I thought I would write about some of the Dell RAID cards that we provide. Some of the ones that we carry and that I'm personally more familiar with are the SAS-5, SAS-5ir, the SAS-6 and the PERC 5 and 6. These are all ones that are designed specifically to work in Dell machines.

Actually, I should clarify a bit. The SAS-5 isn't a RAID card. It's a SAS controller, which means it allows a server that normally can only take SATA hard drives to use the faster SAS drives instead. If you have a SAS-5 and want to do RAID, you'll have to do it in your OS.

The SAS-5ir is a step above the SAS    -5 in that it can do some simple RAID configurations, namely RAID 0 and 1. The SAS-6 is another step up. It can also do RAID 0 and 1, but it can handle more hard drives, has a larger maximum virtual drive size, and in a x8 PCIe slot will run faster than a SAS-5.

The PERC 5 and 6 cards are fancier. Both of them have battery backup, which can be useful. More importantly, they can do more than just RAID 0 and 1. Both will do RAID 5, and what are called nested arrays, where you have groups of arrays working together.  These will do 10 and 50. The PERC-6 will also do a RAID-6 and 60.