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HP P410 SMART Pass-through?


divide_by_zero
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Hi All,

Long time, first time.

 

Been chugging along with my N54L w/ WHS 2011 for a couple years, and all has been fine on that front. Recently I got my hands on HP ML350 G6 for a price I couldn't pass up, and I'm planning to migrate to it as my new WHS box and start doing Bluray rips and on-the-fly transcoding for client systems. It's got an onboard HP P410 controller ("P410i", to be exact - I believe it's identical to the P410, but the "i" designates that it's built on the mobo). 

 

I'm currently running a JBOD config along with DrivePool, and plan to do so on the next version of the server also. Additionally, I'd like to run StableBit's Scanner software for SMART checking, etc. However, in my initial round of testing on the new box (Just using Win 7 to stress test/burn in the new box), none of my quick 'n dirty go-to test utilities (HDD Tune, Crystal) were able to pass through SMART data. With this controller, it looks like you need to initialize each attached drive as an individual RAID 0 device to essentially get a JBOD config, and I'm assuming that's where the issue is when attempting to pull SMART data.

Any of the HP P410 experts have any tricks, suggestions, or experience making it work with Stablebit Scanner or other SMART utilities? (Did some searching, but since HP calls it a "Smart Array" controller, searches for SMART data information have been mostly useless.)

 

(Also of note, but ultimately less important: performance of the controller was awful - Reads/Writes in the 80MB/s range on an SSD that normally gets 250+ on a vanilla onboard Intel SATA controller. If a cache module will help bump that up so I can at least saturate a gigabit connection, I'm all for it. If anyone has any insight, or a low-capacity cache module they'd like to sell, feel free to ping me.)

 

Ok, TL;DR - Does P410 support SMART pass through? Will cache module affect read speeds and make them respectable, or will it only help with writes?

 

Thanks!

d_b_0

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I think, with most RAID controllers, you will find that you have to configure the drives as 'singles' in order to be able to read SMART data from them. With HP controllers that means each drive as a single RAID 0. Since you're wanting to run DP, it shouldn't be a problem.

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Here are some performance comparisons I have done:

http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/5695-25-raid-card/

 

Make sure your system has the latest firmware. A cache module will help RAID performance, I am not sure about passthrough. Your SSD should be able to get close to 250MB/s.

Keep in mind the P410i runs 6Gb/s SAS and 3Gb/s SATA.

 

As stated above, each physical drive need to be set up as an individual RAID0 drive.

 

The Offline ACU is a handy way to configure them.

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Thanks for all the quick feedback everyone! And also, thanks for the link to the performance charts!

 

I do understand the need to setup each drive as a RAID 0 device - that's how I've got my SSD and test install configured currently. I guess what still is a bit unclear is whether anyone has been able to pull SMART data from the drives in this type of passthrough-but-not-really RAID 0 configuration. And if so, what utilities are you guys using to do so, as the ones I've tried don't see any SMART data. Booted to a linux install this afternoon to test, and no SMART data there either.

 

Ultimately trying to figure out if I need to budget in an M1015 card into this build as well,as I'm almost certain I was able to cross-flash and configure one for a friend that supported SMART. :)

 

Thanks!

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The P410i will pull Smart data. You can use the HP utilities ACU or SSA.

HP SIM is a very good tool for monitoring your server, unfortunately, WHS2011 is not supported.

Here is a great post on monitoring HP RAID on WHS2011:

http://homeservershow.com/forums/index.php?/topic/6167-hp-smart-array-with-hp-events-notification-service-and-prtg-network-monitor/

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Wow, that post you linked to was awesome - will definitely implement that in the new build. Also, appreciate the pointers re: ACU/SSA for SMART info. Was hoping to use the Stablebit Scanner for integrated monitoring, but ultimately as long as I can periodically check SMART data and get alerts one way or another, I'll be fine.

 

One last question occurs to me, although I'm afraid I already know the answer. When I initialize each of the individual drives as a RAID 0 device, it's going to wipe out the rest of the data, correct? Was hoping for a quick and dirty migration, where I reload the OS drive on the new box, but keep the pool/data drives untouched (since DrivePool is good at picking up signatures and then putting the pool back online). But since they need the RAID 0 init to get setup for pass-through, I'm thinking that's not going to be an option, and I'm going to have to backup/re-migrate all my data after init and pool recreation. Does that sound right? (If so, anyone have several cheap 2-4TB drives to back up to? ; ) )

 

Crossing my fingers that I'm wrong about this, but either way, very much appreciate the insight and the advise!

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I have been able to take a drive with data, put it on a HP P-series as RAID0 and have the data stay intact, but not consistently. It is best to start with clean drives, RAID0 then put your data back.

In your top post you mentioned slow SSD performance, you should look at this;

http://h30507.www3.hp.com/t5/Coffee-Coaching-HP-and-Microsoft/Exciting-New-Innovations-in-HP-Smart-Array-controllers-HP/ba-p/154257#.Uv5mDPm9rE0

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