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The next-generation of Raid Controllers has arrived! This time, with the expansion and adoption of the Tri-Mode storage interface. Because this series is an industry-first PCIe Gen 4.0 RAID Adapter, a single controller can operate in all three modes concurrently servicing NVMe, SAS, or SATA drives.

Blog | MegaRAID 9500 Series PCIe Gen 4.0 Tri-Mode Storage Adapters are here!

March 11th 2022
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Everything You Need to Know About MegaRaid 9500 Series PCIe Gen 4.0 Tri-Mode Storage Adapters

Ivan Trendafilovski - System Engineer - DiGICOR

Public service announcement; the next generation of Raid Controllers has arrived! This time, with the expansion and adoption of the Tri-Mode storage interface. Although it might be difficult to transfer the excitement in our tone through text, we can guarantee you that we are; and you should be as well. We’re here to tell you why. 

What are some of the benefits of this series?

This emerging technology enables the operation of the protocols NVMe, SAS, or SATA storage devices in a single drive bay; 12Gb/s SAS − 6Gb/s SATA − Gen 4.0 PCIe (NVMe) connectivity. In addition, the Tri-Mode support also provides a non-disruptive way to evolve existing data center infrastructure. 

Being an industry-first PCIe Gen 4.0 RAID Adapter, a single controller can operate in all three modes concurrently servicing NVMe, SAS, or SATA drives. PCIe Gen 4.0 allows high bandwidth of these adapters by delivering twice the bandwidth and 75% more IOPs*. Additionally, the manufacturer, Broadcom, has worked with important industry members to deliver Universal Backplane Management (UBM). As a result, UBM improves current management frameworks to provide a comprehensive approach to managing SAS, SATA, and NVMe. Finally, the 9500 series adapters are UBM ready straight out of this box, meaning customers can immediately integrate these adapters into their U.3 backplanes utilizing UBM.

What are the security features?

(Before we proceed with laying out the security features of this model, you should be aware that to fully utilize the bandwidth and speed, a compatible PCIe 4.0 Motherboard is required)

The new 95xx series onboard controller includes advanced security through hardware secure boot. This feature authenticates and builds a Chain of Trust (CoT) that enables only signed and authenticated firmware to be executed on the controller, as well as to avoid unsigned and falsified firmware images being loaded.

raid controller diagram

Key Product Features

 

  • Tri-Mode Storage Interface − 12Gb/s SAS − 6Gb/s SATA − Gen 4.0 PCIe (NVMe) 
     Hardware Secure Boot 
  •  Universal Bay Management (UBM) ready (SFF-TA-1005)
  • RAID levels 0, 1, 5, 6, 10, 50, and 60 − 13,700 MB/s (RAID 256K Seq Rd) − 3M IOPs (4K RAID RR) − 240K RAID 5 IOPs (4K RW) 
  • MegaRAID SafeStore Software for SED Key Management 
  • CacheVault™ flash backup • x8 PCIe Gen 4.0 Host Interface − Supports x8, x4, x2, x1 PCIe lanes at a transfer rate up to 16.0GT/s per lane, full duplex − Lane and polarity reversal 
  • SFF-9402 Compliant Connector Pinout 
  • Up to 240 SAS/SATA devices 
  • Up to 32 NVMe devices
  • Form Factor Friendly Cable Exit

Port Count and Cabling

The new Isi Broadcom Megaraid 95xx series Broadcom has introduced a more versatile port by utilizing the SlimSAS technology via SFF-8654 type. It is also ideal for enterpise use cases. 

raid cabling

This new port has doubled the connection output via a single port from 4x to 8x devices when compared to the previous Generation. This also means that via a direct-attached solution, a single card with 2 ports can now have 16x devices connected compared to just 8 on the previous gen. In addition, this also alleviates the need to have a 2nd controller or a higher port solution in the system thus cutting down the cost. Lastly, this port is also compatible with older SAS3 SFF8643 backplanes via SFF-8654 (SlimSAS) to SFF8643 cable. 

raid cable graph

95xx Series Product Portfolio

raid table

The key difference between the older but most widely used and popular 93xx series are: 

*Note that not all the features are applicable to the 9540

 

Features

93xx - xi Series

95xx - xi series

NVME Support

12 Gb/s Bandwidth

PCIe Host Bus Type

PCIe 3.0

PCIe 4.0

I/O Processor / SAS Controller

SAS3108 12 Gb/s dual-core RAID-on-Chip 

SAS3908 / 3916 12Gb/s SAS Tri-Mode RAID-on-Chip 

Port Type

SFF-9643

SFF-8654 (SlimSAS)

Max Devices Per Controller

Up to 128 SAS and/or SATA devices

Up to SAS/SATA: 240 

NVMe: 32

Cache Size

1-2 GB

4-8 GB

Low Profile

Hardware Secure Boot

What is the compatible battery model? 

This is CVPM05 (FBU345) power module battery. The memeory modules protec the integrity of cached data on this model by  offloading the cached data to nonvolaile flash memeory if complete AC power supple (UPS) or a second level of fault tolerance when used with a UPS. 

Summary

This model satisfies the needs of consumers in various industries as a result of the wide adoption of NVME storage and enabled systems. NVMe storage combined with high bandwidth Tri-mode controller offers unparalleled speed and performance and compatibility with a wide range of storage options. Also, because it’s an industry-first PCIe Gen 4.0 RAID Adapter, a single controller can operate in all three modes concurrently servicing NVMe, SAS, or SATA drives. Additionally, the 95xx series onboard controller incorporates advanced security through hardware secure boot and has introduced a more versatile port by utilizing the SlimSAS technology via SFF-8654 type. Lastly, if the system is equipped with the latest PCIe Gen 4.0 slots, it would be more beneficial to opt for the 95xx series to fully unleash the controller capabilities.

If you’re excited as we are about this new series, get in contact with us today!

 

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