Raid 5 or raid 1?

What's the optimum solution when setting up a sbs 2011 server? It will have 1 tb hot swap says drives x 3 or 4 it will run a sql express database - exchange and act as domain controller for 10 users
It will have 32gb ram on a ml380 hp g8 server
I understand raid 1 is quicker but raid 5 is less likely to get bad sectors please advise guys
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teomcamConnect With a Mentor Commented:
1.RAID10 already will give you 2TB space with Qty of 4, 1TB HDDs!
If you compare 2x2TB (RAID1) vs 4x1TB (RAID10), following will happen

Qty of 4, 1TB HDD scenario
RAID1 Total capacity 1TB + 1TB 2 different volume, performance will be equal to 1 single HDD's performance. In this scenario to join 2 different volume into 1 volume will require Dynamic Disk configuration, which means you cannot boot your OS and you will be required to buy another HDD to install your OS!!! Whihc is not practical!
RAID10, Total capacity 2TB, performance will be almost double reading and approx 60% faster writing. That is the most practical and common way to go in your scenario. Unless you need more space everyone go for RAID10

2. Please check the following link
Actually RAID 1 is less risky and easier to manage. If possible I'd go for RAID 10 though, as that adds speed. I'd only think of RAID 5 if you don't have enough drive bays available for the disks and space you'd need.
Since you installing major roles and exchange server on the same server, playing safe is vital. But also same time you need performance because you don't have multiple servers. In your case (most cases) the best option is RAID10 which will give you the best performance and the best protection against HDD failures, compare to any other 4 drives raid configurations.
Only negative point about RAID10 is, you sacrificing half of your total HDD capacity but it worths!
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madunixChief Information Security Officer Commented:
Read this discussion on

I can only say if you have to have the performance, RAID10 is probably going to be better for you.
phoenix81Author Commented:
thanks guys looks like the way to go for us is Raid 1 as Raid 10 might be too expensive for this client in question in relation to the useable space that they need (2tb).

However next 2 questions  are:

1. if we go for raid 1 (aiming for 2tb usuable space) is their any impact on performance if we go for 2 x 2tb hard drives on raid 1 compared to 4 x 1tb drives with (2 logical drive 1tb partitions)

e.g on the 4  x 1tb drive scenario we will actually have 2 seperate 1tb raid mirrored (on the same HP embedded controller) to make up the 2tb space? is this a benefit or a disadvantage do you know????

2. Does anyone know if there are any problems with having 2TB partitions in an SBS 2011 setup? (as i seem to remember when dealing with drives bigger than 2TB on a Windows server that it wasnt quite as straight forward during the setup?)

Sorry for any confusion - I hope my comments make sense
rindiConnect With a Mentor Commented:
If you would go for 4x1TB drives, you would get your 2TB space with RAID 10. I'd then add a further 1TB drive as a hot spare so that should one of the drives of the array fail, that spare drive would take over from the bad one and get synced automatically. That reduces the risk. You'd still have to make sure that the server is monitored regularly so any bad drives are removed and replacements ordered.

A server should always have more than one partition. At least one for the OS, and the other for the data. If I remember correctly SBS 2011 actually suggests several partitions during the installation...
phoenix81Author Commented:
Thanks guys we went for Raid 10 on 4 x 1tb and performance seems very good so far :)
May I ask why you accepted that particular comment? I said basically the same thing, but earlier. Here at EE normally the first correct answer(s) should be accepted, not the last one. You can also accept several answers.
I've requested that this question be closed as follows:

Accepted answer: 350 points for teomcam's comment #a38852333
Assisted answer: 150 points for rindi's comment #a38851222

for the following reason:

I have reopened your question and started the process of closing it with a split amongst two or more Experts, as that outcome seems more equitable than your original disposition.
EE Admin
Giving an unsufficent answer without enough detail does not mean that question has been answered. I have followed up askers following questions and answered with even more detail. I believe Author's first decision was right.
phoenix81Author Commented:
I hope this is satisfactory I appreciate all of your help in answering my question thanks again
There was enough detail in my comment to answer the Question. Apart from that your comment isn't totally correct. You can easily boot from software RAID 1. You don't require a separate drive to install the OS on.
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