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12bay RAID as an archive and swapping drives for extra storage?

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Ollie Brent
12bay RAID as an archive and swapping drives for extra storage?
on Jan 27, 2019 at 7:18:12 pm

Before I start, I know using a RAID as an archive is dangerous and swapping out the drives even more so. This wasn’t my call and it’s a temporary solution and hopefully in the next few months a proper archive can be acquired.

Anyway I have a 12bay 120TB RAID that I need use a temporary archive. I have at least 40TB of assorted footage that’s scattered different across a bunch of 2TB shooting drives that need to be dumped and another 50TB on our server and other locations. Right off the bat I’m going to be nearly out of space with all this footage.

Would 2 RAID5 partitions make sense if I want to be able to be able to swap out half the drives in the RAID for fresh drives and put the old ones into cold storage? Or maybe 4 x RAID5 partitions so there’d only be 3 drives a partition and it would make it easer to swap a partition in case something needs to be recalled...

Or because of the risk involved with this workflow does it make sense to go RAID1 for redundancy?


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Bob Zelin
Re: 12bay RAID as an archive and swapping drives for extra storage?
on Jan 28, 2019 at 2:58:31 am

Before I start, I know using a RAID as an archive is dangerous and swapping out the drives even more so. This wasn’t my call and it’s a temporary solution and hopefully in the next few months a proper archive can be acquired.

REPLY - it wasn't your call. If I was you, I would remind the person in charge that if this is the only copy of the footage or media, this is potentially very dangerous, and they could lose all their media.

Anyway I have a 12bay 120TB RAID that I need use a temporary archive. I have at least 40TB of assorted footage that’s scattered different across a bunch of 2TB shooting drives that need to be dumped and another 50TB on our server and other locations. Right off the bat I’m going to be nearly out of space with all this footage.

REPLY - you have just said "I'm going to be nearly out of space with all this footage". SO - you can't go a RAID 1, because 120 TB will be 60 TB with a mirror of the 60 TB. You can only do RAID 5 or RAID 6. With 12 drives, of course, you should do RAID 6, so you can have TWO drives fail before you lose all your data.



Would 2 RAID5 partitions make sense if I want to be able to be able to swap out half the drives in the RAID for fresh drives and put the old ones into cold storage? Or maybe 4 x RAID5 partitions so there’d only be 3 drives a partition and it would make it easer to swap a partition in case something needs to be recalled...

REPLY - this is completely insane. Every RAID 5 group you create, you lose the equivalent of one drive. So 6 drives in a RAID 5 is only 5 drives of space. If you create four RAID 5 groups, you lose the equivalent of four of your 10 TB drives. DO NOT swap out drives for a fresh RAID group. An empty RAID enclosure costs much less than the cost of the drives. If you can afford another 12 10TB drives, then you can definitely afford another RAID enclosure.
If you have TWO RAID enclosures - both with 12 10TB drives, and they are both RAID 6, then this is a perfectly suitable "archive" where you will be pretty safe.


Or because of the risk involved with this workflow does it make sense to go RAID1 for redundancy?

REPLY - RAID 1 is a mirror - you will lose 6 of your drives to the RAID 1 configuration, and if you make each group RAID 5, that 6 drive group will be only 5 drives of usable space (50 TB). Its a poor plan.

10TB drives cost $300 each (Seagate Ironwolf), so 12 drives cost $3600 dollars.

At the very least, if there is no budget, just do a RAID 6 and keep a spare drive on hand (I have no idea of what RAID host adaptor you are using - Highpoint, ATTO, Areca, etc).

The bottom line here, is that if you (or your boss) cheap's out, and you lose all your data - it's game over.
There is no film, no commercial, no show, no client left, and no payment for both you and your boss.

Bob Zelin

Bob Zelin
Rescue 1, Inc.
bobzelin@icloud.com


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Alex Gardiner
Re: 12bay RAID as an archive and swapping drives for extra storage?
on Jan 28, 2019 at 4:31:33 am

To echo bobs post, use double parity.

Single parity with 10TB disks is not a good idea. Once you end up in a degraded state with HDDs this big, the chances of failure during a rebuild are uncomfortably high.

alex@indiestor.com


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