Why You Should RAID Your Servers

COMPUTER SUPPORT Tips from the GONZALES, LA Computer Pro – Why You Should RAID Your Servers

When setting up a server, pretty much everyone is in agreement: the worst possible thing that could happen is a total hard disk crash, which would lose a great deal of data – at least until a backup were restored.

Providing COMPUTER SUPPORT GONZALES, LOUISIANA gives us many opportunities to see network configurations of all sorts, and there’s one solution to this risk that we simply don’t see often enough: a RAID implementation on the server. Small businesses, while they recognize the value of backups, are frequently slow to see that the time necessary to restore a backup is still a major liability – that if a hard drive crashes, it takes time to buy and install a replacement, and then the backup needs to be restored.

RAID 5 makes recovery from a single hard drive crash simple. Modern RAID setups can even provide hot-swappable replacements, so the server never needs to go down – even for a second – while crashed drives are replaced. While you do lose some hard drive capacity compared to simply installing the drives as provided, the added security more than makes up for it… and disk drives are inexpensive.

Several clients for COMPUTER SUPPORT IN GONZALES LA ask how to reduce their risk of downtime, and RAID 5 provides one of the simplest ways to almost eliminate all risk. With RAID 5, a series of three or more hard disks provide the equivalent storage space of two disks… while improving disk performance and preventing drive failure. Any number of disks may be used, and only a single disk’s capacity is lost – assuming all disks are the same size, which is frequently the case and sometimes a requirement.

During use, information is “striped” across the disks, and as each stripe is written, recovery information is written to the disks – so that if any one of the three disks is lost, the data on it remains available (at only slightly slower speeds) and can be restored automatically when the damaged drive is replaced. Hot-swap systems make this an easy process, and allow the IT SUPPORT IN GONZALES LA to replace the drive without so much as a second of overall downtime.

There are, of course, still some risks. If a second drive fails before the first failed disk is rebuilt, data will be lost and need restoration from backup – creating the same need for downtime. An added level of security can be provided with RAID 6, which tolerates the loss of any two drives before rebuild is complete, and requires only one additional disk to provide the same capacity as a RAID 5 system: a minimum of four drives, providing the storage of two fewer drives than the array contains.

When the permanent availability of your data is critical to your business, and even an hour of server downtime is too much, using a RAID system on your servers can make a huge difference in your network’s fault tolerance… and improves data transfer significantly, for better overall network performance.

PHILLIP SINGLETARY is a provider of professional COMPUTER SUPPORT IN GONZALES LA. If you need IT SUPPORT IN LOUISIANA  for your small business, please contact us at SUPPORT@LATECHNOLOGYSOLUTIONS.COM

One Response to “Why You Should RAID Your Servers”

Leave a Reply

Sign up for our mailing list.

  • The Open Source Dilemma April 8, 2011
    The Open Source Dilemma In recent years, it has become common for many people to tout open source products and technologies for anything and everything in the modern business, and it often sounds too good to be true. While these products and technologies clearly have benefits, are there drawbacks, and how serious are they? Like […]
  • Choosing ASP or PHP for Your Web Site April 5, 2011
    Choosing ASP or PHP for Your Web Site When putting together a corporate web site, one of the biggest decisions in the planning process is which technology to use for it. The two most popular options are ASP and PHP, but choosing one or the other can often be a chore. Providing COMPUTER SUPPORT IN […]
  • Does CPU Speed Still Matter? March 31, 2011
    COMPUTER SUPPORT Tips from the Gonzales Louisiana Computer Pro – Does CPU Speed Still Matter? If you’ve been using computers long enough, you remember when it was very important how fast your CPU clock speed was. Indeed, the early Intel CPUs were graded directly by clock speed, and it was pretty simple to figure out […]
  • Password Security – COMPUTER SUPPORT Tips from the GONZALES, LOUISIANA Computer Pro March 29, 2011
    COMPUTER SUPPORT Tips from the GONZALES, LOUISIANA Computer Pro – Password Security As someone providing COMPUTER SUPPORT GONZALES, LOUISIANA, I commonly find that people are using insecure, easily-guessed passwords. The most frequent explanation is that the password is “easy to remember.” The trouble, of course, is that passwords which are easy to remember […]
  • COMPUTER SUPPORT Tips from the GONZALES, LA Computer Pro – Custom or Off-The-Shelf? March 25, 2011
    COMPUTER SUPPORT Tips from the GONZALES, LA Computer Pro – Custom or Off-The-Shelf? A common question we encounter while providing COMPUTER SUPPORT IN GONZALES LOUISIANA is whether to custom-build systems from parts. The basic idea is that if you start from the level of parts, you can design a system which is better suited to […]