best way to get lots of IDE ports?

FLECOM

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anyone have any suggestions on how to get a lot of ide ports? most PCI adapters I can find just have 2 ports... I need like 12, and I dont really want to use 6 PCI IDE cards...

or if anyone has any suggestions for an IDE RAID card that can support 12 200gb IDE drives that dosent cost an eyeball

im not concerned with speed so i figure the built in software raid in server 2003 should be fine...

i was thinking of using FreeNAS but it seems people have been having issues rebuilding RAID-5 arrays, and that scares me...
 

DougLite

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The Epox 4PCA3+, if you can still find it, is a Socket 478 board that has six PATA ports (two from ICH5R and four from a HighPoint HPT374 onboard).

The Promise SX6000 comes to mind, six PATA ports to a card. PS-RagE had one that he has since replaced with a SATA system, might ask him if he's still using it/wants to unload it.

The 3Ware mentioned above is out there, but pretty expensive if I recall.

Are the drives WD or Maxtor? If so, you can pickup enclosures that will bridge 12 or 14 (can't remember which) drives to Fibre Channel.
 

FLECOM

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defakto said:
3ware makes a 12 port ide raid card that will take 12 drives. I believe it also has freebsd, freenas, and linux support as well.

http://www.3ware.com/products/parallel_ata.asp

when i mentioned cards that cost an eyeball that was the one i was refrencing :p

the SX6000 might work, but does it support more than one card?

I have 12 drives but the case I am using is one of those rackmount cases with like 22 IDE trays, and each tray has an individual ide cable, so unless i get a bunch of new cables and set the drives up as master/slave, i need 12 actuall ide ports...
 

defakto

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Another option would just be to add a bunch of 2 or four channel promise controllers, teh sx6000 is a good one, the sx4000(wierd issues with thisone along with no linux/freebsd support if that's an issues).

There are lots of ways you can go with this. For some reason i remember seeing that 12 port 3ware for really cheap somewhere but I could be wrong.
 

ambit

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A guy on Ars currently has a bunch of 3Ware cards up FS, some 8 & 12 port'ers under $200.
 

texuspete00

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Nice post Aronj. That will leave you with 4 more spots. If 2 of those is an eyeball your eyes come cheap! :)
 

Aronj66

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another option would be the LSI megaraid i4 aka dell cerc controller.. like this one and this one

These are 4 channel, but are capable of 8 drives each. I know for a fact that they will recognize large drives, as I have 3 400gb seagates on one right now in R5.
 

FLECOM

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ambit said:
Ahh opps, someone must have bought up the 7500's he used to have.

They are terribly old cards, and do not support drives above 137Gb

they also dont support RAID5
 

FLECOM

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Aronj66 said:
another option would be the LSI megaraid i4 aka dell cerc controller.. like this one and this one

These are 4 channel, but are capable of 8 drives each. I know for a fact that they will recognize large drives, as I have 3 400gb seagates on one right now in R5.

well, like I said earlier the case is wired with one drive per cable and i really dont want to re-wire it...

also i am fairly sure the MegaRAID cards dont support spanning an array across cards...
 

Aronj66

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With the limited requirements you're specifying, it looks like your only option is a 3ware card. I don't think anyone ever made a non-raid controller with more than 4 ports, and even in raid controllers, I think 3ware is the only one that you'll find a 12 port controller, and maybe the abillity to span controllers allowing use of 2 8 port cards. Though 3ware controllers are still getting good money used. It is easier to change cables and use cheaper cards, especially if speed is not a concern. Cables are cheap, and it will also clean up the system with less cables going to the controller. Also a concern with the 8 and 12 port 3ware cards are they are awfully long, and may not fit in standard cases or with some motherboards. You might be better off selling the ide drives and getting a few larger SATA drives and a highpoint raid controller.
 
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