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OWC 4M2, Difficulty Creating RAID Volume

(@julian-boolean)
Active Member Customer

 

I've successfully installed an OWC 4M2 into a PCIE slot of my 2012 MP 5.1.

It's currently showing up in SoftRaid 5.8.4 as as a striped volume.

I'd like to RAID 5 it.

I think the first steps to do this is to select the 4 blades in the left hand column, then initialize. However nothing is happening. No initialize, no error message, nada.

The safeguard feature is disabled. I'm stumped :)

Screen Shot 2021 03 13 at 2.22.40 PM
This topic was modified 1 year ago by Julian-Boolean
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Topic starter Posted : 13/03/2021 2:33 pm
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

To use the disks menu, you must select disks. You are selecting a volume!

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Posted : 13/03/2021 11:21 pm
(@julian-boolean)
Active Member Customer

Thanks for your quick reply. I have a follow up / plot twist.

I purchased this drive to be a boot drive for my 2012 MP 5.1 (12 core 3.46 GHz)

Have discovered there are issues with MAC OS not booting on RAID volumes. I think the workaround for this drive is to do 3x RAID0 with 1 stand alone blade that I can clone an OS onto for a working boot.

OWC published an article for this boot solution here:
https://eshop.macsales.com/blog/57884-accelsior-4m2-raid-0-boot-mac-boot-drive/

Screen Shot 2021 03 18 at 2.29.26 PM

 

Here's the rub. OWC is telling me that this NVMe will only work as a boot if I'm running 10.14.6 or later.  I made the decision to purchase the card based from this technical spec page which states I just need 10.13.16 or later:

OWC Accelsior 4M2 NVMe Specs 2021 03 18 at 11.39.39 AM

Question: Can you offer some clarity here?

I think I'd need to update my video card to get past High Sierra, so that's why this is a sticking point for me.

Thanks!

 

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Topic starter Posted : 18/03/2021 2:32 pm
(@softraid-support)
Member Admin

@julian-boolean

Both statements are true. The problem is NVMe is partially supported in 10.13.6, but not booting.

I have a 2014 Mac Mini for example, which is a home media server. I bought an internal NVMe for it only to discover it did not work, until I upgraded the computer to 10.14.

Here is what I recommend in your case. Buy an inexpensive SSD. Plug it into the lower DVD slot. That slot only does 300MB/s or so, but plenty fast to act as a startup volume, in my experience.

Then you can use all 4 blades in a RAID 0 and get fast startup and good performance in your workspace.

Applications generally load more slowly than than even the slower internal SSD will, (there is a lot of CPU overhead in loading an app), so a faster boot disk won't make that much difference over one in the Lower DVD slot. the connector is already there and you don't really need a bracket.

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Posted : 18/03/2021 3:40 pm
(@julian-boolean)
Active Member Customer

Thanks for the clarification. And that's a fantastic suggestion. I could use that NVMe as a 4x Raid0 scratch disk.  Really comes in handy with a big history pallet and big files in photoshop.

BTW, Happy camper with both SoftRaid products and support since ~2014. Thought I was going to have to purchase an expensive Areca RAID card, but then SoftRaid comes along and does everything I need it do.

Thanks again.

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Topic starter Posted : 18/03/2021 3:53 pm
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