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Help optomize my raid

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May 12, 2010 12:26:16 PM

Hi, I am running a K9N2 Sli Platinum from MSI
the board has 4 ports that are running from the Nvidia Chipset (0,1,2,3)
and 2 ports from the JMicron Chipset (4,5)

I have a RAID0 setup of three 500Gb drives (Seagate 7200.11 32Mb Cache 500Gb)
but my mate put the cables into the wrong ports as we re-built my box
and the RAID is set up over ports 0,4,5

I also set up a partition as of 1TB (1024Gb) for media and the remaining space (350Gb or so) is for my OS

I am getting speeds of a bout 100Mbps average off the entire array using HD TUNE PRO

Im not sure if this is a good rate or not for a 3 drive RAID0

if it isnt, should I remove the partition, or move the drives to 0,1,2 or both to fix the speed?

if I do, what kind of boost would I expect, and, is it possible to move the drives around without moving the data off the drives
and moving them back, or would I be able to rebuild it in BIOS?

More about : optomize raid

a c 127 G Storage
May 12, 2010 2:04:19 PM

You do not say what RAID engine you use; which is very important of course.

If you use the chipset ports, you are running nVidia Mediashield RAID.
If you use the JMicron ports, you are using the JMicron JMB363 controller.

However, you state that you had three harddrives; 2 connected to nvidia, 1 to the jmicron. then you talk about a 3-drive RAID0. This is not possible if you connected the three disk to two different controllers; it cannot be one array.

The only situation where this would be possible would be with using software RAID.
So please explain to us how you setup this RAID first.

Generally, you should avoid the JMicron RAID drivers and never use them.
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May 12, 2010 9:22:27 PM

they are quite definetly across two controllers, most likely the case is, that I am running off the Nvidia RAID controller, as you are allowed access to drives 4,5 through the BIOS

It is DEFINETLY not a software level raid, as the array was built BEFORE installing windows.

In such a case would it be safe to move them across to the Nvidia ports, as a test, and if the array isnt found, move them back?

if the array isnt found, it obviously wont book to windows, which im aware is an issue
in the case of rebuilding an array.
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a c 127 G Storage
May 12, 2010 11:47:28 PM

So you actually CAN boot into Windows, with a 3xRAID0 array on ports 0, 4, 5 (nvidia+jmicron) and it works without problems?

I'm kind of stunned, actually. :p 

Though its certainly possible the nVidia RAID drivers use disks from the JMicron controller, i would expected they only used their own controllers.

Either way, what exactly is your question? If you are concerned about speed, download some benchmarks, screenshot them and post them here.

Good benchmarks are: AS SSD, CrystalDiskMark, HDTune Pro (File benchmark+Random Access).
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May 13, 2010 1:52:02 AM

sub mesa said:
So you actually CAN boot into Windows, with a 3xRAID0 array on ports 0, 4, 5 (nvidia+jmicron) and it works without problems?

I'm kind of stunned, actually. :p 

Though its certainly possible the nVidia RAID drivers use disks from the JMicron controller, i would expected they only used their own controllers.

Either way, what exactly is your question? If you are concerned about speed, download some benchmarks, screenshot them and post them here.

Good benchmarks are: AS SSD, CrystalDiskMark, HDTune Pro (File benchmark+Random Access).



As alread stated, I was getting a data transfer rate (read) using HD TUNE PRO, of 100-110MBPS, it doesnt drop down over the length of
the array (as its a raid) and is a straight line across rarely dropping below 100, but is that fast enough? I know the drives on there own can average speeds of 80-90, should I expect speeds like 240-270MBPS?

CHEERS
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May 13, 2010 2:06:04 AM

by the way, im assuming, as they are all under the control of the Nvidia RAID controller, it would be easy to move the drives to different ports, but I am not willing to do so without being 100% as rebuilding my OS isnt a fun task.

I only have backups of the media.
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a c 127 G Storage
May 13, 2010 3:26:04 AM

The HDTune Pro test has a tab named "File"; this benchmark will test on the filesystem instead; raise the test value to a higher value and run the benchmark. Now see if you get any different (higher) results.
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May 13, 2010 6:40:43 AM

yeah, I redid the tests, speeds in excess of 150MBPS, but only about 2/3 of the way through.








FINALLY GOT SOME SCREEN SHOTS FOR YOU
the last image, is obviously ALOT faster, and actually shows the dropoff at the end that I was looking for, this is using file sizes of 8Mb as appose to the default of 64kb
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a c 127 G Storage
May 13, 2010 12:35:19 PM

I would look most to the file speeds; those are pretty good. 225MB/s read seems alot better than 100MB/s. ;-)

However, your IOps is quite low. But that is 'normal' with Windows.
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May 13, 2010 8:27:59 PM

thanks, the burst speeds are also looking a bit slow, I was a bit worried when I saw the first test, with the speed being stable across the platter
to me that said there was a bottleneck somewhere in the controller or the RAID or somewhere in software, it ended up I simply couldnt work with peices
of 64kb, as appose to 8mb :) 

Ill probably still considering moving the cables about, so they are all on the same controller though, any-thoughts on whether this is safe to do.
during boot, it shows the Nvidia Media Shield RAID screen, as it checks the RAID for health, so im taking a guess here saying that its most likely already under the
nvidia controller, but if I move the ports, how do I rebuild it such as it knows which drive is which. Is it smart enough to understand its looking at a RAID array it already built?
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!