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Consumer-grade SSD for server?

Posted on 2014-01-28
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Hi,

I am looking for opinion about an idea to build up low-cost high-performance server out of consumer-grade parts. I would use one of the Entry-level servers with addition of:
- hardware RAID controller LSI MegaRAID SAS2108 with 512 MB Cache
- iBBU battery for RAID Ctrl
- and 4 consumer-grade MLC SSD disks, for example Samsung 840 Pro
- RAID array would be RAID 5 or 10

RAID controller with its internal 512 MB cache would take up much of disk writes, so SSD's would last much longer. I think.

On Linux machine on it I would add "noatime" to fstab to reduce disk writes even more (and gain on speed). For Windows platform I have no idea of such a filesystem parameter.

What do you think?
For the price of one single server-grade SSD disk I would get whole server.
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Question by:Andrej Pirman
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4 Comments
 
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by:noxcho
noxcho earned 750 total points
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I would prefer to have the SSD drives software RAID as this would support then TRIM. Which is definitely good for your drives. In hardware RAID configuration as far as I know they do not support TRIM.
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by:bigeven2002
bigeven2002 earned 150 total points
ID: 39818673
If I may contribute, while they are substantially cheaper, consumer grade parts aren't exactly designed to run 24/7.  This being a server I trust it will run as such.  

While it appears correct that hardware raid doesn't support trim, some ssds have a built in function for garbage collection in lieu of trim so as to be better supported in raid.  I believe corsair is one of those that supports this.
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fulloutput earned 600 total points
ID: 39823575
your better off with a software RAID configuration

Drive manufacturers i would look at are OCZ and Corsair
i personally have the vertex 450 120GB drive from OCZ and would recommend it in any budget server build.

the read write/speed on SSD drives is so high that hardware RAID wouldn't really be worth it and from a management point of view software RAID would be easier especially if it were to fail which at some point in no doubt will

but as mentioned above, consumer grade parts aren't designed to run at high capacity 24/7.
so the biggest question u need to ask yourself is "what am i going to do with the server?, and what is it going to be doing?"

my suggestion here would be to rather use 2 smaller sized SSD (60GB) drives in RAID 10 or 5 (you can also mirror the drives) for the OS and have two 2TB data drives in RAID 10 or 5 for storage all running software raid.

hope this is helpfull in some way
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by:Andrej Pirman
ID: 39859009
Thank you all for suggestions.

I learned to watch for TRIM support on both, disk and controller.
Among actual manufacturers Samsung Pro, OCZ Vertex will probably be my choice.
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