NVMe Cached Hardware RAID Adapter

ARC-1886-6N2I image


(PCIe Gen 4.0 M.2 NVMe Hardware RAID Adapter)


✵ Controller-level hardware encryption

✵ SED support for encryption capable drives

✵ Support up to 256 SATA or SAS devices using SAS expanders

✵ Firmware automatically backup from NVMe RAID to SAS/SATA RAID

✵ Device interface PCIe Gen4 NVMe / 6Gb/s SATA per M.2 slot

✵ PCIe 4.0 host interface, PCIe Gen4 x8 lanes at maximum transfer rate up to 128Gb/s

✵ Supports up to 4/6 x PCIe Gen 4.0 M.2 slots and 1x SFF-8654[x8] / 2 x SATA connector

✵ CBM module or on-board battery(CR2032) to keep on M.2 fault LED status for troubleshooting

✵ Hardware-based RAID solution that supports RAID levels 0, 1, 10, 3, 5, 6, Single Disk and JBOD

✵ Implemented 8GB 72-bit DDR4-2666 SDRAM providing hardware RAID assist engine for parity calculations

✵ Dynamically allocate storage 12Gb/s SAS/SATA/PCIe (NVMe) to NVMe slot1 and SATA/SAS ports on ARC-1886-6N2I

✵ Support off module power loss protection (PLP) saves data issued without data loss at power fail using optional CBM module

PCIe Gen 4.0 M.2 NVMe Hardware RAID controller

banner of ARC-1886-6N2I

The ARC-1886-xNxI presents the advanced hardware RAID technology in enhanced performance of using 6 Bays M.2 NVMe and an improved enterprise data protection of using two SAS/SATA ports. The hardware RAID adapter accesses the data of NVMe disk array with a workload preset value. While the workload level stays within the preset value, the RAID adapter would constantly back up the data of NVMe disk array to the other two SAS/SATA ports hard disk arrays. This is designed in a 1.6 GHz dual-core ROC processor, DDR4-2666 memory and PCIe Gen 4.0 host/device interface and supports RAID levels 0, 1, 10, 3, 5, 6, Single Disk or JBOD.

  PCIe Gen 4.0 M.2 NVMe Hardware RAID controller
ARC-1886-6N2I ARC-1886-6N ARC-1886-4N8I
Form Factor 107.2(H) x 262(L) mm 107.2(H) x 205(L) mm
I/O Processor Tri-Mode Dual Core ARM A15 1.6GHz ROC
On-Board Cache 8GB on-board DDR4-2666 SDRAM
Drive Connector 2 x SATA
6 x M.2 Connector
6 x M.2 Connector
1 x SFF-8654 [X8]
4 x M.2 Connector
Drive Support 12Gb/s SAS, 6Gb/s SATA, Gen 4.0 PCIe (NVMe)
Management Port In-Band: PCIe / Out-of-Band: LAN Port
Enclosure Ready SGPIO, SMP, SES2 and UBM
Operating Voltage 12V
Power Consumption Approximately 14 Watts (without M.2 drive)
Cache Protection ARC-1886-CBM

Ultrafast Transfer Speed

Unprecedented Performance

ARC-1886-xNxI PCIe Gen 4.0 M.2 NVMe Hardware RAID adapter is built to deliver unprecedented performance, using only carefully, best-in-class components. These include the dual core Broadcom SAS3916, PCIe Gen 4.0 tri-mode ROC, 8GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM with ECC protection.

Powerful Broadcom Tri-mode ROC Engine

At the heart of ARC-1886-xNxI is the incredibly powerful Broadcom SAS3916 dual-core ARM A15 tri-mode ROC, giving effortless performance as desirable. It delivers storage interface PCIe Gen 4 NVMe, 12Gb/s SAS, 6Gb/s SATA, and the security of data protection. Damage in a software RAID is considered as the consumption of massive computation and memory bandwidth on the host. The ARC-1886-xNxI hardware RAID relieves the parity generation burden from the host and maximizes application processing performance.

Tri-mode ARM A15 ROC

Speed Up 8GB DDR4-2666 SDRAM

With a massive 8GB of DDR4-2666 SDRAM, ARC-1886-xNxI gives you super-smooth multitasking during the period of high overload in 4K environment. ARC-1886-xNxI firmware can configure how much cache SDRAM dedicated for read, and how much for write. If your server application has significantly more reads than writes or more writes than reads, you might need to change this setting to adjust the read/write cache ratio for improving performance. Big cache is the perfect choice for a 4K application drive, making your professional apps work as fast as possible.

High Bandwidth PCI-E 4.0 Support

To run the PCIe Gen 4.0 slots in Gen 4 speed, please must install the ROC which supports PCI Express 4.0. If you install the PCIe3.0 ROC, the PCI Express 4.0 slots will run only at Gen3 speed.

  • Higher bit rate - 16.0GT/s

  • Higher bandwidth per lane - 2GB/s

  • Higher efficiency - 98.5% encoding efficiency

PCI-E 4.0 support higher interconnect bandwidth

Professional Storage Connectivity

The ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter can operate in all three modes concurrently servicing NVMe, SAS or SATA drives that offers the operation of NVMe, SAS or SATA storage devices in a single RAID adapter. With a single ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter, system integrators can take full advantage of 6x PCIe Gen 4.0 M.2 x2/x4 NVMe drives (or 6Gb/s M.2 SATA SSD drives) and 2x 12Gb/s SAS/SATA ports.

NVMe speed

Auto-Backup Between Dual Array

--- need to be verified ---

NVMe disasters always happen unexpectedly, and without proper safeguards your data could be in jeopardy. Implementing an Auto-backup and Recovery strategy is critical for protecting a NVMe array from the corruption of data and for providing the ability to recover that data.The ARC-1886-xNxI provides a dual disk arrays including a NVMe disk array and a hard disk array. The RAID firmware has a preset value, and when the workload size does not reach the preset value, it backs up the data of M2 NVMe disk array to the SATA connector port hard disk array. This has the advantages of fast access to data by the NVMe disk and high reliability of data storage on the hard disk. These backups contain exact copies of NVMe array. The clone SAS/SATA array uses them for disaster recovery purposes.

auto-backup between dual array

Off Module Power (OMP) Loss Protection

An enterprise storages need to ensure data integrity in the event of power losses and system crashes. The Power Loss Protection (PLP) is a hardware and firmware solution on the ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter to ensure that the NVMe SSDs integrity is maintained should a power loss event occur.

Off Module Power (OMP)

Launch the web browser-based MRAID storage manager to check the power loss event.

(Breadcrumb-Trail: 'Information' > 'RAID Set Hierarchy' > 'Device Information' > 'Unsafe Shutdowns')

unsafe shutdown

Smart CBM for the Integrity of the Cached Data

ARC-1886-xNxI RAID storages have integrated caches for increasing performance. With corresponding protective mechanisms, the content of these unwritten cached data in the SDRAM would be lost when there is a complete AC power failure or a brief unexpected power outage. For that reason, a cache backup module (CBM) protects the integrity of the cached data on ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter by providing backup power. The cache backup module has built-in functionality to charge the supercapacitor pack automatically and to communicate supercapacitor pack status information to the RAID adapter.

flash-based backup unit (FBU)

Controller-Based H/W Encryption Engine

Host independent real-time controller-based hardware encryption does not impact the performance of ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter and can implement on any kinds of storage device that is transparent to the user, the OS, and applications. Areca encryption function secures a sensitive, mission-critical volume's data from unauthorized access or modification in the event of drive theft, as well as more routine activities such as the return of defective drives for servicing or the decommission or repurposing of drives. Local key management in the controller is designed to protect data from security breaches with minimal cost and complexity. User can use ARC-1886-xNxI storage API code to design its own key management utility. ARC-1886-xNxI supports 128- and 256-bit encryption keys using AES (a key size of 128, or 256 bits), or password (a variable key size).

data encryption

SED-Based Encryption

The ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter firmware Security Function, together with self-encrypting drives (SEDs), secures a data in the hard disks from unauthorized access or modification resulting from theft, loss or repurposing of drives. Protection is achieved by the SED hard drive that automatically and continu¬ously encrypts the data on the drive without any user interaction.

SED-based encryption

Multi-booting Capability

There are many advantages features for ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter uEFI support for more than one macOS version to reside on one Apple machine.

(1). Support a primary operating system and an alternate system that you use less frequently

(2). Allows a new operating system to configure all applications needed, and migrate data before removing the old operating system

(3). Useful in situations where different software applications need different operating systems

(4). Software developers needs to have multiple operating systems for development or testing purposes

The user would need to simply reboot the device and select the alternate option to switch from one version to others version.

multi-booting capability

Mounting Caddy for 2019 Mac Pro

The Areca ARC-CD2I is a well-designed option to install and connect up to two SAS/SATA drives in the 2019 Mac Pro using the space and connections inside the 2019 Mac Pro next to the PCIe card slots. The internal Mac Pro storage capacity can be expanded by adding additional cost effective ARC-CD2I mounting caddy and connects over SATA cable to Mac Pro logic board. The ARC-1886-xNxI can also use it to support secondary array module.

SAS expansion port

Effective Management Tool

Areca provides more flexible management tools comparing with others competitors to manage and monitor ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter.

• LAN Port: Out of Band Management (Without Disturb Host Access)

Lets you set up and manage RAID storage through Out-of-band web browser manager and ArcSAP utility

The ARC-1886-xNxI also offers an alternative out-of band method d for McRAID storage manager. User can access the built-in configuration without needing the ArcHTTP proxy server on the host system. The ARC-1886-xNxI has an RJ-45 connector out-of-band management port on the rear. You can monitor and manage an ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter using this dedicated management channel to manage the ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter without any host connection. It will also not disturb the host access when you monitor or manage the ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter.

LAN port for RAID manager

• PCIe Bus

Lets you set up and manage RAID storage through In-band web browser manager and ArcSAP utility

You can configure in-band management for communication to travel over the PCIe bus path between a data host and ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter. In-band management uses a proxy agent HTTP management software (ArcHTTP) running on a data host to communicate with an ARC-1886-xNxI RAID adapter.

Web Browser-Based Management

McRAID storage manager is firmware-based utility, which is accessible via the web browser installed on your operating system. The web browser-based McRAID storage manager is a HTML-based application, which utilizes the browser (Safari, IE and Mozilla etc) installed on your monitor station. It can be accessed through the in-band Thunderbolt bus and out of band Ethernet port. The in-band-Thunderbolt bus method can launch the web browser-based McRAID storage manager via ArcHTTP proxy server.

web browser-based management

User-Friendly Graphical-Based Management

Areca Single Admin Portal (ArcSAP) quick manager is an alternative graphical-based device management program specifically designed for use in managing and configuring RAID unit implemented using any of Areca RAID controllers. ArcSAP quick manager can scan for multiple RAID units in the local and remote systems and provide an effective mechanism to configure your RAID units.

Areca Single Admin Portal (ArcSAP)


Actual data rates may vary depending on operating environment, RAID mode, RAID configuration, NVMe model and NVMe performance. The best performance is installed the PCIe Gen 4 NVMes and connect the ARC-1886-xNxI to a computer that supports PCIe Gen 4.0 X8 slot. Below is the test result on the new mac pro 2019.



File Version Date
ARC-1886-xNxI Specification 2.0 download icon 2024/06/06
ARC-1886-xNxI User Manual 1.12 download icon 2023/09/25
ARC-1886-6N2I Quick Installation Guide 1.2 download icon 2021/07/29
ARC-1886-4N8I Quick Installation Guide 1.1 download icon 2021/07/29
ARC-CD2I Quick Installation Guide 1.0 download icon 2021/02/05
CLI Utility User Manual 5.2 download icon 2022/01/04
LCD Manual 1.3 download icon 2015/10/20
ArcSAP User Manual 4.2 2020/11/03
File Version Date
ARC-1886-6N2I firmware 1.69 download icon 2023/12/15
1. Add UEFI Shell virtual disk for UEFI BIOS to enter controller setup
2. Add support of unmanaged pcie switch (Supermicro's backplane)
3. Fix NVME direct IO problem in win11/2022
4. Add ARM UEFI BIOS support, 3 BIOS images (INT13+x64 UEFI+arm64 UEFI) included
5. Fix seagate SAS mach.2 hdd error handling problem