Keith C. Perry on 18 Mar 2017 16:42:51 -0700

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Re: [PLUG] SAS / Storage

Usually SAS cards with SFF-8087 cables is pretty much the way to go for most setups that would not benefit from higher bandwidth and much more expensive storage systems.  You shouldn't run into any bottles if you have a decent PCI architecture on your board.  The problem is you're not really going to know that unless you put the workload on it.

I would think you'll be fine for most use cases.

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Keith C. Perry, MS E.E. 
Owner, DAO Technologies LLC 
(O) +1.215.525.4165 x2033 
(M) +1.215.432.5167

----- Original Message -----
From: "Rich Freeman" <>
To: "Philadelphia Linux User's Group Discussion List" <>
Sent: Saturday, March 18, 2017 7:34:45 PM
Subject: [PLUG] SAS / Storage

Ok, I've managed to accumulate a fair number of drives over the years,
which always creates challenges when I need another motherboard.
Right now I have 8 SATA drives plus 1 eSATA to contend with (though I
suppose I could move my eSATA drive internally and use another
internal SATA for it).

From what research I've been able to do the way most people cram more
drives into a system seems to be with SAS RAID cards, using SAS->SATA
breakout cables.  You can apparently get 4 SATA ports out of 1 SAS
port and with cards typically offering 2-4 SAS ports that gives you
for support for 8-16 drives.

My question is whether there is anything I should be concerned about,
or looking for in buying a SAS card.  Will putting 4-8 drives into one
PCIe slot result in some kind of IO bottleneck?  Are there any gotchas
when using SAS->SATA, or with SAS cards in general?  Should I be doing
it some other way that doesn't involve SAS RAID cards?  I'll confess
I'm also not an expert on PCIe in general either, so is there anything
I need to be mindful of there other than whether the card physically
fits in the slot?

I'm not really interested in any RAID capabilities on the card itself.
I just want it to expose a bunch of disks to the OS.

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