To RAID-0 or not to RAID-0
Why I don’t RAID anymore? It’s simpler, cheaper, quieter, energy efficient and the performance is quite the same. This was a quick decision a few months ago and I’m happy with it. It started with a computer for my friend for which I’ve ordered a largest for the money Seagate HDD (cause me and my friends like the brand) – a 500GB ST3500418AS. When it arrived I was shocked how small it was (low profile) and then I was shocked how fast it was.
Few benchmarks later I wasn’t stripping anymore and awaiting for my new drive.
What I found out was that this particular drive was the fastest of the Barracuda 12 series and among similar drives too. Also it was significantly faster than my previous server Barracuda ES.2! I’ve done several tests comparing ES.2 RAID-0, single ES.2 performance and the new ST3500418AS. Here are some rounded values from Cristal Disk Mark.
Sequential Read/Write 130/130
512k Read/Write 52/69
Sequential Read/Write 106/101
512k Read/Write 41/62
Sequential Read/Write 157/124
512k Read/Write 27/66
Real life performance is the same. I just can’t see the difference. For the price of two cheaply sold bad reputation ES.2 drives I’ve bought the new one and still had some spare cash.
There are more benefits but most important for non-server applications is that in case of failure you have to rescue only one drive (you should always have backups on other drives/media), you don’t need to spend hours reformatting the drive with another cluster size hoping it will make any difference and the it’s mobile. You can simply put it into any modern device which has a SATA plug and access your data. It’s just good out of the box.
This post is also a reply to John’s comment about stripping.