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Serious Serial ATA-II RAID with AMCC’s 3Ware 9550SX-8LP Serious Serial ATA-II RAID with AMCC’s 3Ware 9550SX-8LP
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Serious Serial ATA-II RAID with AMCC’s 3Ware 9550SX-8LP
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Old 28th October 2005, 16:51   #1
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Default Serious Serial ATA-II RAID with AMCC’s 3Ware 9550SX-8LP

In a nut-shell, the 9550SX product lineup brings 3Ware's controllers to the top of the pack in terms of raw features. Not only are these controllers based on a true Serial ATA-II/300 architecture, they also use new PowerPC-based RAID processing engines, support up to 256 MB of DDR2 cache memory, feature NCQ and SST technologies, and can run in systems with high bandwidth 133 MHz PCI-X connectivity. Truly an impressive array of features, setting the stage for a battle with Areca's ARC family of RAID controllers, who boast very similar features at a close price point to 3Ware's new product lineup.

Unfortunately, our initial tests with the 3Ware 9550SX-4LP didn't turn out quite the way we expected. Our first batch of cards had several stability major issues which kept us from giving unequivocal thumbs up on this product launch, and performance simply wasn't up to par with what we had been expecting. Our primary suspicion that was that 3Ware's high-end architecture simply wasn't designed for low-end 4-port RAID arrays, and that the excessive amounts of RAID processing power and cache were actually adding latency, hindering performance in comparison to simple, low-latency RAID solutions.

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