NVMe RAID Controllers (Data-Only)

FAQ's (Supported Products: SSD7101A-1, SSD7120, SSD7180, SSD7184, SSD7104, SSD7140)

1) Motherboard UEFI Requirements & BIOS Settings

Q: Can I use the SSD7000 series RAID controller to support OS-created RAID arrays?

A: This is possible, but we recommend using the RAID controller's interface (WebGUI or UEFUI RAID utility). Our management interfaces provides many functions specifically for monitoring and maintaining RAID arrays and individual drives, such as an Event Log, SMART attributes, and TBW (total bytes written) tracking.

2) Performance

Q1: How can I maximize the performance capability of my NVMe storage configuration?

A: Guides are available for both Mac and Windows platforms, under the Software Downloads page for your SSD7000 series controller.

Q2: If I am using a motherboard with VROC capability, why is it important to disable VROC for the PCIe slot I use with the SSD7000 controller?

A: When using SSD7000 series NVMe RAID controllers with VROC (Virtual RAID on CPU) capable motherboards, it is important to use a slot not dedicated to the VROC feature.
PCIe slots dedicated to VROC are often limited to x4 lanes – this would severely limit the transfer capabilities of the SSD7000 controller, which requires x16 lanes to perform optimally.

Q3: I am experiencing a drop in write performance when using Samsung 970 EVO SSD’sin a Ubuntu Linux environment. What can I do to resolve this?

A: This may be related to the Samsung TurboWrite feature. During a continuous write session, if a certain threshold is exceeded, you may experience a drop in write performance. This threshold varies from model to model (depending on the capacity of the SSD). For example, you may start to notice performance loss at the 20GB mark for a 500GB SSD.
Secondly, this may be related to how the SSD or array was formatted – using the “# mkfs.ext4 / dev / nvme0n1” command multiple times may result in performance loss. After the first mount, the system will begin initializing the disk in the background – this may not be obvious when using the system, but will have a major effect on write performance. For more information, please check the following support article: Link.

Q4: My motherboard reports that x16 lanes are available for the slot I have installed the SSD7000 device into. However, the WebGUI reports that the link speed is only x8. How can I double check which is correct?

A: In this case, we would recommend installing a 3rd party tool, such as HDInfo (Hardware Info) – it can determine the actual link speed and capabilities of the motherboard PCIe slot and SSD7000 device. Please contact our Support Department via our Online Support Portal for more information.

Q5: I am experiencing slower than expected transfer speeds when benchmarking NVMe SSD/arrays in a Linux environment. How can I verify transfer performance?

A: Conventional performance tests may not be able to provide accurate information about NVMe related tranfers. We recommend using a 3rd party utility with the option to specify Que Depth, such as FIO. More information is avaiable here.

3) Trouble Shooting

Q1: The WebGUI interface cannot start. How do I resolve this?

A: First, check to make sure the card is recognized by the system, and make sure the latest version of the WebGUI and device driver is installed.
Checking the Device Driver:
a.For Windows systems, check Device Manager and expand Storage Controllers – you should see a HighPoint NVMe entry listed here.
b.For macOS, check under About This Mac-System Profile and expand Extensions – you should see the HighPoint NVMe device listed here.

If the driver is properly installed, and the WebGUI will not start, please visit our Web Support Portal and open a new case.

Q2: I am using the controller with a Windows platform. Disabling the controller entry under Device Manager – Storage Controllers results in a BSOD or error message. How do I resolve this?

A. Please do not disable HighPoint controllers using Device Manager. Doing so may result in a system crash or data loss if an array or disk is active. If you need to disable the controller, please uninstall the Device Driver or shutdown and remove the device for the duration of the test session.

4) WebGUI – RAID & Storage Management Software

Q1: Can the WebGUI be used with a non-RAID configuration?

A: Yes – we recommend installing the WebGUI even if you want to use the SSD’s as individual, single drives. The WebGUI can be used to monitor the health of each SSD. SHI (Storage Health Inspector) is particularly useful, as it provides an interface for checking SMART attributes including temperature readings, and TBW (total bytes written).

Q2: How do I configure the SSD’s if I don’t want to use the RAID feature?

A: If you do not want to configure an array, you do not need to configure the drives using the WebGUI or CLI software – they are purely optional. The operating system will recognize the SSD’s as individual disks – they can be formatted/partitioned like any other drive.

Q3: Why can’t I launch the WebGUI after installing a Samsung NVMe driver for my SSD’s?

A: You will need to reinstall the HighPoint NVMe driver. To clarify, Samsung’s NVME driver does not have to be installed if you are using a HighPoint NVMe solution. The Samsung NVMe driver and HighPoint NVMe RAID drivers cannot coexisit. The last driver installed will overwrite the other.

5) Linux Support

Q: I am unable to install Ubuntu Live to an SSD or RAID hosted by my SSD7000 series RAID controller. Is this version compatible?

A: Live release of Ubuntu Linux may not work with the current driver. We recommend downloading another version, which is available here and has been verified: https://cdimage.ubuntu.com/releases/19.10/release/ubuntu-19.10-server-amd64.iso

6) Data RAID + Bootable Single NVMe SSD

Q: I realize the SSD101A-1 cannot support bootable UEFI RAID configurations. However, would it be possible to configure an array for data, and boot from a single (non-RAID) NVMe SSD hosted by the controller?

A: This is possible in some situations. For example, you could configure a RAID array + bootable SSD for some macOS platforms – they are capable of recognizing the single NVMe SSD as a bootable volume.
For more information, please view the following article: Link

7) Driver & Software Installation - Windows

Q1: Why do I need to install the NVMe driver before connecting the NVMe device or SSD’s?

A: Most modern operating systems include some base level of NVMe support. If the SSD7000 driver is not installed, the operating system will instead load the default support immediately after detecting the SSD7000 device, which will prevent the SSD7000 from function properly.

Q2: When updating the NVMe driver, why must I first remove the device and uninstall the existing driver first?

A: Most modern operating systems will load their default NVMe software anytime the SSD7000 driver is removed. The default NVMe software is incapable of supporting the SSD7000 device - if the SSD7000 is still present when the default support is loaded you may experience a broken RAID array or data loss.

8) Hot-Plug Support

Q1: Is there a way to hot-swap NVMe SSD’s in a Windows operating system?

A: No – current versions of Windows do not support this feature. Removing drives while the operating system is active may result in data loss, a broken array or damage to the NVMe SSD’s. Customers using the SSD7120, SSD7180/SSD184 or SSD6540/SSD6540M will have to shut down windows and power down the system before removing the drives.

9) Updating an embedded driver for macOS

Q: My RocketRAID controller or RocketStor Enclosure is using an embed driver for macOS. After updating macOS, my RAID 5 array is no longer mounting.

A: This can occur if the driver included with the macOS update does not support the RAID level you are currently working with. To resolve this problem, try uninstalling the macOS driver using manual commands, and then install the macOS driver you had been using before the update. If this drier is no longer available, please contact our Support Department. The procedure is outlined below:

1.Open an Apple terminal, and enter the following command to uninstall the driver:
rm -rf /Library/Extension/HighPointRR.kext/
kextcache -i/

2.Restart the mac system

3.Double-click the driver package you wish to use and follow the prompts to install the driver

4.After the installation is complete, reboot the Mac system.