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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 7:42 pm 
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Anyone know much about them?

I'm looking to hook 1 computer directly to another that would be being used as Direct Attached Storage using iSCSI or NFS (Im thinking iSCSI from what I've read). Any other computers that want to get to the data on the DAS could access it through shares on the machine connected to it?

Thanks.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 7:56 pm 
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OR.

Would QUAD 1Gbit teaming be a better alternative? (If thats possible I know double teaming is possible even with on board nics)

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 8:02 pm 
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Are you really going to hit even single gigabit so hard that this will make a significant difference? I'm not even sure the internal bus bandwidth of enthusiast level hardware will make good use of it.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 8:25 pm 
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Well 5 Drives in a RAID 5 array should easily saturate a single 3Gbit Connection.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 10:46 pm 
In theory you're correct. However, my server is running a Raid5 array with 4x 1TB 7,200rpm drives. I get nowhere near capping out my gigabit connection transferring from my 15.1k SAS > server.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 11:06 pm 
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Are you using onboard NIC's or cheaper gigabit nics? what length of cable and type?

I'm only gonna need less than half a meter of the best cable i can get. Its going out one system, to one directly under it.

My other option is a SAS expander...

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 11:08 pm 
I'm using Cat6e, maybe a 10ft cable. Onboard nics for both.


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 11:37 pm 
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Probably the onboard NIC's. I've heard a lot of people not getting anywhere near the full bandwidth because of them. I'm gonna make some calls, see if a friend can get a hold of a 4port gbit card or two, or maybe even 10gbit, just to try out.

I'm gonna have all my photos on this so 1Gbit connection with onboard nics to a RAID 5 with over 50,000 RAW files is gonna get clogged up real fast.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 9:15 am 
Ok, let's clear up a few concepts here.
Onboard Gigabit Ethernet controllers are provided by a wide range of manufacturers and come with either a PCI or a PCI Express interface in modern computers.
On a cheap motherboard you'll get the type that interfaces with the PCI bus and this bus doesn't offer enough bandwidth for the full Gigabit speed.
The PCI Express bus on the other hand has more than enough bandwidth for Gigabit Ethernet. However, the various controllers available offer different performance and some might not hit full Gigabit speeds.
In reality, if you have an Intel controller on your motherboard (which isn't that common sadly, as they're expensive) then you're fine.
Marvell are generally known as a good source for Ethernet controllers as well as Broadcom. The most common brand of Ethernet controllers are Realtek and they're a bit hit and miss depending on the model.
Many motherboards with dual controllers allow for teaming, although from what I've seen this only tend to be with Realtek or Marvell controllers if I remember right.
For something faster you'll need a space x4, x8 or x16 slot (make sure it actually delivers the bandwidth as well, as some slots offer far less bandwidth than the physical connector suggests).
Intel has a 10Gbit over copper card http://www.intel.com/Products/Server/Ad ... erview.htm but it's in excess of US$500 which seems like an insane amount of money to pay. You might as well invest in something like infiniband then, as it'll offer better performance for a similar price, although I'm not sure if you can connect two cards to each other without a switch.
Dual port Gigabit Ethernet cards can be had cheaply and you can even pick up a quad port Supermicro card with Intel chips on it for less than $200. http://www.supermicro.com/products/acce ... -UG-i4.cfm
I think going with a quad Gigabit Ethernet connection you'd have more than ample bandwidth, as I can't see you exceeding 512MB/s when you're copying files (minus TCP/IP overheads, which I guess takes it down to about 500MB/s).


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 9:45 am 
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You could also look at something like the DROBO solution http://www.drobo.com

The latest model the DROBO S has eSATA, Firewire and USB interfaces. You also have the option of a NAS box (Droboshare) with Gigabit Ethernet. An eSATA card (for the back of the computer) should cost less than £50 and shifts data at a max speed of 1.5GB/s. http://www.awd-it.co.uk/scripts/prodVie ... o+-+130823

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 10:10 am 
No need for an eSATA card, you can just get a bracket that attaches to one of the internal SATA ports and gives you an eSATA port from it. Cheaper and easier (although you need AHCI enabled if you want to be able to unplug eSATA devices while the system is on). And with a current motherboard you should reach 3Gbit/s (or about 380MB/s).

On huge advantage with the drobo is that you can add drives as you go along and they don't have to be the same size. It does also have redundancy if you set it up right, so if a drive goes down, you won't lose the data (sort of like RAID, but a bit different).


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2009 10:19 am 
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eSATA isnt fast enough, Gigabit ethernet isnt fast enough. Drobos don't suit my needs and are stupidly over priced.

I wanted the 10Gbit over ethernet since it can be used on any platform and would allow the drives to be purely independent of the main system. I'm a big fan of seperation where possible.

The Quad Teaming wouldn't work well I done a little more digging and it could infact slow things down with certain transfers.

So, to compromise, I'm going to get another SAS controller with an external 4 lane (full duplex) port and hook it up to a 12/24port SAS expander.

SAS controller without hardware RAID 5 will cost me around £50-100, the expander is about £170 used, £220+ new. Plus £250-300 for the case for the hard drives, and £100-200 for the i7's case. Worse case I'm looking at around £700 for the lot. Then £300~ for a Fermi GPU in Q1 and £100 for another 6GB RAM. If I'm lucky I'll get it all under the £1k mark. That'll be me set for another 12 months then.

[oh and I have to buy some more hard drives haha...suger :lol:]

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:09 am 
How do I add an extra ethernet port to my modem? I have a Verizon DSL modem with only one ethernet port, and I need to be able to support 2 computers that can both be connected at the same time. We've tried a router, and it didn't really work so well (kept losing the connection to the internet). I've heard that they sell splitters for ethernet cables. Would they work, and support 2 simultaneously active connections? Are there any other solutions? Thanks!
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