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Raid 1 - 2HD - Hot Swap - HW - Solution - (Sata HD's) - XP Pro

Tags:
  • NAS / RAID
  • HD
  • Storage
  • Product
Last response: in Storage
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July 24, 2011 11:30:06 AM

Hi, this is my first post on here. (24th July 2011), so thanks to anyone offering good information.

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What do I get to install a Hardware Hot-Swop Raid 1 (mirror not stripe) solution into my SFF Desktop PC?

Probably should mention ...
This is to protect a 'data set HD' - not a 'boot HD'
(I already use Ghost imaging to protect the 'boot HD' and that works very nicely :)  .)
(Ghosting won't be any good for nearly 1TB of data so hence I'm turning to Raid for an answer :??:  )

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Reasons for wanting this solution ...
Hardware RAID - fast and efficient, & auto creation of mirror sets (don't need to make/break mirror in O/S).
Hot-Swop - so I can plonk a hard drive into the single bay at any time with the PC off or on.
Raid 1 - to create a pair of Hard Disks, either of which can be removed and stored as a dataset backup.

Some Caveats ...
} I'm wanting a solution that works in my small Form Factor PC - a HP DC7700 SFF. [ tall order I know !! ]
} I'm looking to remove this PC's dvd drive to make room for a single hot-swop 3.5" HD bay.
} There is space inside the case to fit three hard drives.
One Boot HD fixed inside the case.
One Mirror HD fixed inside the case.
One Mirror HD slotted inside the single HotSwop drive bay.
} The Single Drive HotSwop Caddy will need to fit in a standard Bay inside the case with dimensions
width - 14.6cm (standard dvd drive width)
height - 4.2cm (standard dvd drive height)
depth - 20cm (including clearance for data and power leads)
} The intention is to keep power consumption and hard drive wear and tear to a minimum so the hot-swop bay will only be occuppied until the hard drive in it is holding a good mirror image of the data set. The bay will be sat empty most of the time. This requirement excludes an external NAS solution.
} The RAID card would need to be Standard Full Height PCI, as my SFF PC has a PCi riser card :heink:  .
} SATA Hard drive so SATA 'Drive Bay' and SATA 'Raid Card'.
} Both drives in the mirror should be usable individually on a another pc with no RAID solution, either in-case or in a sata caddy.
} The RAID card should upport S.M.A.R.T so Arconis Drive Monitor can report any signs of iminent failure.
} If there is a failure alert, there should be time to insert a drive into the bay and let Raid 1 create the mirror data set before the primary drive fails.

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What's happenning now ...
Currently recovering precious data from a 9 month old - WD 750Gb SATA HD.
no Backup? I hear you ask - well where do you keep a 750Gb data set?
The failure was sudden. Turned off the pc one night, next morning it wouldn't start.
Reviewing the event logs, there was only a 2 hour window from the first event log errors to full failure.
Now using Arconis Drive Monitor, but this is only of small help.

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Data recovery method 'GNU ddrescue' from
(Ubuntu Rescue Remix -Live -bootable cd -v11.04) ... to salvage data off the failed HD to a 1TB WD HD.
Fingers crossed - seems to be going well after two days the recovery log file is reporting a size of 750Gb with an error size of less than 30Mb so shouldn't have lost too much hopefully :D  .

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Some Background ...
Failed HD model -
WD7500AADS - 00M2B0 (manufactured 21Mar2010) Western digital Caviar Green - 32Mb Cache - SATA.
O/S
XP Pro - SP3
Platform
HP DC7700 SFF (Small Form Factor)

Back in the day I used Hot Swop SCSI solutions in HP Netservers. Not sure about SATA, now but back then you needed to buy Hot-Swop capable Raid Cards and Hot-Swop capable hard drives, to avoid frying Drives, Mobos and anything else. Is this the case now or is SATA more robust?

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Sorry about dumping such long and detailed information, but one wrong turn and any advice given won't be any use for this scenario. :) 

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