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Old February 7th, 2008, 09:54 AM   #1
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Do I need a RAID card?

I am buying a new MacPro next week and plan to have (in addition to the system drive) 2 1TB internal drives in a RAID-1 configuration. Do I need to buy a separate RAID card to do this or is the ability to do this built into the OS and motherboard? Thanks.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 10:21 AM   #2
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you can do it with everything in the computer, no card needed.

http://docs.info.apple.com/article.h...n/duh1013.html

super easy.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 10:37 AM   #3
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thank you.
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Old February 7th, 2008, 04:43 PM   #4
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Next related question:
Mac Pro has 4 drive bays. 1 will be my system drive. What should I do with the next 3? I was planning a 2 drive RAID-0 (backed up elsewhere), but can you do a 3-drive RAID-5? Would that offer any improvement? It sounds like I would need a card to do RAID 5, right?

How are most of you configuring your drives?
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Old February 7th, 2008, 07:47 PM   #5
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Ben,

You can indeed stripe the 3 remaining drives as an internal RAID. A 3 drive RAID will be faster than a 2 drive RAID.

I use drive 1 as the System drive, drive 2 as a storage drive for useful, often used files or temporary storage, drive 3 & 4 are striped together as a RAID 0.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 03:01 AM   #6
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What I do is with 4 drives I have 3 striped in raid 0 (Western Digital 500g's) along with the drive from apple that has all my app's installed on it. I have an external 500 gig firewire drive that I back up to periodically. There are some external harddrives out their that have backup software that backs up literally everything but compresses it down so as to not fill the whole drive. I thought eSata was the only way but I slowly found out that it is only barely worth it if you are gonna go over 3 drives. Otherwise you might as well pony up and get scsi or fibre.

The raid gives me a read and write speed of around 220mb/s and there is around 300 gigs on it. I tested it with the kona test thingy.

Honestly though if you go out and buy 3 brand new western digitals chances are slim you are gonna have one fail on you. knock on wood.
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Old February 10th, 2008, 12:06 PM   #7
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well you need to consider risks to benifits here. if you really need the speed for uncompressed HD, well then you need the speed and this is an ok way to go.

if you are using DVCpro100, ProRes, or other compressed formats, maybe the risk isn't worth it. bare drives will handle this fine until they get to maybe the last 10% of space. even then, I think these new drives would be ok. if you do a 3 X 1TB RAID 0 you have a 3x higher chance of a wipe out. if one drive wipes out, do you have a back up plan ? how long will it take to reload all the material on there ? what about rendered output from AE, motion, combustion, ect ? back up for that ? before committing to a large raid, be sure you have a backup / recovery plan thought out which will work for you.

if you say, I just can't back it up, I can't take weeks to reload all that material, then consider RAID5 in an external enclosure. RAID5's can also fail completely, but normally if a drive dies, you get notified by the controller and can then replace the failed drive.

I'd also say, don't use any drive with less then a 5 year warranty. its about your only way of knowing its a decently made drive. most stuff sold in retail consumer outlets are 1 year warranty and are junk. I've had them fail at 13 and 14 months, not even under 8/5 use.
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Old February 11th, 2008, 11:24 PM   #8
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For me though since all the work I do is for school in some degree and that I back it up to an external drive periodically that I use to transport my final cuts to school with this route lended itself to be the cheapest route to a strong performance upgrade. Do I need it all? Not all right now but the drives were on sale and the mac pro has the software so it'd seemed more beneficial than trying to do a 4 or 5 lane Esata enclosure.

Basically if people other than yourself are riding on your Raid then my route is out of the question.
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