What is a Raid Array?
RAID stands for a redundant array of independent hard drives and is a way to store data across multiple drives. RAID arrays contain data that is in a vulnerable state when a broken disk is replaced by a new disk filled with data. RAID levels, such as RAID 1-5, can withstand a single drive failure. Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices are RAID arrays for large data systems such as object storage, which use similar, but more mature technologies. You can have large devices that can hold up to five drives, such as the Drobo-Lacie Mac Ready Box, or smaller devices with two drives with RAID levels of 0 or 1 that are seen by a variety of vendors. RAID is an acronym for Redundant Array of Independent Disk Storage and is a method of combining multiple physical drives into a virtual drive. In the case of hardware RAID, each hard drive has a dedicated controller or processor to manage the memory. RAID is an abbreviation for redundant array of independent and cost-effective disk storage, a virtualization technology used to organize multiple drives into different meanings that meet certain goals (redundancy, speed, capacity, etc.).
Usage of Raid
RAID is designed for redundancy and speed and requires at least three hard drives. Parity is created by the RAID controller so that it can recover data when one of the hard drives that constitute the RAID array fails. In the RAID 0 data strip, all disks form the array and in the RAID 5 configuration, if a single disk fails in the array, the volumes will continue to operate with the possibility that the user will not know what happened, because every possible part of the volume is devoted to parity. If more than one disk fails in the array, there are no longer data recovery possibilities. But in the previous example, 2 of the numeric values are lost, but you know the sum of the 4 values of these 2 values and you do not know where the original value was stored. Another advantage of RAID 5 is that many NAS server drives can be hot-swappable, which means that in the time of a hard drive failure in the consortium, it can be exchanged for a new drive without closing the server NAS or interrupting user access. RAID mirroring and parity allow you to continue working even when a broken drive needs to be replaced. The system is still functional even if a disc hits the bucket and you need to replace it.
Where do we need to Use Raid?
RAID is a method of combining multiple drives into one logical unit, or array. Each drive in the RAID array acts as a backup of the data on the other drives, so all of them must be present for the array to work. If one drive fails, the others can keep your data available by seamlessly taking over its storage capacity. This ensures that even if a drive does fail, there is no downtime associated with replacing that failed drive. Once it’s replaced, the failed drive can be rebuilt to fully restore your array to working order.
What is the Difference Between Hardware and Software Raid?
Steady-State’s Hardware RAID is a hardware RAID solution for servers using the Linux operating system. It is designed to offer dual controller redundancy and high availability for mission-critical server applications. Our licensed controllers are high-quality RAID products that ensure performance and stability. Steadfast engineers will be happy to provide you with recommendations regarding which hardware RAID care you should use that is based on what RAID configuration you want to have.
Software RAID is an included feature in all Steadfast dedicated servers packages. This means that there is NO cost for software RAID and is highly recommended if you are using local storage on a server. It is highly recommended that drives in a RAID array be of the same type and size.
Software-based RAID will leverage some of the system’s computing power to manage the RAID configuration, rather than requiring a hardware-based RAID card. If you’re looking to maximize the performance of a system, such with a RAID 5 or 6 configuration, it’s best to use a hardware-based RAID card when you’re using standard HDDs.
Type of Raid Drives?
Raid 0 (Striping)
RAID 0 is taking any number of disks and merging them into one large volume. Because every block of data is written to both disks, performance increases dramatically. However, because this arrangement has no redundancy, it is critical to use disks of equal size. RAID 0 is also referred to as striping
Raid 1 (Mirroring)
RAID 1 is the first level of RAID. Very simple to configure, and typically found on consumer-level motherboards (Intel calls it “software RAID”, for example). The set of disks in the RAID 1 array are simply two or more identical disks that are completely codependent on each other and exactly the same content exists across both drives. If you have an array with 2 drives, the contents of drive #1 are exactly mirrored on drive #2.
RAID 5/6 (Striping + Distributed Parity)
RAID 5/6 has been defined and implemented in many ways, depending on the manufacturer or product as well as how the information is presented to the user. However, here are some of the key points of RAID 5/6: – It requires at least 3 drives (RAID 6 requires at least 4 drives). – It takes the idea of RAID 0 and stripes data across multiple drives to increase performance. – But it also adds the aspect of redundancy by distributing parity information across the disks. This last point means that, if a single disk fails, then all data contained within all of the other disks can be reconstructed.
RAID 10 (Mirroring + Striping)
RAID 10 (also referred to as RAID 1+0) is a combination of RAID 1 (mirroring) and RAID 0 (striping). This results in increased performance and data redundancy. A four-drive RAID 10 configuration offers built-in fault tolerance, meaning that if one of the drives fails, your data and computer access will remain available. This allows you to quickly replace the failed drive without losing access to your most valuable information.
RAID 10 is a balance between speed and redundancy. In an environment using RAID 10, we recommend at least 4 stable, equally powerful drives to achieve performance comparable to RAID 0 with the added redundancy of a single drive failure.