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Old 12-07-2006, 11:43 AM   #1
hollywoodb
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External IDE enclosure + RAID ?


For backup purposes I thought I'd try find an external 3.5" dual-drive (or more) IDE enclosure with a RAID controller... I'd like to set up RAID 1 so if one drive fails the data isn't *gone*.

So far the only dual-drive RAID-supporting external enclosure I've found runs about $160. Seems like a lot of money for a box with a raid controller. It is also firewire-only, and I need USB.

Anyone know of a product like I'm looking for?

The other option is to get a regular dual-drive USB enclosure... I should be able to set up software raid, but afaik that would only make it usable to linux systems. Perferably I'd like hardware RAID 1 so that once it is set up I can use it on any system.
 
Old 12-09-2006, 01:08 AM   #2
mpapet
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Usb Raid + Ide?

$160 is pretty cheap considering you claim to be getting the RAID controller on-board.

If backups is the actual issue, go to tape.

If storage that's useful for backup is your actual desire, then drop the dough and be done.
 
Old 12-09-2006, 02:56 AM   #3
hollywoodb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpapet
$160 is pretty cheap considering you claim to be getting the RAID controller on-board.

If backups is the actual issue, go to tape.

If storage that's useful for backup is your actual desire, then drop the dough and be done.
I've considered tape backups, however I have a few IDE hard drives lying around from 80 to 160 GB... I was hoping to get a couple of them into a hardware RAID mirrored setup that would be accessible by any system "just in case". I was aiming at a USB configuration, since only one of my systems has firewire.

Now of course I could set them up to be accessible via network on the one system that has firewire... However I'd prefer it to be "system-agnostic" where I could plug it into any system and do occasional backup.

My issue with paying $160 for a dual hard drive enclosure with a RAID controller is that I can get a hold of a motherboard, RAM, and processor (I have case) that has a decent hardware RAID chip for about the same price.

For reality-check purposes, I have a nice desktop setup that has hardware RAID available (I only have one 200GB SATA drive in it) behind a Tripp-Lite which is behind a solid 20-minute UPS box. I already do backups to this box, and I *could* drop another 200GB drive into it and do RAID mirroring. This, however, doesn't save me from a catastrophic failure such as an unhealthy motherboard toasting. I one had a system where PSU failed, which managed to somehow toast the motherboard and in turn killed the hard drive as well.

This is why I'd like to have an external USB dual-drive (IDE) RAID box. Even if the drive controller fails the chances of it toasting both drives is slim. This would also allow me to leave it completely isolated from any power source or system failure when I'm not using it.

A tape backup solution that would fit the bill would, from what I've found, cost considerably more than $160... which I still think is steep for a dual-drive USB box with a RAID controller.
 
Old 12-09-2006, 01:27 PM   #4
mpapet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hollywoodb
. I one had a system where PSU failed, which managed to somehow toast the motherboard and in turn killed the hard drive as well.
This is exactly why SCSI is preferred in production environments. Properly configured SCSI is very reliable in catastrophic failure situations.

If you are *really* concerned about reliable data replication, then I'm not sure why you are screwing around with IDE. You have already learned the price of working on the cheap.
 
Old 12-10-2006, 07:27 PM   #5
hollywoodb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpapet
This is exactly why SCSI is preferred in production environments. Properly configured SCSI is very reliable in catastrophic failure situations.

If you are *really* concerned about reliable data replication, then I'm not sure why you are screwing around with IDE. You have already learned the price of working on the cheap.
Because I'm working with an Athlon64 desktop and a cheap Pentium M laptop... My budget doesn't exactly permit much else. I was able to get a deal on a laptop for school, and I only upgrade my desktop about every five years.

As far as IDE drives go, I've got a 7 year old Western Digital that has never failed, a 4 year old Western Digital that is going strong. My desktop has an SATA Seagate that has been going strong for a couple years now. I'm looking for an enclosure to make use of the 120GB I have lying around, and occasionally dually backup to the 80GB as well. Not the most ideal situation, but it is what I'm working with.
 
Old 12-10-2006, 08:02 PM   #6
Electro
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USB effective speed is a lot slower than IEEE-1394 (aka Firewire or i.Link). There are cheap upgrades to IEEE-1394. For fast backups, I recommend IEEE-1394. Backups can be done much faster on another computer connected through a 1 Gb network.

Go to http://www.cooldrives.com/ to find why these RAID-0/1 units costs a lot.

If you have a broadband connection, have you looked into data centers. I use Streamload or now it is called MediaMax.
 
  


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