Linux and Fakeraid?

By sakhurst
Nov 16, 2007
Topic Status:
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  1. I've been meaning to familiarize myself with Linux for a while now, and with the release of Ubuntu 7, I decided there was no excuse not to anymore, given that it's free and more user friendly than ever. I tried to create a dual boot structure, and was all set to install Ubuntu, when it froze each time after the initial splash screen with the "loading bar". I'm pretty sure the problem is that my hard drives are in a RAID 1 array using an on-board RAID driver

    From what I've read about Ubuntu and fakeraid, is that it is possible to install Ubuntu on an existing RAID 1 array, but it is difficult and usually ends in disappointment.

    So my questions are:

    1) is it worth it? I would really like to check it out and play with it for a while - maybe even switch over. However I'm not willing to spend days setting it up and troubleshooting, nor am I willing to buy an extra harddrive just for it.

    2) Is there another Linux distro that would be better suited to an existing RAID 1 array?

    Thanks in advance for any advice!
  2. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,285   +281

    many persons play with RAID unnecessarily, after all, it is a SERVER environment
    technique to avoid server outage. many people mistake RAID to be a means to
    avoid BACKUPS which is big mistake.
  3. sakhurst

    sakhurst Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Hi jobeard,
    Thanks for your reply. I am aware of the issues and debate surrounding fakeraid. Nevertheless, I find it useful, and no, I don't use it as my primary means for backup.

    But this is all a little beside the point. I'm not willing to change anything just to get Linux. Frankly, I don't ever see it being my primary operating system, although you never know. Right now, I'd just like to familiarize myself out of curiosity and for general knowledge sake.

    So given the RAID 1 setup, is there an easy way to install linux as a secondary operating system? Or is it not really worth it?
  4. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,285   +281

    I'll point you to the HOW-TO

    You will need to get GRUB installed to support the dual boot environment.

    If later you wish to retract and use only the original windows,
    change the default in GRUB to the windows partition before you do anything to
    remove the Linux os/partition.

    > "Is it worth it?"
    hum; depends on your intent and desire to learn. Linux is not really intended
    as an end-user or gaming system; the best use is as a server system.
    CAVEAT EMPTOR.
  5. sakhurst

    sakhurst Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Thanks! I hadn't seen that before. That being said, I'm left with two questions:

    1) that how-to seems to be aimed at creating a RAID from a non-existing array. The array I have is already set up, and currently running XP. I still don't understand how to get Linux to recognize that array while installing it.

    2) I'm primarily interested in a "hold-my-hand" desktop distro - like Ubuntu. Something that doesn't require a whole lot of input of command strings I hardly understand (if at all). I could see that coming later down the road, once I've familiarized myself with the OS somewhat, but when I see that now, my first instinct is to turn off the monitor and hope it goes away in the meantime. Although I know this makes me a complete noob, but isn't there an easy way to do this?
  6. robin_bga

    robin_bga Newcomer, in training Posts: 258

    Hey Buddy hi,
    I have read yo qns and i thing first is Worthy installing Linux,Personally i dont know much about RAID, but what i can say is u first try out a livecd the u will make yo decission later coz there u will have yo linux running but on a Cd and u have options to install or leave it if u feel its not.
    Ubuntu is not a bad choice for Newbies but i would personally think of a different distro with give u the real feel of linux and yet its for those who intend to switch from window, PclinuxOs is my choice and second to that is Ubuntu.
    But tell u what go to the ubuntu or PclinuxOs, website and look for livecd section, and download that the boot from the cd.
    One last thing for u, U WILL LOVE It, if u have any problems related, pliz u can email me i will help somehow.
    robinlinux47@gmail.com
  7. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX Newcomer, in training Posts: 2,438

    There is actually a way to make Steam games ( Counterstrike, half-life and all that ) to work on Linux, My friend runs a D-B with linux & windows and he's able to run it on linux just fine.
  8. Nodsu

    Nodsu Newcomer, in training Posts: 9,431

    Some fakeraid controllers are supported, some are not. The drivers come with the Linux kernel and don't really depend on the distro. The newer kernel your Linux comes with, the better chances you have to get your RAID array being recognised. Ubuntu 7.10 is pretty new and would be a good candidate.

    At bootup, Linux should see your RAID as a single hard drive and you can just install away.
  9. PanicX

    PanicX TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 829

    I've spent a lot of time recently working with Ubuntu on a RAID array. I'd really recommend that you check out Fedora instead. In my opinion, Anaconda (the disk partitioning utility in Fedora) is far more resilient than Ubuntu's use of parted. And in any case, be sure you have a backup of any important data you have on the windows install incase something goes awry.
  10. sakhurst

    sakhurst Newcomer, in training Topic Starter Posts: 23

    Thanks, I'll try Fedora. I have to say though, if it doesn't recognize the RAID array right off the bat, I think I'm just going to give up on Linux until either: a) some friend gives me an old computer they no longer use or b) Linux begins to recognize existing RAID arrays when using a dual boot setup.
  11. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,285   +281

    dual boot is not your issue as that can be added after the fact. your issue is
    the raid environment.
     
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