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Old 12-21-2007, 03:24 PM   #1
DB9
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Talking linux newbie - help building a backup RAID box


Hello all,Seasons Greatings

I'm a real newbie to Linux and little server knowledge.

I have an older Dell 410 server that I thought about turning into a backup box on my home LAN. I want to backup files and also put music that I have so that the ipods are sync'd to one spot (not some on this pc and some on that one - have multiple PC) Also use as a personal FTP for my work files from outside and using it as a downloader for updates etc.

Comments please..
I thought that I would install a small drive (80G)on the IDE controller - should I also RAID the OS drive (I have 2 80's on the shelf)I would install the OS on the 80G and either using a software RAID with 2 750G drives or should I use a hardware RAID.
Suggestions on a distro - thinking that i want a box in the corner that I can remotely log onto and have a good GUI
(I presently use XP, Mac, and SUSE 10(limited use) so there is not keyboard/mouse/monitor hooked up - using Firefox and Asureus - which FTP software would be suggested. Any other considerations or pitfalls that I should look out for.

Thank you

Stephen
 
Old 12-22-2007, 12:47 AM   #2
Simon Bridge
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Linux and RAID:
Grub want boot from RAID - use a small ide drive to hold /boot partition.
Unless you have genuine HW RAID, best to use linux software raid. Raid is good for combining lots of old cheap drives, file servers like RAID5. However, you should investigate LVM, which has some advantages over RAID which may be useful to you.

Linux servers are designed to run headless with no HIDs at all - so you have no worries in that department. Suggest you try a less ambitious setup at first, to get the feel of things. Then make a plan.
 
Old 12-22-2007, 08:38 AM   #3
DB9
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Thank Simon,

Is the Hardware RAID have any advantages over Software RAID?
Any particular Linux Server Distro to look for - or are they all basically the same?

Last edited by DB9; 12-22-2007 at 08:40 AM.
 
Old 12-23-2007, 09:32 AM   #4
Simon Bridge
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There are no sensible performance advantages of HW or fake RAID over Software Raid - though true hw raid may have a small drop in cpu overhead. It really depends on what you are using the array for.

HW RAID is considerably easier to set up and maintain that software... it just looks like one drive to the kernel, so you set it up as normal sata or pata or whatever.

Server distros vary mostly in package management - pick one you understand. That said - "debian stable" is the usual advise.

Last edited by Simon Bridge; 12-23-2007 at 09:36 AM.
 
Old 12-25-2007, 06:46 AM   #5
archtoad6
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HW (real or fake) vs. Software RAID

  • If you have a RAID chip on the mobo, it's probably fake -- requires a driver in the OS.
  • If the chip -- not one of the drives -- fails, it may not be easy to recover your data.
  • If you have a fake RAID chip on the mobo, you almost certainly use it as a 2nd plain controller to which you attach the drives for your Linux software RAID.
  • I like RAID 5, I'd like RAID 6 if I could afford it.
  • Real HW RAID, whether boards or mobo chips, is expensive.

Last edited by archtoad6; 01-28-2008 at 04:50 PM. Reason: typo
 
  


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