I am using an Areca-1223-8i to run 8 4TB Hitachi 7K4000 Ultrastars in RAID 5. It is used for Blu-ray and DVD iso's so performance isn't necessarily the number one priority. I like that RAID 5 offers the most usable space but from what I read online almost no one uses RAID 5 in large arrays like this--but perhaps this may be because they are usually for enterprise purposes.
The array is backed up with an external JBOD system on a weekly basis, so even in the worst case scenario, failure would not necessarily be catastrophic.
Metadata and artwork is stored on the array, so random access speed is sort of important. Right now it takes a 5-7 seconds to load a screen of two dozen movie covers. I've considered upgrading to a more powerful raid card with dual core to help with this issue but they are extremely expensive.
The entire array is within the media server itself, with the RAID card plugged into the pci-express slot of a X58A motherboard with a Q6600 processor.
Wow that is lots of money!
ARC-1228 is $450.00
8x Ultrastar is over $4000.00
and it takes 5~7 sec to load the artworks... there is something not right!
this RAID RANDOM read about 200MB/sec
1_ Eight drives is not a BIG RAID array yet... My client has 24x 4TB as raid5 with HS, this crank out at 650MB/sec random read
2_ You could of save big $$$, if you come to this forum at early of the process.
you could have a 32TB with Hot-spare RAID volume at the same price or lower
3_ Press CTL+ALT+DEL to monitor the system resource while you loading the the covert arts, you should be able to pin point the bottle neck
I don't have space for more than 8 drives and I needed at least 20 TB of storage, so my options were pretty limited.
The Areca-1228 is solid -- I'd have to spend 800-1000 USD to obtain a RAID card with markedly better performance. Am I wrong?
I doesn't take 5-7 seconds to load one piece of artwork, it takes 5-7 seconds for a whole screen of ~20 covers to load. Some of them load within a second or two. I thought this was mostly due to two reasons:
1) the program's loading of the cover art isn't very "smart." The program attempts to load thousands of cover art files at once instead of focusing on just the ones the viewer has on-screen.
2) the limitations of mechanical hard drives.
You don't really make any helpful suggestions (using the system resources monitor does not help) and don't even attempt to answer the primary question I asked. But your one-upmanship was certainly memorable. Thank you.
I think I will be going with RAID 6. Single redundancy with large drives is very risky. When/if a drive fails, the parity data from the remaining disks has to be perfectly intact--one bad sector and you lose the entire array. The larger the hard drive, the larger the chances that you lose a bit here or there. In RAID 6 since there's double parity, a missing bit can be cross-referenced with the other parity set, preventing loss of the array.
My suggestion use the RAID array as external box, if there is something wrong with the system you can always move it to other system and access the data, also It will out less heat stress on the existing system.
All computer rooms ARE COLD, and you need to keep you system run as COOL as possible