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My successful Port Multiplier experience on N36L


smanny
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I just want to share my experience with a Sata Port Multiplier card.

 

I bought a card with JMB321 with 5 Sata ports. It does NOT support any Raid configuration, just single drive separated.

 

Speed test: I can clearly say that the SB850 does support FIS as well as the JMB321 so the speed is incredible good. I tried to hook 4 drives, my speed test was to write and copy the same file from drive 1 to drive 2 and from drive 3 to drive 4 in the same time and the max speed dropped down about 5-6 MB/s. Copying from one drive to another is exactly the same speed as copying between drives inside the microserver. The downside of the FIS feature is that it needs some CPU computing, so expect your cpu load to increase if you use more drives at the same moment. N40L and N54L could perform better I suppose.

 

Power saving features:

- if you set up your drives to spin off after X minutes when not in use, the drives spin off individually and turn on individually when you ask for files as you aspected to do;

- when you turn off the microserver, all the external drives turn off.

 

Hot plug features:

- I plugged and removed drives several times, not a problem! It is as good as my USB 3.0 (NEC uPD720202 chip) with an external docking station (ASMedia ASM1053E Chipset);

- When you remove a drive with the tray icon the drive spin off immediately.

 

I bought it for 27,90 $ shipping included with a registered mail from China. Just the card, so you have to adapt an old case or, as I will do in the next days, you will have to do some DIY.

 

I apologize for my English, for sure I made some mistakes... it is not my native language :)

Edited by smanny
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From the JMicron web site it seems that this is a SATA II card. It might help people more if you put a link to where you got it.

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It is a chip that can be mounted over any card/circuit from the vendor. You can buy any port multiplier card, just check the chip: JMB321

 

It is possible that some commercial sata port multiplier array are built with the same chip, so again, just check the chip that is used.

Edited by smanny
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The JMicron JMB321 is an older integrated six-channel SATA II micro-processor. It is typically configured as a 1 to 5-port eSATA FIS Port Multiplier in an external drive enclosure. I have never seen a PCIe card implementation of this chip.

 

As ikon suggested, please post a link to the card.

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I have never seen a PCIe card implementation of this chip.

Neither me. I never wrote it was a pcie.

 

esata -> card with a jmb321 chip -> 5 hard drives.

 

And yes, I wrote it can be found inside sata port multiplier array (external enclosure as you wrote). I am giving information how this chip works with SB850 (the SB into Microserver) if someone is in doubt expecially for the CBS/FIS discussions with wrong information I saw here.

 

That is the image for those of you that still didn't get what I mean (I will build a case by myself):

1pcs-lot-1-to-5-SATA-port-multiplier-car

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Neither me. I never wrote it was a pcie.

 

 

I see, an incorrect assumption on my part. I was trying to understand how this applied to an N36L. Should be quite easy to build a case with this and five HDDs.

 

Are you using a modified bios in your N36L?

Edited by Taffeys
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Yes, modified bios (N36L, N40L and N54L have the same bios) and the correct settings and driver to make the esata port multiplier works. You can find all the info inside the sticky 3D.

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Yes, I have an N54L with the modified bios and use an eSata multiple HDD appliance for server back-up.

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Thanks for the clarification - now I see what you mean. This must be similar to the card that's in my Lian-Li EX-503 boxes. The difference with mine is I have both USB3 and eSATA (the eSATA is SATA II, just like the card pictured here).

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