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RAID 0 and 1

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January 12, 2013 11:19:54 AM

I bought 3 of these drives
Kingston HyperX 3K SH103S3/120G 2.5" 120GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) (Stand-Alone Drive) x3
i have not received them yet but i was hoping to configure drive 1 and 2 as RAID 0 and drive 3 as RAID 1, is this possible since i have an uneven number of drives ? I'm trying to avoid manually backing up to drive 3.
I know it seems silly but I wanted to know if this could be done before i buy windows.

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a c 86 G Storage
January 12, 2013 11:59:04 AM

No. What you are trying to do is called raid10 and needs 4 drives. 2*120Gb=240Gb. How should that fit on the remaining 120Gb disk? Beside that: raid1 is NOT a backup! Raid1 will write corruptions caused be the os and hardware and your accidentally deleted files to the second drive. The raid0 with ssds will get you a performance gain in benchmarks only, but not in the real world, but you will loose the important trim feature. Recommendation: send the three drive back and get a faster 240Gb + a HDD for backup instead.
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January 12, 2013 12:23:19 PM

No, Raid 1 requires 2 drives for mirroring.

And yes, you can provision the drives before installing Windows. You must do this through BIOS.

You may want to consider setting up shadow copy within Windows to automagically back up your RAID 0 SSDs.

Also, RAID 0 for SSDs is problematic at best with current technology. It requires Windows 7 or 8, a motherboard with a Z77 chipset and other items you can read about here -> http://www.techpowerup.com/170439/SSD-TRIM-Command-on-R...

Read up on shadow copy here -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_Copy
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a c 104 G Storage
January 12, 2013 12:58:49 PM

Yep, what your after is called RAID10. Need four drives.

Whether its possible comes down to the mobo more than the OS.

As Noidea pointed out, RAID1 only protects against physical drive failure (which is pretty much non-existent on modern SSD's). Your data can still be lost through software means like a virus or accidentally formatting the array.
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a c 86 G Storage
January 12, 2013 1:23:28 PM

You need 4 drives.

Also you would be better off creating an external backup. If you system gets corrupt, or fries, you could lose all you data(including your backup)
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January 12, 2013 1:28:05 PM

You could do RAID 5 with 3 drives, which stripes 2 drives and uses the third drive for parity in case one of the drives fails. But I don't think that's a good solution either.

I think your best option is to get a large SSD for your OS, apps, and games and get two mechanical drives in RAID 1 for your sensitive data. I can't see a lot of reasons why a home user would need RAID 0 or 1 SSDs.
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January 12, 2013 1:46:03 PM

noidea_77 said:
No. What you are trying to do is called raid10 and needs 4 drives. 2*120Gb=240Gb. How should that fit on the remaining 120Gb disk? Beside that: raid1 is NOT a backup! Raid1 will write corruptions caused be the os and hardware and your accidentally deleted files to the second drive. The raid0 with ssds will get you a performance gain in benchmarks only, but not in the real world, but you will loose the important trim feature. Recommendation: send the three drive back and get a faster 240Gb + a HDD for backup instead.


Oh i was confused i thought raid 0 halved total capacity. thanks

240Gb SSD ? it could be as expensive as all 3 drives put together.

"not in the real world" what do you mean ? Doing tests shows performance gain but doing actual work doesn't?
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a c 353 G Storage
January 12, 2013 1:48:36 PM

1) Raid10
2) Raid 1+0
Both require 4 drives.
Raid5
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standard_RAID_levels
Total capacity of Raid1 is Sum of two drives, Raid1 total size = size of single drive

I do not recommend raid 5, 10, nor 1+0 for SSDs, Nor raid1. Raid0 is case (usage) dependent - see below.

@noidea_77 :
While I concur with your Bottom line of NOT recommending Raid0 or 1 with SSD, Must also state:
1) Trim is NOW supported when SSD is a raid member drive Provided, Chipset is Intel series 7 and the latest Intel driver is used (So this rules out AMD setups). Understand that the Intel series 6 chipset can be used with a 3rd party hack.
2) While Raid0 will not provide a real life performance boost to a OS + program drive is true - Reason Raid0 does NOT decrease access time, and does VERY little to improve on 4 K random performance - Which are the MOST important matrixs fro a OS + Program drive.
.. HOWEVER, the Increase in SEQUENCIAL performance is real, Just that this is the LEAST important parameter of OS + Program drive. BUT if the drive is primarily used for read/writes of LARGE data (File) structures it does become important and can provide a significat boost. This is the Only case that I recommend a raid0 for SSDs - As A Storage drive and then only if the large persent of usage involves editing Large Bitmap/jpeg photos and/or Large video file manipulations.

With 3 SSD, I'd probably go with:
1) single drive (Drive 0) For OS +Program drive, then depending on usagage:
2) Use drive 1 and Two for a raid0 set up - While it will not improve on small file performance (ie files under 64 K), it will improve performance when file over 64 K are read/writtin. But if Most files on the "2 storage SSDs) are under 64 K then NO advantage to Raid0 and I'd just use as drive "D" & "E"
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January 12, 2013 1:52:42 PM

hapkido said:
You could do RAID 5 with 3 drives, which stripes 2 drives and uses the third drive for parity in case one of the drives fails. But I don't think that's a good solution either.

I think your best option is to get a large SSD for your OS, apps, and games and get two mechanical drives in RAID 1 for your sensitive data. I can't see a lot of reasons why a home user would need RAID 0 or 1 SSDs.


Photoshop documents can be pretty big sometimes as well as animations.
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January 12, 2013 2:02:07 PM

JeauxBleaux said:
No, Raid 1 requires 2 drives for mirroring.

And yes, you can provision the drives before installing Windows. You must do this through BIOS.

You may want to consider setting up shadow copy within Windows to automagically back up your RAID 0 SSDs.

Also, RAID 0 for SSDs is problematic at best with current technology. It requires Windows 7 or 8, a motherboard with a Z77 chipset and other items you can read about here -> http://www.techpowerup.com/170439/SSD-TRIM-Command-on-R...

Read up on shadow copy here -> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_Copy


Im getting Win 7 and this motherboard http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Do you think even with this motherboard it would be problematic ?
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a c 86 G Storage
January 12, 2013 2:17:48 PM

Archex said:
Oh i was confused i thought raid 0 halved total capacity. thanks

240Gb SSD ? it could be as expensive as all 3 drives put together.

"not in the real world" what do you mean ? Doing tests shows performance gain but doing actual work doesn't?

Yes, a 240Gb ssd is not a cheap solution and you got the "real world" right. 95% of the performance gain you see form an ssd is not the transfer rate, but the seek or access time. A hdd needs 15ms to find a file, a ssd need 1ms. The transfer speed only matters, when you copy large files, like videos around from one ssd to another. Concerning the raid0: like an expert who runs a raid0 on this forum wrote some days ago: it is not the question if it fails, the question is when! All the mobo based solutions are software raids and every thing else, but stable.
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a c 353 G Storage
January 12, 2013 5:55:19 PM

1) Best option is to get a larger SSD ie 240 + plust the single 120
.. A 240 gig is faster than it's smaller 120 gig brother.
.. use the 120 gig as a Boot drive (OS + Programs), and the 240 gig for Your files/data.

.. Need to put some things into perspective:
" it is not the question if it fails, the question is when! All the mobo based solutions are software raids and every thing else, but stable. "
First on thee failure - You can say the same about a single drive.
... 1) If you use two drives that say have a failure rate of say 20% in 3 yrs then yes the possibility is that thr raid0 will have a 40 % possibility of a failure - BUT that ALSO means that 60 Percent may last more 3 Yrs. YOU DO NOT use crappy Seagate drives or a Crappy WD green and blue drives for a Raid0, In fact I do not even recommend the WD Black for raid0, You must use a more reliable enterprise drive. it is quickly becoming that for upto 5 years SSDs are more reliable than most consummer drives. I have some HDDs that have been in use for much longer. Example had 3 SCSI drives new in 1999 used until 2004 placed in storage till 2009 and currently are used on a near daily basis - do not think many of the SSDs would be that reliable.

........ I have Used raid0 since late 90's. NOTE this was before SATA interface was even available. I used Raid0 exclussively until SSDs became available, and price was more down to earth. I used the IDE drives on MBs that had a Jmicron Raid controller chip. Still have one in operation. My E6400 (currently in the closet) was set up with dual boot - two raid0 HDDs for XP, and two drives Raid0 for Vista (Swapped vista for Win 7. NEVER had a Failure, and all systems WERE STABLE.

As to raid0 with SSDs, That is how large ones are constructed - basically 2 smaller ones in raid0 config.
Again I only recommend SSDs in Raid0 for a few applications.
Prior to a few months ago a big dissavantage was the loos of TRIM support: However recently INTEL over came that hurdle.

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January 13, 2013 1:35:48 PM

RetiredChief said:
1) Best option is to get a larger SSD ie 240 + plust the single 120
.. A 240 gig is faster than it's smaller 120 gig brother.
.. use the 120 gig as a Boot drive (OS + Programs), and the 240 gig for Your files/data.

.. Need to put some things into perspective:
" it is not the question if it fails, the question is when! All the mobo based solutions are software raids and every thing else, but stable. "
First on thee failure - You can say the same about a single drive.
... 1) If you use two drives that say have a failure rate of say 20% in 3 yrs then yes the possibility is that thr raid0 will have a 40 % possibility of a failure - BUT that ALSO means that 60 Percent may last more 3 Yrs. YOU DO NOT use crappy Seagate drives or a Crappy WD green and blue drives for a Raid0, In fact I do not even recommend the WD Black for raid0, You must use a more reliable enterprise drive. it is quickly becoming that for upto 5 years SSDs are more reliable than most consummer drives. I have some HDDs that have been in use for much longer. Example had 3 SCSI drives new in 1999 used until 2004 placed in storage till 2009 and currently are used on a near daily basis - do not think many of the SSDs would be that reliable.

........ I have Used raid0 since late 90's. NOTE this was before SATA interface was even available. I used Raid0 exclussively until SSDs became available, and price was more down to earth. I used the IDE drives on MBs that had a Jmicron Raid controller chip. Still have one in operation. My E6400 (currently in the closet) was set up with dual boot - two raid0 HDDs for XP, and two drives Raid0 for Vista (Swapped vista for Win 7. NEVER had a Failure, and all systems WERE STABLE.

As to raid0 with SSDs, That is how large ones are constructed - basically 2 smaller ones in raid0 config.
Again I only recommend SSDs in Raid0 for a few applications.
Prior to a few months ago a big dissavantage was the loos of TRIM support: However recently INTEL over came that hurdle.


Im going to keep 2 of the drives, return the other one, set those two as RAID 0 and install OS+programs on them. Then im going to get a fast mechanical one as my backup.

1 240G SSD= $240-$260
2 240 SSDs = $160 money wise this is the clear choice.

Current loading time for Revit, Maya, Max etc on my system is pretty bad so I just wanted to improve loading times a little bit.
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a c 353 G Storage
January 13, 2013 2:20:04 PM

Sounds OK to me.

Raid0/Not Raid0 (SSDs)Your Option, But very little (probably not noticable)performance diff as far as loading OS and programs, May see a small improvement in loading game maps during play (depends on frequency and size).

In either case (Raid0 or Non raid0) your performance will far exceed that of the mechanical HDs.

Both of My 256 gig SSDs (a Crucial M4 and a Samsung 830) were only $180 each. I prefer these compared to ones that have the Sandforce SF22XX Controller.
Will I recommend Crucial M4's, I do Not recommend the M5's. Samsung - Recommend the 830 and the 840 Pro - Do Not recommend the 840 (May after it has been out longer)

NOTE: Benchmarks for SSDs can be a poor representative of real life performance - True for both reviews and manuf stated claims. Currently have 13 SSDs. My primary factor in which I buy are know goverened by reliability an least user problems.

1) I Do NOT buy any SSDs that use Async NAND - OK if Only using in a SATA II port. Goofed up and Bought 2 Agillity IIIs when they first came out.
2) Do not recommend SF based SSDs.
3) Do Not Buy OCZ - This is personal reason - Do Not like company management.
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January 14, 2013 5:13:55 PM

Best answer selected by Archex.
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