Question Leaving RAID 0: A Question or Two

Feb 20, 2020
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So, having built several home PC's in the past beginning pre Win98, most have involved a RAID 0 setup, most using HDD with my current setup running SSD's, a pair of Samsung EVO's. Notwithstanding the caveats with respect to loss of data in RAID 0 configurations, for the most part, all setups have performed without any problems. That said, there's conflicting information regarding life expectancy of an SSD in RAID 0. Some say (as was discussed here in a post back in 2014) that there's no negative effect and possibly even a positive one in terms of overall life expectancy; kinda hard to accept the latter. It was pointed out that "... it's possible" as individual drives are writing less as data's spread between them. Sounded (kinda) possible but came across as more like Bro tech talk; i.e., questionable at best. There are other discussions elsewhere that have more compelling arguments to the contrary that I wont bring up here.

All said, that's not really why I'm dumping RAID 0. The main reasons are twofold; one being the performance I'm gaining is not of significance really as I do very little large data transfers which to my understanding is where striping is of most value. Two, my ASUS board limits the number of available SATA ports when setting to allow for optimal performance on SSD drives on M.2 slots. Won't go into that now either, just saying...

So, what's the question, right? Well, maybe it's not so much a question as it is an opportunity for me to get some input regarding this topic in general and possibly learn a thing or two. In the meantime, I'm trying to decide whether to go with a fresh install, clone or use an image either from Acronis True Image or Windows (using the Windows 7 imaging feature), both of which I've got. In terms of deciding, not a biggie.

BTW, I've been checking out articles as well as forum posts here at Tom's on occasion for several years; I thought I'd take a dive...
 

Newtonius

Respectable
I tried going RAID 0 with my two Crucial MX500 2TB SSD drives but that didn't really work out as the RAID controller didn't process random 4k writes properly, but that's besides the point. After I removed them from RAID 0 I ended up tiering one drive with an NVMe and gave it 2GB RAM cache while I gave the other drive Cache momentum using 4GB of my RAM. Needless to say you need at least 32GB RAM build if you want this to work smoothly, but in the end I was achieving 6-7GB sequential reads and writes from both drives. The tiering is overall safe but the cache momentum can be dangerous if you encounter a random shutdown, file corruptions and so on.

That's what I did and at first it was neat to have, but later on I realized I didn't really need that kind of speed. Regular SATA SSD speeds were good enough for me, at least for gaming and small file transfers.
 

logainofhades

Titan
Moderator
SSD's do not need a RAID configuration. The only real reason, that I see, for an SSD Raid 0 array, is for a huge scratch disk for video editing, and such. I would just do a fresh install, of Windows 10, using your Win 7 product key. Windows 7 support is over, so it's time to move on.
 

Rogue Leader

It's a trap!
Moderator
Eliminating RAID 0 is a good idea for the reasons you've laid out and more.

Regarding SSD wear, excluding very very early SSDs its literally not a thing. The SSD will be long obsolete before you ever come vaguely near wearing anything out. Not only that, the performance benefit you mentioned is only in very specific conditions, while on the other hand certain other conditions are actually slower (random reads) because you're limited by the system SATA bus speeds between 2 devices.

Secondly I've been anti-RAID on consumer hardware for a while now. Its main benefits come in with multiple people accessing the same drive, ie a business environment. But those environments have people constantly monitoring the hardware, and proper cached RAID controllers with protection against failures. On a consumer board? You're one crash away from all your data being borked (hence the reason for good backups).

As for your OS, I would do a fresh install, this is your opportunity to do a new clean system. Also use Windows 10, your 7 key will work to activate it, and 7 is DEAD. Time to move forward.
 
Feb 20, 2020
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SSD's do not need a RAID configuration. The only real reason, that I see, for an SSD Raid 0 array, is for a huge scratch disk for video editing, and such. I would just do a fresh install, of Windows 10, using your Win 7 product key. Windows 7 support is over, so it's time to move on.
I've been running Win10 since its initial release. I mentioned Windows 7 only with regard to its imaging backup capability, something Windows 10 does not offer. Having moved on from Win7 sometime ago, can't say I really miss it but in its time, IMO, it was the finest of OS's that Microsoft ever put out. RIP.
 

USAFRet

Titan
Moderator
Mar 16, 2013
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I've been running Win10 since its initial release. I mentioned Windows 7 only with regard to its imaging backup capability, something Windows 10 does not offer. Having moved on from Win7 sometime ago, can't say I really miss it but in its time, IMO, it was the finest of OS's that Microsoft ever put out. RIP.
For backup images, Macrium Reflect. Much better than what Windows has, either now or before.

And the use cases where RAID (of any type) is a good idea in the consumer space are few and far between. Especially with SSD's.

For your situation, I would absolutely do a fresh install.
 

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