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Guest rds_mcleod

Anyone running RAID 0?

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Guest rds_mcleod

Just curious if anyone has been brave enough to run a RAID 0 box?It's an all or nothing approach to notch up the I/O. I hear from one of the techs that does some of my installs that once hooked, you won't go back. At least until you blow a drive! ;-)I'm going to give it a whirl using 2 X 160G WD drives using the new Socket 775 Intel 915SP ASUS MB. I'm also going to use an ATI Radeon X700 pro PCI-Express with 256M 128Bit RAM and an Intel 3.4CPU. My hope is that RAID 0 will provide the extra I/O to compensate for the mid-range card. The payoff is the price of the drives.My big concern is the flakiness of FS9 and 'some' of the add-ons. Anyone using this kind of hardware configuration?- Ron McLeod CYEG

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Hi, Ron, I tried some months ago with a 875P chipset and two Hitachi 160GB SATA, and it produced a lot of stuttering in FS9. Loading times seemed faster, but decided to unisnstall the RAID and everything was fine again. Maybe new drivers and BIOS have apperared, but I haven

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Guest TrafficTraffic

Your other concern should be that RAID 0 doubles your chances of disk failure. If EITHER disk fails, you lose everything on both.Lee Hetherington, PP-ASEL (KBED)

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Hi Ron,Yes, I'm running Raid 0 here and all is well. I get excellent frame rates and don't have any load times or stutters to speak of. I can get it to stutter, but I have to be doing insane things to make it happen. As far as the risk factor goes, I just think about running an older computer with a single drive. If it were to go belly up, you would be in the same boat. To give myself a little piece of mind, I push a copy of my FS9 folder across my network to an archive on a second machine. I still have a driver issue to resolve with an input device and then I can turn hyperthreading back on.ChuckCYXU

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Thought I'd read (can't remember where) that the "all or nothing" scenario with Raid 0 was fixed?Jim Harnes

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Guest Buck Bolduc

>Just curious if anyone has been brave enough to run a RAID 0>box?>>It's an all or nothing approach to notch up the I/O. I hear>from one of the techs that does some of my installs that once>hooked, you won't go back. At least until you blow a drive!>;-)>>I'm going to give it a whirl using 2 X 160G WD drives using>the new Socket 775 Intel 915SP ASUS MB. I'm also going to use>an ATI Radeon X700 pro PCI-Express with 256M 128Bit RAM and an>Intel 3.4CPU. My hope is that RAID 0 will provide the extra>I/O to compensate for the mid-range card. The payoff is the>price of the drives.>>My big concern is the flakiness of FS9 and 'some' of the>add-ons. Anyone using this kind of hardware configuration?>>- Ron McLeod CYEGI run RAID 0 with two Raptor 74 gig drives.Have had no problems so far. Load times definetly faster. however Lee and the other gent is correct, no redundency, blow a drive, start over.If you got the bucks to spend, a 3ware card and drives to set up 0+1 or RAID 5 will do it. Thats two mirrored drive array's plus a parity drive.Drive blows out, just replace and rebuild the array with the blown drive.If you do set up RAID 0 mke sure you define it for 64kb blocks, NTFS defaults to 4kb (too small) and onboard RAID controllers like Promise defaults to 128 kb blocks (too big).64KB Worked out to be faster, at least for me.Good Luck

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Guest TrafficTraffic

How could they fix it? Approximately speaking, half of each file is on each drive.Other types of RAID support some level of redundancy. RAID 0 has zero redundancy and is just striping.My point is that from a reliability standpoint, RAID 0 is worse than a single drive. You have roughly twice the chances of failure compared to a single drive.Lee Hetherington, PP-ASEL (KBED)

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Guest rds_mcleod

>I run RAID 0 with two Raptor 74 gig drives.Have had no>problems so far. Load times definetly faster. however Lee and>the other gent is correct, no redundency, blow a drive, start>over.Yes, I'm aware of that conundrum, especially running a number of demanding add-ons like: UTraffic, ATR, PMDG, PSS Concorde, etc. ;-) (see below)>If you got the bucks to spend, a 3ware card and drives to set>up 0+1 or RAID 5 will do it. Thats two mirrored drive array's>plus a parity drive.>Drive blows out, just replace and rebuild the array with the>blown drive.That's very tempting too and one to consider since it must - ideally - be an exact duplicate drive.>If you do set up RAID 0 mke sure you define it for 64kb>blocks, NTFS defaults to 4kb (too small) and onboard RAID>controllers like Promise defaults to 128 kb blocks (too big).>64KB Worked out to be faster, at least for me.Yes, I was wondering about that block size. That must eat up some bytes! Thanks for yoru comments.- Ron McLeod CYEG

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Guest rds_mcleod

>FS9. Loading times seemed faster, but decided to unisnstall>the RAID and everything was fine again. Maybe new drivers and>BIOS have apperared, but I haven

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Guest rds_mcleod

>Your other concern should be that RAID 0 doubles your chances>of disk failure. If EITHER disk fails, you lose everything on>both.Lee:Yeah, that's a bit scary, but who doesn't rebuild a system once a year? ;-( Norton Ghost v2003 will be my everyday companion? - Ron McLeod CYEG

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Guest jettjokk

I have been running a 2 disk RAID 0 array for 4 years now. Through 2 motherboards with integrated IDE RAID controllers-currently ASUS P4S800D-E and 3.0 P4 (Northwood) with 1Gb DDR400. The drives are ATA133 Maxtor 20 Gb.This setup has improved frame rates, but only when FS9 is reading from HDD. I feel that DOES make a significant difference. BTW, only FS9 on this array-everything else on a third HDD.I think having the RAID controller integrated on the mobo outperforms PCI RAID controllers. The on board chip does not use the PCI bus-has it's own dedicated bus. Curiously, upon checking, the Asus RAID software had already selected 64K as a block size.Having said that, I recently learned that a RAID1 setup reads just as fast as a RAID 0 setup. Since both disks have identical info, reads are done RAID 0 style-half from each disk. This would appear to provide the increase in read speed to help FS9 and address the redundancy problem of RAID 0. Probly my next experiment.Dan Stalter

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Guest rds_mcleod

>This setup has improved frame rates, but only when FS9 is>reading from HDD. I feel that DOES make a significant>difference. Dan: I'm guessing you mean when NOT accessing RAM data, which makes perfect sense?>BTW, only FS9 on this array-everything else on a >third HDD.Not sure what you mean here? Do you mean a third HDD on a separate boot partition?>I think having the RAID controller integrated on the mobo>outperforms PCI RAID controllers. The on board chip does not>use the PCI bus-has it's own dedicated bus. Curiously, upon>checking, the Asus RAID software had already selected 64K as a>block size.The separate dedicated BUS concept is a surprise! I have not seen that in the limmited reading I've done, or ASUS just hasn't mentioned it. I'm going to be using a couple of WD 7200/160G drives using the mobo integrated ICH6R Southbridge, Serial ATA RAID 0. Intel adds the Matrox Storage (whatever that). It will be interesting to see how the marriage goes in light of what is expected to be, or rumored to be, a simpler, kinder FS10.Anyway, thanks for the information. You're a forerunner and obviously have led the way in making FS9 more enjoyable.>Having said that, I recently learned that a RAID1 setup reads>just as fast as a RAID 0 setup. Since both disks have>identical info, reads are done RAID 0 style-half from each>disk. This would appear to provide the increase in read speed>to help FS9 and address the redundancy problem of RAID 0.>Probly my next experiment.I'm sending a copy of this to my hardware/software provider. If Raid 1 is as fast and more reliable, but you still lose 1/2 the storage, it becomes a real option to consider.~~ Ron

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Guest rds_mcleod

Dan: *update>Having said that, I recently learned that a RAID1 setup reads>just as fast as a RAID 0 setup. Since both disks have>identical info, reads are done RAID 0 style-half from each>disk. This would appear to provide the increase in read speed>to help FS9 and address the redundancy problem of RAID 0.>Probly my next experiment.I looked into Intel's Matrix storage and using the 915P chipset, it appears to say (still clarifying this one) - that it can do RAID 1 on one drive and RAID 0 on the second!Quote:"Intel innovation continues with the introduction of Intel

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Guest jettjokk

My understanding of how FS9 works is that it runs several relational databases simultaneously. The db's talk to each other and are constantly updated. All of this loads into and runs from RAM when you start the game.Which causes the first rub - some dynamic memory used to run programs must be on the HDD in the pagefile. It will never all be in physical RAM only. If you check while running FS9 in the resource manager part of the task manager it will show how much dynamic memory is used from the HDD pagefile (aka virtual memory). Even if all of your physical RAM is not being used, there will be some data in the virtual part. Since I have my OS and all other files (besides FS9) on a third 60 Gb HDD which is not part of any array, the reads/writes involving virtual memory all go to that drive. So this part does not benefit from the RAID 0 array.As I fly along in cruise, there is a continual need to update the view out the window. This means new scenery must be loaded from a hard drive into the correct database in dynamic memory. I can often hear the 2 RAID drives doing this as I fly along. Before the RAID array, this would be loading from a single drive (or worse yet, from the CD)and the game would nearly stop. Since I put FS9 on the RAID 0 array this no longer happens. I hear the drives working and I see the scenery or clouds appearing but the frame rate is not affected anymore.BTW the latest ICH6R chipset is also on my $$ list. You are right, there are now many new RAID options. You can even have 2 drives with half of each RAID 1 and the other half of each RAID 0. Unbelieveable!Anyway, anyone reading this, some of this is my wild guessing about how this game works so I apologize for any bad guesses.

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I've been runing a RAID0 array with two SATA WD800's for the past 4 months or so now and I'm extremely happy with it. Sure it does increase the chance of disk failure, but the performance difference is huge and I back up any critical data on a 3rd drive and periodically on DVD anyway. I also think the HD failure rates on these newer drives have probably gone way down - they've got it down to a pretty exact science now to the point where WD is offering 5 year warranties on their Raptor series. (of which two or more of the 74GB or better models will be in my next system)I believe 3 or more drives is all you need to get full data redundancy - I forget the technical explaination for it, but it weaves a parity stripe through the drives and allows the data on a drive that goes bad to be reconstituted simply by replacing that drive. Having two or more modern HD's fail at the exact same moment (barring something like a whole system frying, in which case you're screwed with or without RAID) is virtually unheard of and I'm personally not at all worried about that.

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Guest rds_mcleod

Hello again, JetJockk:>I hear the drives working and I see the scenery or>clouds appearing but the frame rate is not affected anymore.>BTW the latest ICH6R chipset is also on my $$ list. You are>right, there are now many new RAID options. You can even have>2 drives with half of each RAID 1 and the other half of each>RAID 0. Unbelieveable!If you read the existing material on the Intel site, apparently the new Intel Matrix will do just that given the implementation of the new PCI Express technology and the 915P chipset. The site also specifies which sets are included. I hope that today I'll see that happen, and I will always have a Ghost of the drive set! ;-)~~ Ron

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Very intersting thread. I do not know much about the RAID setup even though I have it on my system. My computer came with 2x160GB Seagate 8MB Cache SATA drives in striped RAID array (RAID 0) with on-board integrated IDE RAID controller. While that all sounds great, I have no idea what it means other than I have 298GB HD capacity. I have the 875P chipset as well.I saw this above:If you do set up RAID 0 mke sure you define it for 64kb blocks, NTFS defaults to 4kb (too small) and onboard RAID controllers like Promise defaults to 128 kb blocks (too big).64KB Worked out to be faster, at least for me.First let me state that the only stupid question is the one not asked and some of the following questions may be very stupid, so here it goes; How does one check this to see what it is currently set to in regards to blocks? How would one go about changing the RAID configuration if one wanted to? Does a different RAID setup reduce memory useage or no? I really have had no problems other than running out of memory a couple times (have 1024MB Cosair RAM) when using the PMDG bird going into say Simflyers ATL scenery. Thanks for any help.

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Guest rds_mcleod

>Very intersting thread. I do not know much about the RAID>setup even though I have it on my system. My computer came>If you do set up RAID 0 mke sure you define it for 64kb>blocks, NTFS defaults to 4kb (too small) and onboard RAID>controllers like Promise defaults to 128 kb blocks (too big).>64KB Worked out to be faster, at least for me.There's an excellent article on Intel's Matrix Storage Technology on their site. www.intel.com/design/chipsets/matrixstorage_sb.htm. It should give you all you need to know.>How does one check this to see what >it is currently set to in regards to blocks? You're probably using 64K blocks now. I believe that's the default.> How would one go about changing the RAID configuration if one I really have had no problems other than running out of memory a >couple times (have 1024MB Cosair RAM) when using the PMDG bird going>into say Simflyers ATL scenery.That's a sticky one, but I have 2048 of DDR 400 and FS9 still pauses to read new areas. I'm hoping RAID 0 will change all that. See the posts above. ;-)- Ron McLeod CYEG

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