Gaz W 04:17 06 Sep 2004

I have been considering RAID for about a week or so now and I've come to the conclusion that it MIGHT be a good idea, but I'm not sure...

I'm thinking of RAID 0, where two drives are used as one and (in simple terms, correct me if I'm wrong) half the data is written to one drive and half to another, effectively doubling performance.

That is my limited understanding of RAID 0 anyway. Although the thought of better performance seems good, the way I see it you are also doubling the chance of a hard disk failure. If one fails you lose everything!

So in comes RAID 1, or at least I think - now I don't fully understand the concept behind this - one drive for "parity"? The problem there is that it's more expensive and you now have three drives getting hot in your system!

What I really want to know is this: for a high performance home system is RAID worth it? What methods can be used to back up a RAID configuration to restore it exactly? Would Norton Ghost work as a cheap alternative to a third drive?

Thanks in advance for any suggesions,


  Diodorus Siculus 08:42 06 Sep 2004

I don't really see the point of RAID 0 for home users; RAID 1 may have some limited value.

A good alternative is plenty of RAM and a decent processor along with a good backup routine, preferably to an external disk.

click here has a good guide to backups.

I use Ghost to create an image every time I make a signigicant change to my OS. click here has a good guide to Ghost.

  hellred 21:43 07 Sep 2004

Raid systems are for people that move masses of data around ( database development, Video , Images etc ) a normal user would not even see a dicernable difference in performance, Furthermore you will need a high quality raid card ( plenty of memmory on the card to act as a buffer ) they cost well over 120 pounds and then some, so after buying two drives plus the card the actual improvement you will see is perhaps 20% in real terms and you would idealy want raid 0 +1 meaning you have two drives as one and one to mirror them, more expense, leave well alone !!

  Gaz W 22:13 07 Sep 2004

The RAID setup wasn't really for me; I was just curious about what sort of performance advantages it would have. I was also thinking of just using the motherboard's onboard RAID controller and probably just RAID 0....

...however, at the moment there does seem little point in doing this. I am starting to take it into consideration myself though since I do copy a lot of video files about my hard disk and have started video and audio editing. Anyway this is a long way into the future. At the moment then, it looks like Serial ATA since it's cheaper!

Thanks everyone for your contributions,


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