I'm trying to select a PERC card to use with a PowerVault MD3000 (15 drives in RAID5). Is the 5/E the only card compatible with the MD3000 on sale by Dell at the moment - or are there newer better options?
You must use the SAS 5/E NOT a PERC card, I repeat, a PERC card will not work with the MD3000 storage array, you require the PERC card for the MD1000 class array.
The RAID controllers are on-board for the MD3000 and therefore does not require an external controller.
Make sure that you have the Dell Modular Disk Storage Manager Client installed on your workstation and that you have connected both enclosure NICs to the same network as your workstation so that you can manage the arrays and drives.
Also note, the MD3000 enclosure does not support the Hot-Add of enclosures, you MUST powerdown the array before attempting to add another enclosure.