2 Replies Latest reply on Oct 18, 2010 5:18 PM by wb_martin

    Advice on RAID Sets, Volume Sets, and RAID Levels of the Volume Sets using an Areca Controller

    wb_martin

      I have read through a lot of information on disk usage, storage rules for an editing rig, users inquiries/member responses in this forum and I thank each and every one of you – especially Harm.

       

      In building my new workstation, I purchased five (5) WD 1T, 7k, 64M SATAIII hard drives and an Areca RAID card, ARC-1880ix-16-4G, which I plan to use primarily as my media/data disk array.  The workstation will use a 128GB SATAIII SSD as the OS/program drive and I will transfer two (2) WD Raptor/10k SATA 70GB drives from my current system for pagefile/scratch/render use.  I tentatively plan on using a mobo SATAIII port for the SSD and mobo SATA ports with a software RAID (level 0) for the 10k Raptors.

       

      In reading the Areca Instruction manual, I am now considering exactly how I should configure the 5 physical 1TB drives in terms of RAID Level(s), Volume Sets, and RAID Sets.  I must admit that I like the opportunity of allowing for a Dedicated Hot Spare as I am generally distrustful of the MTBF data that drive vendors tout and have the bad experience in the past of losing data from a mal-configured RAID array and a single drive hardware failure (admittedly, my fault!).

       

      In line with the logic that one doesn’t want to perform disk reading while trying to write at the same time (or vice-versa), I am thinking the approach above should work OK in using the mobo disk interface and both software and external hardware RAID controllers without having to create separate RAID level configurations within a Volume Set or further dividing up the physical drives into separate RAID sets.  I know in forum messages that Harm noted that he had 17 drives and I could envision a benefit to having separate RAID sets in that situation, but I am not at that point yet. 

       

      To some degree I think it might be best to just create one RAID Level on one Volume Set on one RAID Set, but want to solicit thoughts from veteran controller users on their workflows/thoughts in these regards.

       

      Anyone care to share thoughts/perspectives?  Thanks

      Bill

        • 1. Re: Advice on RAID Sets, Volume Sets, and RAID Levels of the Volume Sets using an Areca Controller
          Harm Millaard Level 7


          Bill,

           

          With 5 disks you have IMHO three choices:

           

          1. Raid3, possibly with 1 hot-spare. It will give you 4 TB net storage without hot-spare or 3 TB with hot-spare.

           

          2. Raid5, possibly with 1 hot-spare.  It will give you 4 TB net storage without hot-spare or 3 TB with hot-spare.

           

          3. Raid6. It will give you 3 TB net storage.

           

          Personally I would choose option one. It depends on your backup process whether a hot-spare is desirable or not. There is one potential risk with your approach and that is the WD disks. If they are the Caviar Blacks you may encounter TLER difficulties, if they are RE4's no problem.

           

          It may be worth to try what gives you the best performance:

           

          a. 2 Raptors in raid0 on the mobo, or

           

          b. 2 Raptors in raid0 on the Areca as a separate volume set, next to the raid3/5/6 array.

          • 2. Re: Advice on RAID Sets, Volume Sets, and RAID Levels of the Volume Sets using an Areca Controller
            wb_martin Level 1

            Thanks for the speedy feedback Harm - I appreciate it.

             

            I was thinking RAID level 3 as well.

             

            Of course, it's always something!   I purchased the Caviar Blacks by mistake - which are non-TLER.   I will work with EggHead to return the ones I purchased and replace them with RE4 versions  as I'm not thrilled about the possibility of the controller declaring the volume/disks degraded unnecessarily and although I have the DOS utility WDTLER where one is supposed to be able to enable/disable TLER on WD drives  - I suspect WD is way beyond that now anyway with current builds.

             

            I agree with you about just testing the performance of the options for the raptors - on the mobo and then on the controller.  When I benchmark them I'll post the results in case others are curious.

             

            Thanks again....off to EggHead!