Adaptec launches SAS/SATA controllers

By Ann Silverthorn

—Adaptec announced today six new PCIe-interface products—five "unified" Serial ATA (SATA) and Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) RAID controllers and one Ultra320 SCSI host bus adapter (HBA).

"The Unified Serial architecture allows a single RAID controller to address both SATA and SAS drives," says Suresh Panikar, director of marketing for Adaptec's Data Protection Solutions Group. "Users or resellers may want to address massive capacity needs with SATA or high-performance and high-availability requirements with SAS."

The controllers are MD2-compliant low-profile cards designed for entry-level to midrange servers and workstations. The 3405 has four internal ports, the 3805 has eight internal ports, the 31205 has 12 internal ports, the 31605 has 16 internal ports, and the 3085 (with eight external ports) has dual-path fail-over functionality for external data-path redundancy.

Features include the following:

  • Performance—Hot Space (RAID-5EE) spreads the hot-spare disk space across the array and increases performance by using the spare spindle rather than leaving it idle;
  • Protection—Dual-drive failure protection (RAID-6) ensures that the array can survive two disk failures without losing data; and
  • Manageability—Users can manage data backups by taking point-in-time snapshots and copying them to tape or disk without taking arrays offline. A hot-spare slot can be designated in the disk cabinet, so after replacing a failed drive, the array will reconstruct to its original configuration.

    Adaptec's Storage Manager software has been upgraded to accommodate the Unified Serial Architecture. When loaded onto servers, it recognizes the existence of all Adaptec controllers on a network and identifies all the drives attached to those controllers. It also senses when drives are not performing well and informs administrators of the impending failure and the action that should be taken.

    Adaptec also announced a new low-profile Ultra320 SCSI PCIe HBA. The 29320LPE is designed mostly for tape applications but also for disk where customers have existing SCSI implementations and may have a new server that needs a new card.

    "Low profile is important because most of our customers and the server vendors are switching over to blades and 1U and 2U high storage boxes where space is at a premium," says Panikar. "Factors like airflow become more critical."

    All of the products will be available on March 30. Prices for the controllers range from $445 to $995. The SCSI HBA sells for $240.

    This article was originally published on March 13, 2007