3 Replies Latest reply on Apr 5, 2013 12:50 PM by Alex - DV411

    Best option for RAID 5 with 4 drives?

    ptl-2010 Level 1

      I have been thinking about doing a RAID 5 setup with 4 1TB drives.

       

      My motherboard has enough intel SATA ports to run one through its chipset, but I've heard that can be problematic and wont perform as well.

       

      What would be the best budget option for a small RAID? Are there any affordable RAID cards out there that would fit my needs? I could probably part with $300 for a card. I'll get 4 WD RE4 drives for the raid.

       

      I will have a backup of this data so that's not a problem.

        • 1. Re: Best option for RAID 5 with 4 drives?
          Alex - DV411 Level 2

          Hi Paul,

           

          Areca ARC-1320-8i seems like the best option - or a variation of it (like ARC-1320-4i4x) - as long as you get four internal ports.  It's right around $300.

           

          That said, some of my clients run Intel RST RAID5 on four drives for some time, and it actually performs well:

           

           

          (Personally I think software and hybrid RAIDs are the future of RAID technology: much more flexible than hardware RAID; potentially faster as well given that they have access to all of computer resources rather than just a dedicated processor.  The latest iteration of RST, for example, allow SSDs for caching of RAID volumes.)

           

          For my personal system, I use a $200 CineRAID H458 box with four Hitachi Deskstars in RAID5, which is a very inexpensive option for an external RAID:

           

          Sure, it's rather slow; fast enough for my purposes though, and is highly portable, unlike any config with an internal RAID controller.

           

          If I need something seriously faster (yet on a budget), I'd use something like this:

           

          • 2. Re: Best option for RAID 5 with 4 drives?
            ptl-2010 Level 1

            Hey Alex,

             

            Thanks for the information.

             

            So, do you think that a dedicated controller would be worth the price if I'm only doing a 4 disk raid? How much better do you think a dedicated card would run compared to intel's RST?

             

            Also, What do you think about raid 0 or 1+0 with intel RST? I do daily back-ups, and I'm really only looking for better disk read/write speeds, but a bit of security would be nice to add to the mix. I've got a system at home and at work, and I plan on doing some sort of disk improvement on both and I'm just wondering what options I have.

            • 3. Re: Best option for RAID 5 with 4 drives?
              Alex - DV411 Level 2

              So, do you think that a dedicated controller would be worth the price if I'm only doing a 4 disk raid? How much better do you think a dedicated card would run compared to intel's RST?

              Hardware RAID5 speeds I see in various places (Google is my friend) are right up there with my numbers: 400MB/s reads, 300MB/s writes.  If you get similar numbers, I don't see much of a benefit to a hardware RAID controller for a small set like this.

              Also, What do you think about raid 0 or 1+0 with intel RST? I do daily back-ups, and I'm really only looking for better disk read/write speeds, but a bit of security would be nice to add to the mix. I've got a system at home and at work, and I plan on doing some sort of disk improvement on both and I'm just wondering what options I have.

              RAID10 will be slower than 5, although it's less taxing on drives (one disk write operation per OS request, vs. two with RAID5). I'd go with RAID5: faster, larger per $.