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  • Software or hardware raid ?

    Hi,
    I have an HP Proliant ML 110 G7 with 16 GB RAM
    and 2 disks 500 GB SATA.

    I want install Win 2008 R2 SP1

    This server will be placed in a school with not too much
    management skilling capacity so the first problem (for me !)
    is building many specific procedures (not too difficult to understand)
    for the possible failing events like breaking a disk or
    something like this.

    I can use an hardware RAID1 enabling SATA RAID controller
    that is B 110i controller
    Very hard to manage with most imaging programs as
    Acronis ABR, Symantec backup exec, ...

    Or
    I can use software mirroring in Win2008R2

    My question is :
    what do you think about ?
    What is the best solution ?

    Thank you for your time.

  • #2
    Re: Software or hardware raid ?

    In general hardware RAID is preferable as the processing load is removed (the RAID controller handles everything.

    Backup apps should see the RAID array as "a drive" and function normally and any RAID failures (or recovery) should be handled by the controller firmware.

    Software RAID obviously relies on the OS to handle the work and thus cuts into performance available for Apps.

    So, IMHO, use HW RAID if you have the choice
    Last edited by Ossian; 11th July 2012, 21:23.
    Tom Jones
    MCT, MCSE (2000:Security & 2003), MCSA:Security & Messaging, MCDBA, MCDST, MCITP(EA, EMA, SA, EDA, ES, CS), MCTS, MCP, Sec+
    PhD, MSc, FIAP, MIITT
    IT Trainer / Consultant
    Ossian Ltd
    Scotland

    ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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    • #3
      Re: Software or hardware raid ?

      Absolutely concur. Backup Exec and any other applications will see a single logical disk if you use a RAID 1 (Mirror), same as Windows.

      Every physical server we use runs on a RAID 1, and we have spare drives to swap out once a month before applying updates. That way, if an update goes badly, we re-boot from the drive just removed. Very comforting to know that 'extra' disk is there.
      *RicklesP*
      MSCA (2003/XP), Security+, CCNA

      ** Remember: credit where credit is due, and reputation points as appropriate **

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      • #4
        Re: Software or hardware raid ?

        hardware raid. Without a doubt.

        I inherited a setup for a client.
        They have an ML330, think it's a G6. It's got a B110 (at least, i think) RAID card, and 4 hard drives installed in it.
        Great, thinks I.

        but oh no. Oh no no no no.

        The guy who set this up... he has got each of teh hard drives on it's own channel, as a single disk.

        That's... ok.... thinks I. Surely he'll just be using Windows software RAID to manage the disks.

        Oh no. no no no. That's also too clever.

        The OS has 4, independent disks.
        C: has the OS, D: has the data.
        E: is, somehow (and I've yet to figure out how) a replica of C: drive. But it's not up to data and regular.
        And F: ? You guessed it. A replica of D:.

        For the life of me, I still can't work out how it's replicating - cannot find any scheduled tasks or anything.
        when i asked the business owner why it had been done this way, he said "it's so we could have a backup copy in case a drive failed or something"


        I wanted to hit my head on the wall.
        Please do show your appreciation to those who assist you by leaving Rep Point https://www.petri.com/forums/core/im.../icon_beer.gif

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        • #5
          Re: Software or hardware raid ?

          Hardware, always. Software RAID is emergency use only for me.

          Although to call the ML110 a "server" is a stretch by HP. Tiny, low powered, no dual PSU capability and worst of all that useless B110i RAID controller only supports RAID 0, 1 and 10 and NOT RAID 5! When 90% plus of standard desktop motherboards support RAID 5 it's pretty poor that a supposed server RAID controller doesn't......

          Rant over, sorry.

          tehcamel: We inherited a setup recently on an HP Server (ML150 maybe?) where someone had fallen foul of the lack of RAID 5. So they'd installed RAID 1 and a single disk. And put everything (OS and data) on the single disk. I spent the first four days of the New Year rebuilding the whole thing, cos the same guy had configured the backup for data only as well, no OS or System State.
          BSc, MCSA: Server 2008, MCSE, MCSA: Messaging, MCTS
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          • #6
            Re: Software or hardware raid ?

            (offtopic!)

            one of the things i think i may end up liking about Server 2012, is how much more reliant it is on powershell and command line interfaces....hopefully it'll start drowning out some of the monkeys.....
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            • #7
              Re: Software or hardware raid ?

              Originally posted by tehcamel View Post
              hardware raid. Without a doubt.

              I inherited a setup for a client.
              They have an ML330, think it's a G6. It's got a B110 (at least, i think) RAID card, and 4 hard drives installed in it.
              Great, thinks I.

              but oh no. Oh no no no no.

              The guy who set this up... he has got each of teh hard drives on it's own channel, as a single disk.

              That's... ok.... thinks I. Surely he'll just be using Windows software RAID to manage the disks.

              Oh no. no no no. That's also too clever.

              The OS has 4, independent disks.
              C: has the OS, D: has the data.
              E: is, somehow (and I've yet to figure out how) a replica of C: drive. But it's not up to data and regular.
              And F: ? You guessed it. A replica of D:.

              For the life of me, I still can't work out how it's replicating - cannot find any scheduled tasks or anything.
              when i asked the business owner why it had been done this way, he said "it's so we could have a backup copy in case a drive failed or something"


              I wanted to hit my head on the wall.
              HINT Why don`t u just call the guy? instead of bashing yr head against the wall.

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