RAID stands for Redundant Array of Inexpensive/Independent Disks. It is widely used among organizations that require massive storage capacities, or by individuals who look for reliably solutions of storing their data.
A simple RAID array is usually built of a minimum of two drives, that work simultaneously, and divide the data stored among them. That type of structure allows the data flow to be faster. More complex arrays contain 4-5 drives, and some RAID structures allow up to 128 drives to be used.
Common RAID arrays used today are:
RAID 0 – This array stripes the data across multiple drives. The advantage of such setup is its speed. Its disadvantage is the redundancy (reliability). If a single drive within the entire array fails, the whole array will stop working. The failed drive has to be recovered to rebuild the damaged RAID array.
RAID 1 (Mirror) – Two drives that “mirroring” each other. The same data is stored on both drives, and if something happens to one drive, the second drive will keep on working. This array has higher redundancy and reliabilty but also needs to be monitored up closely – often, when one drive fails, the user does not get any warning and hence still believes that RAID 1 is protecting his data. Another disadvantage of this type of RAID is the price – you pay for two drives, but only get to use the capacity of a single drive.
RAID 5 – One of the most popular RAID arrays used by external storage enclosures. Consists minimum of three drives. The idea behind this RAID is its ability to lose one drive and still function properly. The algorithm that divides the data between the drives creates a special type of block called “Parity.” If one of the drives stops working properly, it can be removed and replaced with a new working drive. Using the parity blocks, the RAID will be able to rebuild itself by recalculating the value of the missing sectors.
This array allows the users both increased speed and redundancy. It’s easy to deploy and to maintain.
RAID 6 – Very similar to RAID 5. The main difference is – unlike RAID 5, in RAID 6, two drives can fail, and the RAID will keep functioning normally.
Over the years, we restored a lot of RAID arrays of all kinds, types and sizes. We have the best know-how and experience when it comes to rebuilding RAIDs and dealing with logical and physical corruptions that prevent your server or your RAID array from functioning correctly.
We know that huge RAID arrays or servers are sometimes cumbersome to move, and that is why we offer our On-Site consultation service. Contact us now to start the process!
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