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Need some advice on a Hard Drive set up.

Discussion in 'Storage Drives' started by nib95, 17 Sep 2009.

  1. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Basically, I'm going to be installing a copy of Windows 7 Ultimate RC soon (I realise the real thing comes out soon, but with the RC I'm good up to June 2010 right?). And wanted a new drive set up after one of my others failed and left me with a huge data recovery bill. I already have two WD Black's (1TB) for Raid 1 set up, my lazy way of always having a back up there. But now I need something for my main Windows drive.

    Essentially, I'm trying to decide between....


    Set up 1.

    1 single Samsung F3 1TB drive (for Windows, programmes and minor files)

    2 x WD Black RAID 1 (main drive for all data, mirrored for safety)


    Set up 2.

    2x Samsung F3 1TB RAID0 (for Windows, programmes and minor files)

    2 x WD Black RAID 1 (main drive for all data, mirrored for safety)


    Set up 3.

    1x Affordable SSD drive (for Windows, programmes and minor files)

    2 x WD Black RAID 1 (main drive for all data, mirrored for safety)


    First thing is, I'm trying not to break the bank here. How much of a performance improvement is RAID0 really going to give me over a single drive? And how much of a performance difference is there between a single drive vs RAID0 vs SSD? A Samsung F3 set up in RAID0 is essentially the same cost as a smaller SSD drive, so how would they compare? And aside from the obvious storage amount differences, are there any other advantages to getting RAID0 over SSD? I've hear concerns about SSD's losing performance over time?

    My motherboard is an Asus P6T Deluxe if that makes a difference.


    Any help would be greatly appreciated, as I essentially want to buy today.
     
  2. wonko

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 21 Jul 2008

    Posts: 1,402

    Location: Outside the asylum

    Personally I wouldn't rely solely on a raid 1 for the data storage without further backup(s). Unless you have further external storage in mind, I would use one of your WD blacks as an external drive to do regular backups to... raid 1 only protects against individual disk failure, and doesn't help against finger trouble, file system corruption, power supply failure that takes out all disks, etc.
     
  3. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    My PSU is one of the newest Corsair's, so hopefully that will stay in tact. never had a PSU fail on me yet. And along with the RAID1 back up set up, I also have an external Seagate Extreme 1TB (eSATA) drive. So the RAID1 won't be my only back up. The last failed drive stung me so hard I'm not taking risks again.

    Now, on to the main Windows drive.

    Looking at the prices of SSD, I figure 64GB is too little (in regards to storage) and 128GB is too expensive (cost wise at around £200). So I guess it boils down to single drive vs RAID0 for the Windows drive. What do you guys think? And which would offer me more speed, the 500GB F3 or the 1TB version?
     
  4. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Anyone?
     
  5. ~Divine~Wind~

    Underboss

    Joined: 14 Jun 2004

    Posts: 16,059

    Location: Newcastle U/T

    Diff suggestion....

    2x 320Gb Samsung F1s (or similar) in RAID0

    2x 1TB (w/e) in RAID1

    2 320s should be far cheaper than a SSD and still have V Nice performance.

    I personally couldnt justify the cost of an SSD my current setup is...

    2x320Gb RAID0
    2x1TB RAID1
    1x 320GB

    Plenty storage, performance of the 320s is fine for windows.
     
  6. ChileanLlama

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 27 Feb 2007

    Posts: 1,921

    Location: Leeds

    A massive difference - I'd definitely recommend it. If you're thinking of buying drives for a RAID0 and having a RAID1 storage array, then I'd seriously consider holding back until you can afford to get an SSD instead of the RAID0.

    You do realise RAID1 isn't a backup though? I know you have an external drive, but RAID1 protects you against drive failure, it doesn't protect your data if for example you get malware, or accidentally delete something - as to all extents and purposes what is written to one drive is immediately mirrored on the other drive in the array.
     
  7. Zarf

    Mobster

    Joined: 11 Jul 2007

    Posts: 2,527

    SSD + RAID1 storage is a good solution, That's what I built for a mate.
    It's not a backup, but it protects against the most likely cause of data loss - mechanical failure.
     
  8. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    I do indeed realise that. But to tell the truth, mechanical failure is the only thing I'm concerned about. I don't think I've had a virus in years. I like to keep my system secure and healthy.

    Ok, so can anyone recommend me two hard drives for my system (Windows) RAID0 set up? Just the fastest regular drives possible, preferably under £100. I won't be using these drives for much if any storage beyond just install files, so speed is more important than size here. Though I'd prefer if they were at least 250GB just to be safe.

    Which two drives for RAID0 would you guys recommend?
     
  9. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Wrong forum lol.
     
  10. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Anyone else on which HDD's for RAID I should buy? I can pull the trigger at any time.
     
  11. AbsenceJam

    Mobster

    Joined: 2 Nov 2007

    Posts: 4,304

    If you can get a SSD then go for it. The F3's are the top mech drives but SSD's are a different class.
     
  12. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    SSD's are just too expensive right now. I'll pick one up in a year or so when prices are more reasonable.
     
  13. Atom

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 8 Jan 2007

    Posts: 1,465

    Location: Manchester

    RE3's??
     
  14. Audigex

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 3 Feb 2009

    Posts: 2,238

    If you're going raid and have <1tb of data, two sammy F3s now in raid1 - partitioned for files and data. It won't be quite as fast but it's the cheapest way of doing it straight off.

    Then when you can justify it, get an SSD for files and switch the F3s to storage only.

    No wasteage, at the cost of it not being quite so fast now - but F3s are meant to be quick anyway.
     
  15. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Ok, so again, which HDD's would you recommend for RAID0? Samsung F1's? 1TB? 500GB? 320GB? How about the WD Blacks or RE3's? Any input would be appreciated.
     
  16. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Ok last bump...which should I go for.


    1.) 1x1TB Samsung F3
    2.) 2x320GB Samsung F1 (RAID0)
    3.) 2x500/1TB Samsung F3 (RAID0)
    4.) 1x150GB WD Velociraptor
    5.) Another HDD(s)

    I can't really afford a decent sized SSD yet, so I left that out.


    What do you guys think?
     
  17. AbsenceJam

    Mobster

    Joined: 2 Nov 2007

    Posts: 4,304

    I'd go with 1 or 3.
     
  18. nib95

    Gangster

    Joined: 4 Jul 2008

    Posts: 175

    Interesting. Ok, well, if the wallet allows it I'll buy tomorrow along with a 5870 (only if the price is right mind, <£300).