Solved

Can PCI-e x1 slots communicate in RAID with SATA3 cards?

Hey guys,

I know that some motherboards come with RAID chipsets, so SATA port configurations are rather easy to set up. But what if your old motherboard from a LGA775 series is still in great use with my Q9650. My HP IPIEL-LA3 (Eureka3) only has SATA2 speeds from the ports.

I would like to buy inexpensive SATA 6gbs cards for my 3 unused slots. It will cost me a total of 20 bucks and I I feel the upgrades will give me a tad bit of more speed when opening huge Photoshop Files for print. I work in 500mb-1GB Photoshop files for large scale printing.

So my question is, when I have the three cards, what RAID controller will I need? I plan to connect 3 HDDs of 2TB to each new card if I can't do RAID anyways, but I was wondering, which I hope I'm explaining correctly, can one setup RAID using PCI-e slots with SATA cards? I feel like I would need a cable to run in some sort of ''SLI'' mode between all the SATA cards or?

Thanks
Reply to Sugar Kaine Mostly
4 answers Last reply Best Answer
More about pci slots communicate raid sata3 cards
  1. SATA III won't significantly increase your throughput with hard drives. Each SATA II channel should be able to handle up to 200MB/s. So if you have a lot of ports now, you can just set up RAID there.

    Doing hardware RAID across multiple cards isn't likely. But you can set up software RAID in your OS of choice. Or do something fancy like RAID 0 on each raid card, then software raid the striped sets. Stupidly unreliable, but an option.
    Reply to Eximo
  2. Eximo said:
    SATA III won't significantly increase your throughput with hard drives. Each SATA II channel should be able to handle up to 200MB/s. So if you have a lot of ports now, you can just set up RAID there.

    Doing hardware RAID across multiple cards isn't likely. But you can set up software RAID in your OS of choice. Or do something fancy like RAID 0 on each raid card, then software raid the striped sets. Stupidly unreliable, but an option.




    that's good to hear eximo. Thanks for the input. I didn't know software RAID was reliable. I assumed you always need a RAID controller chip of any sort be it a card or integrated into board. What's the convenience of the hardware technologies marketing vs the software RAIDs?

    Well, tbh, I have had a more plentiful using the PCIe slots when loading lots of files in Adobe Bridge and Photoshop vs the traditional SATA2 slots on the board. I'm being honest! =)

    Worst case would be that I'll just start using the card slots regardless if I can't RAID 0. or use mirroring. I have externals HDs too...

    Thanks for your input it's a real help. =)
    Reply to Sugar Kaine Mostly
  3. I'm not too familiar with LGA775 socket boards. I started messing with RAID starting with an LGA1366 build. The Intel RAID controller (ICH10R, I think) was a 6 channel SATA II and a two channel Marvel RAID controller. The latter of which was terrible, it could do a single drive easily enough, but saturated easily with two drives.

    Hardware RAID simply does all the work, though on a chipset that means a little sharing of resources with the rest of the PCH and its DMA connections to the CPU. Software RAID uses the CPU to process everything. I've found it to be perfectly fine for bulk storage as a mirror.

    A discrete RAID card should handle all intercommunication between drives. In most cases the communication to the system will end up going through the PCH anyway, unless you use a direct to CPU PCIe slot.
    Reply to Eximo
  4. Best answer
    You will need a proper SATA 6 Gbps PCI RAID card that supports 4 disks from a single card which are expensive and don't mess with cheap cards.

    Software RAID - Storage Spaces- in Windows 10 runs quite reliably in my opinion.

    3 x 2 TB HDD is good - but only if you buy the latest Seagate Barracuda Compute series, I have two of them and a single one manages sustained write speed of 200 MB/s for hours. Somehow by combining lots of caches, Seagate managed this feat - and this speed is more than sustained write speed of low / middle quality SSD's.

    As an owner of dozens of HDDs and SSDs - I am not joking, I really have them and continously testing them daily for read and write speeds due a project I am working on - I would say forget 3 x 2 TB HDDs and purchase a Samsung 850 Pro SSD : even 256 GB 850 Pro is writing at 520 MB/s speed for hours !

    But this brings another problem: add-on SATA 3 cards have higher overheads are limited by the PCI bus speed - meaning if your PCI slot is limited to 5 Gbps, the best you can get is around 400 MB/s , and the speed of RAID/SATA controller. Using the same SSD's On Intel and AMD chipset SATA ports I can get above 500 MB/s speed, but on Asus U3S6 card ( that has 2 x USB 3.0 and 2 x SATA 6 Gbps ports ) I can only get 400 MB/s. On LGA 775 the PCI bus bandwidth was lower than 5 Gbps if I remember correctly - this may be the reason you want to add each disk onto a separate PCI slot and then RAID them.

    If I were you, I would get a single, second hand quality SSD with high write speeds, like Samsung 850 Pro or Micron M550 both pasding 500 MB/s mark on 256 GB size. These have higher endurance TBW ratings and a computer journal had gound out that 850 Pro failed after 6000 TBW - way way above its official TBW rating, so buying a second hand one with a 100 TBW usage would do wonders.
    Reply to eyupo92
Ask a new question Answer

Read More

Chipsets Hard Drives SATA NAS / RAID Connection Motherboards PCI Express