RAID 0 with additional backup drive?

By Saber_Ryan1
Mar 31, 2007
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  1. Hi everyone. I'm building a new PC, and I can't decide what HDD configuration to use. I'm new to setting up a RAID configuration, so forgive me if this is a stupid question... I was wondering if it is possible to setup a RAID 0 array of two 500GB drives, and then have a seperate 320GB drive that isn't part of the array to use for file backup. Could I do this?... Or would I just have to go with a RAID 0+1 configuration (which would be pretty overkill for my needs - I only need to backup certain folders, but I don't want to use a slow external USB HDD).

    Thanks in advance!

    - Ryan
  2. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,292   +282

    RAID vs Backup.

    I'll give you the litany on RAID vs Backup.

    Raid has the intent of fail-safe or raw performance; both issues for servers, not home computers.

    Raid is not a substitute for backup, even if mirrored with hot-swappable drives.

    Backup has the intent of file, directory, user, or HD recovery.
    If it is precious or has financial implications if lost, then backups are appropriate.

    There are several means to 'backup' including just replicating the data
    to another media.

    Your question re another HD for backups; all depends on how much data is saved and how frequently do you make a 'backup'.
  3. Saber_Ryan1

    Saber_Ryan1 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    I'm simply asking whether you can have a RAID array (such as RAID 0) along with other hard drives that are not part of that array. I don't see why you couldn't, but I wanted to make sure before I bought the HDDs...

    I sometimes backup certain files on DVDs, but I'd just like a fast way to backup large amounts of data (in excess of 100GB) quickly and easily.

    Thanks for the reply,
    - Ryan
  4. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,292   +282

    yes you can have 1/more HDs not associated with the array :)

    Excuse me for the rant, but so many users make the mistake of thinking
    backups are not required -- which is why I prefaced the comment with litany :)
  5. Saber_Ryan1

    Saber_Ryan1 Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    No problem. Thank you for the confirmation! :grinthumb I can't wait to get this new PC up and running...
  6. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 10,406   +834

    Raid by the numbers......

    I an not going to explain what the raid numbers mean here but, raid 1 is a back up mode. (It duplicates data across 2 drives). It essentially makes 2 500GB HDDs 1 500Gb HDD with an ugly twin sister. As to your original question, plug the drive in, boot the computer, tell the drive manufacturer's software (it should already be installed) to format the drive, make certain that LBA is enabled, and tell it to add the drive as a volume. Done!
  7. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 13,292   +282

    Just a nit, but raid-0 is stripping and raid-1 is a MIRROR.
    A mirror allows one hd to fail and continue operations on the other HD.
    It is never considered a backup.
  8. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 10,074   +13

    yes you can install drives outside of an existing array.
  9. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 10,406   +834

    Mirror,rorriM

    I sometimes make mirrors of my music CDs, in case the first one breaks. True enough, you can unplug one of the drives and throw it away. the other drive still contains exactly the same information. Why would anyone mistake that for a back-up?
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