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hello everyone,

just wondering: would buying a second identical hard drive and setting up raid 0 on my computer be worth it? Will raid 0 give me a preformance boost? Or should i upgrade my drive from my stock WD10EARS (Western Digital Green) to a Western Digital Black?

Specs:
Gateway DX4850-43c
Intel i5 2300 @ 2.8 Ghz
WD10EARS 1Tb hdd
Nvidia Geforce GT420 1Gb DDR3? -- not sure if it's ddr3
onboard stock sound card & wireless card
6 Gb DDR3 Ram

Thanks,
Javanoob101

Edited by javanoob101: Forgot to add ram!

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    You would most definately see a performance increase with a RAID 0. However, you should be aware that a RAID 0 offers no protection for you data. Your data will be striped across the RAID array. One drive failure will result in loosing your data. The more drives in the … Read More

  • Can I offer another suggestion.... IF you are looking for just a speed increase, Corsair offers a Caching SSD option. It's a small SSD drive that will cache files read from a larger HD. You install the SSD, run the caching software (only works in windows) and the files used … Read More

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You would most definately see a performance increase with a RAID 0. However, you should be aware that a RAID 0 offers no protection for you data. Your data will be striped across the RAID array. One drive failure will result in loosing your data. The more drives in the RAID 0 array, the better performance, but the more risk for data loss.

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yeah i know that, it's just for gaming and stuff like that data loss -not a big deal, i'll back up the data once in a while.

So you think Raid is a good idea then right? Should i buy another WD10EARS drive or something faster then? My stock drive averages 11 - 35 MB/s when copying 67 Gb or so.
or should i buy two new faster drives for raid 0?

Edited by javanoob101

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I am not the best to advise on exactly which set of drives you should go with, especially if you want to ensure you get the most bang for your buck. I would suggest that you not only look at the specifics of the drive, but also buy a quality RAID adapter. Not all drives are equal and not all adapters are either.

Just by putting two drives (any drives) in a RAID 0 configuration should result in a noticeable increase in performance. Of course, if you spend a bit more and ensure that you optimize the performance of the adapter, and drive(s), you should be able to measure even better peformance.

Now, how much do you have to spend before there is not enough return on your investment? Not sure, this is where you need to spend some time researching.

There are other members of this community that may have some additional input for you with regard to suggestions on specific drive vendors/models.

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Ok thanks JorgeM, I'll look into different drives to use. I read that if i buy a 500 GB drive and use it with my stock 1Tb drive, i'll only get 1Tb because it's limited to the smallest drive correct? and in terms of price, it's tight i'm in college and i am paying for it my self so i'm tight on cash for now. A cheap 500Gb drive should work with my stock drive in raid right?

Thanks for the help so far,
javanoob101

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So with regard to the RAID array, my experience has been that RAID adapters allow you to mix different size drives within the array, but the same amount of storage is used from each drive. So for example, if you had a 500 GB and 1TB drive, at most your array could be 1TB because you couldnt use more than 500 GB from that one drive.

I would recommend that you use the same drives within your RAID array. If the budget is tight, I wouldnt spend too much on this project. You will get the most for your investment just based on the fact that you'll have a RAID 0 array. The return decreases as you start to invest in more expensive drives.

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Can I offer another suggestion.... IF you are looking for just a speed increase, Corsair offers a Caching SSD option. It's a small SSD drive that will cache files read from a larger HD. You install the SSD, run the caching software (only works in windows) and the files used most often are cached and read from the SSD. It's a cheap way to speed up a machine. I"ve seen this used and it cuts the OS load time in Half. Frequently accessed files (like your email app, office) loads fast.

http://www.corsair.com/SSD/accelerator-series-SSD-cache-drives.html

Votes + Comments
great suggestion as a valid option based on the discussion.
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Thanks CimmerianX, I didn't know such a device exsited! However, at $69.99 for the 30 Gb model, I may be better off buying a cheap 500Gb hdd to use for RAID...

So to clarify; My current drive spins at "Intellipwer" RPM... Western Digital seems to have some sort of firmware thingy that controls the speed automatically... (its probably 5200 or 5400 rpm though.) Can i just buy a cheap drive even though the RPM's might be different?
Thanks,
Javanoob101

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Ok guys, I'm going to BestBuy tommorrow to buy a cheap 500 GB hdd for my RAID 0 setup.
I'm searching google now on how to setup RAID 0 as I've never done it before.
So i'd like to ask here as well: How do I setup RAID 0? does my data need to be deleted first? and if it does, how do I put it back onto my RAID setup?

Thanks,
Javanoob101

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The exacts steps required is going to vary by adapter, but in general, yes, you would need to create a new array which will span the target disks. This will require you to remove any existing partitions/volumes. Back up your data before setting up the array, then restore it one you format the drive in the OS.

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Ok thanks again JorgeM, I bought the upgraded version of my stock drive from Canada Computers today and i'm restoring my stuff useing the system image i made yesterday!

i'll let you guys know how it works out
javanoob101

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Okay everyone! I gots the RAID 0 to work! yay! I did some more googleing and i cam across this thread http://www.ocztechnologyforum.com/forum/showthread.php?72309-How-to-switch-to-RAID-0-without-reinstalling! this was a huge help.

However, the link above only applies to INTEL sata contollers, AMD doesn't work with these steps unfortunatly.

Thanks to all the advice I received here at Daniweb, and thanks to Dani for making this website, it's helped me and saved me many many times!

Thanks to all,
jvanoob101

okay, one more question: i can turn one of my hard disks into a "recovery" disk, if i bought another disk and made it a recovery disk and constantly have it update, can that provide some redundancy for my raid 0?

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Glad to hear you we're able to get the array up.

I'm not familiar with the "recovery disk" in the context of RAID unless you are referring to a RAID 5 array. RAID 5 introduces fault tolerance into the array by maintaining parity information to protect the data when one drive in the array fails.

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Yeah, i was reading about RAID 5, but if i get the money, I'd replace the disks with SSD's and make a RAID 10 array.

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but at any rate, we got the RAID 0 up right guys?

Thanks for your help!

javanoob101

P.S, If i get 4 hdd's would you reccomend RAID 5 or 10?

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i read with interst,,you are on a budget,now you are talking about havind 4 drives,but have to say if all you were looking for was more speed,you should have looked harder at the ssd cacheing drive,i think it would have added much more speed than a raid setup ,just an opinion

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Thanks guys, caperjack, do you think the SSD cache will still help improve preformance now that i have RAID 0?

javanoob101

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from what i have read on the subject ,i think it would have benn better ,but i would not bother no that you bought the other drives

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ahh i see, i failed to weigh my options then... sorry abput that guys, i got the idea of RAID0 in my head and i was only thinking of the RAID system...

javanoob

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it's not just that, i copy large files too so having RAID will and has already doubled my transfer rate, however now that I know about SSD caching, I will keep it in mind.

javanoob101

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qick quest for my own interst ,where from or to are you copying large files ,nothing persional ,just trying to figure out if raid would be good for me .thanks

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just trying to figure out if raid would be good for me

If you are interested in a RAID solution, you have to consider that there are different types of RAID arrays, some meant for data protection, others for speed, and others for both.

NOt all RAID adapters are equal, not all drives are equal (as you know).

In the RAID 0 example in this thread, performance increases as you add more drives into the RAID array. The cost is that the risk of a disk failure which will result in the array to fail also increases.

RAID 0 arrays are great for scenarios where performance is the most important objective. Loss of data is not of a concern. It is also the most "cost" effective of all the RAID solutions since there is no fault tolerance built-in. No parity.

I saw this video a while back... they put 24 SSD drives in an array. I've never seen Windows run this fast. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eULFf6F5Ri8

Edited by JorgeM

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I am learning about virtualization now, thus i have 20GB virtual hard drve files. Copying these to my computer i was getting 10-30 MB /sec now with RAID 0 i get 40-50 MB /sec. Because it's just my computer and i use it for gaming, I wanted to expirement with RAID. Data loss is not that big of a deal (I just lose my games) however if you want to go RAID, I suggest RAID 10 that way you get the RAID 0 preformance boost and the data redundancy of RAID 1. Your choice though.

I was copying from USB to my computer and back btw.

javanoob101

Edited by javanoob101

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