I think I am going to switch from RAID 0 to RAID 5...

Discuss/recommend/tweak/brag about........... your hardware.

  • Well... my gaming computer has been running two 500 GB, 7200 rpm drives in RAID 0 config for a year or more now. With drives being relatively inexpensive and me thinking in a more cautious way than I did when I put the system together. I'm thinking that I should update my gaming rig so it is running RAID 5 config instead of RAID 0. Want to maintain good performance, but made the "R" in RAID actually mean something by having redunant drives so if one hard drive fails I'm not immediately screwed.

    I've bought two more 500 GB, 7200 rpm drives. They aren't quite identical to my existing ones, but they are same size, rpm, and even manufacturer so I trust that they will work fine in RAID 5 with the old ones. Next, I've just finished a system (image) backup of my entire gaming rig using the backup software that came with my Seagate Black Armor 400/420 Network Attached Storage (NAS) device.

    Now I'm sitting here wondering what the school of hard knocks is about to teach me when I try to add the two drives and reconfigure my RAID. Some areas of concern that I probably need to do more research on are:

    • My "Asus P6T SE X58 DDR3" supports RAID, but I haven't yet figured out if it is "real" RAID controller or "fakeraid".
    • If it is fakeraid (which lets the CPU do most of the RAID overhead/work) should I get a "real" RAID expansion card?
    • Which RAID controller would you get if you were ordering from Memory Express RAID cards
    • I don't *think* I'll have a problem resotring a backup image made from a 2-drive RAID 0 config when I have a 4-drive RAID 5 config, but I'm not 100% sure that this will work. Never done it before.

    - Kinda wondering if instead of restoring from the backup that maybe I should just go with fresh reinstall of everything. Means I'll have lots of things I want to make note of first, like....

    • export my registry to have a saved copy just in case.
    • Make sure I have all the CD-keys that I need/want.
    • ftp username/passwords for various sites (including WGO)
    • Teamspeak/Ventrilo server details for rarely visited servers (EWB, OSS, WCK, etc...)
    • jot down static ip and host table info
    • probably a dozen other things I'll forget but wished I had saved

    Why am I writing..... well... just in case any of you good folks can give me some things to watch out for, plan for, or to just plain avoid..... it would be appreciated. But.... reply fast. I'm likely to start messing with this really really soon (like perhaps tonight...or at least this week sometime).
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!
    Posts: 241
    Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:07 pm

Mon Aug 01, 2011 7:34 pm

  • Well Swamper, this one sorta died on the vine. :oops:

    I am vaguely familiar with RAID 1+0 or 10 but not on a Desktop PC.
    I also know one configuration over the other either results in a slower performance, leaning towards a slower Read which is what you don't want in a server config.

    And most RAID configs are there specifically for Data Salvation in case a drive is lost and not looking at it for a Speed enhancement. Strictly from a server point of view of course.

    If it's gaming speed you are looking into, I would think a Corsair Digital Drive of a lower storage capacity, say 64g or so just for your gaming and OS, then a larger digital for storage would be an efficient way to gain some speed on both the read and write side of the processing.
    'Bama Bulldog
    Posts: 1318
    Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2004 4:07 am

Tue Aug 02, 2011 12:44 am

  • Hey thanks for the comments. Thought I'd share what has happened over the past week or so...

    1st) I installed the two new drives that I bought, making it so that my box has 4 identical sized drives.

    2nd) I set them up as RAID 5, which supposedly is a bit of a compromise between speed and redudancy. Things went reasonbly well, but after a couple of days one of the drives got flagged as failed (it wasn't), so I reset it and the system started rebuidling the array.

    There was nothing to do on my part while this was occurring, it does it itself. however, the performance of the drives went to shit while this was happening...

    Which got me to thinking.... I don't really need extra space and I want speed and reliablity. So,

    3rd) instead of RAID 5, I reformatted/rebuilt the array and went with 4 drives in a RAID 10 confiruation. I've been running with it that way for a few days now and am quite happy with it. I lost 500GB of usuable space (but I still have ~ 1 TB I can use which is plenty).
    If you find yourself in a fair fight, your tactics suck!
    Posts: 241
    Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2010 8:07 pm

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