The TowerRAID TR8X+BP is an 8-bay RAID 5 tower with mini-SAS connection for high transfer rates of up to 650MB/s. The TR8X+BP is bundled with a high-performance RAID controller card (RR2722, PCIe 2.0 x8 6G RAID controller) that offloads complicated RAID calculations from the computer to lower CPU utilization. High performance could be achieved with a lower cost of ownership compared to RAID embedded subsystems. RAID setup and maintenance could be controlled via built-in web browser interfaces, and the unit is supportive of e-mail notification and real-time event log.
Utilizing high bandwidth mini-SAS (SFF-8088) cabling, the TR8X+BP supports 6Gb/s SAS or SATA hard drives to deliver superior read / write speeds that are crucial in performance-driven environments such as video editing industry and high performance computer. The mini-SAS connection connects eight hard drives connections into two ports, reducing possible points of failures, while preserving uninterrupted data transfer. The TR8X+BP also supports SATA drives, allowing users the option to choose between high performance and high capacity storage solutions. Windows, MAC, Linux and VMware ESX/ESXi 4.0 / 4.1are supported.
OUTSTANDING RAID enclosure
Pros: Solid unit. I have a Windows Home Server 2011 build and a HighPoint RocketRaid 2722 connecting to the enclosure. I have been running 8 2TB WD drives. I have the drives in a RAID5 configuration, with a total of 16TB, 14TB used in the RAID5, and 12.7TB available in Windows. I had one drive give me sector errors (drive was still under warranty), so I replaced the drive and it rebuilt the RAID with no problems. The Sans Digital was a replacement for a different 8-bay enclosure that used port multiplication. I purchased that other unit because it was much cheaper than this, but I had numerous problems with that unit and ended up getting rid of it. I think port multiplication was the culprit and I would stay away from products that connect so many drives using that method. The Sans Digital unit has had ZERO problems since I bought it a few years ago and I highly recommend this enclosure!
Cons: When I purchased the unit, I wished the cost was a little lower, but who wouldn't?
Other Thoughts: The high cost WAS a worry for me before I bought it, but after 3+ years of ownership, that should not worry someone wanting to purchase this unit. I have had a great experience with the Sans Digital 8-Bay Enclosure! Hey Sans Digital, I'd love to beta test any of your new equipment!
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Very Good Unit for a great price
Pros: This is our 3rd Sans Digital external RAID enclosure. Their hardware is of good quality. The included Hardware RAID card is MUCH better than the other two previous units (Their 'RAID Controllers' actually HBA not true hardware RAID.
Other Thoughts: Maybe some way of Rack Mounting it? I don't like putting trays in our racks. It just looks unprofessional... but then again for the price, I'll deal with it. :)
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really poor RAID device choice for either professional or home use
Pros: Device really affordable although my struggling for a month with the Sans digital technical support and all the issues that i've faced made me return the device (excellent service from Newegg).
Cons: 1)power failure broke the raid set, i've tried 2 times, the tech support told me that it shouldn't loose the RAID set.
Other Thoughts: The raid card is in embedded in your computer, this means that the device is like an internal hard drive. So two considerations: if you unplug a cable or the device has a power failure it will be ejected without a proper unmount procedure, second the RAID card driver is obviously integrated in the your operating system, this means it can fail and crash your desktop/server. On linux you will need to replace the module after a kernel compilation, on a mac or windows an update could force you to reinstall the driver (you will need to restart the machine). On a power failure of the device the MacOSX server will freeze and send a bunch of errors/warnings. The publicized increase of speed with an internal RAID card is not a big deal, you can get faster speed with iSCSI devices that embeds a RAID system.
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