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Migrating to RAID 0

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March 13, 2010 5:21:45 AM

Hey all!

I've just purchased another Samsung Spinpoint f3 (500GB) for my system. I'm looking to set the 2 identical drives I now have to RAID 0. I was just wondering what the best path for migration is in everyone's opinion. For instance, should I back up with Acronis True Image then restore? Or is there a better method? Also, generally, how would I go about setting up the RAID? I've got a Gigabyte H55M-USB3 motherboard. Thanks for your help, everyone!

~Coheed

More about : migrating raid

a b Ô Samsung
a c 115 G Storage
March 13, 2010 5:13:15 PM

My advise would be to not do RAID 0 unless you have a specific application that benefits from it.....gaming is not it.

While there are applications that do benefit from RAID 0, gaming isn't generally considered as one of them.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAID_0#RAID_0

RAID 0 is useful for setups such as large read-only NFS servers where mounting many disks is time-consuming or impossible and redundancy is irrelevant.

RAID 0 is also used in some gaming systems where performance is desired and data integrity is not very important. However, real-world tests with games have shown that RAID-0 performance gains are minimal, although some desktop applications will benefit.[1][2]


http://www.anandtech.com/printarticle.aspx?i=2101
"We were hoping to see some sort of performance increase in the game loading tests, but the RAID array didn't give us that. While the scores put the RAID-0 array slightly slower than the single drive Raptor II, you should also remember that these scores are timed by hand and thus, we're dealing within normal variations in the "benchmark".

Our Unreal Tournament 2004 test uses the full version of the game and leaves all settings on defaults. After launching the game, we select Instant Action from the menu, choose Assault mode and select the Robot Factory level. The stop watch timer is started right after the Play button is clicked, and stopped when the loading screen disappears. The test is repeated three times with the final score reported being an average of the three. In order to avoid the effects of caching, we reboot between runs. All times are reported in seconds; lower scores, obviously, being better. In Unreal Tournament, we're left with exactly no performance improvement, thanks to RAID-0

If you haven't gotten the hint by now, we'll spell it out for you: there is no place, and no need for a RAID-0 array on a desktop computer. The real world performance increases are negligible at best and the reduction in reliability, thanks to a halving of the mean time between failure, makes RAID-0 far from worth it on the desktop.

Bottom line: RAID-0 arrays will win you just about any benchmark, but they'll deliver virtually nothing more than that for real world desktop performance. That's just the cold hard truth."


http://www.techwarelabs.com/articl [...] ex_6.shtml
".....we did not see an increase in FPS through its use. Load times for levels and games was significantly reduced utilizing the Raid controller and array. As we stated we do not expect that the majority of gamers are willing to purchase greater than 4 drives and a controller for this kind of setup. While onboard Raid is an option available to many users you should be aware that using onboard Raid will mean the consumption of CPU time for this task and thus a reduction in performance that may actually lead to worse FPS. An add-on controller will always be the best option until they integrate discreet Raid controllers with their own memory into consumer level motherboards."

http://www.hardforum.com/showthread.php?t=1001325
"However, many have tried to justify/overlook those shortcomings by simply saying "It's faster." Anyone who does this is wrong, wasting their money, and buying into hype. Nothing more."

http://computer-drives-storage.sui [...] erformance
"The real-world performance benefits possible in a single-user PC situation is not a given for most people, because the benefits rely on multiple independent, simultaneous requests. One person running most desktop applications may not see a big payback in performance because they are not written to do asynchronous I/O to disks. Understanding this can help avoid disappointment."

http://www.scs-myung.com/v2/index. [...] om_content
"What about performance? This, we suspect, is the primary reason why so many users doggedly pursue the RAID 0 "holy grail." This inevitably leads to dissapointment by those that notice little or no performance gain.....As stated above, first person shooters rarely benefit from RAID 0.__ Frame rates will almost certainly not improve, as they are determined by your video card and processor above all else. In fact, theoretically your FPS frame rate may decrease, since many low-cost RAID controllers (anything made by Highpoint at the tiem of this writing, and most cards from Promise) implement RAID in software, so the process of splitting and combining data across your drives is done by your CPU, which could better be utilized by your game. That said, the CPU overhead of RAID0 is minimal on high-performance processors."

RAID 0 will get you faster boot times but if your looking for something else, unless you are doing movie editing / format conversion, large databases or some other app known to benefit, I don't think you'll see any real advantage.
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March 14, 2010 8:46:01 AM

Bingo. Movie editing/conversion, and a lot of virtualization.
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Related resources
a b Ô Samsung
a c 115 G Storage
March 14, 2010 4:13:33 PM

I think your best bet then would be to move the OS and existing programs on your existing HD to an SSD and then use the HD's for the movie stuff.
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a b G Storage
March 14, 2010 4:18:12 PM

I don't think that a image is going to help you. the raid install will require different drivers unless you happened to set your hdd mode to RAID.

1. Enter the bios, disable any quick boot option and set your hdd mode to RAID.

2. During post hit ctrl+I this will bring you to the Intel Matrix RAID menu.

On a side note I would consider using matrix RAID to setup a small RAID 1. You can keep a disk image and important files here afterward in case the RAID 0 should fail. However if the RAID 0 is not the boot drive then this won't be necessary.

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