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Western Digital 2 TB Green Drives RAID 0

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June 29, 2010 3:07:56 AM

I am running out of hard drive space for video captures on my desktop, and recently began looking at options to expand the storage. I was looking at taking 2 of these drives in RAID 0 due to their excellent price point, and because they are highly recommended as storage drives.

My question is: Will these drives in RAID be too slow to capture SD (not HD) videos without dropping frames?

Thanks in advance for helping.
a b G Storage
June 29, 2010 3:20:37 AM

Your really can't just go sticking any two drives in RAID. Especially with raid 0 where the risk of failure is much greater. You would be better off getting a nice SSD for current work projects and storing completed projects in a single 2TB drive.

Are you running an intel RAID? If so you have some nice options there.
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June 29, 2010 3:37:22 AM

Thanks for the fast reply.

I agree, an SSD would be quite nice, but the problem is that I have a limited budget, and cannot afford one. I was looking at the 2TB drives because they seem to be the most storage for your money. (I saw these models for $100, 1500GB drives are around $80.) I like to capture several videos at a time, then edit them, and this would help me do so.

I know that RAID 0 is not very safe, and I am planning to move completed projects either to a RAID 1 array on my current drives, or even over to my boot drive. Therefore, if the RAID 0 goes down, it's not a big deal.

When you say that I can't just stick any two drives in RAID, what do you mean? Are some drives not RAID-capable?
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June 30, 2010 3:38:53 AM

Did some more thinking.

I don't really need 4TB of space (2TB*2, no space 'lost' in RAID 0), I could just continue capturing to my current RAID 0 (320GB*2). Then, I could put the larger drives in a RAID 1 for redundancy and backup.

How does this sound to people? I don't lose much if the RAID 0 crashes now, and will probably eventually upgrade this array to 2*500GB, just because the 320s are very old.

Thanks in advance.
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July 1, 2010 3:24:20 PM

My RAID card would probably be AMD, it's the one on this board:

http://ee.giga-byte.com/products/mb/driver/ga-ma785gm-u...

What you're saying is that TLER is important in RAID 0 but not in RAID 1? That makes some degree of sense, but I thought that when rebuilding a RAID 1 all of the data on both drives was lost. Or do the drives retain the data as long as they have not been written to since a drive was dropped, and the array simply has to be rebuilt?

I understand the issue in RAID 0, but the problem is this: the only drives I can find that support TLER are over $100, far out of my budget.

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

In the end, I'm not worried about a moderate amount of down time, I am more concerned with saving money. If it is possible to rebuild a RAID 1 without losing data, I will probably go with that. I'm not so concerned about the RAID 0, because I would back up everything to the RAID 1, only using the RAID 0 for its faster reads and writes.

Thanks for bearing with me, I don't know much about RAID.
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a b G Storage
July 3, 2010 7:33:25 AM

You can rebuild a RAID 1 without losing data, it's kinda the whole point. If one drive fails the other drive has all the relevant data and can even boot the system. With intel RAID you actually have to boot into windows to begin recovery of the second drive. I'm sure it will be the same with AMD.
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a b G Storage
July 3, 2010 9:19:14 PM

I presume you are awair that these are "Advanced Format" drives, and have checked that your RAID controller supports them.
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July 3, 2010 10:54:11 PM

I don't know if the controller supports Advanced Format drives. Does anyone have experience?

My board is revision 1.0 of the board I pointed to earlier, if that helps.

EDIT:

I do know that I will need to run the WD align tool, or use a jumper to set it to a mode compatible with XP. I thought this was all that needed to be done, even if using in RAID.

Thanks for any help.
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August 5, 2010 6:15:59 AM

I had 2 WD-15EARS in a RAID 1 with the 7-8 pin jumped running Win XP on and Asus MB using AMD SB710 chip set. It's be running for about 2-3 months. Windows XP would freeze constantly, sometimes for up to 20 or 30 seconds, and the HD light was constantly on. Using the jumper work around is not a good idea in a raid 1.

Finally I had enough :pt1cable:  . Backed up my raid with acronis trueimage 2010 Home build 7046 using clone HD util (which I believe supports Advanced Format drives). Updated BIOS to latest version (in-case there were any RAID firmware updates). Went into the BIOS, changed HDD controller from RAID to IDE mode. Ran acronis WD align util (from WD web site). Align util will not recognize drives as WD if HDD cont is in ACHI or RAID mode. Went back into BIOS turned on RAID. Went into RAID firmware, re-created RAID 1 drive. Booted PC with acronis TI CD and cloned backup image back onto RAID. Also, to make backup image I booted PC with acronis CD.

It's only been running for a day, but so far so good. No freezing, and the HD light is off most of the time. I'm not sure if running acronis WD align util did any good, because I think the RAID firmware over wrote the partition made by WD align util when it created the logical RAID drive.
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August 7, 2010 3:04:35 AM

Thanks for the detailed reply, even after so much time. After doing some research on my own about these particular drives, I think I might be better off using some 1.5 TB drives that do not appear to be advanced format:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

A friend of mine has 4 of these in RAID 5 under Win 7 Ultimate x64, and says that they are not advanced format, and I have not been able to find any other info about it. Does anyone know for sure?

The 2TB drives would be nice, but I'm not going to go to a lot of trouble for 500GB if these drives will work. My time isn't incredibly valuable, but there are things I'd rather be doing than fiddling in BIOS - I spend enough of my time and money on this machine as it is.

To the earlier poster - During my research, I made sure that my hardware did in fact support advanced format drives - this would be a non-issue if I was using a more modern OS. Just can't afford an upgrade at the moment.
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August 7, 2010 6:28:43 PM

So far so good. Win XP is running great. No hang-ups.

I think what cured my problem was using the newest build of acronis TI 2010, which is WD AF aware, to clone the drive back onto a re-created RAID drive. The first time I installed the RAID and cloned my older single drive onto the new RAID drive, I was using an older build of acronis TI which was Not WD AF aware. FYI - If you are using a "Disk manager" or "HD cloning util" that is WD AF aware do Not use a jumper on pin 7-8. A WD AF program will automatically adjust the partition when copying data to a WD AF drive.

User 18, I'd go with the Seagate drives. Most of my drives are Seagate, and they all worked beautifully.

Chao.
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