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RAID 0 and SSD cache on ASUS p8z68

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January 26, 2012 7:19:39 PM

Hello,

In my last computer I had a RAID 0 as OS partition and a couple disks for extra storage, and have been happy about that, so I wanted to keep doing it. but now I wanted to experience a little with a ssd.

My build:
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe
RAID 0 HDs: 2x Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB SATA III 7200 RPM 64MB Cache WD1002FAEX
General Storage HD: Western Digital Caviar Green 2 TB WD20EARX
ssd for cache: Crucial 64 GB m4 SSD SATA 6Gb/s CT064M4SSD2

I intend the 2 caviar black for a RAID 0, and the Caviar Green for regular storage. the SSD using z68 Intel Smart Response Technology(ISRT) for caching the RAID 0 array.
I don't want to use the SSD directly as a boot drive since it is too small.
All 4 drives are SATA 6Gb/s.

I have 2x 6Gb/s SATA ports and 4x 3Gb/s in the Intel Chipset, and 2x 6Gb/s using a Marvell chipset on the motherboard.

The marvell chipset can support RAID 0, but not the Intel Smart Response Technology, so i only have 2x 6Gb/s ports available when using ISRT
If I neglect ISRT, i have 4x 6Gb/s available.

what is better?
(1). put the RAID 0 on the Intel 6Gb/s ports, and SSD caching on a 3Gb/s port?
(2). put the RAID 0 on 3Gb/s ports and the SSD cache on a Intel 6Gb/s port?
(3). Don't be like that and put the SSD 64GB as OS boot drive, that's plenty space, keep your RAID 0 for you apps, and your green caviar for your bulk data. (filling the 4x 6Gb/s I whould have available if I don't use ISRT)
(4). Forget the SSD caching, stay with the rest of the setup. Play with your ssd if you are really just curious about'em.
(5). Do whatever you like, when ssd prices drop and you can afford a big ssd, reinstall your OS there and have fun.


I'm mostly inclined by doing option (2) and eventually after a while option (5). That is under the assumption that the RAID 0 is not being limited by the 3Gb/s ports on option (2)

Any advice is welcomed
Thanks,





a c 317 G Storage
January 26, 2012 7:52:48 PM

Option 3 -- 64gb ssd is plenty large for your OS and most used programs. SSD caching is a waste of such a large drive. Just put the paging file on a HDD and optimize your ssd.
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a c 114 G Storage
January 26, 2012 8:08:21 PM

Outside of special applications, video editing, huge databases, etc....RAID 0 in SSD's is a minimal impact thing.
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January 26, 2012 8:30:29 PM

krusteomel said:
Hello,

In my last computer I had a RAID 0 as OS partition and a couple disks for extra storage, and have been happy about that, so I wanted to keep doing it. but now I wanted to experience a little with a ssd.

My build:
Motherboard: ASUS P8Z68 Deluxe
RAID 0 HDs: 2x Western Digital Caviar Black 1 TB SATA III 7200 RPM 64MB Cache WD1002FAEX
General Storage HD: Western Digital Caviar Green 2 TB WD20EARX
ssd for cache: Crucial 64 GB m4 SSD SATA 6Gb/s CT064M4SSD2

I intend the 2 caviar black for a RAID 0, and the Caviar Green for regular storage. the SSD using z68 Intel Smart Response Technology(ISRT) for caching the RAID 0 array.
I don't want to use the SSD directly as a boot drive since it is too small.
All 4 drives are SATA 6Gb/s.

I have 2x 6Gb/s SATA ports and 4x 3Gb/s in the Intel Chipset, and 2x 6Gb/s using a Marvell chipset on the motherboard.

The marvell chipset can support RAID 0, but not the Intel Smart Response Technology, so i only have 2x 6Gb/s ports available when using ISRT
If I neglect ISRT, i have 4x 6Gb/s available.

what is better?
(1). put the RAID 0 on the Intel 6Gb/s ports, and SSD caching on a 3Gb/s port?
(2). put the RAID 0 on 3Gb/s ports and the SSD cache on a Intel 6Gb/s port?
(3). Don't be like that and put the SSD 64GB as OS boot drive, that's plenty space, keep your RAID 0 for you apps, and your green caviar for your bulk data. (filling the 4x 6Gb/s I whould have available if I don't use ISRT)
(4). Forget the SSD caching, stay with the rest of the setup. Play with your ssd if you are really just curious about'em.
(5). Do whatever you like, when ssd prices drop and you can afford a big ssd, reinstall your OS there and have fun.


I'm mostly inclined by doing option (2) and eventually after a while option (5). That is under the assumption that the RAID 0 is not being limited by the 3Gb/s ports on option (2)

Any advice is welcomed
Thanks,

be EXTREMELY careful with option 4! it can lead to a life time of seclusion! lol JK
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a c 317 G Storage
January 26, 2012 8:37:51 PM

JackNaylorPE said:
If a man speaks in the forest and no woman hears him, is he still wrong ?


As I understand it, and am constantly reminded, if a man has a thought, it is pretty much wrong whether or not it is shared. :lol: 

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a c 523 G Storage
January 26, 2012 9:46:52 PM

krusteomel said:
what is better?

(1). put the RAID 0 on the Intel 6Gb/s ports, and SSD caching on a 3Gb/s port?
(2). put the RAID 0 on 3Gb/s ports and the SSD cache on a Intel 6Gb/s port?
(3). Don't be like that and put the SSD 64GB as OS boot drive, that's plenty space, keep your RAID 0 for you apps, and your green caviar for your bulk data. (filling the 4x 6Gb/s I whould have available if I don't use ISRT)
(4). Forget the SSD caching, stay with the rest of the setup. Play with your ssd if you are really just curious about'em.
(5). Do whatever you like, when ssd prices drop and you can afford a big ssd, reinstall your OS there and have fun.



Option 2

Put all of your HDDs on the Intel 3Gb/s ports and your SSD on the Intel 6Gb/s port.

Two HDDs in RAID-0 cannot spin fast enough to saturate the 3Gb/s ports so you will suffer no performance loss connecting them there.

You can then use the SSD as a ISRT cache for your RAID-0 array.
Your 2TB Caviar Green will automatically default to AHCI mode since it will not be part of any RAID array.
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a b G Storage
January 26, 2012 10:15:32 PM

Seriously forget all the options and just install the OS on the 64gb drive - that is plenty of space. SSD caching (like Intel RST) is really meant for tiny SSDs and honestly I think we might as well call it obsolete (in a desktop computer) since a 64gb SSD is cheap enough and outperforms Intel RST and 2 x HDD in RAID-0.

You will get the maximum performance from the OS installed on the SSD. There will even be room for a few demanding apps. If you require additional high-speed storage then continue to use the RAID-0 HDDs as a separate volume.

Edit: Ok, so that's option 3!
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Best solution

January 27, 2012 3:01:29 AM

(2)

SRT isn't going to be as fast as pure SSD speeds. What it will be however is an install and forget solution that will boost 90% of everything you do. I've been running 2xSSD in RAID0 for two years now. While the speed is ok, the constant micro-managing of what to install and what not to install is a real pain. Pair that with the headaches of having to optimize it out of the gate and it's not really a very fun experience.

As was pointed to earlier, two mechanical drives in RAID0 will not saturate SATA 3Gb/s, not even close so don't fret that.

If you do decide to use your SSD as a boot drive don't forget to migrate your Users folder. It's by far the biggest run-away growth culprit of Win7. You'll need a guide for this however as it's not as simple as just copy/paste.

GL either way.
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January 31, 2012 5:13:06 PM

Dereck47 said:
Option 2

Put all of your HDDs on the Intel 3Gb/s ports and your SSD on the Intel 6Gb/s port.

Two HDDs in RAID-0 cannot spin fast enough to saturate the 3Gb/s ports so you will suffer no performance loss connecting them there.

You can then use the SSD as a ISRT cache for your RAID-0 array.
Your 2TB Caviar Green will automatically default to AHCI mode since it will not be part of any RAID array.


Dereck47,
Thanks a lot, I was wondering a lot about the RAID speed being block-necked by the speed of the transfer, knowing that it do not is a big help in my choice about on which ports will be located each drive. :) 

Btw, richardjsf mentioned you in a similar topic (http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/277675-32-asus-p8z68-...) I will be using this guide to install my Drives :)  so thanks you too for that.

a4mula said:
(2)

SRT isn't going to be as fast as pure SSD speeds. What it will be however is an install and forget solution that will boost 90% of everything you do. I've been running 2xSSD in RAID0 for two years now. While the speed is ok, the constant micro-managing of what to install and what not to install is a real pain. Pair that with the headaches of having to optimize it out of the gate and it's not really a very fun experience.

As was pointed to earlier, two mechanical drives in RAID0 will not saturate SATA 3Gb/s, not even close so don't fret that.

If you do decide to use your SSD as a boot drive don't forget to migrate your Users folder. It's by far the biggest run-away growth culprit of Win7. You'll need a guide for this however as it's not as simple as just copy/paste.

GL either way.


a4mula,
I think I get it pretty clear with your explanation, I feel strongly towards the ssd-cached option, I'm not so much a fan for carefully installing/uninstalling/moving stuff.

I may not get the best performance this way, but I'll probably be more comfortable. I prefer everything running a little faster, than selected software running so fast. In a year or so I will get a bigger ssd to hold my os and apps and keep the raid0 cached.


I'll get my ssd & hard drives in a couple of days, I'll start rerouteing the sata cables on my case to the appropriate places, so I just have to put in the drives.

Thank you all for your advice :) 

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January 31, 2012 5:30:45 PM

Best answer selected by krusteomel.
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February 1, 2012 12:34:37 PM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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