Register for the iXsystems Community to get an ad-free experience and exclusive discounts in our eBay Store.

Unsure about PCI Raid Card


Neophyte Sage
Mar 30, 2014
Well, I'm not certain that you understand all the performance issues. Hard disks transfer data at 150 - 200MB/s more-or-less, so the SATA interface and the pcie speed will not be your bottleneck. Spinning disks don't come anywhere near to fully utilizing a SATA III (6 GBs) interface. Only matters for SSD's. A Gen3 pcie x1 would be fast enough.

If the card I suggested works on your system, you could still put 4 disks on the motherboard and one disk on the PCIe card to make a 5 disk array.

However, there is no doubt that the ASRock motherboard would be a better choice. For one thing, it has an Intel network interface which will be more reliable than the Realtek nic on the MSI board. Hopefully, you are convinced by now that the MSI board is a bad choice for TrueNAS.

Anyways, good luck.
Last edited:


Dec 30, 2020
Now I am still a bit fuzzy over the AST2500 BMC...Is that generic built in video meaning I do not need GPU on Ryzen?
The BMC is actually a mini-computer within your computer, monitoring the hardware. It does provide a VGA video output from which you can set the BIOS, select the install media for boot and watch the TrueNAS console. So yes, superficially it provides a generic video.

The BMC also has its own network interface. You can set up with just an Ethernet cable in the dedicated BMC LAN port and no screen attached! Plug the BMC to your network, ask your router/Internet box which address the BMC has obtained from DHCP and point a browser to this address. From there you can manage the computer, including launching a console (hopefully HTML-based rather than Java-based) where you can set the BIOS and install. No need to attach a screen and keyboard to the NAS: You do everything from your usual desktop or laptop.

In either case, once TrueNAS is installed the rest is done through the web interface.

utilize all 5 drives (20 TB 16 usable RAID 5)
There is no RAID5 in ZFS. The equivalent is RAIDZ (single parity; 4 drives worth of space out of 5). But for now more than ten years it has been advised not to use RAID5/RAIDZ with HDD larger than 1 TB: There is a non-insignificant risk of not being able to reconstruct an array/a pool of such large drives after the loss of one drive.
For data safety against the loss of one drive, the current advice is to use RAIDZ2. Which would mean a sixth HDD to keep the same usable capacity of (roughly) 4*4 TB.
With that, your shopping list would be, in order: Motherboard, HDD #6 and then, optionally ECC RAM.