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Raid5-Controller - PCI - Arrays larger than 2 TB - possible?

Posted on 2007-10-09
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Is there a controller for the old pci (32) interface that supports raid-5 arrays exceeding 2 TB?
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Question by:McKnife
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by:pstrawser
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from what i know or hear about..   Windows XP can only handle 2tb Max, so i'm assuming the same with windows 2003 (both are xp built)  hope that help man
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by:McKnife
ID: 20039950
The OS is not the problem. Dynamic drives can handle more than 2 TB.
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by:pstrawser
ID: 20039965
what kind of HD is it..   IDE, SATA, SCSI
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by:McKnife
ID: 20040116
Sorry, I forgot. SATA.
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willcomp earned 800 total points
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by:pstrawser
ID: 20040185
hey..  just go to  newegg.com and search for   raid-5   pci (32bit)   sata drive  ,  you will see lots of them..
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by:McKnife
ID: 20040262
Are you sure that there are any that will allow arrays larger than 2 TB? Only the modern ones (PCIe/PCI &$ Bit) do support that, I did not find a single model so far.
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by:pstrawser
ID: 20040273
if sata yes.. 3ware is a good hardware
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by:McKnife
ID: 20040612
There is no 3ware controller for the pci32 interface that supports arrays larger than 2 TB.
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by:willcomp
ID: 20041166
That's incorrect.  3Ware 9000S series controllers are all 64 bit and support greater than 2TB arrays. All three PCI controllers I linked to earlier will.

Don't confuse 32 bit PCI with 64 bit controllers. 64 bit controllers can run on a 32 bit interface.
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by:willcomp
ID: 20041181
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by:McKnife
ID: 20041858
Yes, I was confused. The controllers of the 9000series will fit. And you are sure that if they fit, that implies that they are always backward compatible with the 32-bit-pci-bus, Will?
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by:willcomp
ID: 20041993
There's no backward compatible involved. They are PCI bus cards and PCI bus is 32 bit.
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by:McKnife
ID: 20042033
Another important thing: In your article http://www.carltonbale.com/2007/05/how-to-break-the-2tb-2-terabyte-file-system-limit/ they say nothing about dynamic disks as being a possibility to break the 2-TB-Limit. However, in wikipedia's NTFS article, it says
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Maximum Volume Size
    In theory, the maximum NTFS volume size is 264-1 clusters. However, the maximum NTFS volume size as implemented in Windows XP Professional is 232-1 clusters. For example, using 64 KiB clusters, the maximum NTFS volume size is 256 TiB minus 64 KiB. Using the default cluster size of 4 KiB, the maximum NTFS volume size is 16 TiB minus 4 KiB. Because partition tables on master boot record (MBR) disks only support partition sizes up to 2 TiB, ->dynamic<- or GPT volumes must be used to create bootable NTFS volumes over 2 TiB.
---
So can you for example use a dynamic volume in windows 2000 without using additional software raid to address a volume on your 3ware 4-TB-raidarray?
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by:McKnife
ID: 20042099
"no backward compatible involved" - now it's getting over my head :) For example this locost card here http://www.dawicontrol.com/german/flyer/DC-4300R%20Flyer-DE.pdf has the same interface as the 3ware 9000 series and dawicontrol emphasizes that it is backward compatible to the 32-bit-pci-bus ("Abwärtskompatibel zum 32 Bit PCI-Bus"). So that does not deserve emphasizing, every card with that interface would be compatible?
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by:McKnife
ID: 20047741
http://technet2.microsoft.com/windowsserver/en/library/b51311b3-ec61-402e-96cd-986c89ef40eb1033.mspx?mfr=true
Clears up the thing with dynamic disks: Maximum is 2 TB for a simple volume and 64 TB (Raid 0/1) respectively 62 TB (Raid5) if you use software raid to put together several dynamic disk to a volume.
So in my case, if I used a controller that could go over 2 TB per array, I would have to use linux to take advantage of it.
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by:McKnife
ID: 20047912
I correct myself: http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/device/storage/LUN_SP1.mspx - xp64, 2003 server sp1 and above can do better: GPT. Another error in my previous posting: of course mirrored dets can only go up to 2 TB (in OS' prior to xp64/2003 SP1).
I will close this question. Thanks
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by:willcomp
ID: 20048823
You're welcome. Finally convinced yourself did you? :)

FYI - the PCI bus is and always has been 32 bit -- no exceptions.

PCI-X is 64 bit and was used on server/workstation motherboards. 32 bit PCI cards can be used in a PCI-X slot. PCI-X has been replaced by PCI-E.
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