I have a major issue with the build of a machine I am trying to get up and running. My goal is to create a file server that will service the needs of my software development, personal media storage and streaming/media server needs, as well as provide a strong platform for backing up all this data in a routine, cron-job oriented German efficiency sort of way.

The issue is a simple one - all my drives are SATA drives and my motherboard controller only contains 4 ports. Solving the issue has proven to be an unmitigated nightmare. I would like advice on the purchase of the following:

4 Port internal SATA / 2 Port external eSATA PCI SATA Controller Card that has the following features and/or advantages:

1. It must function. If I plug it in and attach drives, I expect my system to still make it to the Operating System login screen.

2. It must function on CentOS, and I mean it must function WELL and with MINIMAL hassle. If hassle is unavoidable, there shall be CLEAR CUT and EASY TO FOLLOW instructions on how to install drivers and other supporting software.

3. I do not need nor want fakeRAID - I will be setting up any RAID configurations from within the operating system.

Now, if I am able to find such a mythical device, I would be eternally grateful to whomever would be able to point me in the right direction, a direction which I assume will be paved with yellow bricks. I am prepared to pay a considerable sum of money (as SATA controller cards go) and so paying anywhere between 60 to 120 dollars will not be an issue whatsoever.

Does such a magical device exist? The following link shows an "example" of the type of thing I am looking for, however, I have no way of verifying that once I plug this baby in that my system will still continue to function once I've attached the drives, or that once I've made it to the OS, I will be able to install whatever drivers or software programs I need to make it work with relative ease. It doesn't have to be dog-**** simple, but it cannot involve kernels or brain surgery.