I had not realized until reading my first review exactly how much faster the M.2 SSDs are compared to the 2.5" SSDs that use any version of SATA interface. Which of the Intel NUCs support two installed M.2 SSD drives, so that I could mirror the boot device and hopefully minimize impact when one of the two SSDs eventually fails.
- Intel® NUCs
Aside from NUC6i7KYK, are any of the Gen7 products coming out in Q1 of 2017 speculated to support two M.2 SSDs internally?
NUC6i7KYK looks way too expensive to me. Over $1100 on Amazon with any reasonable configuration. Do they make this with a much slower quad core CPU? I don't need this for gaming and the CPU appears to be overkill and is wrecking the price.
That is really a shame. A NUC6i7KYK type box with a slower quad core CPU would make a great home server. Another related point is that a slower CPU version of NUC6i7KYK would get us back to the 15W power draw that makes the NUC approach such an economical long-term option.
Since Intel cannot apparently figure this out, do you know of any third party making an NUC-type product that takes two M.2 SSDs internally and connects out to peripherals on either USB 3.1, eSATA, or Thunderbolt 3? I don't need a lot of CPU power, just quad core of almost any speed. I need 16 GB and a lot of powerful I/O to disk, both internal and external.
As mentioned before, from our end some of the solutions with this specification is the Maple Canyon Family which you can find here; http://ark.intel.com/compare/89186,89189,89188,89190 Intel® Product Specification Comparison.
Amy, those product specifications you point to include two systems with one M.2 SSD and two systems with one M.2 SSD and one 2.5" drive that does not use M.2 interface (so much slower). None of those apparently matches to my requirement, which was for two M.2 SSD drives.
Maybe I should be asking a different question. Is there a reason I should *not* want to make the M.2 SSD my primary boot device and then mirror that to a software RAID 1 on an equivalent M.2 SSD?
Pone, I meant these; http://ark.intel.com/products/codename/75423/Maple-Canyon Products formerly Maple Canyon, sorry. The board layout for this family shows two M.2 slots, see here for it;
The Technical Product Specifications for Intel® NUC Products can be found here; http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/000005545.html Technical Product Specifications for Intel® NUC Products.
In regard to your question, no, there should not be any reason to not make the M.2 SSD primary boot device and then mirror that to a software RAID 1. Just make sure to set the device as RAID ready, this guide will help doing it; http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/boards-and-kits/000021493.html
Amy, the boards you are highlighting take one drive M.2 SSD and the other M.2 appears to be for wireless, not for a drive. This is not the same thing as what is being offered on the Skull Canyon NUC6i7KYK product, which appears to have two M.2 SSD slots. The problem with Skull Canyon is it consumes too much power at 45 watts. I really want to find a product that is closer to 20 watts, and I will run several of them in parallel.
I actually did not want to use the built-in software RAID in BIOS, but instead I just want to do software RAID inside Windows directly. If Windows sees two different devices in the RAID 1 pair, it can optimize I/O much better and will start to do I/O tasks in parallel that it would not if the disks were hidden behind a RAID device driver/BIOS/hardware RAID.
What P One is looking for is a board that has two Type M M.2 slots - slots that he can use specifically for M.2 SSDs. The other slot is a Type E M.2 slot, intended for supporting WiFi/BT modules; it cannot be used for a SSD.
As I said earlier, KY is the only NUC that offers two Type M M.2 slots. You could accomplish this using other NUC models, but only by (potentially compromising performance) using a 2.5" SATA III SSD as your mirror device.
Scott, do you know if Windows 8 or higher has any way to instruct Windows to favor read operations on a specific member of a software RAID 1 pair? I'm referring to RAID 1 created in Disk Manager, not the software RAID built around the Intel BIOS and associated device driver.
The Veritas Storage Foundation product - which Microsoft licensed to create its own RAID in Windows - definitely does have an option that lets you change the balance of read operations on a RAID. It was meant for exactly the situation where one member of a RAID 1 pair is a slow large disk that is intended for backup, but can still occasionally service read requests. It's just you might want 80% of the read I/O to go to the M.2 SSD and only 20% to go to the slower SATA drive.
I want to bump this thread and get an update. Aside from the one Skull Canyon NUC, is there now any other Intel NUC that takes TWO Type M M.2 NVMe SSDs internally? Ideally, I want a product with a lower power draw than the Skull Canyon.
If no product has been released yet, is there even a pre-announcement for a product that will be out by end of year that has the two M.2 NVMe SSDs?
My main requirements behind this request are 1) extremely high disk performance compared to a normal SATA drive and 2) the ability to have a real-time backup and disk mirror in Windows for the critical system device. Given that all SSDs eventually do fail, having some resilience by mirroring the drives is desirable.
First of all, the standard NUC 4x4 form factor does not leave enough real estate to fit (and properly cool) a second 2280 M.2 drive (regardless of whether NVMe or SATA). Skull Canyon was a larger form factor board and had the extra room for the drive.
Second, the Skull Canyon design utilized a Mobile (as opposed to Embedded) processor, with a separate chipset (PCH), and this provided the additional PCIe lanes that would allow a (second) NVMe SSD to be supported. The Embedded processors, which are System On A Chip (SOC) designs, have an embedded (barebones) PCH and the PCIe lanes needed to support a second NVMe SSD are simply not available.
The NUC team is working on the next-generation designs - and this does include another "extreme" design - but details are not yet being made public. I can assure you that they understand the value proposition for multiple NVMe SSDs - and that this is being considered - but no commitments can be made at this time...
It is three years since my original post. What are the current NUC options to get two M2 SSDs internally, so you can build a RAID 1 pair for the boot device?
- Actually is new NUC with option for two M.2 SSDs. It is Hades Canyon NUC. This NUC is an excellent NUC, although not cheap neither.
- NUC8i7HNK 65 W CPU https://www.amazon.com/Intel-NUC-Performance-G-Kit-NUC8i7HNK/dp/B07BR3HCZ3/ref=sr_1_1?crid=2LJ5UKBT4TRFC&keywords=nuc8i7hnk&qid=1578388000&sprefix=nuc8i7hnk%2Caps%2C290&sr=8-1
- NUC8i7HVK 100 W CPU https://www.amazon.com/Intel-NUC-Performance-G-Kit-NUC8i7HVK/dp/B07BR5GK1V/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=nuc8i7hvk&qid=1578387978&sr=8-1
There are currently two designs available that support dual NVMe drives and RAID 0/1, the original Skull Canyon (NUC6i7KYK), which we discussed previously, and Hades Canyon, its successor. There are two versions of Hades Canyon, the NUC8i7HNK, which has an Intel Core i7-8705G Processor with Radeon RX Vega M GL graphics, and the NUC8i7HVK, which has an Intel Core i7-8809G Processor with Radeon RX Vega M GH graphics.
A recent "massive" leak (see here: https://koolshare.cn/thread-168913-1-1.html) presents a ton of information regarding the forthcoming Ghost Canyon (NUC9i#QNX) platform. As the embedded slide indicates, the Compute Element boards available for this platform will support dual NVMe drives and RAID 0/1. This platform also support a discrete (short) PCIe graphics card.
More information about Ghost Canyon you may find here https://nucblog.net/2020/01/upcoming-ghost-canyon-nuc-i9-and-discrete-gpu/ . However, I would say that this quite big format, different from NUC format. This is probably not what you are looking for.