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Matthew MisterOct 4, 2019 10:37:27 AM1 min read

When should you use a RAID?

If you are planning to install a server in your office, adding a RAID configuration is something you should be considering. But which RAID configuration should you use and what should you expect out of it. Here is a list of the most common RAID configurations and when you should use them.

RAID 0: This configuration provides no fault tolerance but it will give you the best speed boost of all RAID configurations. If you're only looking for a performance increase, RAID 0 is the best option. If you can't afford to lose data then this is the wrong option for you.

RAID 1: This RAID configuration works by mirroring data between two disks. There is typically a third disk that is readily available as a hot swappable spare in case of disk failure. RAID 1 provides great read speeds but slower write speeds since it needs to write the day twice. RAID 1 should be deployed for any mission critical servers.

RAID 10: A RAID 10 configuration joins multiple RAID 1 arrays together using striping. This setup provides much more security and can withstand multiple drive failures.  RAID 10 still provides excellent speed due to the striping. This configuration requires a minimum of 4 drives.

RAID 10 allows for scalability as you can add additional RAID 1 mirrors. This is the best choice for large scale operations that require fault tolerance and high performance speeds.

RAID 5: This RAID configuration requires  uses a combination of striping and parity to achieve fault tolerance and improved read speeds. 

In the event of a drive failure, the parity on the remaining drives will recover any data that was on the failed drive. This can be slow however and will result in reduced performance until that failed drive has been swapped out.

RAID 5 is used mostly in cases where you have a mission critical server with some budget constraints where the users prioritize disk space