RAID 5 optimal setup

Hello everyone,

This is my first post; this site has been an invaluable resource whilst making the change to a new and heartier system.

I've just setup a new system - primarily for music production although also to increase the efficiency of performing everyday tasks such as working on multiple Office docs and PDF files etc (no gaming). I've assembled an i7_870@2.93GHZ with an ASUS P7_P55LX running on-board Raid and 4Gb RAM (Gfx: ATI Radeon 5450 512mb).

I've searched all over the site and forums but I can't seem to find what I'm looking for.
You see in the machine I've got 2 x WD Green 1Tb HDDs (brand new), and 1 x Samsung 1Tb HDD (taken from an older external drive) running on RAID 5, plus another 500Gb disk which I'm yet to format.

My query is about how I might configure the RAID array for optimized read/write and data protection.

Currently I have it configured with the 3 x 1Tb HDDs on Raid 5 representing a 1x 2Tb physical disk that is partitioned as follows: 310Gb (boot, page file, crash dump), 100Gb (system reserved), and 510Gb, 510Gb & 570Gb (for storage).

-Is partitioning like this a good idea?

-Can anyone please suggest a logical way to configure the RAID array so that the machine will be organised, with read and write times optimized while also maintaining data protection? (Bearing in mind that I can always pick up another 1Tb disk for around $70 or possibly even go down the SSD road).

Thanks, Nic
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  1. Not sure I can comment on your partitioning question. I can't honestly see a reason to do that. What was your logic? Your disks are already in a RAID array so I don't think you are getting any extra security by doing that.

    As far as adding a 500gb drive to the array, DON'T DO THAT. That will actually result in less total space in your array (array size equals number of drives x size of smallest drive - parity space)
  2. Yeah, the best thing to do is probably stick with your RAID 5 3x1TB's as it is and then put the 500GB drive as your OS. That will optimize your performance more than anything else. And yes, definitely don't add the 500GB to your RAID as it will then make all of your HDD's as if they were just 500GBer's.
  3. Thank you.
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