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  1. #1
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    LSI Megaraid 9266-8i and TRIM and RAID

    Hi,

    As topic suggests we're running a few of these on our SANs but seems like no TRIM support.

    Does LSI offer an option that supports TRIM? These are all SSD arrays using CacheCade as well.

    Also, what RAID are people running? We're doing RAID 10 but have been considering going RAID 0 and having 2 SANs mirror each other for better throughput and real redundancy

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    Hi,

    As topic suggests we're running a few of these on our SANs but seems like no TRIM support.

    Does LSI offer an option that supports TRIM? These are all SSD arrays using CacheCade as well.

    Also, what RAID are people running? We're doing RAID 10 but have been considering going RAID 0 and having 2 SANs mirror each other for better throughput and real redundancy
    No TRIM. Here's an interesting perspective:

    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/...=1#post5027110
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  3. #3
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    Also we're using these with Samsung 830s. Do these have some sort of optimized GC built into the controllers?

    LSI is coming out with these - interesting pricing ... given that a 100GB PCI SSD probably makes up most of the cost of that card ...

    http://www.techpowerup.com/171656/LS...ion-Cards.html

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    Also we're using these with Samsung 830s. Do these have some sort of optimized GC built into the controllers?

    LSI is coming out with these - interesting pricing ... given that a 100GB PCI SSD probably makes up most of the cost of that card ...

    http://www.techpowerup.com/171656/LS...ion-Cards.html
    actually, you will want to wait for Samsung 840 Pro for about 2 more weeks.

    840 pro gives you more than twice the IOPS on random write, yet it costs just 20% more than 830.

    if you had Xeon E3 v2 or dual E5, would want to do 9271-8i PCIe 3.0 based LSI instead of 9266-8i PCIe 2.0.
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  5. #5
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    What is the price difference between the 9266 and the 9271 and what are the benefits?

    Will look into the 840s - are there any specific benefits in terms of garbage collection - rather than just performance/

  6. #6
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    Newegg sells Samsung 830 128GB for $108 shipping. Samsung 840s will be $150 for 128GB so its more like 50% more.

    That said, I'm more interested in things other than raw speed. More about durability and the controllers

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    What is the price difference between the 9266 and the 9271 and what are the benefits?

    Will look into the 840s - are there any specific benefits in terms of garbage collection - rather than just performance/
    regardless 830 or 840 or any SSD for that matter, you just won't get TRIM support unless you want to give up hardware RAID. it's not a matter of choice! none of the hardware RAID cards on the market today can support TRIM which is also OS dependent. for linux, you will need to install experimental 2.6.33 kernel (even the latest RHEL6.3 production kernel is 2.6.32.xxx) just to get TRIM support if you connect SSD's to on-board Intel SATA controller (C202, C204, C602, C604) without going thru hardware RAID card.

    the whole purpose of TRIM is to minimize write amplification, improve performance and endurance, so can the technique of over-provisioning (OP) which is entirely possible and darn easy to do with hardware RAID card. all you have to do is to leave some percentage out of full capacity as blank/unused raw space at the time you configure the array size. i.e. set array size to 410GB to a 4x 256GB SSD RAID-10 will give you about 20% over-provisioning and this 20% can improve endurance level as well as random write IOPS by 2-3 folds!
    http://cache-www.intel.com/cd/00/00/...354_492354.pdf
    although white paper above is about Intel 320 SSD drives, but it can apply all SSD drives in general.

    "$150" is the MSRP for 128GB Samsung 840 Pro. historically speaking, newegg has the tenancy to sell spanking-new-to-market products in MSRP. the settle-down street price shall be much lower than what newegg would sell or pre-book you for now.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    What is the price difference between the 9266 and the 9271 and what are the benefits?...
    PCIe 3.0 can do 8 GT (gigatransfer) per second which effectively delivers 60% higher bandwidth than PCIe 2.0 (5 GT/s). it may matter a lot when you have SSD-only arrays.

    9271-8i is essentially the same price with 9265/9266-8i. well, perhaps $10-$15 more unless someone is dumping the old inventory of 9265/9266 cards...
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  9. #9
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    When did the 9271 come out? Our server vendor was asking us to buy the 9266 even a month ago ...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    Also, what RAID are people running? We're doing RAID 10 but have been considering going RAID 0 and having 2 SANs mirror each other for better throughput and real redundancy
    If your running >4 drives I don't see any reason to not run raid6? More space efficient and unless you really need 100% of the iops of the SSD's the write whole (halving the iops) should not be a huge deal on SSD's. Actually even with only 4 drives I would seriously consider raid6 with SSD's.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    When did the 9271 come out? Our server vendor was asking us to buy the 9266 even a month ago ...
    haven't checked other outfits, but at least Provantage has 9271-8i in stock for $645:
    http://www.provantage.com/lsi-logic-...0~7LSIG0P4.htm
    and they still sell 9266-8i for $634.
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  12. #12
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    wow nice and cheap..

    Shame provantage won't do business with me, they declined my American Express card and won't allow bank transfer from Australia.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    Does LSI offer an option that supports TRIM? These are all SSD arrays using CacheCade as well...
    if you run all SSD arrays, you don't really need CacheCade which is designed to boost performance from much slower spin drives by using single (or a pool of) ultra fast SSD as caching devices on BIOS level. what you need for pure SSD array is FastPath:
    http://www.lsi.com/products/storages...hSoftware.aspx
    LSI claims that FastPath can boost LSI 2208 ROC based RAID card running all SSD arrays to 465000 IOPS!

    anyway, the 9271-8iCC includes both CacheCade and FastPath in one packaging so that you don't have to buy the keys for CacheCade/FastPath separately.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by eva2000 View Post
    Shame provantage won't do business with me, they declined my American Express card and won't allow bank transfer from Australia.
    We use an American Express card with Provantage. Do they just not take orders with a foreign billing address?
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  15. #15
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    It's strange, my order went through at provantage.com web site after i read for Australians they take either American Express or bank wire transfer payments. Then get 2 emails, first one says they can't accept my American Express payment and give me bank wire transfer info. Then 2nd email arrives a few minutes later and says they can't accept bank wire transfer and for me to send a money order as the only acceptable payment method

    Guess my ip or something set off fraud alerts or something.

    Coincidentally, the order was for LSI 9260-8i BBU and fastpath key. So ended up cancelling order and buying elsewhere.

    My 9260-8i BBU seems to have died now, probably not worth investing in another when new LSI cards have cache vault.

    I have a dual E5-2650 here with PCI-E 3.0 so that 9271-8i looks like just what I need to match up with my 256GB Samsung 830 and Plextor M5S SSDs (seem to perform better than Samsung 830 on C602 chipset)
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  16. #16
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    We have the LSI-9266-8i so not much we can do now - we have a number of these in our SANs ... guess its 9271 for the next build

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by eva2000 View Post
    It's strange, my order went through at provantage.com web site after i read for Australians they take either American Express or bank wire transfer payments. Then get 2 emails, first one says they can't accept my American Express payment and give me bank wire transfer info. Then 2nd email arrives a few minutes later and says they can't accept bank wire transfer and for me to send a money order as the only acceptable payment method

    Guess my ip or something set off fraud alerts or something.

    Coincidentally, the order was for LSI 9260-8i BBU and fastpath key. So ended up cancelling order and buying elsewhere.

    My 9260-8i BBU seems to have died now, probably not worth investing in another when new LSI cards have cache vault.

    I have a dual E5-2650 here with PCI-E 3.0 so that 9271-8i looks like just what I need to match up with my 256GB Samsung 830 and Plextor M5S SSDs (seem to perform better than Samsung 830 on C602 chipset)
    Wait, M5S, or M5P/M3P? The M5S's use cheaper Micron nand it seems. Lower P/E cycles and not as fast as toggle nand.

    We've seen much more consistent results with Samsung 830's than Intel 520's or Crucial/Micro M4.

    Note that these samsung drives with their own nand have some pretty impressive results when it comes to longevity as well as reliability.

  18. #18
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    Chong, is the megaraid recovery software useful or other storage software achieve the same goal?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cookiesowns View Post
    Wait, M5S, or M5P/M3P? The M5S's use cheaper Micron nand it seems. Lower P/E cycles and not as fast as toggle nand.

    We've seen much more consistent results with Samsung 830's than Intel 520's or Crucial/Micro M4.

    Note that these samsung drives with their own nand have some pretty impressive results when it comes to longevity as well as reliability.
    Plextor M5S not sure if it's only a C602 chipset issue but only done quick tests within windows not linux yet (need to find the time).

    Plextor M5S write amplification ain't that bad from reviews http://www.anandtech.com/show/6090/p...256gb-review/9

    Tested on both Intel C602 chipset and Marvel onboard Asus Z9PE-D8 WS

    Crystal Disk Marks


    AS SSD Bench


    Sorry The Broadband Man for taking your thread off topic Haven't used megaraid recovery software so can't comment on that. For me I dabble in raid 0 for fun, but really only raid 10 for me. I previously had 8x 60GB Sandforce based SSDs on 9260-8i with fastpath cache, improving writes and write latency at a bit of expense of lower reads.
    Last edited by eva2000; 10-04-2012 at 02:15 AM.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    We have the LSI-9266-8i so not much we can do now - we have a number of these in our SANs ... guess its 9271 for the next build
    They use the same controller, and everything else looks the same, except that the 9271 has a PCIe 3.0 interface. I don't think most people would notice any performance difference, so I wouldn't worry about it.
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  21. #21
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    We have 24 x Samsung 830's in our RAID array on RAID 10 that's why - and wondering if PCI-E 3.0 would have made a difference. Adding FastPath next week

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Broadband Man View Post
    We have 24 x Samsung 830's in our RAID array on RAID 10 that's why - and wondering if PCI-E 3.0 would have made a difference. Adding FastPath next week
    How is the performance of that now?
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  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by cwl@apaqdigital View Post
    the whole purpose of TRIM is to minimize write amplification, improve performance and endurance, so can the technique of over-provisioning (OP) which is entirely possible and darn easy to do with hardware RAID card. all you have to do is to leave some percentage out of full capacity as blank/unused raw space at the time you configure the array size. i.e. set array size to 410GB to a 4x 256GB SSD RAID-10 will give you about 20% over-provisioning and this 20% can improve endurance level as well as random write IOPS by 2-3 folds!
    Should have known that a few weeks ago...
    Will do it on the next server
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by cwl@apaqdigital View Post
    for linux, you will need to install experimental 2.6.33 kernel (even the latest RHEL6.3 production kernel is 2.6.32.xxx) just to get TRIM support if you connect SSD's to on-board Intel SATA controller (C202, C204, C602, C604) without going thru hardware RAID card.
    Just a side note: Although CentOS6 is listed to have a 2.6.32 kernel, I believe that it has a few features backported from 2.6.33, such as TRIM support. It's really a hybrid mix of 2.6.32 and 2.6.33.

    You can mount drives using ext4 with discard (TRIM) support in CentOS 6.

    From: https://access.redhat.com/knowledge/...ssdtuning.html
    keep in mind that MD (software raid) does not support discards. In contrast, the logical volume manager (LVM) and the device-mapper (DM) targets that LVM uses do support discards. The only DM targets that do not support discards are dm-snapshot, dm-crypt, and dm-raid45. Discard support for the dm-mirror was added in Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.1.

    Red Hat also warns that software RAID levels 1, 4, 5, and 6 are not recommended for use on SSDs. During the initialization stage of these RAID levels, some RAID management utilities (such as mdadm) write to all of the blocks on the storage device to ensure that checksums operate properly. This will cause the performance of the SSD to degrade quickly.

    At present, ext4 is the only fully-supported file system that supports discard. To enable discard commands on a device, use the mount option discard. For example, to mount /dev/sda2 to /mnt with discard enabled, run:

    # mount -t ext4 -o discard /dev/sda2 /mnt

    By default, ext4 does not issue the discard command. This is mostly to avoid problems on devices which may not properly implement the discard command. The Linux swap code will issue discard commands to discard-enabled devices, and there is no option to control this behavior.
    Hope this helps.

  25. #25
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    During the initialization stage of these RAID levels, some RAID management utilities (such as mdadm) write to all of the blocks on the storage device to ensure that checksums operate properly. This will cause the performance of the SSD to degrade quickly.
    thanks Samuraid,

    didn't realise that about mdadm

    learn something new everyday !
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