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OS drive (and pagefile)
set of 2 or more raid 0 or 5 scratch/capture/work what ever you want to call this where you ingest your footage and work from
set of 2 or more raid 0 or 5 for output/render to.
external back up NAS/eSata etc
no need for anything more complicated than that.
First a couple of general remarks.
Without a raid controller and only having the mobo raid capabilities, it hardly makes sense to use anything but raid0,
All disks in a raid array must be identical for an effective raid, otherwise you are talking about a JBOD (Just a Bunch of Disks) and the mobo does not support that, let alone the performance penalty.
For more background on raids, read here: Adobe Forums: To RAID or not to RAID, that is the...
You documented your question well, but I get the feeling that your backup strategy is not very clear, you are using multiple externals for partial backups and possibly some duplication of data. It sounds a bit disorganized.
Your idea about the 250/500/3x1TB makes sense, but what about all the other drives you are using? Can you give a clear listing of your drives and interfaces. Remember, for raids the disks need the same capacity and the same SATA interface. FW800 or USB2 can not be raided on the mobo.
Thanks Harm... sorry, that really wasn't as clear as it could have been. Here's what I've got right now:
(ALL DISCS ARE SATA2 7200)
ONE 250gb OS/Programs/Pagefile
ONE 500gb for photos/graphics/audio-only projects using Audacity/other documents
ONE 1tb for Projects and Outputs
TWO 1tb as RAID-0 for video data (mix of direct-ingest of AVCHD and R3D data files and captured HDV from Premiere).
For externals, I have ONE 4tb FW800 that maintains a running backup of all drives EXCEPT OS/Programs and ONE 2tb drive that I use to backup important graphics/photos and also both video data and project files of active projects, which is generally kept off-site (in case of fire or a massive electrical surge that blows out my UPS and computer...)
After reading your info, it looks like I might be better off re-doing my discs such that my projects and video data are on the same drive and the outputs are on the separate drive (instead of separating projects and data). Is that the case? And if so, what would be the best way to do that with what I have? And is RAID-0 even necessary for the sort of stuff I edit? Do I get enough speed increase from it to make things better, or would I be better off not doing RAID at all?
Thank you, David, that makes it a lot clearer. At least much more understandable for my tired mind now.
Given your options (no separate raid controller, possibly one or even two extra disks), I would go for this setup:
C: 250 G OS & programs
D: 500 G photos/graphics/audio-only projects using Audacity/other documents & Pagefile
E: 1 TB Projects and Outputs & Media Cache
F: 3 x 1 TB Raid0 for media and previews
The reasoning behind this is that currently you are running out of space on your 2 disk raid0, during editing your access to current contents on D will be rather small, so relocating your pagefile may be attractive and by using the E drive for the media cache, next to projects you are splitting the load between E and F. Your F drive grows in capacity and will be quicker and the backups are taken care of with both the 4 TB and the 2 TB off-site disks.
Thanks, Harm... I'll put in the request for a new drive on Monday, and see what happens! Short of a new drive, I'll just keep it as is (except moving the pagefile) and move as much as I can from the data drive to archive--is bluray the best way to do that at this point? I'm leery of archiving hard drives as I've read the platters can stick if they're not spun up frequently...
The most practical solution would be IMO to add a 2 TB disk to your system as well, not only a 1 TB disk as a third disk on your raid0. If you do that you can simply copy the contents of your current raid to this new 2 TB disk, expand your raid, move the data back to this new raid0 and then allocate this new G drive for media cache, previews and exports. It will save you around 50 BRD's and save you lots of time. Just the cost of 50 BRD's will compensate the cost of a 2 TB disk and that is not calculating your time.
Hmm... Good idea, but I've only got one SATA plug left available on my mobo, so short of also getting a dedicated RAID card (and I've read the only ones worthwhile cost close to $1k and up, so that's out of the question), I can only add one more drive, not two.
You may be able to use an eSATA connector, temporarily disconnect a SATA DVD/BR burner just for the data transfer or get a PCIe-SATA card. Just use your imagination, but I think that you can save lots of time by figuring out a solution to the lack of SATA ports on your mobo.
Duh... I should have thought of those things! Unfortunately my onboard eSATA hasn't worked since day one, despite nearly two hours with a BOXX technician remoting into my computer working on it... but a PCI card would be sweet! I'll look into that!
why complicate the drive configuration?
what i recommended only requires 5 Sata ports. however the separate Audio/photos makes 6
moving the pagefile off the OS had absolutely no effect in performance (unless the OS is a small SSD)
we benchmarked this by moving the page file from the OS to standard Sata, Raptor and SSD.
0 performance gain. And thats all the drive was used for.
AVCHD and Red should both have Raid 0 drives.
FYI an excellent raid card is only $500 Intel RS2BL080
your output drive should be the same speed as the media drive.
you have 4 drives for those 2 items. better to have both of them raid 0
2 each. that way your renders do not take as long. (also more space)
and Harms idea of eSata ext. is a good one. i prefer a raid 5 NAS but they can get pricy
just in case you are not aware your drives should not be filled past 65% MAX. you get a serious performance hit.
Wow... just moved my pagefile and I can already see a speed increase just in the responsiveness of programs and stuff within Windows! I've put in the request for a third 1TB drive for the array, and I'm hoping to get it... I'll post back results on what happens if I'm able to get it and add it to the system.
only way thats possible is if your OS drive was full...