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a few thoughts on RAID

Joel is right, RAID is a life-saver, but.....

- you need to backup with RAID as you did without, if you accidentally delete something important RAID does not help at all

- RAID controllers may be a pain the ass, I recently had an IBM RAID controller on Linux report two out of three disks of a RAID-5 array dead at the same time (which meant all the data was lost).....sounded pretty strange, so after a few firmware upgrades and some fiddling with the controller BIOS, we discovered the drives were not dead at all, the controller "only" thought so....

- software RAID is usually very reliable, and much cheaper than hardware RAID both on Windows and Linux

- you don't need RAID on desktops, just make the "My Documents" folder a link to a folder on your RAID-equipped server, and store everything important there and/or on network drives; a disk failure on the desktop means you only have to reinstall Windows and re-target your net drives/folders

my 2 cents, forgive my bad English I'm Italian =)

ludoo
Sunday, January 26, 2003

Yeah, the only really bad thing about software raid is that if the first disk goes, the system won't boot without fiddling. That and if you've never done a rebuild under linux, it can be a bit awkward as opposed to the automatic rebuild of a hardware solution. I would not know for windows (NT|2000|XP) but I should stress the point that an incident needs to be simulated and the recovery procedure must be understood.

Alex
Sunday, January 26, 2003

Is it really possible to have a directory like C:\My Documents linked to a network drive?? I thought Windows' "reparse points" could only link to local storage. I know several people who would be VERY VERY happy if you could create a link to non-local storage...

Dan Maas
Sunday, January 26, 2003

Alex, in the Linux/LILO world, you're Just Plain Wrong.  LILO will note mirrored RAID boot disks and write the bootblock to all elements in the mirror.  Lo, booting happens.

Rodger Donaldson
Monday, January 27, 2003

Dan you do not create links to a network directory (though you can mount a local partition under a directory much like Unix in XP), what I was referring to was moving the location where your "My Documents" folder points to. You can achieve this by right-clicking on the "My Documents" folder (or by fiddling with the registry if you want to automate this for multiple users, I guess).

ludoo
Tuesday, January 28, 2003

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