Need new eSATA card

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by alphaod, Nov 4, 2009.

  1. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #1
    I'm up for upgrading again. I have an external drive that's currently running on FW800, but I have too many FW800 drives, so instead of daisy chaining all my drive, I wish to run said enclosure via eSATA. Unfortunately I have run out of PCIe slots. My decisions is to replace the Areca ARC-1212 I currently have with something with eSATA on it. It needs to be bootable obviously. Maybe if I don't have to rebuild the RAID that would be even better. Any recommendations?

    Basically the cards I have:
    GTX 285 in Slot 1, Areca ARC-1212 in Slot 2, USB 2.0 card in Slot 3, RAID battery in Slot 4.

    Yes I know I can remove the battery, but that would make my RAID-5 risky. I don't want to just double stick the battery somewhere. I could remove the USB card, but I'd run of USB ports.
     
  2. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #2
    You'd need to move the battery from slot 4 to another location in the system, not remove it alltogether. You might have to splice the wiring to extend the length (depending on where you can place it), and I'd recommned using velcro or zip ties. A peice of plastic sheet might be needed to prevent shorts, especially if it's on a case surface or against some other board.

    It might be a little tough, but I think it's doable, and won't require you to buy anything.

    That's one thing I don't care for about PCI bracket mounted batteries. They can get in the way. I usually remove them from the bracket.

    A pic of your internals might give me a few ideas as to where you can locate it.

    If you pull the ARC-1212, you'll lose the data. It's a proper hardware controller, and the initialization process on any software RAID (or another brand of proper RAID card), will wipe the data. So restoration from backups is an absolute necessity if you do this.

    If you have to do this, you might be better off from a larger port count card (8 port). Not exactly inexpensive, but not terrible either, assuming you plan to sell the old card. I'd think you'd easily get $300USD for it, as they sell for ~$350.
     
  3. UltraNEO* macrumors 601

    UltraNEO*

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    近畿日本
    #3
    When it comes to PCIe slots, it's not something I really worry about but if you really need one for professional applications, then you need one. There's a company out there whom cater for this and manufacture a expensive but useful solution. Enter's magma, formerly Second Wave. Though, Nano's solution is wayyyyy cheaper!
     
  4. alphaod thread starter macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #4
    I don't want to redo my array until I upgrade all my internal drives (and then I can get a newer card). Let's say I relocate the battery to right on the aluminium next to my video card (on top of the CPU section).

    I'd prefer inexpensive, but not super cheap that it would be a POS. Needs to support both OS X and Windows, but not necessarily bootable. RAID support with a proper cache and such would be nice to have. I might not use that feature now, but I would in the future. I'd like to avoid having to loop an internal cable to the outside (since I wouldn't have anywhere to route it and I'm not going to drill a hole in my chassis), so I would prefer something with purely external connections (mix and match is fine too).

    What would you recommend for the card?
     
  5. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #5
    RocketRAID eSATA for Mac

    It's the only that can be booted from on a Mac AFAIK (has both EFI 32 & 64 firmware). And for that reason, it's not cheap ($230USD).

    It may actually make more sense to get a larger RAID card, and swap. Once you sell off the ARC-1212, it might actually be less expensive than the cost of the Highpoint card. The next size up in the same series is the ARC-1222 ($525USD, and all the ports are internal). You'd have to run a cable out the empty PCI bracket (still moving the battery off the bracket). Cost seems about the same (use the cable that comes with it, so no need to buy one).

    The ARC1680LP would work (it has both an internal and external MiniSAS port on it). So no need to run a cable out the back of the system, but it requires a cable you don't have, or is included with the card. And at ~$660USD (newegg), the Highpoint is less expensive in terms of immediate need.

    Your situation blows. :( Apple can't make anything easy it seems. :rolleyes:

    If you can lose the boot capability, you can add a Mac compatible eSATA card for ~$25USD (cards that use the SIL3132 chip). It's the "Bootable" aspect that's raking you over the $$$ coals. :eek: :p
     

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