Noob setting up a raid

All things storage here: hard drives, DVD RW drives, little wicker baskets.

Moderators: morphine, Steel

Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:43 pm

I been thinking about this ever since I built my new system but I am not sure where to start.

Here is what I have to work with.

Intel Core i5-3570K Ivy Bridge 3.4GHz (3.8GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 77W Quad-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 4000 BX80637I53570K
ASUS P8Z77-V LK LGA 1155 Intel Z77 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS
CORSAIR Vengeance LP 32GB (4 x 8GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory
EVGA 02G-P4-2680-KR GeForce GTX 680 2GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 x16 HDCP Ready SLI Support Video Card
2x SAMSUNG 830 Series MZ-7PC512D/AM 2.5" 512GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) Desktop Upgrade Kit
Seagate Barracuda ST1000DM003 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive
SeaSonic Platinum Platinum-860 860W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS PLATINUM Certified Full Modular Active PFC Power Supply
SAMSUNG DVD Burner 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 8X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 24X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM SATA
Corsair Special Edition White Graphite Series 600T Steel / Plastic ATX Mid Tower Computer Case
COOLER MASTER GeminII S524 120mm Long Life Sleeve CPU Cooler
Windows 8 64bit OEM

The 600T case I have has plenty of room left for more drives. I currently have only used one of the optical drive bays and three of the storage drive bays. That leaves three 5.25 and three 3.5 drive bays open.

Here is what I am wanting to do. I am looking at adding in a 120/128GB SSD for my OS drive, probably another Samsung 830 if I can find one, 840 pro if not. Then I want to turn the two 512GB SSD's into one big drive, so RAID 0 from what I have been reading. I have yet to even use the Seagate drive but it will remain as a future storage drive unless I can incorporate it into the RAID some how. No clue about this at this point. I am looking to simplify things. Instead of all these drives being used separately I want to treat them as one or two large drives. Data redundancy is not a major concern right now.

So, where do I start? Do I need a Raid controller of some sort or will my Motherboard be able to handle what I want to do.
Is it possible to work the Seagate into the raid in some way to increase the storage capacity or do all the Raid drives need to be the same size and type?
Would I be better off using the Seagate as a back up drive mirroring everything on the two SSD's? If so how do I do this?
My old system has a 500GB HDD, not sure what brand right off hand, that I am considering adding into the system. Mainly I want some of the software off of it then it could be wiped and used however was most beneficial.

I freely admit I am a noob when it comes to RAID's so please forgive the dumb questions I have probably already asked. I should probably go out and find a copy of RAID for Dummies at the local book store. So, point me to some websites that can make this more clear than the mud I have been trying to figure out on my own. All constructive suggestions welcome.
Khali
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:05 pm

You can use Intel RST program to set up RAID0 on your system (it's pretty easy to use... Just don't forget to update the BIOS on your motherboard for the latest version before using it), though I would personally not bother with it - if something goes wrong with single drive in your RAID0 setup - you're ****, unless you do backups to another drive (like your HDD one, which you should use for backup purposes, using Windows' own backup tool or something like Macrium Reflect)... B.t.w, why do you want to set up RAID0 and what will you be storing there?
Also, you don't really need any books about RAID - just check out Wikipedia's articles about it and also Intel's own documentation for their RST program.
My subscription allows you people to exist on this site and makes me a better human being than you'll ever be
JohnC
Gerbil Jedi
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1881
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:08 pm
Location: NY/NJ/FL

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:28 pm

JohnC wrote:You can use Intel RST program to set up RAID0 on your system (it's pretty easy to use... Just don't forget to update the BIOS on your motherboard for the latest version before using it), [b]though I would personally not bother with it - if something goes wrong with single drive in your RAID0 setup - you're ****,[/b] unless you do backups to another drive (like your HDD one, which you should use for backup purposes, using Windows' own backup tool or something like Macrium Reflect)... B.t.w, why do you want to set up RAID0 and what will you be storing there?
Also, you don't really need any books about RAID - just check out Wikipedia's articles about it and also Intel's own documentation for their RST program.


Mostly this. SSDs are faster that HDDs in both access times and transfer rates, but it's the faster access times that you benefit most from; RAID0 is only going to get you faster transfer rates, which should already be ~3x as fast as an HDD. RAID should only really be used where needed, so unless you can make a case for yourself that you need faster transfer rates, then you're adding complexity and reducing reliability for nothing.
Canon 6D||[24-105/4L IS USM|100/2.8L Macro IS USM|70-300/4-5.6 IS USM|40/2.8 STM|50/1.4 USM|85/1.8 USM|Samyang/Bower 14/2.8 Full-Manual Rectilinear Wide-angle|
Canon EOS-M|11-22/4-5.6 IS STM|22/2 STM|EF-M 18-55/3.5-5.6 IS STM|
For sale!|24/2.8 IS USM
|
Airmantharp
Maximum Gerbil
 
Posts: 4991
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 10:41 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:32 pm

I ran into a little problem the other day when trying to install a game from Steam. The drive was full and I could not find a way install the game onto another drive. So this led me to wanting to turn the two SSD's into one big drive and add in a smaller SSD for the OS. I finally fixed my problem by moving some stand alone game files to my second SSD. However with Steam, Origin, and others becoming the way to buy games, as opposed to a actual physical disk, its looking more and more like you will need a drive for each or one big raid drive.
Khali
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:43 pm

Just try to uninstall the junk you don't need and don't use SSDs for storing music/movies/photos and similar type of files (use your HDD to store them)... All my currently installed Steam and Origin games fit fine on my 512GB SSD (which is also an OS drive) and I can always redownload any old game if I'll ever want to replay it...
My subscription allows you people to exist on this site and makes me a better human being than you'll ever be
JohnC
Gerbil Jedi
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1881
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:08 pm
Location: NY/NJ/FL

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 5:59 pm

RAID 0 doesn't make sense unless you need extra I/O performance at the expense of data integrity.

OP, a single SSD is more than sufficient for most mainstream needs. You don't need to put games on SSDs, most of them are CPU-bound in terms of load time. There are only a handful that benefit from being on a SSD.
Ivy Bridge i5-3570K@4.0Ghz, Gigabyte Z77X-UD3H, 2x4GiB of PC-12800, EVGA 660Ti, Corsair CX-600 and Fractal Refined R4 (W). Kentsfield Q6600@3Ghz, HD 4850 2x2GiB PC2-6400, Gigabyte EP45-DS4P, OCZ Modstream 700W, and PC-7B.
Krogoth
Maximum Gerbil
Silver subscriber
 
 
Posts: 4402
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2003 3:20 pm
Location: somewhere on Core Prime

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 6:41 pm

If you just want one big drive across the SSDs, then you don't even need RAID. Just mount the partitions as a folder and don't give those drives a letter.
Image
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
 
Posts: 24360
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 9:20 pm

Flying Fox wrote:If you just want one big drive across the SSDs, then you don't even need RAID. Just mount the partitions as a folder and don't give those drives a letter.


I have no idea how to do this. I never learned how to mess around with drive partitions in the past because I generally had one hard drive in my computers in the past and really never had the need. Guess I need to learn about partitions. I will give this a look. I guess I am like a lot of people and never took the time to learn about certain things I never had a use for in the past.

JohnC wrote:Just try to uninstall the junk you don't need and don't use SSDs for storing music/movies/photos and similar type of files (use your HDD to store them)... All my currently installed Steam and Origin games fit fine on my 512GB SSD (which is also an OS drive) and I can always redownload any old game if I'll ever want to replay it...


I don't have a lot of music, videos, or pictures stored on my computer. Its mainly just games, Firefox, and a word processor program. I am limited to a rather slow DSL for internet so down loading games can be a multiple day project depending on size. Once I have a game installed and all patched up, where needed, I like to leave it on my computer unless its something I know I will never play again.
Khali
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 9:48 pm

You still have a couple of options- you can set up multiple drives as a JBOD (Just a Bunch Of Disks) that turns them into one drive that the OS sees. You can also move games around, either by using built in features or using symbolic links. I use the latter to move games installed by Steam/Origin from an HDD to an SSD as needed.
Canon 6D||[24-105/4L IS USM|100/2.8L Macro IS USM|70-300/4-5.6 IS USM|40/2.8 STM|50/1.4 USM|85/1.8 USM|Samyang/Bower 14/2.8 Full-Manual Rectilinear Wide-angle|
Canon EOS-M|11-22/4-5.6 IS STM|22/2 STM|EF-M 18-55/3.5-5.6 IS STM|
For sale!|24/2.8 IS USM
|
Airmantharp
Maximum Gerbil
 
Posts: 4991
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 10:41 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 10:11 pm

JBOD sounds like what I want to do. Will do some research on that.

I have several older games I want to install. Since most of them only take up one CD or DVD disk, would it be better to install them on the Seagate drive and leave the SSD's free for more data intensive modern games?
Khali
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 10:30 pm

Simple solution for you: since you have Win8, you can use "Storage Spaces" (just go to "Control Panel" then "Storage Spaces"). Just make sure to backup all of the data on your SSD drives before you'll start experimenting with it! :wink: And if you simply want more storage space and don't care about data safety - just select "None" for "Resiliency type" when creating a new storage space.
My subscription allows you people to exist on this site and makes me a better human being than you'll ever be
JohnC
Gerbil Jedi
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1881
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:08 pm
Location: NY/NJ/FL

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 10:43 pm

Khali wrote:JBOD sounds like what I want to do. Will do some research on that.

I have several older games I want to install. Since most of them only take up one CD or DVD disk, would it be better to install them on the Seagate drive and leave the SSD's free for more data intensive modern games?


As mentioned above, very few games will show any benefit from an SSD. BF3 does, Skyrim doesn't, and both are big games; I run Skyrim off of a WD Green.
Canon 6D||[24-105/4L IS USM|100/2.8L Macro IS USM|70-300/4-5.6 IS USM|40/2.8 STM|50/1.4 USM|85/1.8 USM|Samyang/Bower 14/2.8 Full-Manual Rectilinear Wide-angle|
Canon EOS-M|11-22/4-5.6 IS STM|22/2 STM|EF-M 18-55/3.5-5.6 IS STM|
For sale!|24/2.8 IS USM
|
Airmantharp
Maximum Gerbil
 
Posts: 4991
Joined: Fri Oct 15, 2004 10:41 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Wed Mar 06, 2013 10:48 pm

Airmantharp wrote:
Khali wrote:JBOD sounds like what I want to do. Will do some research on that.

I have several older games I want to install. Since most of them only take up one CD or DVD disk, would it be better to install them on the Seagate drive and leave the SSD's free for more data intensive modern games?


As mentioned above, very few games will show any benefit from an SSD. BF3 does, Skyrim doesn't, and both are big games; I run Skyrim off of a WD Green.

Skyrim also does once you start adding in a few "beautyfying" mods for it :wink:
My subscription allows you people to exist on this site and makes me a better human being than you'll ever be
JohnC
Gerbil Jedi
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 1881
Joined: Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:08 pm
Location: NY/NJ/FL

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:42 am

Two thoughts that I hope you keep in mind:
- RAID is not "backup".
- RAID0 is analogous to the twin-engine jet that goes down if either engine craps.

I gave up on the whole RAID-thing when large disks became cheap enough that using a whole other disk to make a full copy, preferably kept off-line or in a different machine on the network, made sense. The s/w to do it is free (or included): if on Linux or Mac, check out rsync, dd, or even tar; if on Windoze, robocopy works quite well.

The only bits I've ever lost were supposedly "safe" in RAID setups where the controller died, or worse became flaky. We helped our resident "IT Architect" find another job after that.

It's definitely a fun learning experience playing with RAID setups, but don't trust your bits to it.
MarkG509
Gerbil First Class
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2013 6:51 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Thu Mar 07, 2013 2:50 am

Two thoughts that I hope you keep in mind:
- RAID is not "backup".
- RAID0 is analogous to the twin-engine jet that goes down if either engine craps.


Yes, I was aware of that much going in.

Thanks every one for all the advice. This is the main reason I keep coming back to the Tech Report and its forums. I learn a lot here. I think I am just going to move all my non Steam/Origin games to the Seagate drive and then move Steam and Origin stuff to the second non OS SSD.
Khali
Gerbil XP
 
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2012 5:31 pm

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Thu Mar 07, 2013 3:03 am

Khali wrote:
Flying Fox wrote:If you just want one big drive across the SSDs, then you don't even need RAID. Just mount the partitions as a folder and don't give those drives a letter.


I have no idea how to do this. I never learned how to mess around with drive partitions in the past because I generally had one hard drive in my computers in the past and really never had the need. Guess I need to learn about partitions. I will give this a look. I guess I am like a lot of people and never took the time to learn about certain things I never had a use for in the past.

When you install a drive and just "format" the whole thing, you get a partition by default and that partition (taking up the whole drive) gets assigned a drive letter. Instead of assigning a drive letter, you can choose to "mount" it as a folder under another drive. Here is a link that shows how without other noise.
Image
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
 
Posts: 24360
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Thu Mar 07, 2013 4:24 am

Please be aware of TRIM support (or the lack thereof) for running RAID on SSD harddrives. Only until recently intel has support for it, and only on limited range of hardware.

you can read more about it here...
http://www.anandtech.com/show/6161/inte ... we-test-it
atty
Gerbil In Training
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Mar 07, 2013 4:17 am

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Thu Mar 07, 2013 5:01 am

RAID at best is junk food version of backup. It only protects you against hardware failure not against the countless other vectors (malware, user error and memory errors).

RAID is meant for improving data availability and minimizing downtime. While giving the nice benefit of increasing I/O throughput performance. As you can see, RAIDs are best suited for servers and mission critical systems. Workstations can benefit from the increased I/O throughput if your project demands it.
Ivy Bridge i5-3570K@4.0Ghz, Gigabyte Z77X-UD3H, 2x4GiB of PC-12800, EVGA 660Ti, Corsair CX-600 and Fractal Refined R4 (W). Kentsfield Q6600@3Ghz, HD 4850 2x2GiB PC2-6400, Gigabyte EP45-DS4P, OCZ Modstream 700W, and PC-7B.
Krogoth
Maximum Gerbil
Silver subscriber
 
 
Posts: 4402
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2003 3:20 pm
Location: somewhere on Core Prime

Re: Noob setting up a raid

Postposted on Thu Mar 07, 2013 9:26 am

@Khali

Another option is creating a spanned volume with Windows disk management. It's not RAID, but it will create a large volume spanning the two disks which will show up as a single terabyte size drive. I'm not sure what the performance would be like mixing SSDs with a HD. The link below shows how to create the spanned volume rather then a software RAID array like the title suggests.

The same area will also allow you to create software RAID sets, if you're interested in playing around with that.

How to Create a Software RAID Array in Windows 7
http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/36504/ho ... windows-7/
Flatland_Spider
Gerbil Elite
 
Posts: 824
Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2004 8:33 pm
Location: The 918/539


Return to Storage

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests