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JMcGi4
Beginner
605 Views

VROC support with ASUS HYPER M.2 X16 Gen 4 Card- supports 4 M.2 SSD drives. Installed: four Intel 660p Series 1TB (NVMe) Solid State Drives.

I have a ASUS Motherboard: ROG Strix X299-E Gaming II supports includes VROC

Processor: Intel Core i9-9940X 3.3 GHz Fourteen-Core LGA 2066 PN: BX80673I99940X - Supports VROC

32 GB RAM

PCIe M.2  ASUS HYPER M.2 X16 Gen 4 Card PCIe Hyper M.2 that supports 4 M.2 SSD drives. https://www.asus.com/us/Motherboard-Accessories/HYPER-M-2-X16-GEN-4-CARD/

Installed:  four Intel 660p Series 1TB (NVMe) Solid State Drives

 

OS: Windows 10 Pro 64 bit Version 1909 

 

Note: no storage installed on the motherboard. All Storage is installed on the ASUS PCIe card with 4 (Four) Intel 660p M.2 1 TB NVMe drives

https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/products/memory-storage/solid-state-drives/consumer-ssds/6-s...

 

Question 1: I would like to set these up as a RAID 5 and boot the OS from the PCIe card. Is this supported? (will it work?)

 

Question 2: Will I need to install the hardware key on the motherboard? (Virtual RAID ON Vroc SSD intel only- being i'm using Intel NVMe SSD's) to get RAID 5? RAID 0 should never be used and is not acceptable on any system. (Unless you don't care about your data)

 

Question 3: I do not see the Intel 660p Series M.2 1TB (NVMe) Solid State Drives on the compatibility matrix. Will they still work?https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/articles/000030310/memory-and-storage/ssd-software.h...

 

Please advise- Jim

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5 Replies
n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
523 Views

Since most of these questions are dependent upon Asus-specific implementations, I would think that Asus should be your primary source for answers. I am not an expert with this technology; perhaps Intel Customer Support can find an expert to review my answers...

 

  • According to everything that I read, I see no issues with card or motherboard or processor.
  • Intel's VROC glossies indicate requirement for Enterprise-class NVMe SSDs, which the Intel 660p SSDs are most definitely not.
  • I read that VROC key is required for the capability to work, so yes, I would think it has to be present.

 

Bottom line, my responses are: (1) Yes (barring 660p compatibility issue), (2) Yes and (3) No. These responses need to be reviewed by Intel and especially Asus experts.

...S

JMcGi4
Beginner
523 Views

ASUS really has horrible technical support and I would not get any answer from them (Especially since the majority of my question is Intel technology focused.) I guess my question is: if I put four Intel 660p SSDs in the PCIe adapter card will VROC recognize it and allow me to create the raid set (RAID 5 using dongle). I'd hate to purchase all of this Intel hardware only to find out that it will not physically work.

As far as not being enterprise class... I get it - It's a gaming system. They are going to be set up in RAID-5 for data protection. The usage characteristics are 90% reads - Online gaming. I do not expect heavy writes therefore mitigating early death caused by cell deterioration. In the event they do fail, they come with a great five-year warranty. I have other gaming system that I set up over 6 years ago that is using four Intel 2.5" model 330 (MCL) SSD's in a RAID 5 configuration and have not had an issue since day one. It still gets 1500 MB/s reads (Burst) after all these years.

They worked so well I'm looking to recreate that using modern technology. Hopefully is will be just as good (Hopefully better !)

JosafathB_Intel
Moderator
523 Views

Hello JMcGi4,

 

Thank you for contacting Intel® Memory & Storage Support.

 

As mentioned by n.scott.pearson the Intel® SSD 660p Series is not supported to be used with VROC, you can find a list of supported SSDs in the “Intel® Virtual RAID on CPU (Intel® VROC) Supported Configurations” article (https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/articles/000030310/memory-and-storage/ssd-software.h...).

 

Our official statement related to VROC configurations using the X299 chipset is the following:

 

Intel® VROC is targeted as an enterprise product, mainly for Servers and Workstations. Also, per the details found in the article “Intel® VROC Support on X299 FAQ”, Intel® VROC was enabled on X299 client platforms (see below). This initial decision was made at the time of launch in 2017. Since then, it has become apparent that Intel® RST (and not Intel® VROC) is the better product to support SSD RAID on X299 platforms, partly because of Intel® RST availability, broad SSD support and no need for an extra HW key. Intel® RST is free and it supports Intel® as well as NON-Intel® storage devices.

 

Intel® VROC will continue to have its HW Key licensing policies, which are more in line with enterprise product expectations. From the above explanation, we hope it’s clear that for X299 / client platforms, our customers do NOT require purchasing Intel® VROC key for RAID 0 (even with NON-Intel® drives). Please use Intel® RST instead of Intel® VROC for RAID 0 and other things.

 

For more detail, please review the full FAQ; especially answer to question 2 in the below article:

https://www.intel.com/content/dam/support/us/en/documents/memory-and-storage/ssd-software/VROC_Suppo...

 

We noticed you have another ticket open related to the same topic with our advanced technical support department, we will continue to assist you in that ticket.

 

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

 

Best regards,

 

Josh B.

Intel Customer Support Technician

A Contingent Worker at Intel

JMcGi4
Beginner
523 Views

Josh,

Thanks again for your input.

Intel rolled this support for VROC out to the gamer community with the ASUS Motherboard: ROG Strix X299-E Gaming I and II (supports VROC). So, your saying: you have it on your motherboard it's really meant for Enterprise customers - don't use it.

 

It appears that RST is EOL - how would this affect my ability to use on generic NVMe SSD drives moving forward?

https://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/support/articles/000055419/technologies.html

 

As I've stated RAID 0 is not an option and in my opinion should never be used. (Unless you really don't care about your data...) Distributed RAID 5 is preferred for performance and rebuild times due to all drives participating in the RAID group - no dedicated hot spare required.

 

Thanks,

Jim

n_scott_pearson
Super User Retired Employee
523 Views

No @JMcGi4​, RST is definitely NOT being EOLed. You need to read more carefully. With the conversion to the DCH driver model, Microsoft is requiring that that all support and configuration tools be implemented as Modern GUI (a.k.a. Metro) apps and be distributed via the Microsoft App Store. This notice is telling you that the old, non-DCH support and configuration tools/GUIs, which were previously installed along with the drivers, are being EOLed; nothing more.On the first reboot after you install the new, DCH-based RST package, the replacement apps will be automatically downloaded from the MS App Store.

 

Ok, all that said, @JoshB_Intel​ did not answer the main question: will RST support RAID5 across four 660p drives installed into the system via this Asus PCIe/NVMe drive support card? I have only previously heard of it supporting two NVMe drives in RAID0 or RAID1 configurations.

 

...S

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