The perfect ZFS home server motherboard.

Discussion in 'SSDs & Data Storage' started by okashira, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    You know, I was about to start a thread asking this question but it turns out, I am giving an answer...

    Intel and Asrock have finally answered the question that nobody in the enthusiast home server asked (but should have)

    ASROCK C2550D4I

    Here's a teaser:
    -Quad Core
    -Mini-ITX
    -12x SATA onboard (not a typo)
    -Dual Intel GbE LAN (with Teaming)
    -ECC low power DDR3
    -Something like 12 w TDP
    -Should make a possible a 20+TB server that idles at 25W with drives spun down.
     
  2. deadlift1

    deadlift1 [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,292
    Joined:
    May 8, 2009
    Awesome but where can I buy one?
     
  3. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Take it easy. It was just announced. Supermicro announced two boards, too, but they are 8-core only (unnecessary) and overpriced..

    I am waiting impatiently. Glad I waited and researched.

    Supposivly these chips have worlds better IPC performance then prior atoms so they will have no trouble maxing out hard disk performance in a rebuild/scrub.
     
  4. deadlift1

    deadlift1 [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,292
    Joined:
    May 8, 2009
    So its hurry up and wait time then. Hope to see something soon as I need to rebuild my home server.
     
  5. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    You can buy one of the supermicro boards now. Ebay and amazon.

    They have QUAD ethernet, lol. But only 6 SATA.
     
  6. jwcalla

    jwcalla 2[H]4U

    Messages:
    3,629
    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2011
    Very, very nice.

    Anybody know of a good corresponding mini-ITX case? :cool:
     
  7. PigLover

    PigLover [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,171
    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    It won't support all 12 possible HDDs, but this case could make a hell of a server. 7x3.5s (5 of them hot pluggable on a backplane) + up to 3 2.5's mounted to the floor. Even possible to mount an 8th 3.5 on the floor of the chassis. All in a nice compact footprint.
     
  8. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    exactly what i was going to suggest. i just ordered one from newegg after finding the asrock motherboard (wasnt sure if i was going mini itx or uatx until finding this board)

    the case is on sale at new egg.
     
  9. Firebug24k

    Firebug24k [H]Lite

    Messages:
    106
    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
  10. LibertySyclone

    LibertySyclone [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,366
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2007
  11. Liggywuh

    Liggywuh Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    388
    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Looks great! Although I think my storage requirements will be served with 6 drives in Z2, I know some of "you guys" have millions (if not more) of hard drives on a single system :) This board would be perfect :p
     
  12. mrgstiffler

    mrgstiffler [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    13,406
    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2000
  13. staticlag

    staticlag [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,675
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    Awesome, but previous iterations of Atom processors were pretty terrible at ZFS. (Unable to saturate Gig, like 40MB/s)

    I will be skeptically optimistic until I see hard numbers.
     
  14. brutalizer

    brutalizer [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,593
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    You got 30-40MB/sec with a 32 bit cpu. ZFS is 128 bit cpu, so 32 bit was a bad match. Also, the 32bit ZFS code was not optimal.

    If the Atom is 64 bit, I would not be surprised if it maxed out a 1gbit NIC easily.
     
  15. staticlag

    staticlag [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,675
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    It was this one actually, it's 64-bit:

    http://www.supermicro.com/products/motherboard/ATOM/ICH9/X7SPA.cfm?typ=H

    http://ark.intel.com/products/43098/


    I think you might be thinking of my first zfs foray with a PIII 866 or with the 603 slot Xeon

    http://ark.intel.com/products/27301/Intel-Xeon-Processor-2_50-GHz-1M-Cache-400-MHz-FSB

    All with similarly abysmal performance.

    Note that I only judge true performance based on sustained transfer of large (100GB+) incompressible data via CIFS/SMB. Sure they can all burst a 8GB file into RAM at gig speed, but I'm only interested if they can maintain it in the long haul.


    CIFS/SMB is pretty damn inefficient as you know.
     
  16. omniscence

    omniscence [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,311
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    Only the N and Z series Atoms were 32 bit, even the Atom 330 was 64 bit.
     
  17. vegaman

    vegaman n00b

    Messages:
    41
    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2013
    I have the same Supermicro board. It's definitely 64bit. Uses a D510 and there's a slightly newer D525 model too.
     
  18. mwroobel

    mwroobel [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    4,942
    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2008
    I would love this exact motherboard but with a current-revision (22nm) ULV i3, i5 or low-end i7 at 11.5W. Would cost quite a bit more but would make a far better transcoding/VM/SAN box.
     
  19. hotcrandel

    hotcrandel Gawd

    Messages:
    781
    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2010
    Be nicer if you could VT-D pass-through the SATA/SAS ports to an OS. Seems pretty great (other than it will be expensive) for a home NAS. Have Marvel controller drivers improved to the point where they are use-able?
     
  20. LibertySyclone

    LibertySyclone [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,366
    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2007
    They show 23 in stock as of today, and there are several people on the home server forums that have ordered them recently.
     
  21. mrgstiffler

    mrgstiffler [H]ardForum Junkie

    Messages:
    13,406
    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2000
    Thanks for the heads up. I check it every once in a while and checked when I posted too. Just put in my order.
     
  22. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    pretty sure the 8 core (8 real cores) version of the board would be better for transcoding then a low end i3, etc... ?

    Not to mention your ideal board will lack ECC, fanless, and you'd never be able to fit 12 sata ports and dual ethernet.... this atom board can do it because the atom is a true SoC.
     
  23. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
  24. brinstar117

    brinstar117 Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    159
    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2010
    That is an amazing amount of features for such a small form factor. I'm pleasantly surprised by the ECC support. Are there any other ITX boards that use ECC RAM?
     
  25. Jim G

    Jim G Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    221
    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2011
    S1155 has the S1200KP or KPR ITX server board from Intel - that's the most common socketed one around here, at least.
     
  26. omniscence

    omniscence [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,311
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    I still think that a Haswell based processor with a comparable power envelope would be better for transcoding due to the wider internal bandwidth and multimedia instruction set.

    Did you look at the X9SPV series of boards from Supermicro? They have exactly that feature set, mobile i3/i5/i7 (35W TDP), ECC ram with a laptop chipset (a good sign for the fact that ECC is artificially disabled an the desktop processors/chipsets). But they are absurdly expensive. They don't have 12 SATA ports, but you can get quad ethernet.

    Not to mention that a 20W Atom cannot be cooled completely fanless.. anything above 5W is pushing it without any active convection und 10W is nearly impossible or requires a huge heatsink.
     
  27. Quartz-1

    Quartz-1 [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    4,257
    Joined:
    May 20, 2011
    I also note that this motherboard will support 32 GB RAM, but it does not support USB 3, and I'm not sure from the page if it supports VT-d.
     
  28. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    You may be right on haswell and transcoding. But I would personally never run trans-coding on my ZFS home server, it just complicates things and takes away from what a ZFS server is supposed to do. And in my experience with transcosing, its not worth the effort, will be little used, and always requires tweaking and fixing.

    I had not seen those boards. And they do look very nice, until I saw the price. Not appropriate for a home server unless you're rich. I hope to get a C2550D4I for less then $300....And 7+ SATA ports are very deseriable so I can run a 6 drive RAIDz2, then have the 7th for a reliable SSD for ZIL/L2ARC/Dump for security cam data so the main drives are not always spinning. I don't want to use an add in card, as they have a reputation of inefficiency. Those cards always add 10W min, which would basically DOUBLE the power of the entire board, ram and CPU.

    I agree ECC is artificially disabled. Been going on for a long time.

    Your comments on 5W, 10W and 20W .... You must be thinking of tablets?? The eight core board from ASROCK is in fact fanless...
     
  29. Elpee

    Elpee [H]Lite

    Messages:
    69
    Joined:
    May 6, 2013
    Really? I thought all drives those are in ZFS system are always spinning.

    Are you sure? Prove it?
     
  30. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    Well, FreeNAS (FreeBSD + ZFS) supports spin down and it works well. You can even get it to support sleep and WOL.... if you're lucky.
    If you couldn't spin down or sleep with ZFS I wouldn't consider it appropriate for home server use (since such use is so intermittent)
    Infact FreeBSD's / zfs's poor ability to support sleep/WOL is what leads me to want ultra low power consumption.

    Just going by anecdotal evidence on the add in cards, including my limited personal experience. Do you know of an add in card that uses 1 W or less? It seems like such a thing should exist as the marvell chipsets on the atom board are speced at 1 W... why would an add in board be different?
     
  31. spazoid

    spazoid Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    289
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    It's not uncommon for SATA/SAS controllers to consume 10-15 watts - even dumb ones without onboard processor and RAM.

    And you can, of course, spin down drives in ZFS systems.
     
  32. Activate: AMD

    Activate: AMD [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,988
    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2004
  33. omniscence

    omniscence [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,311
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    HBAs like the LSI2008 based cards (M1015, 9211-8i) are designed for server use, they consume almost the same power when idle and under full load. A single one of these can basically double the idle power of a modern platform. Some expander chips consume even more. If you want low power over performance and reliability, you have to take a Marvell or Asmedia based controller. Those usually work without a heatsink.

    The board being fanless does not mean it is designed to work completely without fans. Harddisks also come without fans, but some of them definitely exceed their safe operating temperature without active cooling. For a long time passive graphics cards had the bad habit of dying after only one or two years because they got ridiculously hot.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2013
  34. okashira

    okashira [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,798
    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2005
    There is no reason to trade performance or reliability for low power.

    The integrated intel SATA ports are the lowest power, highest performance and very reliable.

    The truth is, It's just been bad design by Adaptec, LSi, HighPoint, etc.


    ASrock is putting new marvell chips into this expensive low power server board. Let's see how that pans out.
     
  35. omniscence

    omniscence [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,311
    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2010
    Well, SAS HBAs are bit more complicated than the dumb SATA ports found on mainboards. HBAs contain an own processor that has to be able to handle a more complicated protocol and several hundred devices, more powerful transceivers and can handle a much higher bandwidth. The Intel controller can already be saturated with 3 SSDs. The processor on LSI HBAs can even handle RAID levels up to 5, although its XOR performance is sub-par.

    I agree that LSI should maybe go to a more advanced process node.
     
  36. TCM

    TCM Gawd

    Messages:
    641
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    LOL! Nice troll.
     
  37. brutalizer

    brutalizer [H]ard|Gawd

    Messages:
    1,593
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2010
    ? What do you mean?

    I had a 32 bit Pentium 4 with 1GB RAM, and got 30MB/sec with ZFS and OpenSolaris. What is so trollish about this fact? I didnt present an opinion, I presented an observation.
     
  38. spazoid

    spazoid Limp Gawd

    Messages:
    289
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    I think he's referring to your comment that "zfs is a 128 bit cpu" which makes no sense at all. In general, whether a CPU is 32 or 64 bit makes little difference besides memory allocation. A 64 bit version of the mentioned P4 would probably get very similar results as your 32 bit version.
     
  39. TCM

    TCM Gawd

    Messages:
    641
    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2011
    A 64-bit CPU is not twice as fast when doing the same task as a 32-bit CPU. Performing 64-/128-bit calculations on a 32-bit CPU is not half or quarter the speed of a 64-bit or imaginary 128-bit CPU - certainly not enough to go from 40MB/s to Gigabit throughput.

    Misunderstandig bit sizes this way is either a complete newbie's mistake or a deliberate prank. I didn't want to assume the former.
     
  40. gigatexal

    gigatexal [H]ardness Supreme

    Messages:
    7,249
    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2004
    Op sounds like an advert...