work?

 

Thank You

 

 

Hi Mehtaman & welcome to the Forums.

 

I don't believe you would need any additional Hardware to create a Parity Resiliency in a Storage Space Storage Pool.  If you plan to attach your SSD to either the on-board SATA Port or the eSATA Port you will need to flash your BIOS with the BIOS-MOD to get AHCI on those two ports and to be able to set them at a higher SATA II speed ( i.e. SATA II 3Gb/s vs their default is SATA I 1.5 Gb/s)  You can check some Performance Studies I did in S2012E on a MicroServer in "Storage Spaces Performance in Windows Server 2012 Essentials On a HP N40L ProLiant MicroServer" -- as Ikon mentioned a lot of folks haven't been too pleased with the performance of Parity Resiliency though I think the 2-Way Mirror is pretty decent.  You can check blog postings and stories on Storage Spaces Here and in the Forums.  PCDoc in particular has done a lot of testing too so search out his postings.

 

Good luck with your build and keep us up to date on how things are going!  When you get a chance introduce yourself.  

Edited by Joe_Miner
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Hi Joe_Miner,

 

Thank you for the helpful links, i will have a read through and conside the options.

I flashed the BIOS last night before installing WS2012 on to the SSD (again thank you for the guide).

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Any chance of some help with setting up an Icy Dock...

 

When I connect my SSD directly to the Molex-> SATA Power and SATA port 5 the system discovers the drive.

When I plug it into the Icy Dock bay its not found.

 

The Icy Dock has power (lights are on) but neither a 3.5 or 2.5 bay drive is discovered.

 

I have followed the BIOS mod/config to a 'T' and even tried a few other combos e.g. IDE or Legacy IDE, eSata on all ports on/off.

 

Any ideas what I am missing??

Unless I have a fauly Icy Dock :-/

 

 

Thanks again.

Edited by mehtaman
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Any chance of some help with setting up an Icy Dock...

 

When I connect my SSD directly to the Molex-> SATA Power and SATA port 5 the system discovers the drive.

When I plug it into the Icy Dock bay its not found.

 

The Icy Dock has power (lights are on) but neither a 3.5 or 2.5 bay drive is discovered.

 

I have followed the BIOS mod/config to a 'T' and even tried a few other combos e.g. IDE or Legacy IDE, eSata on all ports on/off.

 

Any ideas what I am missing??

Unless I have a fauly Icy Dock :-/

 

 

Thanks again.

 

Are you using the Icy Dock MB971SP-B DuoSwap?  We have a review of it Here.

 

If it's the DuoSwap -- the SATA's are direct pass thru -- Plug in the power and Plug in two SATA cables -- one SATA to the top SATA Port for the 3.5" drive and the other SATA cable to the lower SATA Port for the 2.5" drive 

 

clip_image005.png

Are the power button's on for both the 3.5 and 2.5 HDD slots?  (Both lights will be green if the Power is on)

 

 

clip_image004.png

 

If the SATA cable's are plugged in, the Power is plugged in, and the Power Lights are on then I would next check the Boot order in the BIOS -- anytime you move a HDD and boot the MicroServer if it doesn't see the Boot Drive exactly where it was before the Boot order gets scrambled and you need to go into the BIOS and reset it.  At the Meet-up as written in the above referenced Doc -- for instance: every time we changed out the HDD's in the MicroServer at the Meet-Up we would check and fix the Boot order on the 1st power up of a new HDD config.

 

Another thing to check is are the HDD's "seated" into the internal connectors of the DuoSwap?  If you have the top of the N54L off you can look inside the DuoSwap and check that they are seated

 

clip_image035.jpg

 

 

clip_image039.jpg

Edited by Joe_Miner
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Thank you again!

 

Rather embarrassingly I had not pressed the 2.5" power button. :blink:

 

The SSD is working fine now within the MB971SP-B however the OEM 250GB drive is not showing in Windows - the drive is installed in the Icy Dock as well, going through to the eSata port on the back of the server.

 

The 2TB drive in bay one did appear once I went into the Storage Space and formatted the drive.

I'll try the 250GB drive in bay two to see if I can format it from there first.

 

Thanks for the detailed info!!!

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