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Journeyman III
Journeyman III

(reloaded) AMD-RAIDXpert2 support for latest EPYC processor ?

Dear AMD Community Users / EPYC experts / and official AMD representatives (if you read this),

for personnal reasons, I am considering building an home made HEDT workstation using next generation (Zen 3 ?) EPYC processor.

I am not in a hurry, and I am still waiting need to see the eco-system around EPYC processors to settle a little bit, especially motherboard availibility and stability for consumers like me.

In the meantime, I am evaluating the current options, and I noticed something.

I already have a home made PC using competitor CPU, and what I liked about my system is that I was able OOTB to easyly setup a (software) RAID0 / SSD volume from which my Windows OS is booting.

This has been working flawlessly since 2015, and I was able to enjoy NVMe like performance on an 1.8 TB volume (4 x 500 GB) even before true 'TB' M.2 NVMe were generaly available, and for a very fair price at the time.

It really emphasize the value of using 'Redundant Array Inexpensive Disk' for better performance.

And even if RAID experts call that 'fake-RAID', I found that software RAID combined with SSD is a winner combination as it remove the 'mechanical' weakness of HDDs and even the need for 'cache'.

So of course, for my next system I would like to do the same with an AMD CPU.

I figured out that AMD provides so called 'RAIDXpert2' technology to setup a RAID volume at the BIOS/UEFI level.

However, it seems that technology is specifically NOT available for EPYC processors;

https://drivers.amd.com/relnotes/amd-raidxpert2_user_guide.pdf

is there a reason for that ?

because ultimately, here is what I believe:

I believe there is NO point of providing multple SATA ports (up to a dozen sometime) on any MOBO if there is no way of combining them in a RAID (0, 1, 5) volume and seamlessly boot a Windows or Linux from it.

would someone disagree ?

if no, is there a way to convey that question to AMD ?

if yes, explain me why ?

Thanks very much for your attention and future replies/comments.

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3 Replies

Re: (reloaded) AMD-RAIDXpert2 support for latest EPYC processor ?

Hello @optimizer ,

As you found, the AMD EPYC line of processors does not have an equivalent of RAIDXpert2, and no plans to enable it.  Many server vendors will utilize the SATA ports in JBOD type format, not using software RAID on the drives.

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Journeyman III
Journeyman III

Re: (reloaded) AMD-RAIDXpert2 support for latest EPYC processor ?

hello @mbaker_amd 

thanks for your response.

I have just looked for JBOD explanation... and it does not sounds so "exciting" from a performance point of view.

So if RAIDXpert2 is not an option (really ? for ever ?), are you aware of another solution for using the integrated SATA ports in a RAID 0 volume for booting Windows or Linux ? 

Please advise.

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Re: (reloaded) AMD-RAIDXpert2 support for latest EPYC processor ?

Hello @optimizer ,

Quickly searching the web for Linux, here is some documentation from Ubuntu for configuring RAID 0 for your boot device.  https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Installation/SoftwareRAID

 

I cannot find a method in a recent version of Windows Server to create software RAID 0 boot drives.  You should check with Microsoft to be sure there isn't a method.

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