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Thinking About Going RAID.

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by CDdude55, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. CDdude55

    CDdude55 Crazy 4 TPU!!!

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    Hey everyone.

    Been thinking about going to a RAID 0 setup with another Velociraptor. I have never tried RAID before but i understand how it works and would like to get in on it. Now as i have just said before i understand how RAID works and all, but would still need some help in getting it configured. So first off, for those using RAID (or without lol) how are you liking it and do you recommend it for us gamers over a standard single drive?, Have any problems using RAID? and if someone can, i would like to see some solid steps to making a RAID configuration.

    I understand that I'll probably have to back up everything first and reinstall the OS. But really, what should i know about going with RAID, i know it's fast, i know the striping/data splitting between each drive. But what should i really know about having a RAID setup overall?

    :toast:
     
  2. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    This is my first raid 0 setup as well. i have two 500GB WD blue drives and they run very fast compared to just one. i would imagine you would see a ton of speed increase with another raptor, especially on boot times.
     
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  3. Asylum

    Asylum

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    Not much to it really.

    Just hook both drives up...Boot into bios...Set hdd's to raid mode.

    Then f10 save and reboot into raid config....cntr+ i at boot up i think and config your stripe.
     
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  4. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Only thing i do to maintain is to install then new intel rapid storage software and every week i do a raid verification and clean to keep it working good
     
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  5. AthlonX2

    AthlonX2 HyperVtX™

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    i dont mean to hijack your thread cd but brandon how do you go about verifying and cleaning your RAID array,im using an x58 chipset and i dont recall seeing these options...software?
     
  6. GENTLEMEN New Member

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    Raid 0 is very good for performance (recently had 2 80gb HDD in raid 0, quicker game load times and r/w speeds) but you should have backups. (1 failed drive = lost files)
     
  7. CDdude55

    CDdude55 Crazy 4 TPU!!!

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    How about RAID drivers?, where would i find them and would i install them in Windows, or is it bootable?
     
  8. AthlonX2

    AthlonX2 HyperVtX™

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    Windows 7 has no issues booting from most onboard raid setups,or installing to them
     
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  9. Kantastic

    Kantastic

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    Sorry to hi-jack this thread, but I have a slightly off-topic question: Does having a RAID array increase boot-up times (not specifically Windows loading times)?
     
  10. AthlonX2

    AthlonX2 HyperVtX™

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    I knocked a few seconds off my boot time after setting up my array
     
  11. brandonwh64

    brandonwh64 Addicted to Bacon and StarCrunches!!!

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    Ok in IRST, click on your volume 0 raid 0 box on the left then under advanced you can verify your raid which verifys and fixes errors in the raid

    [​IMG]
     
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  12. slyfox2151

    slyfox2151

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    yes, it will incress the time it takes to boot the bios by about 5 seconds.

    if the os is on the raid, it maybe offset by the incressed boot speed of windows.
     
  13. jmcslob

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    I didn't notice the speed of RAID0 until I was a similar non RAID system......I sure noticed what not having RAID0 is like and I'm never going back until single HDD's run better than 200mb/s average read/write for less than $50 for a 1 TB drive.

    I'm on a non RAID system right now waiting for programs to install at 66mb/s average and I want to bash my eff'ing head against the monitor...TBH anything less than 120 mb/s average drives me insane....

    I honestly don't think people give HDD transfer speeds enough respect and I don't think most people understand how much a slow HDD bogs down your system until they have something like a 80% + boost in HDD transfer rates...then it's like DAMMMMMMMMMMMM!

    SO yeah go raid
    and my ARRAY checks so fast I don't even get to see the screen.....AMD has good raid drivers
     
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  14. shevanel

    shevanel New Member

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    Click spoiler for the long verison

    I used 2 Samsung 500GB F3 in a raid0/1 config. Part of the drives were set as raid0 on a 300gb partition and the second partition was set as Raid1 in case 1 drive failed I could have the other to pull any files off which were on the raid1 side.. the only disadvantage was the raid1 partition was split in half naturally since half the space is used for the mirror.

    As far as boot times and game loading I noticed huge improvements, mostly 2x the amount of the single drive hd tune bench result. With Raid0 all games loaded quickly, especially games like Sims2/3 , Dirt 2 and any other offline type of game. BC2 never loaded quickly but that was for other reasons beyond the HDD config. When my daughter played sims 2/3 I used to watch her load times and with a single drive it was 10-13 seconds.. with Raid0 3 seconds.

    Might not seem like alot when 10 seconds is the time you wait... but if you add up all that time it may become important.. depends on how often you play.. 6 loads per gaming session @ 5 sessions a week is only 5 minutes of total wait time.. but if you play all year that could add up to a total of around 4.5 hours of your life you spent waiting on games to load.. multiply that by how many games you play and well you get the idea.

    Now that I have an SSD for the first time I can say that as far as boot times and game loads it feels the same as RAID0.. In MW2 when the white bar begins to load on a single drive it would progress to the end in about 8-10 seconds then pause and go into class selection screen...

    with raid0 or the single ssd the progress bar completes within 3-4.5 seconds no pause and instantly taken to the class selection screen. The game also appears to run somewhat smoother during gameplay too.. maybe it feeds the GPU textures faster? Im not sure.

    With benchmarks.. Raid0 on the Samsung F3's performed much faster(well, faster and because its more consistent** see below) than with my single SSD.. the only advantage I see from what the benchmark shows is a decrease in access time with the SSD which is near none... as with the Raid0 it was around 10ms iirc which still isnt' considered "slow" imo

    After the bios screen and what not.. the cursor on the top left blinks.. the logo comes together then I am at the win7 desktop.. all the startup aps are fully loaded and Pc is ready to use and it all happened in 8-9 seconds (after bios shit bec. that time doesnt count as "boot time" imo)

    With raid0 its only 2-3 seconds longer but alot faster than a single drive.. maybe because of access time and seek time?

    Since I am using a laptop now I prefer having the SSD as the boot drive(2.5" hdd's and what not).. but if I were to go back to a desktop config then I would without a doubt go RAID0 on Samsung F3's or similar again.. since it's just as fast as an SSD (give or take) , only $110 new and you get much more storage space than you do on an SSD.

    Sorry to type so much, I get carried away sometimes.. I just wanted to give detailed info instead of just saying "Raid0 FTW" and no reason why..

    (** see above)
    Lastly, the weirdest thing I notice about the SSD is sometimes it'll bench in the 160mb range and if I come back from sleep mode I only get around the 110mb range.. reboot then I am getting 160's again.. Im not sure why yet but with the Raid0 config it was always around the 170-210mb range iirc


    Raid0 FTW ;)
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2010
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  15. oily_17

    oily_17

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    This is important, if you are going to have your OS and any data saved on your array.Make sure you have a good backup plan or you can lose all the data on your RAID array, there is no redundancy with RAID0.

    It is like Russian roulette, the more bullets in the gun, the greater chance to shoot yourself in the head.
     
  16. El_Mayo

    El_Mayo

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    What is RAID again? :D
    Is it like crossfire but with hard drives? ;o
     
  17. shevanel

    shevanel New Member

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    If you only have 2 drives you can still do Raid0+1 which splits the drive and leaves the rest to use a partition for RAID1... if a drive fails then anything on the Raid0 side is surely lost, but anything on the raid1 side can be easily recovered from the working drive.

    If youre using 500GB drives x2 and use a 250gb partition for raid0 then you will only have 300-325gb of usable space left for the raid1 side since Raid1 mirrors the data to the other drive incase of a failure. If you decide to use RAID0 only then you will have 1gb total space to use. (of course that is not counting the unallocated space and recovery partitions and what not, I am just using rounded numbers as an example)

    Still though, the Samsung F3's are 500gb for $55 shipped at newegg.. for $110 you get 250gb for speed and 300ish gb for storage if you consider my previous example. Still much more than what you get for $110 from the SSD side of the road..

    You could say that. Unless I am mistaken I believe what happens is that instead of a single drive doing the work.. the work is split between drives and pieces are scattered across the array simultaneously therefore causing the info to be read/written faster.. typically at twice the rate in a 2 drive RAID0 config compared to a single drive and the results are usually pretty consistent when using drives known for quality... even faster with 3-4-5+ HDD's in a RAID0 array. In the HD tune thread I remember someone getting over 450MB/s with several drives!

    which is also the reason why if one of the drives fails then you lose the all the data since the remaining data on the drive that works will be considered incomplete/corrupt etc because the broken drive will contain the remainder of the data needed to make it complete.

    I found my previous bench using the samsungs in RAID0.. now that I see this I know the SSD I have can't compete with the RAID0 config.. but the access time on the SSD is pretty sweet.. too bad I'll only have a low amount of things to access since it's only a 60gb drive..
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2010
  18. oily_17

    oily_17

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    Never tried this, you would be splitting drive into 2 partitions, so would lose the extra space compared to just a plain RAID0.Also how would speeds compare in each case, with having to write a copy/mirror on the drive as well.
     
  19. shevanel

    shevanel New Member

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    The benchmark I posted above was with that same exact raid0+1 setup

    The raid1 side acted as if it were a single drive.. speed wise anyway.

    With an average of 232MB/s I don't think there is much to worry when it comes to the RAID1..

    Now I would guess that if I ran that benchmark as I also copied files from a third non-raid drive to the Raid1 partition that my average of 232MB/s would probably have been lower.. maybe it would be the transfer rate of the 3rd drive to the raid1 - 232MB/s or close to it and it still remains to be faster than a single drive.. I wish I had the array here to test my theory though since I am only guessing...

    When you setup the RAID0+1 you do not do the partition during the windows installation, you do it in the RAID setup screen. It will ask you if you want to partition, which type of raid for the partition, stripe size and go from there... that's how it was on the P55 Foxconn inferno katana anyway. It is not possible to use the second partition for anything other than RAID1.. it must be RAID0+1 or no partitions as all and don't try to make both partitions RAID0 bec. it isn't possible.

    Then once you booted into the windows cd you will then find your various partitions and you'll be able to choose to install the OS onto the Raid0 part of the disk and if youre using a flashdrive to install you'll be done very quickly.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2010
  20. oily_17

    oily_17

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    I have only ran either RAID0 or 1 before so would be interested in this but,

    My way of thinking is you would need 4 drives/partitions to have a nested array (RAID0+1).

    With two 300GB drives you would have to split the drives into 100GB partitions for the RAID0 and 200GB partition for the RAID1 array (so that it can mirror the 200GB RAID0 array).Therefore losing actual storage space and you would be writing any data twice to each drive.

    Would probably be harder to set up and as this is his first RAID maybe better just using a simple RAID0 set up.
     
  21. El_Mayo

    El_Mayo

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    What are the different types of RAID?
    sorry for hijacking this thread... I asked once and everyone ignored me! ahhaha
     
  22. Jizzler

    Jizzler

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    Once you get going can't stop, so just jump in with a huge array ;)

    [​IMG]


    Most of the basics have been covered but:

    Oily: He's talking about creating multiple arrays on the same set of drives - called Matrix RAID on Intel chipsets. When I first got my 4 x Blacks, configured them as RAID-0 (about 384GB) and the rest of the space as RAID-5 (about 1.5TB).

    [​IMG]

    Now they're in RAID-5:

    [​IMG]


    Boot times: Where people have heard this is from when a dedicated controller is used. They can add up to a minute, sometimes more, to boot times. Doesn't bother me when using Adaptec or other controllers as the machines they're in never turn off. When using Intel ICH or AMD SB RAID, many don't see a huge difference.
     
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  23. CDdude55

    CDdude55 Crazy 4 TPU!!!

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    There are a bunch of different types of RAID, but this are some mainly used ones:

    RAID 0: Pure performance mode, data is split between the drives to give you high read/writes speeds.

    RAID 1: More for security, all data is mirrored, so what every data is on the first drive is backed up to the second.

    RAID 5: Uses block-level striping with parity data distributed across all member disks.
     
  24. Jizzler

    Jizzler

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    RAID-0: Striping
    RAID-1: Mirroring
    RAID-5: Striping with parity spread across all disks.
    RAID-6: Striping with double parity spread across all disks.

    The "spread across all disks" is only important because there are RAID levels (3 and 4 I believe) that use a single disk for parity, but you probably won't ever see them.

    Many can be nested:

    RAID-10, 01, 50, 51, 60, etc.

    Some others:

    RAID-1E: Allows for the mirroring of an odd number of disks.
    RAID-5E: RAID-5 plus active hot-spare. Rebuilds are much faster, higher overall performance.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2010
  25. shevanel

    shevanel New Member

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    Also just a note to oily..

    I don't think the Raid0+1 operates that way.. I could be wrong but I believe the Raid1 partition will only mirror whatever is on the raid1 partition and nothing from the raid0 side..

    (this part isn't aimed at you oily just in general to anyone reading this and have not tried raid) It's not complicated to setup as long as your mobo/controller supports it. All in all.. once your drives are installed into your case it actually takes less than 5 minutes to setup within the raid setup... less than 2 mins once you become familiar with the RAID options and what not.

    It's easy.
     

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