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Home RAID5 setup

Discussion in 'Storage' started by Violet_Shift, Sep 4, 2012.

  1. Violet_Shift New Member

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    Hi all.

    I'm considering setting up a RAID-5 array - mostly because I have so much data now that losing a drive would be very bad for me, and I see RAID-5 as an attractive combination of redundancy and enhanced performance.

    To do this, I'm going to use four 7200RPM 3TB drives (some Seagate model).

    The problem I'm coming into is exactly how to do this. I don't want to tie myself to this motherboard which will eventually be replaced, so I'm drawn to a RAID card, but I know very little about these in comparison to other hardware.

    Most of the ones I've seen look very expensive, but there are a few reasonably priced offerings that I hope should be able to provide what I'm looking for for a home RAID setup. The model I've looked at is the Highpoint RocketRaid 640, and I'd like to know if the people here could recommend them.

    Thanks a lot in advance.
  2. Arrakis+9

    Arrakis+9

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    If its an intel based raid you can transfer it over motherboard to motherboard if your staying with intel, amd im not sure of but im sure some AMD enthusiasts here could enlighten us about that.

    It might help to fill out your system specs in your profile as well, and as always welcome to TPU

    PS, if your using 4 drives and want to have the best data security you can get i would recommend looking into RAID 6 instead - - that is if your dead set on getting a raid card
    Violet_Shift says thanks.
  3. Violet_Shift New Member

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    Thanks for the warm welcome; I also updated my profile with my system specs.

    I'll likely stay with Intel, but I really want to be sure if I'm going to put all my stuff in the hands of this system. I don't want to change motherboard only to find that my data's unrecoverable - I had the unfortunate incident of a motherboard just stopping working a year back.

    As for RAID 6, I think that losing half of my capacity to parity data is too much cost for the added security that it offers. I've never experienced a drive failure in my life, and I do want to protect against this eventuality, but I doubt that I'll experience two in a short space of time.
  4. Arrakis+9

    Arrakis+9

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    Ah, as for your setup you'll be fine - - you can move over to the mainstream P67 or Z77 chipsets or even the X79 and your raid will still be intact no problem - as for not having a drive failure ever, i was in the same boat untill i got "unlucky" and had 2 SSD's and 600GB worth of data on a mechanical drive all fail within a week of each other so much for using one of the drives out of my raid 1 to hold me over untill my SSD's came back from RMA. the drive i chose was the "GOOD" one and apparently the other drive had been failing for quite some time without RST even notifying me of any sort of smart errors
  5. Violet_Shift New Member

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    That's some impressively bad luck.

    How good's the performance with motherboard RAID? I've heard people complain about how it slows everything down.
  6. Arrakis+9

    Arrakis+9

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    If your running any sort of parity data on the drives, its going to be slow unless you get a dedicated hardware raid card, otherwise raid 0 is were its suppose to be on intel chipsets and on the new mainstream platform and X79 its some of the best you can get. raid 1 setups are "acceptable" since its just mirroring the data. the main issue with "slowdown" is referring to the boot time in most cases which adds about 3-5 seconds on the boot - in an operating system environment your probably never going to notice the speeds unelss your transferring big files 1gb+ or tons of small files.
  7. Aquinus

    Aquinus Resident Wat-man

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    RAID 1 offers the same write performance as a single drive, but double the read performance since it is reading from two drives in parallel. RAID-0 makes writes almost twice as fast, but you're removing the redundancy. RAID-5 has read speeds a lot like RAID-0 since it is reading over 3 stripped drives and writing is slightly better than a single drive because you're also writing in parallel. The issue that slows writes down (not typically slower than a single drive,) is because the controller has to calculate and write the parity block to maintain redundancy.

    Honestly, if you're really worried about your data you should do something like what I'm doing. I have regular backups from my RAID-5, which has regular backups from my SSD RAID-0. So even if my motherboard does fail and I can't recover my raid, I still have an external drive with all my stuff on it.

    RAID-5 is nice, but don't strictly rely on it unless you have a dedicated hardware RAID card, but even with a good RAID card, you may want to make sure to have a backup plan.

    Edit: Synology makes some pretty nice NAS solutions for home and business.
    http://www.synology.com/us/index.php
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2012
  8. Steevo

    Steevo

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    I like my 640, it has good performance, low overhead and has been rock solid for me on my mechanical drives.


    Note it will hijack your boot, and it is a bit of a pain to remove the interrupt hook it uses.
    10 Million points folded for TPU
  9. Violet_Shift New Member

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    Hijack my boot? What does that mean? Just that it'll take longer to boot?

    Incidentally my planned setup is to run Windows 8 off my SSD, and to have my games and data piled on the array.

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