baumaxx1

RAID Suitable Desktop Drives?

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Hi, I'm looking at building a simple RAID 1 array using the Intel ICH10R facility. It will have a small partition for XP 32 bit, and the rest for Win 7 64, the idea being to allow the system to survive if a single disk fails, as I don't really have the time to re-install everything from scratch when I'm at uni.

I've been looking at:

-Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 (ST3100528AS) $59

-WD Caviar Blue (WD10EALX) $79

-WD Caviar Black (WD1002FAEX) $96

-Hitachi Deckstar (7K1000?) - $56

-Samsung 1TB F3 HD103SJ - $57

I have a few questions though.

  • Are these drives advanced format? Or is that only green drives?
  • The WDs no longer support TLER and this seems to be an issue.
  • The Samsung seems to have a RAID friendly CCTL/TLER feature that can be enabled, and I've heard that they can work in an array, but the CCTL feature is reset every time the PC is powered off. How would I go about automatically instructing it to switch on?
  • How does Intel RAID behave in a failure? Is a rebuild a long process on a high end PC? Will I be able to boot and run it as a single drive if one fails, and re-build when convenient?

So far, the Samsungs look like they're a good option, and Samsung and Seagate have local warranty centres too, while WD requires shipping to Singapore.

I've been looking for answers for weeks and it's not really a well documented science XD. Thanks for your help in advance.

edit:

I also have 2x 2TB Seagate Barracuda Green LPs, 4K drives with smart align for storage. I could also RAID 1 these, but if they're problematic, is there a backup tool where I can mirror certain folders? Since it's a data only drive, I can easily just take a failed one off-line and change the drive letter. Seagate do suggest RAID on their website though in the barracuda section. I'm thinking I can also send a ERC command on each boot or something to make sure the drives don't fall out. I believe it's only WD that don't support them at all.

I know these are volatile settings, but surely there's software that just sends the commands to set the stable timeouts on each startup or at least OS start-up.

So what happened to RAID standing for Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks?

RAID edition drives command 2-4x the premium over a regular drive. :(

Edited by baumaxx1

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Keep in mind that the Intel Matrix raid will randomly drop disks.. it doesn't matter if you use raid edition drives or not, you will find them randomly dropped.. Nothing will ever show up as being wrong with a dropped disk, but it gets dropped anyways.

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You're looking at a lot of different options, green, value and performance drives. Generally for software RAID, I wouldn't pay extra for enterprise/RAID class drives. Since you're looking for failover protection, I'm not sure I love the software RAID option. I'd almost rather run on one drive and have regular backups to another high quality drive. Even if you go with software RAID, leave enough budget for a backup drive anyway. As to the AF question, I don't think any of those on your list are, except maybe the FAEX.

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You're looking at a lot of different options, green, value and performance drives. Generally for software RAID, I wouldn't pay extra for enterprise/RAID class drives. Since you're looking for failover protection, I'm not sure I love the software RAID option. I'd almost rather run on one drive and have regular backups to another high quality drive. Even if you go with software RAID, leave enough budget for a backup drive anyway. As to the AF question, I don't think any of those on your list are, except maybe the FAEX.

Yeah, not going for any green drives in this case, but the Samsungs look good from what I've read. Is there any program that will watch directories and create copies automatically? Anything that will create a ghost that I can restore my OS to as well?

RAID just seemed easiest when I first started researching it, but it looks like it's been completely nerfed for budget home use.

And I'm going to get a NAS to put the old drives in, so the current OS one and the warranty replacement that failed (both green from when there wasn't an option at the shop for some reason). I can't really wait 2 months for my replacement to arrive, so I'll just use it as an external backup in addition to a few externals.

I'm still going to try for the RAID, but you can use the array as a single disk if a drive has been dropped right? Then re-build when convenient?

If it's too problematic, you can convert to a single disk without too much trouble right?

What I could do Is say make a 200GB Partition for XP, install and have an image I can restore from on a 200GB partition of an identical drive... And on the other drive install 7, and do the same sort of backup on the other drive. Then that way I'll still be able to use at least one OS if one of those drives fails. I shouldn't have problems booting from two different drives?

^ Is there a fairly easy way to do this?

Edited by baumaxx1

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Hi,

RAIDs come in different levels. In a striped array (RAID level 0), multiple drives work in parallel to eke out the best possible performance and provide a combined storage capacity (good for video production); however, this type of RAID provides no backup protection-you’ll lose all your data if one disk fails. A mirrored array (RAID level 1) provides very fast read times (it can read multiple drives at once) and real-time backup, it writes the same data across all disks simultaneously, so if one goes down, nothing is lost. But your total capacity is half the amount of the total capacity of all the drives. (For example, if you have a pair of 500GB drives in a RAID 1, you get only 500GB of total storage.) RAID level 5 uses parity, which provides data redundancy and better storage capabilities than RAID 1’s plain mirroring, splitting data across three or more disks, so if one goes down, your files are re-created from the remaining disks.

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Second that. Best experience I've ever had with consumer-grade RAID has been with Hitachi disks.

I've had excellent success with Seagates in the past. My current PC has 4 x 500gb Barracuda 7200rpm ES drives that have been running in a split RAID 0 and RAID 10 on an Intel D975XBX2 board for over 4 years, with no failures and no dropped drives in that time. Previous system was 1.5 years older, also with a similar 4 drive array on an Intel 950 board built using 400gb Seagates, also no issues.

That said, I was quite dismayed trying to find new drives for my new system. Seems they were either noisy, or prone to failure. In the end I've settled on 4 x 2TB Barracuda XTs, which I will run RAID 10 (with a small RAID 0 portion). Plus a big SSD for my boot drive, but the model there is still in question. I scrapped the Seagate Constellation ES drives after reading more than one comment about a high pitched whine, which would absolutely drive me bonkers.

Previous to Seagate, I was using IBM drives (beginning with the Deskstar 75GXP - I ran two of them and despite the Deathstar nickname they never died - well, until I accidentally fried the circuit board of one thanks to improperly connecting a floppy power cable, but was able to swap the circuit board from the second and recover all my data). Before the 75GXP, I was back using Seagates, and I had a 100% failure rate. Thank god those days are over.

In my house I'm also currently running a couple Hitachi 2TB 7200rpm drives in a WHS server, and they've been fine. Have a 1TB WD Caviar Black in one PC, and it's fine but awefully noisy (one reason I don't want them for myself).

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Keep in mind that the Intel Matrix raid will randomly drop disks.. it doesn't matter if you use raid edition drives or not, you will find them randomly dropped.. Nothing will ever show up as being wrong with a dropped disk, but it gets dropped anyways.

You must have more Intel matrix RAID setups than I do... I only have a tiny insignificant handful here, but all of them have been fine. Most are with old-school Seagate 7200.10's and .11's and .12's too... :o :o :o

That said I have so few I know my data set isn't valid...

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You must have more Intel matrix RAID setups than I do... I only have a tiny insignificant handful here, but all of them have been fine. Most are with old-school Seagate 7200.10's and .11's and .12's too... :o :o :o

That said I have so few I know my data set isn't valid...

Have only a few here as well.. 7200.11's drop drives, WD Caviar blacks drop, and even more scary, I've had multiple times where even WD RE3 and RE4's randomly drop.

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