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Is it true that for SAS hd to work with a PERC 5 controller it must have a special firmware on it put in by Dell which forces you to buy a hd only from them. The hd that came with the server is a Seagate Cheetah 15K.5, but I don't know if its being 'value added' firmware by Dell.

Price of a 146GB Seagate SAS 15K is $180 from newegg, while Dell charges $420 For 300Gb $270 from newegg and $620 Dell

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

You don't have to, but if you are using RAID, it is important that all drives are on the same firmware revision. If your other drives have a Dell firmware, you are best off buying from them. Having drives with different firmware revisions can cause off problems sometimes, like members randomly dropping from arrays.

Support is also an issue. Most vendors, Dell included, do not support hardware configurations that aren't blessed by them. If I call Dell, or any other vendor, the last thing I want to do is have to try and convince them that a third party piece of hardware isn't the cause of the problem.

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Thanks for a quick answer. I'm NOT using RAID, just a single HD per server. So am I safe with a hd from newegg? – Shreko Jan 21 '11 at 14:47
I've got a mixture of 15K SCSI drives in my PERC 5 controller RAID 5 and I've never had an issue. – DKNUCKLES Jan 21 '11 at 15:03
@Shreko - It's not supported by Dell, so if you have storage issues you're on your own. If that's an acceptable risk for you, then go ahead. Personally, I wouldn't. @DKNUCKLES - I wasn't implying that every time firmwares and drives are mismatched that it causes issues, but it certainly does happen in some circumstances. – MDMarra Jan 21 '11 at 15:34

We purchase empty drive carriers from The only issues that we've had is that the drives lack the pretty label -- but saving a few hundred bucks per drive we get over that pretty fast.

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The main thing you won't get when buying a drive from NewEgg is a drive carrier that lets you physically insert the drive into the server. Without one, your drive will be useless.

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The other reason they are so expensive is support. Personally, I'd rather buy from the vendor and know for sure that when my SAS backplane takes a dump in a year, that they will cover it because I didn't use hardware that didn't come from them.

To answer the question, yes, it will probably work.

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