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HighPoint RocketRAID 2760 Switch Architecture PCI-E x16 24-Port SAS/SATA 6Gb/s Controller - Final Thoughts

HighPoint has something special here; something capable of transferring a dual layer DVD's worth of data in just one second. We make the most of what this controller is capable of thanks to Crucial sending over 24 RealSSD C300 drives.

| RAID/HBA in Storage | Posted: Sep 30, 2010 8:02 am
TweakTown Rating: 92%      Manufacturer: HighPoint Technology

Final Thoughts

 

When choosing a RAID controller for your business, more needs to be considered than just simple benchmark results and price. Most companies go with the names that are familiar such as ATTO (yes, they make controllers too and not just the benchmark software), Adaptec and LSI. HighPoint is trying to break into this realm of leading companies, but as we all know, making a great product is just the start.

 

For what it is designed to do, the HighPoint RocketRAID 2760 is a really good product. In fact, it has features that are currently exclusive to HPT's switching architecture and no one on the horizon has even mentioned doing something similar. The performance is very good and is even better than some of the more established products we have tested.

 

What the HighPoint RocketRAID 2760 is lacking is what most HighPoint products do; maturity. The HighPoint configuration software is far less useful than LSI's software and lacks some of the features that make the LSI controllers easy to use. Adaptec's software has just been passed by age and is in the same spot lagging behind LSI, but HighPoint's software just never achieved a parallel level. With both the LSI and Adaptec software, a user can format or clear the contents of a drive or entire array. This is very handy if bringing drives into your system from another controller or array. HighPoint just doesn't have that option and if you need to do it you are just going to have to deal with the problem another way.

 

Another issue we ran into had to do with enabling and disabling each drives cache. Under other controllers software it is just one button (and you are given the option while building the array), but with HighPoint's software you have to enter each drives properties and then enable or disable the option. When running 24 drives at once it can take more than a few minutes and be a repetitive nightmare. To sum up the software, I would just call it consumer grade. Expect a consumer like experience when dealing with the control software and not what you would expect from enterprise level hardware.

 

When it comes to price, HighPoint has everything else ticked. When asked to review the controller I was expecting to find a price tag of 2K or more. I was very surprised to see 699.99 at Newegg. Come on, right? - You can connect 24 SATA or SAS hard drives to this thing and that price is less than both the aging Adaptec controller we tested with and the newer LSI controller. Both of those controllers do use 512MB of cache and feature an XOR engine; two things we would love to see on a mega RocketRAID, but then again, the price at that point would be considerably higher.

 

Performance wise, when used for what it was designed for the HighPoint RocketRAID 2760 is very good. Our Web and File Server tests show the RocketRAID delivering twice the performance we achieved with the Fusion-io ioDrive. Using 24 Crucial RealSSD C300's and a controller obviously has a higher cost and a higher long term cost when configuring power usage, but you also are getting a lot more storage capacity; something you can never have enough of when dealing with file and web servers.

 

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