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MSL4048 connection to H241 Smart HBA... 4-to-1 cable availability?

Neal Howard
Advisor

MSL4048 connection to H241 Smart HBA... 4-to-1 cable availability?

I've got an MSL4048  (SAS) library with 4 drives in it, currently hosted on an old  DL380G5 server and need to move it to a new DL380G9 server.

 

The old server has an SC44Ge HBA card in it, connected by a 1-to-4 fanout cable to the four LTO4 drives in the MSL4048.

 

I'm trying to find a similar 1-to-4 fanout cable that would fit the new HDMini SAS sockets on the H241 card in my new server, but HP apparently does not offer one. All HP offers is a single 1-to-1 cable with the HDMini SAS  connector (SFF-8644) on one end and the regular Mini SAS connector (SFF-8088) on the other.

 

This means that with genuine HP cables that you can only connect 2 drives in an MSL4048 to a single H241 card.

 

I've found 3rd party cable suppliers who make the 1-to-4 fanout cable I need, but cannot seem to find any info on whether or not anyone has successfully used a 3rd party cable to connect an H241 card to all 4 drives in an MSL4048.

 

The H241 does indeed have 4 physical SAS links in each of the two HDMini SAS connectors (for a total of 8 SAS "ports") so theoretically it should work okay, Right?  Unless HP programmed some monkey business into the firmware to intentionally thwart it from working.

 

Anybody else out there successfully connecting a 4-drive MSL4048 to a new Gen9 server with the H241 HBA card, or am I the first one down this pioneer trail?

1 REPLY
Neal Howard
Advisor

Re: MSL4048 connection to H241 Smart HBA... 4-to-1 cable availability?

I acquired a custom 1-into-4 cable with the right connectors on each end, and Windows 2012R2 can indeed see the library and all four LTO4 drives.

 

I am having an issue that whenever I either reboot either the MSL4048 or the server itself, that the library and drives get rediscovered by Windows with different SAS connection addresses each time, requiring me to have to reconfigure the storage devices in my backup software after each reboot.

 

I think this problem has more to do with Windows 2012's handling of SAS-connected peripheral devices and not necessarily anything to do with the cable, the MSL4048 or the H241 Host Bus Adapter card. I've been reading some web forums discussing similar problems and found a couple of registry tweaks to try to enable "connection persistance" for the devices.