I have used Raid 0 for years but never tried Raid 5 with XP. I have two questions.
First, If I use 2 250 drives and 2 200 gig drives I assume Windows will just allow a raid set of 4 200 drives. BUT will Windows allow me to utilize the 100 gig left on the two larger drives?
Also, this will really sound crazy but with the new firewire 800 options and the speed they offer, will Windows allow them to be converted to a dynamic drive and allow them to be in a raid set. Good way to have external drives in a small case.
I don't know how windows is going to like 2 250s and 2 200s but it might work. Just partition a 50gb segment off of each of the 250gb drives. Then create a raid 5 from the 4 200gb partitions to make a 600gb drive and span or stripe the 2 50gb partitions to have a 100gb drive. That is quite a crazy setup. You better hope your windows install never screws up, lol.
I don't think windows cares how the drives are connected, it just uses the disks avaliable. I see no reason why it wouldn't accept firewire drives as part of the array.
Thanks for the reply. Good idea about setting up the two 50 gig partitions first. You are right about windows. Thinking seriously about using a external sata enclosure from macgurus and get a "real" raid 5 controller card. From experience using my gigabit ethernet card on pci I know the limitations of the pci bus and motherboard ide controllers that use the same bus. Thinking that maybe I should wait for a pci-express motherboard with four sata connections. I like win xp but do not trust it for raid 5.