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Which 1TB-2TB Drives for RAID config?

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Anubis_386

Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2006
Location
England - Where VAT hurts my pocket :(
As all the Samsung 750GB F1's are failing in current RAID 5 setup, I'm looking to replace the whole server and storage setup. I was thinking of getting an Intel board to run Matrix RAID and would like 2-4TB of fast Storage with data security.

So, what do you guys think would be the best setup? RAID Level 1, 5 or 10? and comprised of which drives?

Cheeers :beer:
 

johan851

Insatiably Malcontent, Senior Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2002
Location
Seattle, WA
I would stick with RAID 1 for your storage and an SSD for your OS if you can afford it. I've had too many problems over the last 3-4 years with Matrix RAID drives dropping out of the array for no apparent reason. I don't usually lose any data - it seems that one drive will just kind of fall out and then be fine on reboot - but it sometimes causes file corruption and usually triggers a 24-hour rebuild process on the RAID 5 array. It certainly doesn't make me feel safe about my data.

There are some serious performance issues with a 0+1 setup as well. The RAID 0 partition is relatively fast, but the RAID 5 partition absolutely crawls on writes, especially on complex read/write tasks like extracting archives. Copying between the RAID 0 and RAID 5 segments occurs (over time) at about 40mb/s or less. That's sort of sad for a three-drive array. I just can't recommend it. I'm sure there are some Matrix RAID people who will disagree, but I can't wait until I can afford to get away from mine.

These solutions provided a really good speed/redundancy compromise for a low cost a couple of years ago, but with the arrival of good SSDs, I don't think it's worth going for RAID 0 anymore if all you're interested in is good desktop performance.

*Edit* Get an OCZ Vertex for your OS/Apps (or, better, an X-25M with working TRIM) and some WD Caviar Green or Samsung EcoGreen drives for storage. 1.5TB is the current sweet spot for $/GB.
 

benbaked

Folding/SETI/Rosetta Team Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2005
Location
WA
I'm using some Hitachi Deskstar 32mb cache 7200 rpm 1 TB drives I picked up from Frys on BF for $60/each. I don't know how good they are, but they were cheap and are working fine for my RAID 1. :D

As for which RAID level to do I think this site, http://www.acnc.com/04_01_05.html, is one of the better RAID descriptions I've seen on the web. Four 1 TB drives in RAID 5 would get you 3 TB of storage and fast read rates.
 

madhatter256

Special Member
Joined
Jul 5, 2008
Location
CFL
Did you run a hardware diagnostic on your samsung drives using the samsung drive utility???

If not, I suggest that you do! intel matrix raid is known for showing the hdds as failing when they actually are not failing. it's a known issue with the matrix software, which is why I don't recommend sticking with Intel's MSM software. use intel rapid storage ver. 9.5 (beta but still stronger than MSM).
 

johan851

Insatiably Malcontent, Senior Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2002
Location
Seattle, WA
I've run diagnostics on them - I'm using some Seagate drives. They check out fine, so I know it's not the drives themselves. I'll check out Intel's Rapid Storage instead - thanks!
 

pik4chu

Senior Yellow Forum Rat
Joined
Jan 17, 2003
Location
Centennial, Colorado
In my new server and storage arrays im using the Seagate 1.5TB drives and they are wonderfully fast even outside of a RAID so I would recommend those.

did some HDTune tests last night to compare with my main rig and on the RAID 1 mirror the average was 95MB/s and on the standalone it was closer to 105MB/s compared to the RAID1+0 of older SATA drives on my main rig which average only ~77MB/s

As for MATRIX raid issues I only ever get annoyed if my computer crashes (bad video card at the time) because it will often drop the raid to a degraed state requiring a nice 12+hr rebuild but otherwise ive never had issues with drives dropping from the raid or anything like that.
 

johan851

Insatiably Malcontent, Senior Member
Joined
Jul 24, 2002
Location
Seattle, WA
In my new server and storage arrays im using the Seagate 1.5TB drives and they are wonderfully fast even outside of a RAID so I would recommend those.
Are you using the 7200RPM drives or the 5900RPM ones? There are tons of bad reviews on Newegg about the reliability of the low speed ones.
 

pik4chu

Senior Yellow Forum Rat
Joined
Jan 17, 2003
Location
Centennial, Colorado
Are you using the 7200RPM drives or the 5900RPM ones? There are tons of bad reviews on Newegg about the reliability of the low speed ones.

that is something I have to verify because I saw that today. When I went back tob buy a couple more I noticed they said 5900 RPM on them but I didnt really look at the box the first time. So I will verify this when I get home to see what speed they are.
 
OP
Anubis_386

Anubis_386

Member
Joined
Apr 20, 2006
Location
England - Where VAT hurts my pocket :(
Thanks for your input guys, gunner pick up atleast a pair of Seagate 1.5TB drives (7200s obviously) for Matrix RAID 1.. If I can stretch to 4 drives then ill set up a RAID 10 array.

I just forked out £100 for a new PSU, so more money + big data loss = :'( ..
 

Alchemy1

Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
I got two of the low speed drives from Frys when they ran their sale at the end of December. They came packaged absolutely horribly, but so far they have run absolutely perfectly. I have two of them in RAID1 running 24/7 in my WHS box.
 

BossBorot

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
My favorite 1.5tb drives are the Samsungs. Unfortunately almost every large capacity drive has issues currently some big and some small depending on what situation you plan on using them in.

here are the issues that I am currently aware of for 1.5TB drives:

Samsung F2: issues being detected properly on some raid cards. Unproven drive manufacturer compared to the big two which causes some reliability suspicions. Although these drives appear to have the least amount of issues they haven't been around for long so something bad might happen down the road.

WD green: issues with dropping out of raid arrays, on top of that they dropped TLR (something to prevent dropping from raid arrays) which compounds this issue. WD also updates product lines without changing product names which makes it hard to upgrade existing raid arrays with the correct drives later on.

Seagate 7200.11: would also drop out of raid arrays which caused them to release new firmware late 2008. Many of the drives with bad firmware died as did many that had bad firmware and were flashed. In the case of 1TB drives some would brick when the firmware was flashed. Due to this issue many people are wary of buying Seagate drives and will be for years to come. This issue appears to be fixed but again many people don't trust Seagate drives anymore.

Seagate LP: Due to the 7200.11 line many people wouldn't even consider buying these drives. Also newegg appears to have gotten a bad batch. This may be a fluke but considering the issues with the 7200.11 Seagate's rep is in the toilet and people are quick to point the finger. Also these are new drives and thus are rather unproven.


Another issue with Seagate high capacity drives is the fear of power cycling issues. Most of the drives that died appear to haven been power cycled a lot more then the ones that are still running strong. This means that they might die unexpectedly down the road after being power cycled enough.

All of these drives should work fine for software raid where they can not time out off a raid array. However for hardware raid I would avoid the LP and WD green. Also I would not trust anything important to an intel Matrix array, do hardware raid properly or go for a software raid OS.

Sorry for the long post but picking the right drive is not a simple issue especially considering the diversity of backup solutions.
 
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pik4chu

Senior Yellow Forum Rat
Joined
Jan 17, 2003
Location
Centennial, Colorado
I got two of the low speed drives from Frys when they ran their sale at the end of December. They came packaged absolutely horribly, but so far they have run absolutely perfectly. I have two of them in RAID1 running 24/7 in my WHS box.

you means these?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822148412

Can you do me a favor and run HDTune on them? I know its RAID 1 but I would like to see some general numbers for those and I doubt microcenter has any of the good ones left (and I need storage...)
 

Alchemy1

Member
Joined
Apr 12, 2004
Yup, those are the ones. I am not sure when I'll be able to run the test for you. It's playoff weekend and my WHS is headless. So, I'd have to pull it from one room into another where I can hook it up to a monitor, mouse, and keyboard.
 

BossBorot

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
I have the following 1.5TB drives that I can test if you want more then just the LP tested. They would be tested as single disks as they are in software raid in my WHS box.

4x 1.5tb Seagate 7200.11
3x 1.5tb Samsung EcoGreen F2
1x 1.5tb Seagate LP
 

pik4chu

Senior Yellow Forum Rat
Joined
Jan 17, 2003
Location
Centennial, Colorado
Id be interested in numbers from the seagate LP.

Though Im having severe issues with WHS and AHCPI drivers right now so its sorta moot for now -_-
 

BossBorot

Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2006
here is my LP. My controller might be cutting its sustained transfer a bit in the first 400gb or so. Im not sure if it is or not as I have never run this disk on anything else.
 

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