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Questions on setting up RAID

Old 05-17-04, 02:47 PM
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Questions on setting up RAID

OK, since picking up four 250GB drives on the cheap yesterday, I finally got around to setting up my multimedia server. I have an Abit KT7A-RAID mobo, and have set up the RAID1 (mirroring) controller to use all four 250GB drives (2 sets of 2).

I'm running into some concerns:

1) The RAID setup menu (before you get into Windows) will only recognize the 250GB drives as 137GB, despite updating to the newest version. Once in Windows XP, however, the drives are recognized as 232GB, which is correct. Is there anyway to know, besides attempting to paste >137GB of data there, whether or not the system will deal with the size properly?

2) The RAID controller automatically hides the mirrored drives, so once in Windows, you can only actually see two of the drives. How can I monitor that the data is indeed being mirrored this way?

3) Is there a better way to go about this? I basically want 500GB for storage, with the other 500GB as backup.


Any help will be appreciated.
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Old 05-17-04, 02:52 PM
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1) That doesn't sound good. I wouldn't trust it until I copied 250GB onto it and was able to get it back.

2) Break the mirror and look at each set to see if they are duplicates.

3) I wouldn't leave an online backup. I'd backup the 500GB to two drives in an external enclosure. Mirrored backups like yours are for systems that have to be up 24/7 but they are susceptible to most of the same problems that the other pair are. Power spikes/glitches, viruses, accidental erasures, etc.
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Old 05-17-04, 03:25 PM
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Thanks for the speedy response.

1) I wasn't going to trust it. Way too anal to do that.

2) Once broken, do you have to go through the synchronization process when you restore the mirror? It took 2 - 3 hours to do that initially.

3) Sounds like a good plan. My backup plan (no pun intended) was to simply do a manual backup every so often to the other drives. I was hoping that the mirror situation would allow me to not not have to worry about it.
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Old 05-17-04, 03:33 PM
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Originally posted by Numanoid
2) Once broken, do you have to go through the synchronization process when you restore the mirror? It took 2 - 3 hours to do that initially.
I have no idea. I imagine it would want to make sure everything was the same even if it didn't have to copy everyting.
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Old 05-19-04, 03:24 PM
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Many motherbooards will only recognize drives up to 137GB. The KT7-RAID is this way for sure. Not sure about the A model. I believe that ABIT has a BIOS update to fix this problem. Again I know they do for the KT7 not sure about the KT7A.

I had to update a KT7-RAID a couple weeks ago.

This is fairly common on older boards that were produced before the 200 and 250GB drive became available.

The drives are "hidden" becuase thats the way the highpoint raid controllers work. The real RAID work is hidden from Windows. All windows sees is the spanned drive.

The reason you're seeing 237GB in Windows is you're seeing a spanned drive of 2x137GB minus overhead and stuff = ~237GB.

What you should be seeing is 2 drives at ~470GB each.

-Naan
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Old 05-19-04, 04:06 PM
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If you break the mirror, then it will have to rebuild it from scratch. I'll second X's idea, don't raid, use 2 for data, the other 2 for backup however often you need to, then disconnect and store them away securely.

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