Best Raid set up

Im setting up sbs 2003 on a HP server. I have 4 80GB disks which i want to set up in an array format. What setup would offer my best performance but also offer redundancy?
Also have another that has only two 80GB disk - same question?
boomerbostockAsked:
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ppfoongCommented:

Take a look at this tutorial about RAID

http://www.acnc.com/04_00.html

and choose yourself. Each setup has their own pros and cons.


durgaprasadnCommented:
boomerboostock,

>>I have 4 80GB disks which i want to set up in an array format. What setup would offer my best performance but also offer redundancy?

for your first question as you have four equal size 80 GB disks, i would like to prefer an raid 10
raid 10 : you need 4 or more hdds, the hdds are stripped and the boths stripped are mirrored, save and fast. (example: 100 GB real disk space is 50 GB useable disk space)

>>Also have another that has only two 80GB disk - same question?
for your second question as you have 2 disks which are of equal size i.e 80GB, i would prefer an  raid 1
raid 1: you need two or more hdds, the hdds are mirrored (example: 100 GB real disk space is 50 GB useable disk space) has better redundany but not that fast

Thanks,
Durga Prasad.
rindiCommented:
You could also use raid 5 for your 4 disk array. Raid 5 isn't as fast in writing performance as raid 10 is, but it gets close in reading performance, and you get more space, as you only loose 1 disk to the array. Otherwise I'd say durga's answer above should be of good help.
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StammesOpferCommented:
Your Best solution depends on a couple of things one being your RAID controller and your storage space needs almost all controllers support RAID 0, 1, 0+1 better ones also support 5, 10 and other support still more.

For your 4 drive array
If you need performance and redundancy but space is not an issue then use RAID 10 if your controller does not support RAID 10 then use 1+0 (there is only a slight difference between the two) this will give you aprox. 2x write speed and 4x read speed and half of the total amount of space on the drives

If you you need more than half the space 160gb in your case then you need RAID 5 if your controller supports it RAID 5 will give you aprox. 75% of the total space 240gb in your case while still offering total redundancy and also better performance

If your RAID controller does not support RAID 10 or 5 then your only option is 0+1 or buy a new controller

For your 2 drive array
Your only option if you want redundancy is RAID 1 which gives you half the total amount of space and 1x write speeds 2x read speeds

RAID 0 give your all of your hard drive space and 2x read and 2x write however does NOT give ANY redundancy if one drive fails all information on both drives is lost not good in a server environment

Hope this is helpful,
StammesOpfer
mmsiCommented:
hello,
 i agree with durga and rindi, i myself have 9 servers all running raid 5, not as fast as 10, and like they said only loss of one disk leaving you with more space, remember if a drive fails you can just pop in another one and it will rebuild itself, hope this addition helps in your decision making,                mike
ShittashCommented:
Raid 5 and 1 respectivly would give the best ROI and redundancy
davidcornesCommented:
An alternative option, which is somewhat dependent on how you plan to use your server. I'm no that familiar with SBS, but would I be correct in believing that it includes Exchange and SQL Server? If so I think I'd opt for two RAID1 arrays, one of which could be used for the OS, and the other for data for the SQL and Exchange databases. Splitting the read/write heads this way can give superior performance, though the space hit would be the same as for a single RAID 10 (50% of the total).

If the server is to also host network fileshares then you would also have the option of placing these on whichever of the arrays is least used, thus distributing the load better.  You could even split the first array into two (or more) partitions - say 10-16GB for the OS (C: drive), and the remaining for file shares. This wouldn't improve performance per-se, but would be a good method of segregating system files from data.
ShittashCommented:
david the performance aspect which you are stating is negligable when taking into account a SBS.

The whole point in SBS is that you are running all of a company/whatever's business from 1 box. the maximum number of users on SBS is 75 i believe so mailbox and SQL usage is not going to be very high.

Plus i would expect that you would want more space for your money than speed, because the boxes that usually run SBS are not very big so capacity will be no more than say 6 drives. when taking into account that RAID 1 only gives you 50% capacity of your total drives its not the best option. You arguments are not wrong in any way but probably not the best practice for small business that wont have the budget for a high spec seperate server for each device (exchange , SQL , File and Print) servers.
Madhukar_MythriCommented:
Boomer,

>>I have 4 80GB disks which i want to set up in an array format. What setup would offer my best performance but also offer redundancy?

I would suggest RAID 0+1 or RAID 5.

1) RAID 0+1 :  setup is based on the concept of "Disk striping with Miroring"

Minimum No of disks required : 4, (You have 4 80 GB disks)
Capacity = N/2 Where N is the number of disks, (4/2=2 => 2*80=160 GB will be the capacity of the RAID setup, Max amount
                                                                       of data which you can store is 160 GB)
Redundancy = Yes , remaining N/2 will be used for this. (4/2=2 => 2*80=160Gb will be used for redundancy(full) ie.Mirroring)
RAID 0+1 combines the RAID 0 and RAID 1 - Mirroring and striping.
RAID 0+1 allows "multiple drive failure" because of the full redundancy of the hard drives

In this case, Performance for write operations would be LOW and for read operations it would be MEDIUM and not high.

2) RAID 5 : setup is based on the concept of Striping with interspersed parity

Minimum No of disks required : 3, (You have 3+1)
Capacity = N-1, Where N is the number of disks, (4-1=3 => 3*80=240 GB will be the capacity of the RAID setup, Max amount
                                                                       of data which you can store is 160 GB)
Redundancy = Yes

RAID 5 is similar to RAID 3 (Where parity info will be stored in a dedicated drive and if it is damaged, RAID couldn't be able to regenerate the lost info) but the parity in RAID 5 is not sotred in one dedicated hard drive. Parity info is interspersed across the drive array. In the event of a failure, the controller can "recover/regenerate the lost data" of the failed drive from the other surviving drives.

In this case, the performance for write operations will be LOW and for read operations it wold be HIGH.


Boomer, Now its your turn to select the best setup :-)

>>Also have another that has only two 80GB disk - same question?
For this you can have two options. RAID 0 and RAID 1

                                                  RAID 0                              RAID 1

Concept                                :     Disk Striping                     Disk  Mirroring
Minimum No of disks required :         2                                      2
Capacity                               :        N (N*size)                        N/2 (N/2 * size)
Redundancy                          :        NO                                     YES
Performance for READ           :        HIGH                                MEDIUM
Performance for WRITE         :       HIGHEST                           LOW


Hope you would select RAID 1 as RAID 0 has no redundancy but see the performance.

NOTE: If there more than two hard drives assigned to perform RAID 1, RAID 0+1 would be performed automatically

Thanks,
Madhuakr.

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