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Archive 2013 · RAID systems
  
 
Mr645
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · RAID systems


I store some stuff off site, but my studio shoots about 125 to 150 events per year and the amount of data we capture makes it difficult. We store data on two floors of our building, and the data is secure from theft.

RAID 1 is great for protection against a drive failure, but more often the data loss is due to human error, so in this case, RAID 1 does not help. RAID 0 is great for speed, almost double the drive performance of a single drive. RAID specific drives, like the Seagate Cheetah series and WD RE4 drives can deliver incredible throughput with many drives striped together. And yes, the risk of drive failure goes up for each drive you add to a RAID 0 array. If one drive fails, you loose the data on all of the drives. RAID 0 is a great performance boost, but needs to have a secure back up system to protect against drive issues. Enterprise class drives have an average lifespan of 4 times that of the typical off the shelf drives. Also, many RAID controllers, when combined with advanced drives can monitor SMART status of the drive and warn the user of a possible issue before it becomes an all out failure. These drives can also monitor internal temps and slow down to reduce temps as they get too hot. For example, but RAID card notified me that one of the drives in the RAID 5 now has 82 bad sectors that have been mapped out



Jan 26, 2013 at 01:17 AM
sboerup
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · RAID systems


js09 wrote:
nobody talks about RAID 1, this is definitely the best way to have your files backed up.


Disagree strongly.



Jan 26, 2013 at 04:32 AM
Jeff Simpson
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · RAID systems


sboerup wrote:
Disagree strongly.


What could be easier than a basic 2 drive raid 1 setup? With an automatic off-site backup as well. No downtime. This solution is also fairly inexpensive. Care to explain why you disagree?

edit: sounds like you just don't like to deal with RAID in general, because of the extra time/effort. Fair enough.. i personally don't find it troublesome and see less pitfalls than other backup methods.



Jan 26, 2013 at 05:47 PM
sboerup
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · RAID systems


RAID1 sounds nice in theory, in that its automatically creating a 2nd copy of what was placed on the 1st drive. This also means that if you delete a file, it's also deleted on your "backup", and if a file is corrupted, the corruption is also transfered to the next drive. I've had corruption issues with RAID1 setups, and it's just a risk I'd rather avoid.

The only thing its good for is immediate protection against drive failure. If you are diligently backing up your files to other drives/locations, then I don't see a real need for RAID1 for photographers, because you don't need 100% system access 24/7. It's not going to hurt to throw in a non-RAID clone that takes 5mins. Will I lose some files in the process? Potentially, because it's not backed up 100%. But it the RAID takes up space (if you only have 4-5 direct sata connections) in the computer, and requires more power as well.

But RAID1 is FAR from being the best backup system, and I wouldn't really even consider it a backup system, for the reasons above.

The last thing I think photographers should do is run out, get an extra drive, setup RAID1 and think they are protected. A good backup strategy involves much more than that.



Jan 26, 2013 at 06:44 PM
whtrbt7
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · RAID systems


RAID1 is definitely not for photographers lol. As Spencer pointed out, corruption is its main weakness. Backup does not mean you have RAID. RAID is just for a mix of redundancy and availability. If you're working with large databases or single use items, a RAID 1 would ensure that you stay functional while another system or RAID array would act as a backup. Don't confuse backup with RAID. Backup requires thought, RAID is just a method of getting to your goal.


Jan 29, 2013 at 05:02 AM
 

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RDKirk
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · RAID systems


I already said that myself back in P1#13.


Jan 29, 2013 at 02:06 PM
DblDrgn
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · RAID systems


I'm hoping to restart this discussion without the debate over RAID 1 vs. a responsible backup strategy. I just think that's been thoroughly addressed, and hopefully most wedding photographers are using a backup strategy that is responsible and safe. Can we get back to the OP's original topic: suggestions for an onsite RAID 1 box, or what your solution has been for storage...

My photo storage solution has been:
1) a mirrored external 6TB Lacie "2big" drive (RAID 1) in the office, my storage capacity is 3TB and this acts as my "Photo Drive" and it is connected via firewire
2) a copy of that "Photo Drive" onsite, and another copy offsite

I'm starting to run out of space, and I'd like to hear what hardware and backup systems others are using. I'm thinking about adding to what I already have, in other words keeping the 3TB of data and it's backups intact, but renaming it "old photos" and adding a thunderbolt drive to act as a faster working drive for more recent weddings.

I'll edit and store new weddings on the working drive, then gradually move jobs over to the old firewire drive when they're completed. I guess that will work until I eventually run out of space again, but I'm open to suggestions...







Oct 09, 2013 at 05:51 PM
Bartlett Pair
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · RAID systems


Am I crazy in thinking that storing all files (RAWs, JPEGs + LR catalog) in these 3 locations is enough?

External HD on-site
External HD off-site
Zenfolio (jpeg only obviously)

After wedding, RAWs are put on laptop and the 2 externals, and we have a few 64gb SD cards so that we aren't forced to format the images if we have back-to-back weddings.



Oct 09, 2013 at 06:47 PM
MRomine
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · RAID systems


Raid question: if you are using a Raid system as a working volume for it's speed will it be faster than an internal drive? Isn't the speed bottleneck of an external system throttled down based upon the connection?


Oct 09, 2013 at 06:51 PM
Jeff Simpson
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · RAID systems


MRomine wrote:
Raid question: if you are using a Raid system as a working volume for it's speed will it be faster than an internal drive? Isn't the speed bottleneck of an external system throttled down based upon the connection?


it's not black and white.

some raid systems are faster, some are slower. the bottleneck can either be the connection or the type of storage device used. there are many factors to consider.

edit: i'll also reiterate what i said a ~year ago: raid 1 + backup setup = win.



Oct 09, 2013 at 07:11 PM
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