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HP P400/P800 >2TB Drive Support

I cant find any info of using >2TB drives on HP P400/P800 controllers.

We have already got 2TB WD RE4-GP drives working on these controllers in a 12x2TB array but i need to build a new backup server and we have a 12bay HP DL320s with a P400 card in it which im checking if i can use larger drives.

I was planning to put the Seagate ES.2 drives.

If there is no definitive answer ile get a pair of 3TB disks and try it out.
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tsmgeek
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tsmgeek
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2 Solutions
 
Paul SolovyovskyCommented:
This is most likely the DL320S model (storage server) that you are mentioning. The quickspec below listes 750GB as the largest size with the P400 controller/256 cache.

http://h18000.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/12654_div/12654_div.PDF
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DavidCommented:
The only reason the spec says 750GB was because that was the largest HP disk shipping at the time they made the literature.
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Paul SolovyovskyCommented:
that makes sense.  I dislike the fact that they don't update the quickspec which leaves you searching for comparible drives...
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
I know that it accepts 2TB drives and if needed I've got a spare P800.
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
There shouldn't be any difference between the P800 and P400 in this since they both have a LSI SAS 1078 ROC (with HP's RAID stack rather than LSIs), the P800 just* has a PMC-Sierra expander chip added to give it more ports.
The ROC supports disks above 2TB AFAIK but I'm not sure HP's stack does, maybe there will be a firmware update in the future if it doesn't run with disks over 2 TiB.

* Before anyone bites my head off this is a simplification, there are other differences but they aren't relevant to whether they support 64bit LBA on the disk side.
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Davis McCarnOwnerCommented:
To cross the 2TB barrier, you need firmware/BIOS upgrades as the drives require yet another new translation to be handlesd properly.  Nothing on the HP support site leads me to belive they have issued such an update: http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/SoftwareIndex.jsp?lang=en&cc=us&prodNameId=1157689&prodTypeId=329290&prodSeriesId=1157687&swLang=8&taskId=135&swEnvOID=54

I think you'll either get the drive not recognized or only see 2TB :(
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
Ile get a couple of drives and try it out.
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DavidCommented:
The problem is NEVER going to be with the disk drives.  This can be proven rather easily with a thought experiment.   Why would anybody manufacture a disk drive that was incapable of accessing 100% of the data on it.

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Paul SolovyovskyCommented:
@dlethe..accessing 100% of data..who needs it?  Just like marketing 1000 bytes instead of 1024..I keep wondering where my GBs go now I know

<-tounge in cheek
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
giga = 10^9, you should be asking why you're getting a gibibyte of RAM when you only asked for a gigabyte.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SI_prefix

<tongue also in cheek> ;)
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Paul SolovyovskyCommented:
Was thinking of SAN Vendors and difference between market size/raw size/actual size..YMMV
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markgmCommented:
Hello,

The 3 TB drives are not currently supported under HP's latest firmware (7.22 25 Oct 2010) on either controller (the P400 and P800).  I have tested this on both.  HP has not announced when or if the controllers will support the drives, but I imagine it will happen later this year when they inevitably release 3 TB enterprise drives.  
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DavidCommented:
Don't hold your breath that such a fix will EVER be done.   Once you exceed a 2.09TB drive size, you have to make sure you use 64-bit math everywhere.  You may also have to redo metadata, which means all sorts of problems for migration, expansion and downward compatibility unless they did this from the beginning.  The older RAID ASIC chips out there are also limited to both a block size under 528 bytes AND max # of FFFFFFFF hex blocks, so it is not even possible to do this with some hardware controllers to begin with (Not saying the P400/P800 uses one of the older chips, but those controllers have been around long enough that you have to consider it).

So even if the change is possible with the hardware, you have a huge expense when it comes to testing and support costs, and even then you won't get new features like SAS-2 domains & security; then you have to cert the larger drives with the controllers & tweak the firmware ...  

I don't see this as a wise use of engineering & support costs, as I don't see the ROI in increased sales in the 2+ TB drive space to warrant the work.  It would probably be a net loss. IMHO it won't happen UNLESS some defense contract somewhere mandated that HP provides continued support for the 2+ TB disks on that controller and HP is contractually obligated to do the work.
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
Already said what ROC it uses. Re-jigging the metadata isn't really a problem as HP only offer backwards compatibility so a new controller just has to be able to read new as well as old metadata. They have added extra stuff to the RIS before, I would expect them to do the same in the future - you can see that by comparing ADU reports on old and newer controllers.
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DavidCommented:
Agreed, but this is so much work, for a SAS-1 product, I just don't see the ROI now with SAS-2 in GA.
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
Yup, you're right. Probably introduce it to the next generation which will help them sell you a whole new set of servers too.
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DavidCommented:
.. and SAS switches too!
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
HP have had SAS switches from 2009 for their blade enclosures, they're only 3Gb but that's 6Gb from each switch to the HBAs in the blade servers as 2 lanes, and 12Gb to the disk unit with all 4 lanes; doubled again as two paths. HBA's a bit expensive as it's a RAID controller running in non-RAID mode.
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
so far the info ive found points towards the P400 not supporting 3TB+ drives, found a page saying that the LSISAS1078 chip does not support 32bit LBA, not sure what the new P410/P810 cards use though

http://communities.intel.com/message/123688

GRRRRR, annoying
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
P410 runs a PMC-Sierra ROC, not sure which one though. Again it's got HP's raid stack on it so disks can be moved from one to the other while preserving the data.
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
not much info on PMC-Sierra ROC stuff, but suspect as its new HP cant be so dim to leave off 2TB+ support but as you said they use a unified software stack so that needs to be up to scratch too, how annoying i may have to just get a LSI card which i know supports 3TB drives
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
In the end I went with the LSI 9260-4i card as it supports 3TB drives, its a cludge as the HP DL320s its put into means that the controller does not correctly know the backplane layout, its all skewed but seems to work fine in the OS.
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
While it was worked out by one answer that the P400/800 does not support 2TB+ drives there was no indication to when or if the P410 also has the same problem.
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
Hot off the press:  HP just released new firmware to support disks greater than 2TB.

http://h18000.www1.hp.com/products/quickspecs/13021_div/13021_div.pdf

NOTE: To support HP hard drives exceeding 2.2 TB, HP Smart Array
Firmware version 5.0 or later is required for the following controllers:
HP Smart Array P212 Controller
HP Smart Array P410 Controller
HP Smart Array P411 Controller
HP Smart Array P711m Controller
HP Smart Array P812 Controller
To use hard drives exceeding 2.2 TB, you must create a boot volume using
offline ACU version 8.75 or later. HP Smart Array controllers do not support
boot volumes exceeding 2.2 TB.
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tsmgeekAuthor Commented:
grrr bummer, now im in a pickle if i should rebuild the server with a proper HP card over the LSI i put in
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andyalderSaggar makers bottom knockerCommented:
I'd stick to the LSI now you've got it working since it's designed for generic disks, HP's controllers work with generic ones but some parameters are tweaked in the firmware of the HP disks to better match the controller.
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