[SLUG] IDE Raid Controllers

Matthew Hawkins matt at mh.dropbear.id.au
Thu Sep 12 11:09:41 EST 2002

Bernhard L?der (bernhard at blue.net.au) wrote:
> I am running a very inexpensive (A$35) ata100 ide card and run it with Linux
> in RAID5 software mode with 3x 80GB IDE sitting one on each channel of the
> IDE card and the third on the second channel of the motherboard with a 10GB
> disk on the first motherboard IDE channel as system disk.

I assume by this you mean you're using either LVM or Linux's software
raid driver.

LVM is an interesting one.  The standard software raid required that you
use partitions of identical size.  LVM doesn't.  There's supposedly an
even newer replacement for it scheduled for 2.5, don't know any details
of it though.

> High performance go SCSI and hardware RAID. I would use only ADAPTEC.

http://www.linux-raid.org/ - which I wasn't able to get at, used to have
a comparison between a hardware raid controller and Linux's software
raid.  Turned out that software raid performed noticably higher than
hardware raid in everything BUT when the silly amount of write cache
on the hardware raid controller was enabled - which makes sense to me.
Note that enabling the cache means you'll lose any data it holds thats
uncommitted to disk when the power fails, for this reason most sensible
people keep it disabled :-)

Adaptec cards are alright, I'd try to get one that's fairly recent
though since older models are mediocre to say the least.  My personal
preference though is for Mylex controllers.  Not only are they
technically better, politically they supported Linux many many years
before Adaptec; being up-front with specs and shipping with Linux
drivers.  Even if they weren't better, I'd probably still support them
simply because of that.  But they are better, so it's a win-win :)

Matt                  "Our products just aren't engineered for security"
                            -- Brian Valentine, Microsoft Senior Vice-President
			       in charge of Windows development team
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