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Old 10-16-2008, 10:29 AM   #1
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: Texas
Distribution: Debian, dyne:bolic
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Setting up RAID0 in Debian


My home machine has two identical SATA drives in it. For fun and for learning, I would like to install Debian on them (I have experience installing/using Debian). My problem is that I want to configure the drives to be RAID 0 for speed and performance (data loss is not an issue here). I've read the Software RAID HOWTO, but something isn't clear to me:

Can I create the RAID prior to partitioning the disks in the installer, or do I need to install on one disk, then create the RAID?

I hope my question is clear, thanks in advance for any help you might have.
Old 10-16-2008, 10:45 AM   #2
Registered: Feb 2005
Distribution: RHEL, CentOS
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Raid-0 has to be defined before the file system is. This is because in Raid-0 the data is striped block by block across the two disks.

Define the RAID (probably in your installer somewhere), and create your file system on top of that.

Note that your boot partition can't be RAID-0.

Beware that RAID-0 is for speed only (and probably not much of an increase at that), it actually reduces reliability since the failure of either disk will hose the entire RAID set.
Old 10-16-2008, 12:02 PM   #3
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Registered: Nov 2006
Distribution: Debian Squeeze SMP AMD64
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There are two ways to install your OS on a software RAID0. It depends on which controller you are using.

In the case of a controller that doesn't offer fakeraid, then you will need to have a separate "/boot" partition on drive one, and configure the rest of both drives to RAID0 during the install process.

In the case of a controller that does offer fakeraid, then you will need to install dmraid, and you won't need a separate boot partition. IOW, go ahead and setup the RAID0 in the BIOS, and during install time configure both drives into a RAID0, as well. Install dmraid during the installation and it should go OK with one caveat:

It All Depends on the installer of your distro. I was not able to get this to work properly on the original Etch installer. I don't know what the state of Etch is at the moment, and I can't say about Lenny. There is a good Ubuntu page out there about installing on fakeraid if the installer isn't up to it.


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