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After having purchased a Dell T420 with SATA drives and without RAID, and discovering this was a mistake for performance reasons, I'm obtaining a Perc H710 PCI card and SAS drives. Now I'm stuck with a dumb question: what kind of cables are needed to go between the Perc H710 card and the SAS drives? I confess to being inexperienced with SAS and RAID cards, and I can't quite figure out the correct power and data cabling, despite having spent some time looking at descriptions and pictures on the web. (Also, I'm not currently next to the computer, making it more difficult to figure out the right parts that I need.)

The T420 was purchased with the cabled 4-drive, 3.5" configuration with embedded SATA. If someone could point me towards a description of the typical connectors needed by SAS drives, and what a Dell T420 might have or need to put SAS drives in it, I would very much appreciate it.

  • Which drive bay configuration does your server have: four 3.5" cabled, eight 3.5" hot-plug, or sixteen 2.5" hot-plug drive bays? – longneck Feb 16 '15 at 21:12
  • Ah, sorry, I should have thought to include that info. It's the 4 3.5" cabled drive configuration. I'll edit the question. – mhucka Feb 16 '15 at 21:18
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This looks like the part you're looking for:

XP00F - ASSY,CBL,MB,HD,SAS A,R420/R320 - Mini SAS & ODD power cable, MB (SAS A) to HDD (used with cable HDD).

This is the SAS version of the cable, where p/n H3YKR looks to be the SATA version - though I'd expect the SAS cable would probably work fine for either anyway since the SAS connectors are compatible with SATA drives, and the controller likely can't "see" the difference in what type of cable is being used.

I'd suggest going for a model w/ a backplane next time around - that gets you hot-swapping, and compatibility with both SATA and SAS (even mixed if you so desire).

  • Thanks for (another) fast answer today. And as usual, I'm having trouble finding this item. However, could the StarTech SAS808782P50 be a suitable work-alike substitute? I gather the Perc H710 card has an SFF-8087 connector, but what I can't check right now (not being physically at the machine) is whether the HDD side needs separate power or not. – mhucka Feb 16 '15 at 22:30
  • The Dell-branded cable isn't much different - it essentially just runs all four power connectors into a single PSU connector to connect to (either PSU directly or to motherboard - not honestly certain). I'd expect that a cabled motherboard would get you what you need, but you may just have to gamble and test it out. – JimNim Feb 17 '15 at 4:56
  • As for the data connection - the card is just rebranded LSI. I'd expect the connector is the same as their other cards with 6Gbps SAS connectivity. – JimNim Feb 17 '15 at 4:57
  • I can now confirm that StarTech "50cm Internal Serial Attached SCSI Mini SAS Cable - SFF8087 to 4X SFF8482 - Internal Mini SAS Cable (SAS808782P50)" cables work in this system. I've been using them for months in the T420 and so far have not encountered any issues. – mhucka Aug 8 '15 at 23:53

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