SATA 6g 4-port non-RAID controller ?

Jeremy Chadwick freebsd at
Tue Jul 26 22:56:03 UTC 2011

On Mon, Jul 25, 2011 at 01:42:07PM -0700, Freddie Cash wrote:
> On Mon, Jul 25, 2011 at 2:34 AM, Kurt Jaeger <lists at> wrote:
> > What kind of SATA 6g 4-port non-RAID controller is currently suggested
> > for use in 8/9 setups with large RAM (64G) setups with ZFS ?
> >
> SuperMicro AOC-USAS2-L8i
> PCIe controller with 2 multi-lane connectors (SFF-1087) supporting 8
> SAS/SATA ports.  Supports two firmwares:
>   IR mode enables RAID0, RAID1, RAID10 and a couple of other modes (no
> RAID5+)
>   IT mode enables straight HBA mode
> Supported by the mps(4) driver in FreeBSD 9-CURRENT, and I believe has been
> MFC'd into 8.2-STABLE.
> Sure, it's 8-ports, but for under $300 CDN, you really can't do much better.

It's important to note that this device -- despite not being mentioned
anywhere on their site or in the user manual (!) -- appears to use a PCI
Express x8 connector, and will work on PCIe 1.0 or PCIe 2.0.

What's confusing about this card is that the web page states "Compatible
UIO Motherboards".  UIO is Supermicro's proprietary slot type (Universal
I/O) which can work with UIO-only cards, OR, using a riser/adapter, can
be made into a PCI, PCI-X, or PCIe x{1,2,4,8} slot.  So the web page
wording and description of this device is really sub-par.

And before someone asks: in most cases you *cannot* use this card in a
PCIe x16 connector on a motherboard.  Most generic motherboard
manufacturers at this point have special one-offs that assume their PCIe
x16 slots are for video cards only.  If you aren't sure, you'll need to
ask your motherboard manufacturer/vendor if you can use a
non-VGA-adapter in their PCIe x16 slot.  Some Supermicro boards do have
PCIe x16 slots that can be used by non-VGA adapters, but I haven't seen
this on, say, Asus/Gigabyte/Dell/Intel motherboards.

| Jeremy Chadwick                                jdc at |
| Parodius Networking              |
| UNIX Systems Administrator                   Mountain View, CA, US |
| Making life hard for others since 1977.               PGP 4BD6C0CB |

More information about the freebsd-stable mailing list