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Help deciding how to run my hard drives

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December 29, 2008 4:49:24 PM

I have decided on getting this hard drive:

Western Digital Caviar Black WD5001AALS 500GB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s Hard Drive - $69.99

I have 3 options I'm going between:
1) Buy 2 of them and run them in RAID 0 - around $140
2) Buy 3 of them and run 2 in RAID 0 and 1 as a backup - around $210
3) Buy 1 of them and then buy a WD Raptor 74GB 10000RPM and put OS/Games on that HDD and data on the 500GB drive - around $180

Which would you choose? (I'll already be running at least 4GB of RAM)
December 29, 2008 5:11:23 PM

The first thing I would do it switch that from a WD 500 to a WD 640. It's a $5 upgrade and you'll benefit in 2 ways. Obviously the additional space, but the 640's are also faster.

This wasn't one of your options, but it's what I plan to do. I have 1 640 as a backup drive. I thought about getting another and doing a raid 0, but I have a 150 gig raptor drive as my os/boot drive.

SSD's are going to be the best option in a few months. I'm waiting until I can get 2 64GB SSD's for $300, which will be around may - june from the look of things. This will get me 4-5 times the read times of my current Raptor drive, as well as tripling my write speeds.

If you don't want to wait that long, I'd probably go with option #2. I'd recommned getting 3 drives and doing a raid 5, but I've seen benchmarks where performance was significantly hindered with Raid 5 arrays. So the Raid 0 with an additional for backup sounds better.
a b G Storage
December 29, 2008 5:20:16 PM

Get the Raptor and install your OS onto a 20-30GB partition;
allocate the remainder to a data partition e.g. for archiving
drive image files of the OS partition.

Then, get 2 x WD 500GB RE3 HDDs and configure them
as RAID 0 -- for speed:


$70/3 year warranty = $23.33 per warranty-year
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

$90/5 year warranty = $18.00 per warranty-year
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


When you create drive image backups of your OS partition,
write the output files to the RAID 0, then copy them back
to the data partition on the OS drive -- for redundancy.

If you write drive image files to the data partition
on the OS drive, the read/write armature will thrash
back and forth -- which will increase the wear on that
servo mechanism.


If you can afford it, the WD 150GB VelociRaptor is far superior
to prior versions of the Raptor e.g.:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


MRFS
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December 29, 2008 5:23:42 PM

Even though that's only a $5 upgrade and easily do-able I just don't have the need for that space. I'm currently running on a 160GB hard drive and only have 80gb used. Is it still worth upgrading to the 640?

I don't want to wait too long and don't know much about the SSD drives. Even though you use a raptor as a OS/boot drive you recommend getting the WD 500gb in RAID 0, why is that?
December 30, 2008 4:05:00 PM

Any other opinions? Keep budget in mind.
!