The DS8880 has 2 types of storage arrays, The HPFE Gen2 Flash arrays and the HDD spinning drive arrays. These are driven by pairs of RAID adapters that are specific to the array type.

The High Performance Flash Array Gen2 RAID adapters have 4 ports each running 24Gbps for a combined total of 192Gbps full duplex peak transfer rate. Each RAID adapter is driven by a IBM designed ASIC which integrates RAID acceleration with two 1.6Ghz PowerPC 476FP cores. There can be up to 4 HPFE Gen2 features per pair of I/O bays. (The maximum is available on the DS8888F, system maximum of 16 HPFE Gen2 feature codes)

For Hybrid systems there are up to 2 pairs of HDD RAID adapters per pair of I/O bays. The HDD RAID adapters have 4 ports each running 8Gbps for a combined total of 64Gbps full duplex peak transfer rate. Each RAID adapter is driven by a IBM designed RAID ASIC with an external dual e500 core 1.5Ghz PowerPC processor. In the DS8886 the maximum number of HDD RAID adapter pairs is 8.

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