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How to setup JBOD with a DL360 G3

 
Nick Fisher_1
Occasional Visitor

How to setup JBOD with a DL360 G3

Hi All,
I have been trying to work out how to do JBOD (Just a bunch of disks) configuration on a DL360 G3 with a 5i controller. I cannot seem to find a way of getting the controller to expose the disks as disks rather than an logical volume. I can do RAID 0 on a single disk but it still appears to be considered an array. I want to use software RAID rather than hardware RAID as it's much easyer to manage and maintain. It's a little slower but that is not a consern for this server.

On previous DL series servers I have removed the controller chip from the mother board. At that point hardware RAID is no longer an option and I have direct access to the disks. Basically the RAID controller becomes a vanilla SCSI controller. With this DL360 G3 however, when I remove the memory controller (+ bat pack) the 5i remains enabled and fails during POST, giving me no access to the disks at all.

Does anyone have any idea how I can directly access the disks through the 5i controller? Or maybe how to disable the 5i controller, leaving a vanilla SCSI controller?

Many thanks,

Nick
4 REPLIES
Terri Harris
Honored Contributor

Re: How to setup JBOD with a DL360 G3

Unfortunately there is not an option to disable the integrated 5i on the DL360 G3. To run drives as a JBOD, you will need to add HBA SCSI controller and attach drives to this controller.
Steven Clementi
Honored Contributor

Re: How to setup JBOD with a DL360 G3

Nick:

Not sure how you have come to the conclusion that managing software RAID is "much" easier that hardware RAID. I would think it is quite the opposite in your situation.

Along the same lines, you would benefit from the RAID controllers Cache in ways that the OS could not give you.

The only way I see it possible is as Terri suggests.

Example situation:

Hardware RAID1 single disk failure on a Smart Array:

Resolution: Replace the failed disk and it rebuilds automatically(by default).


Software RAID1 single disk failure in Windows:

Resolution: Replace the drive. Open up the Disk Manager. Initialize the New Disk. Format the New Disk. Convert it to Dynamic Disk if necessary. Assign it to mirror the primary disk.


Steven
Steven Clementi
HP Master ASE, Storage and Clustering
MCSE (NT 4.0, W2K, W2K3)
VCP (ESX2, Vi3, vSphere4, vSphere5)
RHCE
NPP3 (Nutanix Platform Professional)
Nick Fisher_1
Occasional Visitor

Re: How to setup JBOD with a DL360 G3

Steven,
I find that it's much easyer to use mdadm to manage and controll my RAID configs. It's a single tool that works on all platforms. What happens if the server has a huge hardware fault rendering it useless? What happens if you do not have annother 5i controller lying around to recover the data trapped on the disks? How do you upgrade to new larger disks without powering down the server if you don't have direct access to the RAID config and disk partitions? I can see clear advantages to software RAID over hardware.

AFAIK there is only one advantage to using hardware RAID - speed. There is also the posability that it will handle power events more gracefully. This is assuming that you know how to manage and deploy software RAID properly ;) If not you are much better off with hardware as it's much less prone to user error.

I have learned through experiance (sometimes very bitter) that hardware RAID is not always the best solution. When it is the solution of choice there is always extra setup and maintanence that is required to monitor and maintain it.

At the end of the day I think it comes down to personal choice when considering the roll of the machine in question. In my situation I have considered the pros and cons and had decided to go software. However it appears I have been forced to use hardware or puchase more parts.
e4services
Honored Contributor

Re: How to setup JBOD with a DL360 G3

Have we lost track of your question here? Connect your JBOD to the SCSI controller not the RAID controller. You are right, the RAID Controller must create a logical drive, even for a single drive for RAID 0.
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