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8-port SAS/SATA x4 adapter card AND 4-slot M.2 SATA (non-nVME) x4 adapter card

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Jun 26, 2019
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#1
Anyone know of a reliable 8-port SAS/SATA x4 adapter card? I've seen plenty of x1, x2 and x4 cards, but they mostly use fairly unreliable/cheap controllers. All the SAS controllers I've found are either 8-port x8 or 4-port x4. If anyone has any 8-port x4 adaptor card that they know and swear by, and is 100% reliable and compatible with FreeNAS, please let me know. Same applies for any 4-slot x4 M.2 SATA (non-nVME) adapter cards, suggestions will be appreciated.
 
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#2
Has anyone used or tested the SYBA SIPEX40137 8 Port SATA III PCI-e x4 Controller Card https://www.newegg.com/syba-sipex40137-sata/p/14U-00BA-00016 I believe it also goes by a different name: I/O Crest 8 Port SATA III PCI-e x4 Controller Card https://www.amazon.com/Crest-Non-RAID-Controller-Supports-FreeNAS/dp/B07NFRXQHC It's a x4 adapter card which is what I'm looking for, but not sure how reliable it is.
It has FreeNAS compatible posted all over the title and description but was wondering if anyone has tried it and if it's reliable. 'Using a ASM1806 PCIe bridge elimate the need for a Port Multiper when combining the Dual Marvell 9215 Chipset allowing to reach maximum bandwidth per port.'
'......vendors can develop their own software RAID boxes with FreeNAS'

The only other x4 card that I could find that might work is the older LSI 8308ELP, but it's a RAID card and I'm not sure if anyone has been able to flash it to IT mode successfully. Also it's SATA II rather than SATA III, but that doesn't bother me as much as I would guess that the bottleneck would be the singular gigabit ethernet port (which is what I have).
 
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Aug 15, 2019
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#3
I see it has been a month since this has been posted... Here is my 2c.

I have not used either of the cards that you have mentioned, but I have used I/O Crest 8 Port SATA III PCIe 2.0 x2 Non RAID https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ESFEI2E for the last year with no noticeable issues. I am running 8 - 4TB WD Reds with this card.
 
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#4
I see it has been a month since this has been posted... Here is my 2c.

I have not used either of the cards that you have mentioned, but I have used I/O Crest 8 Port SATA III PCIe 2.0 x2 Non RAID https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00ESFEI2E for the last year with no noticeable issues. I am running 8 - 4TB WD Reds with this card.
Thanks Erich_7719,

Are you running it with FreeNAS? And how are you getting it to recognise all 8 ports without installing the driver (from what I can read, it seems to need a driver to recognise the second set of 4 ports)? Do you have the boot lag that others are talking about?

I still feel like the original card I posted might be a better solution for me since I have the capability of running a x4 card which also means better bandwidth. Also, I believe your card has a Marvell 88SE9705 which is a 1to5 multiplex chip, while the card I mentioned above is 'using a ASM1806 PCIe bridge elimate the need for a Port Multiper when combining the Dual Marvell 9215 Chipset allowing to reach maximum bandwidth per port.' I feel the risk of data loss would be lower on the card I've mentioned over the one you've chosen. I'm sure the experience is different depending on the user. The price difference between the two is nominal as well, so I think I might try the one I mentioned. Regardless of all this, if you have it running successfully on FreeNAS, it's good to know there is a working solution. Keep me posted if anything changes with your card.
 
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Aug 15, 2019
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#5
Yes, I am running freenas.
Did not install any additional drivers, the card just worked.

I, personally, was never concerned about getting the full 6Gbs out of each drive. My reasoning is I have 1-10Gbs and 2-1Gbs network connections. So really my network connections is my bottleneck.

As for the boot lag, I'm normally fully booted in less than a minute.

Just for clearity... I have not run any programs to monitor or stress the system to see what it can or cannot do. This system is used as a file server only. The family each have their own storage folder and our movies for our plex server are on the system. So all I am saying is the card I am using is not my bottleneck and I have not had any data corruption, if any, that has been noticable.

For my next build, that will serve as a backup to this freenas box I was intending on using LSI Logic SAS9211-8I 8PORT for my drive controller. If you do use one of the controllers you were already thinking of using, I would love to know how they work out.

Kindly,
Eric
 
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