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Do I need to raid?

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March 27, 2010 10:55:06 AM

Hi there. Can you help?

I have one hdd at present (750 gb hitachi HDT721075SLA380 to be precise). It is ok, but I am already near to full capacity.

I need a new drive, or new drives.

What is important to me? I would like speed of course, and to be honest, the hard drive I have isn't that great or quick. Storage is also very important, so something like a SSD is out of the question.

I have my eye on the 1tb Samsung F3s.

Is it worth going raid 0 with a couple of them? Would I notice a diference in performance?

RAID 5 offers protection, but could I use my hitachi in the array?

Is it not worth going with RAID at all, and just getting two samsungs as independent discs?

Any ideas greatly appreciated, as always.

More about : raid

a b G Storage
March 27, 2010 11:29:45 AM

I don't know. You need to decide. I know that if I were going to build a RAID array, I would spend the extra money for a RAID controller. Motherboard RAID solutions pretty much tie you to that particular model of motherboard.

Using your present 750 GB drive has two problems. RAID requires equal sized drives. So your array will be based on 750 GB drives instead of more modern designs. Second, what will you do with the data already on the drive?
March 27, 2010 11:30:07 AM

Unless you are storing critical information I would go with raid0 as it is faster overall. It is definitely worth it in my opinion.

Heres a little bit of info I dug up that goes into the basic +/- of the various raid levels. I copied the raid0 and raid 5 portions below.

taken from:http://www.prepressure.com/library/technology/raid


RAID 0 Can be done with 2 drives.

In a RAID 0 system, data are split up in blocks that get written across all the drives in the array. By using multiple disks (at least 2) at the same time, RAID 0 offers superior I/O performance. This performance can be enhanced further by using multiple controllers, ideally one controller per disk.

Advantages

* RAID 0 offers great performance, both in read and write operations. There is no overhead caused by parity controls.
* All storage capacity can be used, there is no disk overhead.
* The technology is easy to implement.

Disadvantages

RAID 0 is not fault-tolerant. If one disk fails, all data in the RAID 0 array are lost. It should not be used on mission-critical systems.
Ideal use

RAID 0 is ideal for non-critical storage of data that have to be read/written at a high speed, e.g. on a Photoshop image retouching station.


RAID 5 minimum of 3 drives

RAID 5 is the most common secure RAID level. It is similar to RAID-3 except that data are transferred to disks by independent read and write operations (not in parallel). The data chunks that are written are also larger. Instead of a dedicated parity disk, parity information is spread across all the drives. You need at least 3 disks for a RAID 5 array.
A RAID 5 array can withstand a single disk failure without losing data or access to data. Although RAID 5 can be achieved in software, a hardware controller is recommended. Often extra cache memory is used on these controllers to improve the write performance.

Advantages

Read data transactions are very fast while write data transaction are somewhat slower (due to the parity that has to be calculated).
Disadvantages

* Disk failures have an effect on throughput, although this is still acceptable.
* Like RAID 3, this is complex technology.

Ideal use

RAID 5 is a good all-round system that combines efficient storage with excellent security and decent performance. It is ideal for file and application servers.
Related resources
March 27, 2010 11:38:17 AM

I'm not storing critical info. It's just a home PC. I've never had a hard drive fail on me, so I don't know why they'd start failing now. Perhaps RAID 0 is the best then (thanks for that list crosko). What could I do with 750 gb drive? Sell it I guess.
March 27, 2010 11:41:37 AM

matt77 said:
I'm not storing critical info. It's just a home PC. I've never had a hard drive fail on me, so I don't know why they'd start failing now. Perhaps RAID 0 is the best then (thanks for that list crosko). What could I do with 750 gb drive? Sell it I guess.


You could always pick up an enclosure and use it as an external drive. Enclosures are like $30 on newegg.
March 27, 2010 12:08:04 PM

Nice idea. Thanks.
!