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We are looking to purchase an intel S2600GZ with two Xeons for a new server. We would like to run a setup of 12 disks, as the barebones we are looking at support up to 12.

The idea is to run the Windows 2012 Hyper-V host on on pair of RAID 1 disks, and then a Hyper-V VM on each of the other 5 pairs (RAID 1).

We are trying to figure out how the RAID on the motherboard works, as it lists the need for a C600 XXXXX Key to enable some features.

What key (if at all) do we need?

Should we consider another add-in RAID controller instead?

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FYI: The built in RAID is actually a rebranded LSI MegaRAID card. Intel has no SAS HBAs or RAID chips of their own - they only have SATA and FakeRAID. The rebranded LSI chip is not compatible with LSI's offerings, Intel "customized" everything so it would be incompatible. This is one of many reasons why I avoid Intel motherboards and barebones systems. Other reasons include using non-standard connectors, lack of transparency, difficulty in finding appropriate documentation and drivers. As Chopper mentioned, the Adaptec and LSI cards are quite good, and well supported. – Chris S Apr 22 '14 at 13:55
Would you recommend a Super Micro based system instead, or what else? – Vort3x Apr 22 '14 at 15:18
Why not use a normal brandname server? You get support and proper warranty and don't need to puzzle over illogical things. – dyasny Apr 22 '14 at 15:19
SuperMicro? hell no :) how about an IBM, Dell or how about the best selling server in the World - a HP DL380? They just work. – Chopper3 Apr 22 '14 at 15:21
I recommend HP or Dell in most situations. I use SuperMicro at home... Everyone's got an opinion though. – Chris S Apr 22 '14 at 15:21
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Firstly why not just run the whole 12 disks as a RAID 10 array, it's a far better idea than lots of RAID 1 arrays. That said the systemboard won't let you do that (4 disks on one controller, 8 on the second).Secondly you DO need the C600 upgrade key to use that second controller, it costs money, buy one from your system vendor.

A better suggestion, by a MILE, would be to buy a proper good hardware controller, something like an Adaptec or similar. It'll give you a great deal of options of how you do things and outperform the systemboard based one/s by quite a margin.

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or get a good JBOD controller and go with software raid, if the budget is tight – dyasny Apr 22 '14 at 15:20

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