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RAID PCI ATA/133 card needed

I am building a storage server and plan to put all my 250gb HD's in there.
I need a PCI card that will support 250gb ATA133 drives and MUST support RAID 5... i need that parity incase of a failure.
I would also like a card that can support 8 drives.

I did some reading and keep seeing the LSI Megaraid card has alot of bad reviews so im not sure i wanna go with this model.
My current budget is less than $100, i would preferrably like to spend around $60.


I would like some reccomendations from anyone who might have valuable advise.
If possible, please provide link to stats for any card you would reccomend.
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ViRoy
Asked:
ViRoy
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4 Solutions
 
rindiCommented:
$ 100.-- or less? Forget it.

The best I can find is a promise controller, but only for 4 drives. It'll be difficult to get a controller for more than 4 PATA drives, the large cables being one of the limiting factors.

http://www.promise.com/product/product_detail_eng.asp?segment=RAID%20HBAs&product_id=122

If I were you I'd look for a SATA solution. There are a lot more raid 5 SATA controllers around, they perform better, support more drives, are cheap. Again it'll be difficult to standard PCI adapters, you should really use PCI Express or PCI-X, or the performance suffers. Good SATA raid adapters are 3ware, areca and promise, but 3ware and areca are full hardware raid and better, most promise controllers aren't fully hardware raid compliant, but they are still better than the other software raid controllers. But also for SATA raid you won't get anything for around $ 100.--
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YurayCommented:
yeah i agree with rindi, you won't be able to find Raid 5 controller for less 100$
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YurayCommented:
i've just found the link, i think it's the cheapest one:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16816102036
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garycaseCommented:
"... I need a PCI card that will support 250gb ATA133 drives and MUST support RAID 5 ... that can support 8 drives ..." ==> This is an excellent card that supports 8 drives:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E16816116020

"... My current budget is less than $100, i would preferrably like to spend around $60. " ==> As has already been noted, this is simply NOT a realistic budget.   If you're data's important, buy a good hardware RAID card.
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jimbecherCommented:
I have been using Promise cards in servers for ever. X-L-Ant cards. But I agree with the rest. Raid-5 for under $100 and that supports 8 drives? You are asking too much my friend. I would be very careful. You usually get what you pay for ...
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ViRoyAuthor Commented:

ooch yea after looking more into a good performance one, i see they normally run around 600-800.
i really like the 3ware ones, lots of good reviews.

i was wondering what the chances of finding an older server board with onboard raid support are.
anyone heard of maybe a xeon board with raid5 support?
or maybe a rackmount server/NFS shell i can use?
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ViRoyAuthor Commented:

budget forced increased to $200   :-/
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garycaseCommented:
Find yourself a 3Ware card on e-bay => they are available fairly often, as folks switch to SATA RAID systems.   Here's an 8-port 3Ware ATA RAID controller that you may be able to buy for your $200 budget (expires in 3 hours ... current bid $107.50):  http://cgi.ebay.com/3Ware-Escalade-7506-8-Parallel-ATA-IDE-RAID_W0QQitemZ130045487163QQihZ003QQcategoryZ39968QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
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rindiCommented:
Servers usually don't use ata raid, but rather come with SCSI. Newer boards that support raid 5 can come with SATA, and if they use IDE raid, it'll be a raid 1 board. You may be able to find compaq servers for good prices, but again they'd be equipped with SCSI smartarray controllers, and they would probably cost more than $200.-- 2nd hand.
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ViRoyAuthor Commented:

Well i scored pretty big last night!
I got (2) 8 port RAID5 cards shipped for under $150
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ih=011&sspagename=STRK%3AMEWN%3AIT&viewitem=&item=320047341315&rd=1&rd=1
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ih=011&sspagename=STRK%3AMEWN%3AIT&viewitem=&item=320047341571&rd=1&rd=1

Very nice cards by 3ware, they are the older model so they only support ATA100 @ 33mhz... but im not complaining for the price i got them.

well heres what im gonna do:
I have 1 last need pertaining to these cards... I need 24" or longer ROUND IDE cables... 8 of them for now unless theres a super deal, ill buy 20.
I keep seeing alot of these but i do not want a 2 device cable, just a 1 device cable (2 connectors total).

I will spread these points evenly with the bulk going to whoever can find an excellent deal on these cables... i prefer Ebay and have been fishing for over an hour now.
Best i could find so far are 36" cables for $12/each... TOO MUCH!
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ViRoyAuthor Commented:
Points increased to 500
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ViRoyAuthor Commented:

Also, i see these cards have LBA support for over 137gb... does this mean i can put 500gb drives in there without trouble?
i need to know my max capacities for this card and windows 2k server
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garycaseCommented:
Yes, 48-bit LBA support means you can use drives larger than 137GB, so you can use 500GB drives.   There IS an array size limitation of 2TB, but you can create multiple arrays if necessary to use all of your drives.
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garycaseCommented:
GREAT deal on the controllers, by the way :-)
(I told you they were inexpensive on e-bay)
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