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LSI MegaRAID 9280-24i4e RAID Controller w/ 24 Crucial RealSSD C300s Review - Test System Setup and ATTO Baseline Performance

Putting our 24 Crucial RealSSD C300s to good use once again, Chris fires them up off LSI's SSD optimized 9280-24i4e RAID controller.

| RAID/HBA in Storage | Posted: Feb 3, 2011 8:31 am
TweakTown Rating: 93%Manufacturer: LSI

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We would like to thank the following companies for supplying and supporting us with our test system hardware and equipment: AVADirect, GIGABYTE, Cooler Master, LSI and Noctua.

 

You can read more about TweakTown's Storage Product Testing Workstation and the procedures followed to test products in this article.

 

We learned quite a bit from testing the HighPoint RocketRAID 2760 with 24 Crucial RealSSD C300 SSDs. For the LSI test we had the power issues down and reduced the number of PSUs needed to get 24 drives up and running. Making an appearance again are the fastest SSDs currently available on the market today, the Crucial RealSSD C300. We used 24 of them in RAID 0 and RAID 5.

 

It should be mentioned that the LSI MegaRAID 9280 is a high end RAID controller with many, many options. One option that will allow users to 'tune' performance is block size. It is possible to tune your RAID array for sequential transfer performance (larger block sizes) or high IOPS (smaller block sizes). LSI offers a handful of settings, but we used the largest block size available since the Crucial RealSSD C300 is able to deliver all of the IOPS you could ever need.

 

For a comparison, we are pairing the new LSI MegaRAID 9280-24i4e against the HighPoint RocketRAID 2760 and Areca ARC-1880ix-24 that we tested with 24 drives previously. The 2760 is a software RAID controller, but the LSI and Areca are hardware RAID controllers. This means that the HighPoint uses CPU cycles and the others use their own onboard processors to calculate transactional data. All were tested with 24 Crucial RealSSD C300 256GB drives.

 

LSI offers specific features for solid state drives and is the first RAID controller manufacturer that we know of to include SSD specific settings. We chose to run tests with the MegaRAID FastPath option enabled. LSI describes FastPath as:

 

LSI MegaRAID FastPath optimization software provides a high performance I/O accelerator, designed to dramatically boost transactional application throughput of multiple SSDs connected to a 6Gb/s SATA+SAS MegaRAID controller. MegaRAID FastPath software supports full optimization of SSD Virtual Disk groups to deliver a 3X improvement in read and write I/Os per second (IOPS) compared to the previous generation product.

 

ATTO Baseline Performance

 

Version and / or Patch Used: 2.34

 

ATTO is used by many disk manufacturers to determine the read and write speeds that will be presented to customers.

 

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In ATTO we were able to see read and write speeds breaking the 1000MB/s mark. It is possible to tune your performance to different block sizes, so your results will differ from mine as you try new settings.

 

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