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What Mac, What Storage [message #138833] Tue, 20 March 2018 15:13 Go to next message
TSC is currently offline  TSC
Messages: 5
Registered: April 2015
Hello Folks,
I am in need of some advice. We have currently switched our Kerio Connect server from Windows 2012 on a Dell PowerEdge 710 Rack Mount with 24GB of RAM a PERC Raid Controller with 2 SAS 10k rpm 160GB drives in a mirror for the OS and 6 10krpm 160GH. We have about 60 users (some very heavy users and some light).

Switched to Mac XServe 2009 24GB Ram, dual 2.66GHZ quad core, with SSD for boot and 3 1TB 7200RPM Western Digital Blue (not the greatest drives) in a Raid 5 using SoftRaid (not apple software raid but the product SoftRaid).

We are on a Dedicated Pipe 50x50.

Since the switch a few users have been saying that email is very slow now, in Kerio Connect client sometimes they wait 5-30 seconds while it says "Getting Data For You". Searching email is also very slow. This all started last week when we switched servers so obviously it is an I/O issue with the new drives.

I have been communicating with a very knowledgeable Kerio Partner and they have suggested it is the SATA drives in a Software SOFTRAID (softraid dot com) RAID 5.

We switched to Mac because the new admin is a Mac guy only and Kerio Engineers (back when it was Kerio) said that the platform really does not matter.

My Raid experience has always been for larger creative files, 4k Video, Photos, etc as most of my clients are creatives. Kerio appears to use RAID in a different manner.

SOLUTION
- To figure out this new slowness issue I was going to put the mailstore on 1 (or 2) SSDs into the trays of the xserve and see if that gives us better I/O. This is the easiest and cheapest as we already own the parts to put SSDs into the Xserves.

I am going to assume this will tell me a lot.

If it does fix the issue and I must stay with mac for now my ultimate question is do I...

#1. Sink $$ into aging technology like the Xserves and maybe an External Promise VTrak e610f Fiber Channel enclosure.
OR
#2. Would it be better to scrap the old xserves, buy a couple Mac Mini Quad Cores and attach a Pegasus R4 or R6 Thunderbolt Raid to the Mac Mini.

Again currently we have about 60 users but this will grow to hundreds in the future so I want to be sure to build in growth. And we MUST stay with Mac for now, we will move to Linux once the new guys becomes familiar with Linux.

Could I bother you all for some advice please.

Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138834 is a reply to message #138833] Tue, 20 March 2018 16:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
bm
Messages: 57
Registered: July 2008
Using 8+ year old Xserver is pure madness...

1. Switch back to Dell PowerEdge 710
2. Switch old SAS HDDs to SATA/*SSD (*depends on R710 version)
3. Set PERC RAID
4a. Install Debian 8 (https://www.debian.org/releases/jessie/installmanual)
4b. Install Kerio Connect on Debian 8
( https://manuals.gfi.com/en/kerio/connect/content/installatio n-and-upgrade/installing-kerio-connect-on-debian-8-1909.html)
5. Have fun...

Do'nt get me wrong, I'm a big Mac fan, but don't be silly and don't use low-level hardware for something critical like mail.

[Updated on: Tue, 20 March 2018 16:17]

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Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138837 is a reply to message #138834] Tue, 20 March 2018 18:01 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TSC is currently offline  TSC
Messages: 5
Registered: April 2015
I agree. But to buy some time, do you think the SSD thing will help?

[Updated on: Tue, 20 March 2018 18:01]

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Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138844 is a reply to message #138837] Wed, 21 March 2018 07:29 Go to previous messageGo to next message
bm
Messages: 57
Registered: July 2008
R710 PERC controler have SSD cache feature. Cache can greatly improve overall IO. But like everything, it depends on money because you have to use HDD's from the Hardware Compability List, which are not cheap.

I run Kerio Connect with +300 users on Dell R520 (used as ESXi hypervisor) without this cache and everything works fine. My system + data storage is on RAID1 volume and my backup storage (for backup and archiving feature) is on RAID5 volume.

[Updated on: Wed, 21 March 2018 07:31]

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Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138872 is a reply to message #138844] Thu, 22 March 2018 15:28 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Carconnex is currently offline  Carconnex
Messages: 66
Registered: November 2016
Location: Belgium
We are running Kerio for currently 85 users on a Mac mini with a built in 2TB SSD and have no performance issues (except for the slow search function in windows because of bad Kerio offline connector performance)
Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138898 is a reply to message #138872] Fri, 23 March 2018 17:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
sfpete is currently offline  sfpete
Messages: 102
Registered: June 2007
Location: San Francisco, CA
Mac Mini Core i7, 16GB RAM, and SSD boot disk.

Your data store should go on a G-Technology G-Speed Shuttle in RAID 10 configuration. RAID 10 is the key.

That combo will hum along very nicely for your application.
Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138922 is a reply to message #138833] Sun, 25 March 2018 16:42 Go to previous messageGo to next message
MacLab is currently offline  MacLab
Messages: 217
Registered: May 2012
The xserve is doable (although beware the age as others have stated). They are bulletproof for the most part. If you want to get speed out of it, do an SSD on a PCIe card, then use another PCIe card for mini SAS RAID 10 to a separate box. Highpoint's 2722 will work. You will have a tough time finding cards that will list compatibility but that one works.

I don't know if you will be able to put SSD in the drive bay. The xserve may balk on that, which is one reason to go with the PCIe card.

If you had the choice though would be more updated to do Mac Mini with enterprise RAID 10 (either Thunderbolt or mini SAS through breakout box like Sonnet).


MacLab, Inc.
Kerio Certified Partner, Reseller, Hosting Provider, Kerio Connect Certified.
http://maclaboratory.com
Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138923 is a reply to message #138922] Sun, 25 March 2018 16:47 Go to previous messageGo to next message
MacLab is currently offline  MacLab
Messages: 217
Registered: May 2012
Just to add after reading your email Pegasus is not necessarily enterprise. Last time I checked they use consumer drives. Look to G-tech.

MacLab, Inc.
Kerio Certified Partner, Reseller, Hosting Provider, Kerio Connect Certified.
http://maclaboratory.com
Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138927 is a reply to message #138834] Mon, 26 March 2018 00:50 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Bud Durland is currently offline  Bud Durland
Messages: 514
Registered: December 2013
Location: Plattsburgh, NY
+1 for this. The switch from Windows to Linux give a big boost to performance.

bm wrote on Tue, 20 March 2018 11:15
Using 8+ year old Xserver is pure madness...

1. Switch back to Dell PowerEdge 710
2. Switch old SAS HDDs to SATA/*SSD (*depends on R710 version)
3. Set PERC RAID
4a. Install Debian 8 (https://www.debian.org/releases/jessie/installmanual)
4b. Install Kerio Connect on Debian 8
( https://manuals.gfi.com/en/kerio/connect/content/installatio n-and-upgrade/installing-kerio-connect-on-debian-8-1909.html)
5. Have fun...

Do'nt get me wrong, I'm a big Mac fan, but don't be silly and don't use low-level hardware for something critical like mail.

Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138950 is a reply to message #138833] Mon, 26 March 2018 17:56 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TSC is currently offline  TSC
Messages: 5
Registered: April 2015
Hello folks,
Thanks for the information. It all makes sense.

I am curious about those running on Mac Minis, how many users do you support on a 2012 Mac mini Quad Core i7 with a thunderbolt raid in Raid 10?

Thanks,
Jason
Re: What Mac, What Storage [message #138951 is a reply to message #138950] Mon, 26 March 2018 18:16 Go to previous message
sfpete is currently offline  sfpete
Messages: 102
Registered: June 2007
Location: San Francisco, CA
You're likely well equipped to run that configuration up to 150 users.
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