I am looking for supported RAID 5 controller for FreeBSD and
I am very puzzled after reading all the specs and descrioptions.

I haven't found any SATA RAID 5 controller in the FreeBSD
supported Hardware list, but some manufacturer claim they
support FreeBSD.

SO far i have found
1) Promise FastTrak SX4 (around 200$)
2) HighPoint RocketRaid 1640 (aorund 150$ hard to find)
3) EscaladeR 8506 4-port  one (around 500$)

HightPoint and Escalade AFAIK are well supported by FreeBSD.
FreeBSD 4.8 support is promised in Promise :) FastTrak.

Here is the dilema:

As i have read SX4 is not a hardware raid, it uses server's CPU to
do XOR calculations. Which is not good, because it means if
CPU is loaded RAID permonace will degrade. But SX4 has HUGE
cache memory (up to 256MB SDRAM) and FRAM for internal
queue storage.

I could not find out if RocketRaid is a true hardware RAID 5 or
partly software. Also, no infromation on the size of a cache on 1640.
Review state that RAID 5 perfomance is not very good. However,
I currently use just one huge SCSI disk with 4MB cache. Will i gain
in speed with RAID 5 or loose? (it is a web server, many small file

Af for Escalde 6506 i again did not find any info on Cache size. However,
the specs clearly state that it is a hardware raid5. But if does not have
any significats amount of cache and IF rocketraid is too hardware
raid 5 then why the heck escalade is so much more espansive?

Please, help me to decide which to pick and maybe someone has
info on cache size and ability to do hardware XOR for RAID5 for
each controller?

Artem Kuchin
General Director of IT Legion Ltd.
Russia, Moscow
+7 095 232-0338

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