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HP Proliant DL380 G7 RAID controller question.

Posted on 2010-08-18
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Guys,

I have a quick question, the DL380 G7 comes with 8 drive bays.
We have populated 4 in RAID 10, we are going to populate the other 4 into another RAID 10 Array taking the total to 8.

Now, they all slide in and attach to the back plane however is the back plane all attached to one channel on the raid controller? Back in the days we use to put 4 drives or 2 drives per channel to split all the load. Is the drive cages automatically split so that 4 drives connect to one channel and the other 4 to another? I cant seem to understand from the spec sheet of our controller (P410i 2 Channel 1GB FBWC).

Thanks in advance!

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Question by:dqnet
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by:kgreeneit
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Hi there, an 8 drive backplane is attached to two separate channel's on a DL 380 G 7.

Hope this clears things up!
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by:noisy_cricket
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personally I use the 0 + 4, 1 + 5, 2+6,3+7 configuration to split the possibility of something happening if a cable is bust.. ( so that in a raid, the mirror disk, is on the other half of the backplane)..
Im not sure its relevant today, but in the old days, with two seperate backplanes, it saved me a few times, when a backplane fried..
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by:Coast-IT
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he has already stated this kgreeneit...

No, it is not automatically split, generally with HP servers you will need to purchase a split backplane to achieve your required results.

There are lots of part numbers for these, so contact your supplier and ask them to spec you up a dual channel backplane for your model
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by:andyalder
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No such thing as a split backplane in SFF Proliant drive bays, that was for LFF using old parallel SCSI.

There are two cables from the P410i card to the backplane but it's not really two channels, each cable has 4 lanes making a total of 8 lanes so it's one 6Gb lane per disk.
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by:Coast-IT
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My apologies if there isnt one available for SFF drives and sending you down the wrong road, I have bought these for previous ML37s and the part number was

339323-B21
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by:dqnet
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I think I understand.. So these 2 cables that come from the raid controller card.. are they on separate channels or is that whole concept gone now? I mean the two cables that are coming from the raid controller, are they actually separate ports on the raid controller, can one array be completely damaged whilst the other is working fine? Or better put, can one 'channel' be damaged whilst the other works or are they just split into 2 * 4 for cable redundancy and they only actually go into one single channel...?  thanks guys!
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by:noisy_cricket
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as far as i can tell from prevoius answers, there is no redundancy - two cables to a single channel fo higher speed, but no redundancy..
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by:andyalder
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There's no redundancy on the backplane, it just splits the 4 lanes on each cable one one lane per disk. There's an alternative cable that splits off one lane to a tape drive, if you have that you lose one disk channel so can only have 7 disks. That shows that the backplane is passive as far as SAS goes(although there's a PSoC on it to drive the LEDs), it doesn't have a SAS expander on it. Although the disks supplied will probably be dual port the second port isn't used.
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by:dqnet
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So one last time to confirm...

All the cables (8 of them in two cables so 4 per lane) are connected into ONE physical port on the raid controller card?
Is this correct? If so, is this a performance loss and is there a 'better' raid controller that splits this into two channels so that if one 'port' is damaged the other array can continue to function? I am asking out of curiosty now...

I just want to know if this is the way SFF SAS works now or is it just particular to this server.
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andyalder earned 500 total points
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Two physical ports on the card, 4 lanes each but they come from the same chip so in effect one port. 6Gb is so far in excess of what you can read/wrote to on a disk there's no advantage of having more. If you really want to have two seperate cards you can get a second drive bay which sits where the DVD is. You could then use software RAID across controllers, rather expensive though in disk count as you would have two levels of RAID nested and doesn't cover a motherboard failure.
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by:dqnet
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Andyyalder, you've got the points.. I just want to ask you something for my general knowledge sake.

Now these drives are connected into one backplane. they all go into two ports on the same chip on the raid controller.
Here is the questions..
Is this the new setup of ALL servers or just HP's way of keeping up with technology?
If I went and bought the new R line from Dell, is this what would apply?
Do SFF's only maintain a single backplane? Is this the new norm?
Or can you get split backplanes on SFF and do what I said above?
Because yes the speed to the controller is in excess, however the raid controller can only deal with so much read/writes in any given RAID setup (5, 10, 6) and this is were two cards come into it?
(yes, motherboard failure excluded from eqution)

A few questions in there if you could try and answer them all... :) ps... thanks a ton!
Thanks to all the rest who helped!
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by:andyalder
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Someone else may answer that list, it's too much for me.
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by:Coast-IT
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lol
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