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Re: "big" machines running Debian?

On Thu, Feb 26, 2009 at 11:41:03AM +1100, Alex Samad wrote:
> This begs the question why did you pick hardware raid over software raid

You can boot from it no matter what (software raid can require interesting
tweaks to the boot loader setup to make it work).

Recovery can be transparent to the OS and be as simple as swapping out
the drive that failed.

You get nice hotswap bay LED control to show which drive has failed
(I imagine software could do this too, but I have never seen that
happen yet.)

> I have been a long supporter of software raid, but I find myself leaning
> towards a HP smart array 400 and using hardware raid (looking at 10
> disks in raid6).
> My current thoughts are why should I have 10 channels (4 of them come
> from 1 pcix card) when I could have 1 channel to the smart array. there
> seem to be a few cciss utilities for me to track the array 
> I am waying this up against the ability to easily manage the array and
> do upgrade and change disk and monitor the individual disks

Some hardware raids have good support for monitoring under linux.
Some do not.  Having monitoring is quite important.

The biggest advantage to software raid is that it is hardware independant.
You can move all the disks to another controller type on another system,
and linux's software raid will still work.  Hardware raid setups are
often very specific to one controller type so recovery from a controller
failure can be tricky if you don't have access to spares.

Len Sorensen

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