PCI Express SATA RAID Controllers For SMB Servers

Semi-Professional PCI Express RAID Controllers

Entry-level RAID controllers allow administrators to create secure multi-drive storage arrays to host a server’s operation system and vital data.

Many people don’t appreciate the value of backups and data safety until they experience what it means to lose data. Whether it is music, videos or photos at home or project files, customer data or other digital assets in the office, people don’t think of data safety - until it’s too late.

Imagine how you would feel if your vacation photos or videos of your wedding and daughter’s birth were destroyed? Such scenarios can lead to divorce court when your better half finds out. Or how would your boss react if his or her email and project files were lost due to a faulty hard drive? Your life might be spared, but you could still get fired.

No warranty in the world protects you from such an incident. Make no mistake about it: these things happen every day! If it’s your data, it’s your responsibility to protect it. And even if you’ve got a boss who eventually is responsible, he or she might still blame the loss of data on you. In the end, you can do no wrong by developing awareness of threats and paying attention to data safety.

Backup Vs. Data Safety

At this point we have to differentiate between a backup and basic data safety. Both mean something different and every business should rely on both regular backups and a safe data repository.

Performing a backup means copying files or complete system images from your hard drive onto another storage device, where the data is safe from hardware malfunction, viruses or accidental modification. If anything happens to your primary data, you can access the backup "snapshot" and restore whatever you need.

Any type of drive can be used for backups, but you should pay attention to data safety offered by the solution you pick. A hard drive, for example, cannot be considered a safe medium, as it uses mechanical components that may fail. A perfect backup is performed frequently, is written onto alternating media that are partially stored off-site and should be written onto media that is widely available.

When we talk about data safety, we specifically address the issue that every computer stores all key data on hard drives, and that every hard drive will eventually fail. The challenge is to create a storage subsystem that is unsusceptible to hard drive failures. This is where the five RAID storage controllers come into play.

AMCC, Areca, HighPoint, LSI Logic and Promise Technology offer PCI Express add-on cards that run up to four hard drives to create fast and secure storage array.

Join our discussion on this topic

  • Eric The Red
    This is a very well put together article! It would be nice if there was a review with recent RAID cards while doing the same thing you did here.