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Hardware Thread, 6gbps PCI Express SATA Card in Technical; I've just been looking on Areca's website and noticed the ARC-1880i supports booting on EFI Mac's. Shame about the price ...
  1. #16


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    I've just been looking on Areca's website and noticed the ARC-1880i supports booting on EFI Mac's. Shame about the price (478.76).

    The currently Mac OS X 10.X can not directly boot up from 6Gb/s SAS controller's volume (we do not support the Open Firmware) on the Power Mac G5 machine and can only use as a secondary storage. All Intel based Mac Pro machines use EFI to boot[/b] (not Open Firmware, which was used for PPC Macs) the system. Areca controller has supported the EFI BIOS on its PCIe 2.0 6Gb/s SAS RAID controller. You have other alternatively to add volume set on the Mac Pro bootable device listing. You can follow the following procedures to add PCIe 2.0 6Gb/s SAS RAID controller on the Mac Pro bootable device listing.

    1. Upgrade the EFI BIOS from shipping <CD-ROM>\Firmware\Mac\ directory or from the www.areca.com.tw, if the controllers default ship with a legacy BIOS for the PC. Please follow the Appendix A Upgrading Flash ROM Update Process to update the legacy BIOS to EFI BIOS for Mac Pro to boot up from 6Gb/s SAS RAID controller's volume.
    2. Ghost (such as Carbon Copy Cloner ghost utility) the Mac OS X 10.4.x, 10.5.x or 10.6.x system disk on the Mac Pro to the External PCIe 2.0 6Gb/s SAS RAID controller volume set. Carbon Copy Cloner is an archival type of back up software. You can take your whole Mac OS X system and make a carbon copy or clone to Areca volume set like an other hard drive.
    3. Power up the Mac Pro machine, it will take about 30 seconds for controller firmware ready. This periodic will let the boot up screen blank before Areca volume in the bootable device list.
    (Source, p30)
    You would also need a SFF-8087 to SATA cable too.
    Last edited by Arthur; 18th April 2011 at 05:49 PM.

  2. #17


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    What about an iMac instead? New models are rumoured to be released within the next few weeks and will have at least one SATA 6Gb/s port (like the new MacBook Pro's). They also support upto 16GB DDR3 RAM which is extremely cheap at the moment.

    Rough costs...

    Code:
    iMac 21.5"                            1,020.00 (958.80 with Edu discount)
    16GB (4x4GB) DDR3 RAM                 139.18
    OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G 240GB SSD  426
    
    Total = 1585.18

  3. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    What about an iMac instead? New models are rumoured to be released within the next few weeks and will have at least one SATA 6Gb/s port (like the new MacBook Pro's). They also support upto 16GB DDR3 RAM which is extremely cheap at the moment.

    Rough costs...

    Code:
    iMac 21.5"                            1,020.00 (958.80 with Edu discount)
    16GB (4x4GB) DDR3 RAM                 139.18
    OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G 240GB SSD  426
    
    Total = 1585.18
    will stick to my original plan for the time being

    one 240gb 6gbps owc ssd, 16gb ram and the owc multi mount, get OS X Lion on or about the release date and with AHCI support etc hope that they release or support more Expansion cards ie 6gbps sata or sas cards that are cheaper and will boot OS X, if not then I can always purchase that card on finance

    An interesting thought, would I be able to ( if I get the 1880i card )

    Use the SSD on one port for booting and the remainder of ports for a raid of disks for storage ie 3 or 4 2tb drives so they are split into 2 pools

    If so then that would do me

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    Quote Originally Posted by mac_shinobi View Post
    wondering if this will change with OS X Lion ??
    Its not about the OS its about the firmware, the EFI is simmilar to the BIOS (in fact its replacement) and to boot from a storage controller the EFI needs to be able to talk to it. With a BIOS system a card would simply offer an INT16 option that would be polled at boot for valid boot options. Unfortunatly Apples implementation of EFI does not have this and relies on higher level drivers/interface standards built into the EFI code to handle the boot sequence.

    Lion may - possibly - change this but only because Apple has a tendancy to ship new firmware with a new OS to make sure it all gells right (which you can do when your range is like markedly three different computers).

  5. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    Its not about the OS its about the firmware, the EFI is simmilar to the BIOS (in fact its replacement) and to boot from a storage controller the EFI needs to be able to talk to it. With a BIOS system a card would simply offer an INT16 option that would be polled at boot for valid boot options. Unfortunatly Apples implementation of EFI does not have this and relies on higher level drivers/interface standards built into the EFI code to handle the boot sequence.

    Lion may - possibly - change this but only because Apple has a tendancy to ship new firmware with a new OS to make sure it all gells right (which you can do when your range is like markedly three different computers).
    Just found the ATTO Line

    ATTO H608 and H644 - any confirmation on if those are bootable, found the H608 for about 300 which is cheaper then the 500 for the Arecca

    http://www.attotech.com/products/cat...13e160549ef231

  6. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by mac_shinobi View Post
    Just found the ATTO Line

    ATTO H608 and H644 - any confirmation on if those are bootable, found the H608 for about 300 which is cheaper then the 500 for the Arecca

    SAS/SATA Host Adapters | ATTO Technology, Inc.
    Does not look like it:
    i have ExpressSAS R608 - New Solution - FixYa
    atto R608 is not bootable for my latest mac pro - New Solution - FixYa

    Edit: just rechecking but the above may be different their product code is the R608 but it was the closest that google came to an answer.

    I think Apple actually purposly makes it difficult or at least expencive to do what you are after as it messes with their preffered upgrade procedure.

    I had found a way better one but youtube is now full of weak imitations like the above.
    Last edited by SYNACK; 19th April 2011 at 10:23 AM.

  7. #22


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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    Does not look like it
    The cards mac_shinobi refers to are bootable. See page 15 of the manual. rEFIt needs to be used to configure some of the settings though.

    http://docs.google.com/viewer?url=ht...&embedded=true
    Last edited by Arthur; 19th April 2011 at 10:51 AM.

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    mac_shinobi (19th April 2011)

  9. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    The cards mac_shinobi refers to are bootable. See page 15 of the manual. rEFIt needs to be used to configure some of the settings though.

    Powered by Google Docs
    Cool, yea I had edited the above to point out that the products may have been different due to the slightly different product number.

    rEFIt though is a custom EFI extention and so gets around the Apple firmware limitations adding support for additional hardware by the looks of it along with the ability to choose the OS at boot time and probably other stuff.

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  11. #24


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    Quote Originally Posted by mac_shinobi View Post
    found the H608 for about 300 which is cheaper then the 500 for the Areca.
    Do you think the H644 would be a better choice with its external Mini SAS connector given the price difference?

    Code:
    ATTO ExpressSAS H608 (P/N: ESAS-H608-00) - 296.40
    Connectors: 2 x SFF 8087 Internal (8 drives)
    
    ATTO ExpressSAS H644 (P/N:  ESAS-H644-00) - 296.40
    Connectors: 1 x SFF 8087 Internal (4 drives) / 1 x SFF 8088 External (4 drives)
    Saying that though, if you did get the H608 you could also buy a MaxConnect adapter from MaxUpgrades which would enable you to install an additional four drives in your Mac Pro.

  12. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arthur View Post
    The cards mac_shinobi refers to are bootable. See page 15 of the manual. rEFIt needs to be used to configure some of the settings though.

    Powered by Google Docs
    Which ATTO card(s) would you suggest, I presume either the H608 or 644 ??

    Any chance WDAN or CPLTD or someone could give me an aprox price on each of these cards ?
    Last edited by mac_shinobi; 19th April 2011 at 11:10 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SYNACK View Post
    rEFIt though is a custom EFI extention and so gets around the Apple firmware limitations adding support for additional hardware by the looks of it along with the ability to choose the OS at boot time and probably other stuff.
    I think the main reason ATTO recommends rEFIt is simply because Apple doesn't include an EFI shell (which is the only way you can run "rvcfg"). If you burn the DMG version to a CD/DVD you don't even need to install it.

    Depending on your configuration, it may be necessary to adjust adapter NVRAM settings prior to performing the OS X installation. For example, you made need to modify the device wait time. The EFI configuration utility can be launched from an EFI shell. Unfortunately, an EFI shell is not included with Intel Macs. ATTO recommends rEFIt, which is available for free from http://refit.sourceforge.net/. Once you have downloaded the DMG for rEFIt, do the following to open the EFI Configuration Utility.
    Quote Originally Posted by mac_shinobi View Post
    I presume either the H608 or 644?
    Either will be fine.

  14. #27

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    From what I could establish the R version of the cards are the RAID versions and the H ones are hybrid ( whatever that means ). Im assuming if I got the h608 Id not be able to setup a raid of SSD's ie 2 or 4 to get around or below the 1gbps mark ?

    Also what raid card do max connect use ?

    http://www.maxupgrades.com/istore/in...product_id=190

    900 to spend - what are peoples suggestions so that I can get

    RAM ( amount of ram will depend on cost ) from www.memoryc.com 4gb kit ( 2 * 2gb ) are aprox 108 and the 8gb kit ( 2 * 4gb ) are aprox 222
    one or two SSD's ( again seeing as this is a raid config i may have to order two 100gb OWC RE or four 50gb RE drives )
    The ATTO Tech Card ( H608 assuming I can raid the SSD's together , assuming this is a good idea and also what raid config ? )

    The max connect caddy or w/e to hold the drives or an owc multi mount ?

    Failing that I will get the 6Gbps SSD for now, 16gb of ram and the owc multi mount and get the card ( H608 ) later on
    Last edited by mac_shinobi; 19th April 2011 at 11:36 AM.

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    Personally I'd hold out on the card until more chips come out. For PC apart from the sandybridge onboards, and the more expensive ones (LSI etc) theres only the Marvell 91xx series, which isn't great. Given time hopefully Mac will support some cheaper options and you'll be able to spend that money on another SSD

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  19. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by j17sparky View Post
    Personally I'd hold out on the card until more chips come out. For PC apart from the sandybridge onboards, and the more expensive ones (LSI etc) theres only the Marvell 91xx series, which isn't great. Given time hopefully Mac will support some cheaper options and you'll be able to spend that money on another SSD
    Think I will do that and hold out and if they bring out a decent not too expensive card out then ill be able to get some more SSD's as you stated

    I'll hobble along at around the 250mbps mark for now using a 6gbps ssd

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