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Using WHS 2011 with RAID


pcdoc
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I also did a few trial installs on WHS2011 on both a dual drive system and a RAID system. With my dual drive system I found it very easy to make the OS drive separate from the data drive and could see some advantage there if a drive were to fail.

 

I then reinstalled after creating a RAID 1 array using the built in RAID function of my motherboard. I noted that it worked perfectly, creating the OS and data portions on my array. Based on this I am leaning towards building a single 2TB RAID 5 array for both OS and data. Admittedly it could not be easily expanded but 2GB is plenty for my foreseeable needs and within the backup limitations of WHS2011.

 

Which leads me to my question; were I to create a RAID 5 array using 3 x 1TB drives, yielding a 2TB volume, and added a 4th 1TB drive as a hot spare would this not be an even more robust configuration than I could get with previously DE? Should any drive fail the spare would automatically join the array. Both data and OS are fully redundant and backup would make this nearly bullet proof. I am trying to think of a scenario where having the OS on a separate physical drive would be advantageous and I cannot. I should not think it would be a serious performance issue either. Comments?

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I also did a few trial installs on WHS2011 on both a dual drive system and a RAID system. With my dual drive system I found it very easy to make the OS drive separate from the data drive and could see some advantage there if a drive were to fail.

 

I then reinstalled after creating a RAID 1 array using the built in RAID function of my motherboard. I noted that it worked perfectly, creating the OS and data portions on my array. Based on this I am leaning towards building a single 2TB RAID 5 array for both OS and data. Admittedly it could not be easily expanded but 2GB is plenty for my foreseeable needs and within the backup limitations of WHS2011.

 

Which leads me to my question; were I to create a RAID 5 array using 3 x 1TB drives, yielding a 2TB volume, and added a 4th 1TB drive as a hot spare would this not be an even more robust configuration than I could get with previously DE? Should any drive fail the spare would automatically join the array. Both data and OS are fully redundant and backup would make this nearly bullet proof. I am trying to think of a scenario where having the OS on a separate physical drive would be advantageous and I cannot. I should not think it would be a serious performance issue either. Comments?

 

For starters, I would not put the OS and data on the same array. It is safer to have the OS on a smaller drive or arra. It makes for a reinstall or recovery much easier and safer with the driver issues. As for you question, "If" you have a controller that allows for expansion of the array, then yes it would be a more robust configuration than DE. My suggestion is to you based on the above configuration is build the 3 drive raid 5 array strictly as a data drive and use a small drive for the OS or use on of the Icy Dock units with the built in RAID that uses two laptop drives. This gives you a mirro on the OS, and raid 5 for the data. I you really want to do it right though use a hardware controller for the raid 5. Good luck

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***Update***

It appears at times I miss the most obvious things. I have been mentioning array build times of 39+ hours but what I missed on the software was an option called backgound or Foreground. Needless to say it defaults to the background which allows you to use the array right away, however drags out the initial build. When set to foreground on initial build, the same 8T array went from 39 hours to 5 hours. Just a minor difference I know but worthy of nothing. It goes without saying that I will be using the foreground from now during initial builds. Always something new to learn.

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