Overview: Dell PowerEdge RAID Controller (PERC) H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA User's Guide

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Dell™ PowerEdge™ RAID Controller (PERC) H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA User's Guide

  Operating System Support

  About RAID

  RAID Terminology

The Dell™ PowerEdge™ RAID Controller (PERC) H200 and the 6Gbps SAS HBA cards are part of the third generation of the Dell Serial-Attached SCSI (SAS) RAID controllers. The PERC H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA cards comply with the T10 SAS 2.0 specification, providing upto 6 Gb/sec throughput, and improved hardware performance.

The PERC H200 card has integrated RAID capabilities and enables support for Dell-qualified hard drives and solid-state drives (SSD). The card also enables support for internal tape drives in PowerEdge systems only. The 6Gbps SAS HBA provides support for Dell-supported external SAS tape devices.

The PERC H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA cards are all standard half-length, half-height PCI-E cards, except for the PERC H200 Integrated Modular controller on the blade systems.

The PERC H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA cards are supported with PCI-E x8 link width. The cards can be used on platforms with PCI-E x8 and x16 connectors, and communicates with SAS devices using 2x4 mini-SAS external connectors. The PERC H200 Integrated Modular controller supports PCI-E x4 link width only.

Key features of the PERC H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA cards include

  • SAS 2.0 compliance, 6Gb/sec throughput

  • RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 10 functionality

  • Support for SSDs

  • Support for LT03 060, LT04, and LT05 tape drives

  • Support for full hardware Transport Layer Retry (TLR), to improve maximum tape throughput

  • Mini-SAS connectors

  • PCI-E 2.0 compliant to key features

  • Support for two global hotspares

Figure 2-1. 6Gbps SAS HBA Hardware Architecture


2 x4 external SAS connectors


PCI-E connector

Operating System Support

The PERC H200 and 6Gbps SAS HBA cards support the following operating systems:

  • Microsoft® Windows Server® 2003 family

  • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 family, including Hyper-V Virtualization

  • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2

  • Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® version 4.7, version 4.8, and version 5.3

  • SUSE® Linux Enterprise Server version 10 Service Pack 2 (64-bit only), version 10 Service Pack 3 (64-bit only), and version 11 (64-bit only)

  • Sun® Solaris™10 (64-bit)

  • VMware® ESX 4.0 Update 1

NOTE: For the latest list of supported operating systems and driver installation instructions, see the system documentation on the Dell Support website at For specific operating system service pack requirements, see the Drivers and Downloads section on the Dell Support website at

About RAID

RAID is a group of multiple independent physical disks that provide high performance or better data availability by increasing the number of drives used for saving and accessing data. A RAID disk subsystem improves I/O performance and data availability. The physical disk group appears to the host system as a single storage unit. Data throughput improves because multiple disks can be accessed simultaneously. RAID systems also improve data storage availability and fault tolerance.

RAID Levels

  • RAID 0 uses disk striping to provide high data throughput, especially for large files in an environment that requires no data redundancy.

  • RAID 1 uses disk mirroring so that data written to one physical disk is simultaneously written to another physical disk. This is good for small databases or other applications that require small capacity, but complete data redundancy.

  • RAID 10, a combination of RAID 0 and RAID 1, uses disk striping across mirrored disks. It provides high data throughput and complete data redundancy.

CAUTION: Lost data on a RAID 0 disk cannot be recovered in the event of a physical disk failure.

RAID Terminology


RAID 0 allows you to write data across multiple physical disks instead of just one physical disk. RAID 0 involves partitioning each physical disk storage space into 64 KB stripes. These stripes are interleaved in a repeated sequential manner. The part of the stripe on a single physical disk is called a stripe element.

For example, in a four-disk system using only RAID 0, segment 1 is written to disk 1, segment 2 is written to disk 2, and so on. RAID 0 enhances performance because multiple physical disks are accessed simultaneously, but it does not provide data redundancy. Figure 2-2 shows an example of RAID 0.

Figure 2-2. Example of RAID 0


With RAID 1, data written to one disk is simultaneously written to another disk. If one disk fails, the contents of the other disk can be used to run the system and rebuild the failed physical disk. The primary advantage of RAID 1 is that it provides 100 percent data redundancy. Because the contents of the disk are completely written to a second disk, the system can sustain the failure of one disk. Both disks contain the same data at all times. Either physical disk can act as the operational physical disk.

NOTE: Mirrored physical disks improve read performance by read load balance.

Figure 2-3. Example of RAID 1


RAID 10 requires two or more mirrored sets working together. Multiple RAID 1 sets are combined to form a single array. Data is striped across all mirrored drives. Since each drive is mirrored in RAID 10, no delay is encountered because no parity calculation is done. This RAID strategy can tolerate the loss of multiple drives as long as two drives of the same mirrored pair do not fail. RAID 10 volumes provide high data throughput and complete data redundancy.

Figure 2-4. Example of RAID 10

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