Norco Build Advice

Discussion in 'Storage & Backup' started by PunX0r, Mar 16, 2012.

  1. PunX0r

    PunX0r Member

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    Hey guys,

    Im looking at getting a Norco 4224 to replace my 2 current NAS builds.

    Server 1:

    5x 1TB drives in ZFS running on BSD (working but slow due to old hardware)

    Server 2:

    5 x 2TB Drives in ZFS running on Ubuntu 10.4 LTS (Not working, OS wont boot, I get a different error message every time I boot)

    I am looking to take the HDD's from both systems and retain the data stored on them.

    I have a bit of money spare to do all this, and I want to do it right the first time round with plans to fill all 24 HDDs in the future.

    So far on the buy list is:

    Norco RPC-4224 Rackmount Server Chassis
    Norco 120mm Fan Wall Bracket
    Antec 750W EA-750 Green Series

    No this is where I get really confused in regards to connecting the drives. Currently both servers run the drives directly to the mainboard, this obviously wont work to connect 24 drives to the system. What do I need in the way of a SATA/SAS (?) controller card to connect them? I am not interested in hardware RAID, only ZFS.

    I have read about certain server cards (HP/DELL/IBM?) that can be modified to give access to a lot of drives at a relatively cheap price, where can I find more info on this and does anyone have any personal recommendations?

    Any other help or suggestions would be much appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. grogamanda

    grogamanda Member

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    what you need are IBM br10i cards for 8 drives per card.

    They are really cheap on ebay..

    You will be able to import your zfs drives in directly when you transfer them - if at all possible you should also try to export them from the previous OS.

    cheers

    R
     
  3. fuXK

    fuXK Member

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    sell the 1tb and get bigger drives

    Raid controller this is where it get expensive

    Areca, adaptec or lsi take your pick if you the $$

    raid + sas expander = dream team = make u poor
     
  4. OP
    OP
    PunX0r

    PunX0r Member

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    From what I've been reading the IBM br10i cards don't support bigger then 2tb drives, which will work for now but allow me to upgrade. Any other suggestions on a suitable card?

    Is techbuy the only place in AU to get this stuff aswell? I wish I got in on the group buy when was happening.
     
  5. Jim G

    Jim G Member

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    IBM M1015 is the card you want, not the br10i - 6gb/s support and support for larger drives. You can pick them up for ~$70-90 on the forsale section here or on eBay and SFF-8087 to SFF-8087 cables aren't too expensive either. Just make sure you get ones that are 60cm or longer for the 4224/M1015s as the 50cm cables are a heck of a stretch to the rear ports with the 120mm fan wall.

    It's extremely easy to flash the M1015s to IT mode (from IR mode) - it turns it into a dumb HBA and removes any RAID functionality, which is generally what you want for ZFS - it just passes the drive straight through to the OS. Having said that, I ran some M1015s in IR mode for a while without drama as the default JBOD functionality works pretty well for that too - so if you don't want to go down the path of flashing the card (or can't due to not having a compatible motherboard) it's not a huge deal.

    Edit: Also, do you need a PSU that powerful watts-wise? We're running our 4224 on a Seasonic X-560W and it has no issues handling the number of drives and is Gold rated as opposed to Bronze - about $50 more expensive than the PSU you're looking at, though. You'll get more power efficiency (and thus lower power bills) long-term and a 5-year warranty is pretty decent.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2012
  6. davros123

    davros123 Member

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    Did you not read the op? He said zfs.


    op, go the m1015's and flash to IT mode...takes but a minute and they are brilliant cards for ~100 ea. for 8 sata ports.... so you'll want 3 of them and a mobo that has at least three 4x pcie slots. check out servethehome site for some good reviews on mobos and oth home server parts.
     
  7. DrFrag

    DrFrag Member

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    I'd advise against the IBM Br10i too. I have a few and they're cheap and work great, but the 2TB limit is a barrier in the long run.

    You could buy a single IBM M1015 card for the first 8 drives, and use a reverse breakout cable to utilise the SATA ports on your motherboard. That way you'll only need to buy 1 card to start with.
     
  8. sreg0r

    sreg0r Member

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    the BR10i is a rock-solid card so the upgraded m1015 is likely to also be awesome, and support larger drives. I know some people like using SAS Expanders but it'd probably cause less issues in the long run to just get a couple of the m1015's instead.
     
  9. Betzie

    Betzie Member

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  10. DrFrag

    DrFrag Member

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    Yeah, my Br10i's all play well with each other's BIOSes, as well as the Chenbro expander. It's so refreshing to use hardware that just works.

    Sub-mesa has advised against using expanders with ZFS, due to latency sensitivity. I personally haven't had problems, but in the future I'd probably go with multiple M1015 cards because he knows his stuff.
     
  11. OP
    OP
    PunX0r

    PunX0r Member

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    OK, So I have purchased 3 M1015 for $270 in postage, now to decide on a MB/CPU/RAM combo.

    I am liking the idea or remote KVM over IP and have been looking at the Tyan S5510 (S5510GM3NR) mATX Sandy Bridge Xeon LGA1155 C204 Motherboard, but I cannot seem to find any suppliers in AU for it.

    Does anyone know of anything comparable?
     
  12. DavidRa

    DavidRa Member

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    Intel S1200BTL if you need 4 PCI-e slots, or the S1200BTS if you want it to be mATX. ISTR that only the BTL version can offer the remote KVM. Oh and it's a separate module ... I think I bought mine off eBay (it's been a while!)

    I have one of these running as a Solaris 11 host - I'm not happy with the stability (it generally stops talking to the network after a few weeks) - but I don't think it's a hardware thing.

    Alternatively, I have 3 SuperMicro mATX boards with the same chipset. If you get a SM board with the -F in the model name, it has remote console over HTTP. Pretty sure they are the X9SCM-F.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
  13. touki

    touki Member

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    http://www.supermicro.com/products/motherboard/Xeon/C202_C204/X9SCM-F.cfm

    I am running one of these in my server. IPMI is so handy. KVM means I have never attached a monitor or keyboard!

    I got mine through techbuy.
     
  14. davros123

    davros123 Member

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  15. joshpond

    joshpond Member

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    The super micro boards with ipmi are nice but can sometimes be picky on hardware so check with compatibility first.

    I also have a three fan plate for the norco 4224 if you are interested.

    Josh
     
  16. sam_allen

    sam_allen Member

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    +1 for M1015's.

    I'm running 3 of them in my 4224. Worked out cheaper than buying a 6Gbit expander.
     
  17. OP
    OP
    PunX0r

    PunX0r Member

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    OK so I think I have decided on the following config:

    1x Norco RPC-4224 Rackmount Server Chassis, No PSU - 4U 459.00
    1x Norco 120mm Fan Wall Bracket 10.95
    1x Supermicro MB-X8SIL-F Motherboard - LGA1156, Intel 3420, 4xDDR3-1333, 6xSATA-II, RAID, 2xGigLAN, VGA, mATX 282.15
    1x Intel XEON X3440 Quad Core, 2.53GHz, 8MB Cache, HTT, LGA1156, 1333MHz, 95W, 2.5GT/s DMI 258.70
    2x Kingston 8GB (2 x 4GB) PC3-10600 1333MHz Unbuffered ECC DDR3 RAM, Intel Validated, Thermal Sensor - CL9 154.00

    Total $1,164.80 (all prices from TechBuy)

    + the 3 M1015s


    Still need to decide on 3 120mm fans, any suggestions? Also is it worth replacing the 80mm on the back or just disconnect them all together?
     
  18. joshpond

    joshpond Member

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    I replaced the 80mm back ones as they were the jet engines. I didn't think the four mid ones were too loud(i kept mine in the pantry so not next to me) so i kept those 4fans hence why i have a three fan plate lying around.

    Josh
     
  19. frozencrystal

    frozencrystal Member

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    Have Norco sorted out their backplane issues on the 4224? All the horror stories about dead backplanes turned me off getting one...
     
  20. OP
    OP
    PunX0r

    PunX0r Member

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    I hope so!!
     

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