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Optimal Array Configuration for P440 Smart Array Controller

Occasional Contributor

Optimal Array Configuration for P440 Smart Array Controller

I searched high and low for good performance benchmarks to compare the P420 and P440 with Raid 5 and 10 and how FBWC and SSD caching affect performance but couldn't find much.  I'm looking for the best array config for the below scenario:

Server:  DL380 G8, Server 2012 R2 running Veeam and VSphere Server.  Basically I want this server to be able to handle fast backups and spin up VMs directly from the backup files stored on this server's D drive.

Current disk setup:  

P420i (1GBFBWC) with only two mirrored 900GB 10k SAS drives for the c: drive

P420 (1GBFBWC) with 8 900GB 10k SAS drives in RAID 5.  I am replacing this controller with a P440 with 4GB FBWC.  I also have a 120GB ssd I planned on adding as a cache disk to the P440.  I can only have a max of 8 drives for the controller because I don't have a SAS expander.

Considering the workload on this server, how should I configure the D: drive for backup storage and to occasionally use those backups directly to run a couple of VMs with Veeam?  I know the P440 with additional 4GB cahce will give a speed improvement, but I'm not sure what route to go.  I see 3 main options:  8 drive Raid 10, 6 drive Raid 10 with 120GB SSD cache drive, or 7-Drive Raid 5 with 120GB SSD cache drive.  What would you do?

Jan Soska
Honored Contributor

Re: Optimal Array Configuration for P440 Smart Array Controller


My recomendation is the latest option - 7 drives in R5 + 1 drive SSD cache. It shoud have fair performance in read and write.