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Re: Looking for a good entry level server board that plays well with FC3.



N. Johnson wrote:
> I am looking for entry-level motherboard which works well under FC3 - 
> basically all the drivers are available.
> It should also have the following:
> - SATA support with RAID 1.

Entry-level and hardware RAID don't go together.

> I was thinking about this board.
> http://www.intel.com/design/servers/boards/se7221bk1-e/

download.intel.com seems to be unobtainable at the moment, but
http://www.intel.com/products/i/chipsets/e7221/e7221-flowbig.jpg
suggests that it has an ICH6R adapter. The standard resource,
http://linux.yyz.us/sata/faq-sata-raid.html
says:
> It's not hardware RAID. It is software RAID, provided by the BIOS on
> the card.

Basically, such adapters come with Windows drivers that do all the work.

Linux has its own software RAID implementation, and that is preferred
for these adapters.

But that means you don't need a motherboard with "BIOS RAID": anything
with SATA adapters will do.

There is (or was) software being developed that will let Linux software
RAID understand the BIOS RAID, but I haven't heard anything about it for
a while.

Your options are

 * try and find a motherboard that supports real hardware SATA RAID
   (good luck)

 * find an add-in real hardware SATA RAID card with good Linux drivers
   (I have no experience with them, but 3ware are supposed to do real
   hardware SATA RAID. I don't know of any motherboards with adapters
   built in. http://linux.yyz.us/sata/sata-status.html#tware ).

or
 * use Linux's built-in software RAID (definitely recommended).

If you're worried about the processor overhead, save on the RAID and buy
more CPU speed.

> http://www.tyan.com/products/html/tomcati7210.html
> But I can't find information on how well this works with FC3.

http://www.tyan.com/products/html/tomcati7210_spec.html says:
• Two ICH5-S integrated SATA ports 
(same problem)
• Silicon Image Sil3114 SATA controller 
(different adapter [1], same problem).

Hope this helps,

James.

[1] Technically, the controller is part of the drive
-- 
E-mail address: james | "The letters are Elvish, of an ancient mode, but the
@westexe.demon.co.uk  | language is that of Microsoft, which I will not utter
                      | here. But this in the Common Tongue is what is said:
                      | By this or any other name, You are well and truly..."


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