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Mixing SATA II & SATA III drives in a single RAID array

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January 22, 2012 4:07:30 AM

Will mixing 2 SATA II drives and 2 SATA III drives in a single RAID array pose any functional or stability issues?

I know the ideal guide for building a RAID array is to use the exact same drives in an array; same brand & model - but I don't live in the ideal world.

I would greatly like to use my current 2TB SATA II drives and integrate them with new 2TB SATA III drives. Will not the software simply configure the RAID to operate at the slower SATA II speed of 3 Gb/s?

A second compatibility point to note is that I am also using a RAID controller card that is categorized as SATA III. I assume this means that it is backwards compatible with a SATA II drive as well. Right?

a b G Storage
January 23, 2012 2:33:15 PM

Never assume, usually SATA III is backward compatible, but why not check with the manufacturer to be sure?

When mixing drives you are correct, not ideal.

But again, if all the drives you use are on the vendors hardware compatibility list then you should be OK.

Your guide should always be your hardware manufacturer.

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January 24, 2012 9:00:10 AM

By hardware, do yo mean drive manufacturer or as relates to the RAID setup. I will be using a Sans Digital 4 Bay enclosure, model TR4M. Upon asking Sans Digital, they said it may function mixing Sata 2 & 3 drives in the single array, but they don't recommend it. It was a vague response.
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