Raspberry Pi OS receives native SATA support

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The kernel of Raspberry Pi OS, the standard operating system for the Raspberry Pi, now includes built-in support for SATA hard drives. Up to now, a specially developed kernel with to achieve full SATA speed and to use RAID with such drives compiled support for SATA and AHCI was necessary . Thanks to Jeff Geerling and his contribution to the RPI kernel, this is no longer necessary, as he on his blog reports . Jeff Geerling is not only known for his work around the Raspberry Pi, but above all for his projects on Ansible and Kubernetes.

Native performance and RAID

Up to now it was also possible to use SSDs with SATA with the Raspberry Pi via SATA-to-USB adapters. But with that you lost 10-20% performance and RAID was not possible. With the kernel support available now, almost all PCI Express SATA adapters are supported. For already installed versions of Raspberry Pi OS, a simple

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

the SATA support. This means that anyone who has a Compute Module 4 can insert a SATA card and connect and use hard drives or SSDs. Among other things, this makes the maintenance of a NAS with RAID much easier, because the constant maintenance of your own kernel is no longer necessary. What doesn’t work yet is booting from such discs. The Raspberry Pi boots from USB, microSD, eMMC, or even NVMe on the latest Pi OS, but currently the Raspberry Pi bootloader doesn’t scan SATA devices to boot.

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Wiretrustee SATA-Board

In this context, the is interesting for building a NAS Wiretrustee SATA board , whose crowdfunding should begin soon, . It can connect 4 SATA SSDs and offers HDMI 2.0 and, in addition to MicroSD, also 2 USB 2.0 ports. On the software side, a mesh based on WireGuard is used. The software can already be used on other devices. Packages for Debian and Fedora are available on GitHub .

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