Hey all. :)
I am building a new image library for my company (huge .eps images), which in time will be searchable, configurable, and yadda yadda. :) Basically, one Linux machine will run this beast, and people from different departments will get different kinds of images over the network, via different methods (including AppleShare, HTTP and FTP, depending on what and how).
Anyhow, I am considering to do a software RAID-0
setup on this machine, for two reasons:
* Speed. This machine may be in heavy use, and it will most likely be the disk I/O that will be the bottleneck at all times, since the machine will not do much heavy calculations or run complex software - it will keep track on images and deliver upon demand, that is all.
* Planning for the future. This library might very well grow over the next years, when we are including other contries in the mix (we have an internal network that spans countries, so it is possible, yes) and I might just run out of disk space. Taking down the machine to put in an extra disk will not be a problem, but the images will, and must - for manual access, be stored in a certain (changeable) directory structure. This will, as I see it, be a problem when trying to add disk, since it will be new partitions. If anyone care to correct me, or suggest some kind of working strategy here, please do. :)
I have been reading these two HOWTOs: http://www.linuxdoc.org/HOWTO/Software-RAID-HOWTO.html
, but I still am not sure about a few details:
First and foremost, I am making sense here? Is my reasoning reasonable, is it possible the way I imagine? I am not looking for any redundancy or safety, however, just speed and extensibility. I have another system for backing up.
How do I go about adding any new disks? I read the above URLs and tried Google, but that didn't really answer my question - or I am missing something. The problem as I see it is possibly that the disk will not be partitioned or formatted? Are there tools for this (with non-broken links) that one can run to "extend" the RAID onto a new disk?
I also see ways to make the machine boot from the RAID, but I still can't 100% make out if I still need a non-RAID disk for the /boot partition or not. Can someone that knows help me with that one?
If I do need (or it is easier) a non-RAID disk, how about making a single-drive, RAID-capable system for now? What I mean is, one disk for the boot, and the normal linux stuff, and one disk for the images and that, which will run RAID on it's own, and that
disk can be extended later, with a new disk?
As you can see, I am in for quite a trip here, and I might be forced to order a machine any day now, without possibility to test much first.
Can you please help? I could sure use your assistance. :)