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Ide Raid vs. Scsi Raid

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April 12, 2002 8:45:10 PM

Does anyone have personal experience in comparing the two. I am putting a dual athlon system together and really wanted 2 18gb 15k cheetahs running off an adaptec 2110s at raid 0. Those 2 hard drives and the controller will run me about $800. Or I could get 2 wd 100gb ata100 drives running off a ata raid card for about $500. Is scsi worth the $300 and less storage. I know it is hard to compare the two because there are so many variables I just can't find anything that gives me any idea what the speed is going to be like.

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April 12, 2002 10:08:43 PM

From my experience, SCSI used to be the only answer for performance issues in high-performance workstation/desktop systems. This is no longer the case.

The benefits of SCSI over IDE are:

Less CPU utilization - less of a factor now with high performance CPUs and UDMA.
More devices per channel - SCSI supports 15 drives while IDE supports 2 - This is often overcome in IDE RAID adapters by using 2-4 or more channels. In a workstation RAID array, more than 4-6 drives will overpower the PCI bus regardless of SCSI or IDE.
Higher RPMs=faster seek times - this is only useful in database server type systems (unless you do an extraordinary amount of text searching or the like on your PC).
Higher total bus transfer speeds - more drives makes for higher bandwidth needs (only helps if your PCI bus is capable of supporting higher speeds and 64bit IDE cards are available that support 4 X 133MBps.

The benefits of IDE over RAID:
Lower cost per GB - ~$200-300 for 18GB vs. $200 for 100GB.
Lower cost for RAID adapter.

Basically, unless you have database server needs, you're currently better off going with IDE. I used to buy all SCSI, but IDE is now good enough that you can spend <$800 and get 300GB RAID 5 (4 X 100GB - 100GB) for redundancy and speed or 400GB RAID 0 (4 X 100GB) which would be faster than any 2 drive 15K RPM SCSI RAID array.


I thought a thought, but the thought I thought wasn't the thought I thought I had thought.
April 13, 2002 7:56:38 PM

Is scsi worth it? It all depends on what you do. You could do just as well with two larger 10k seagate lp drives to cut some cost that would compare more than favorably to the ide drives. With high end SCSI, adaptec cards are not well thought of btw.

It's not what they tell you, its what they don't tell you!
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April 15, 2002 7:45:49 PM

If you're going IDE, you might want to consider stepping up to the WD 120GB drive with 8MB cache for better performance.
April 16, 2002 12:02:03 AM

Yes I agree, SCSI is best if you have the budget to work with, but if you go IDE it is CERTAINLY worth the extra few $$ to get the 8meg special edition drives!!

Jesus saves, but Mario scores!!!
April 18, 2002 4:00:54 AM

don't get the 2110s - it is a dog. Max transfer rate approx 60MBs and usually 30s or 40s. I get faster bulk transfer off IDE.

for a very good performing array with lots of space, get 2 or 4 WD SE drives (8Mb cache) and stripe them on a Promise TX2 or 2000.

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April 18, 2002 1:49:44 PM

Biggest things I can say for SCSI is Iam not using the IDE channels which frees them up particulary when Iam burning a CD, SCSI uses a lot less CPU time, generally SCSI is more reliable and faster in data transfer's as it can handle multiple tasks through the ribbon and has a longer warrantee, has its own bios and usually has lower seek times, on top of that I can set up a whole stack of them without the hickups that I would get with IDE. Down side is: price, heat, and some set up knowledge which is overcome quite easily.

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