Poor RAID0 performance with KD7 RAID on WinXP

Discussion in 'Abit' started by Rittercorp, Jul 14, 2003.

  1. Rittercorp

    Rittercorp Guest

    Hi,

    I just finished setup a RAID0 system with KD7 RAID and I dont see any
    "impressive performance boost" on HDD throughput.
    The system is:
    Abit KD7 Raid, Latest BIOS (DN), HPT372 onboard
    Athlon XP 2600+ (333fsb)
    256MB DDR333 Kingston HyperX
    MSI GF4 mX440 DDR 8xagp
    2x Maxtor 160GB DiamondMAx PLus 9 HDDs
    Win XP Pro SP1

    I used HDTach for base performance with one drive, and then added the
    other, created the raid0 array and re-installed WinXP.

    I am only gaining about 10% performance...really NOT what I expected.

    Sigle Drive average throughput was near 47MB/s and raid performance
    does not even reach 55MB/s.

    One thing I discovered is that one HDD is the L0 model and the other
    P0. This means 2MB and 8MB cache mixed....Is this that important ?? I
    read that cache size does not mean too much on RAID arrays since cache
    helps on latency...not on real throughput.

    Thanks!!!
     
    Rittercorp, Jul 14, 2003
    #1
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  2. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    First you need to be running two identical drives for top performance.
    Make sure you are running the same version Highpoint drivers as the
    Highpoint BIOS version, and don't set up the raid array using the
    default 64k block size if you want to see good benchmarks. 16k blocks
    will give much better marks.

    This is my two 30gig maxtor drives on the KD7 Raid running the 2.34
    highpoint BIOS and drives using 16k blocks.
    http://home.satx.rr.com/wosbbs/HDTach.jpg

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 14, 2003
    #2
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  3. Rittercorp

    Rittercorp Guest

    The drives are identical 160GB DiamonMax PLus 9...the only difference
    is the cache size. Your numbers are way above my performance...and as
    I understand with larger drives I should get even better results !!!.

    Can the cache size be the "crime" on this???

    I see that your CPU utilization is way higher too (mine is around
    11%)...I guess its because of the 16K blocks...that should stress the
    HPT controller and the CPU.

    I am using 32k blocks now....I just rebuild everything from 64k to
    32k...no performance gain though.

    Thanks!
     
    Rittercorp, Jul 15, 2003
    #3
  4. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    For best performance the drives need to be identical, right down to the
    model number. If one of your drives has more cache then the other I
    would think that could have an effect on the raid performance, although
    I can't say for sure.
    Yes, smaller blocks will use more CPU.
    Again, 16k.

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 15, 2003
    #4
  5. Rittercorp

    Leif Guest

    I also have the sama mobo and posted a question on the same matter as you!
    I got some help from the guys here and one thing that actually seemed to
    help a bit was to disable the "CPU disconnect function" in bios!
    I run HPT 2.32 drivers with two Seagate ST340014A and I get approx. 60 Mb/S
    sequential reading and about 36 Mb/s writing. I have my stripe partioned in
    two halves and the second partition (non OS) is faster than c:!
    I have mailed the supports on Highpoint and Abit, but have not got any good
    answer yet!
     
    Leif, Jul 15, 2003
    #5
  6. Rittercorp

    Rittercorp Guest

    That is what I am getting too...in HDTach:
    Single drive: max read : 63MB/s, max write: 45MB/s, average: 47MB/s
    and 27MB/s
    RAID0 (32k): max read: 72MB/s, max write: ?? (partitioned), average:
    54MB/s

    I will replace the 2MB cache drive for another with 8MB...to have the
    good "twins" run together....I dint think have them mixed is any good.
    Let you know.
     
    Rittercorp, Jul 16, 2003
    #6
  7. Rittercorp

    John TL Lee Guest

    Hey folks,

    I've been wrestling with an odd problem with the KD7 Raid board. Everytime I
    install the Soundblaster Audigy drivers, the XP install gets HOSED. As in
    "Can't find system file xxx" hosed.

    Here are the particulars and some questions...any suggestions would be
    appreciated!
    Abit KD7 RAID Bios date = 4/2/2003 v1.1 (the latest)
    Highpoint HPT 372 Bios = 2.32
    Highpoint drivers = 2.34
    Soundblaster Audigy MP3+ Used Drivers from CD and Updated XP drivers from
    web...both cause system fail.
    WD120Gb 7200Rpm Hdds with 8Mb cache.
    Drives are set up in Raid 1 (Mirroring) configuration

    I've done about 10 installs of XP and everything seems to be fine untill I
    install the sound card drivers..
    The onboard sound is disabled.

    Questions:
    1. Highpoint's site says the drivers must be the same as the bios. Why would
    ABIT ship later drivers? (The drivers on the Abit CD are the 2.34 drivers,
    the bios is 2.32)
    2. Just how important is the driver / Bios match?
    3. Why would sound card drivers hose a RAID set up?
    4. Has anyone else experienced this?

    Thanks,
    J.Lee
     
    John TL Lee, Jul 17, 2003
    #7
  8. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    You should always run the same version Highpoint drivers as the BIOS
    version, although I don't think that is the cause of you problem.
    I'm not sure. Have you gone to Creative's web site to get the latest
    driver release for your card? Have you installed the latest VIA Hyperion
    4in1 drivers v4.48?
    I haven't, but then I have been avoiding Creative's products for years
    now.

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 17, 2003
    #8
  9. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    I think I would try the onboard sound and use it that way for a few days
    to see what happens.

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 18, 2003
    #9
  10. Rittercorp

    John TL Lee Guest

    Updated to the 4.48 drivers...no noticeable difference.
    I'll have to get back to you on the specifics for the memory and power
    supply. However, I know the power supply could handle 420 W peak. I was
    using it in a loaded box with an old Athlon 750. It should handle this
    board with no problems.

    As for the ram...I had 512 Mb (2x256 2100 DDR) on an Epox board with no
    problems for a couple of years. All the bios settins are set to the
    Auto-detect level.

    I'll try the memtest86. I'd love it if you could send me the modified DN
    bios. I'm using the older dirver for the sake of compatibility with the
    highpoint instructions...but I'd rather be at the most current rev. The BIOS
    I downloaded from Abit didn't upgrade the highpoint bios. Where did you get
    yours?

    My wife tried to print a couple of things and it looks like the box
    spontaneously rebooted after the second print job...looks like I'm not out
    of the woods yet.
    JL
     
    John TL Lee, Jul 18, 2003
    #10
  11. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    I wouldn't be so sure about that.
    Your not running your FSB at 166MHz with that old PC2100 ram are you?
    What brand is the ram?
    I modded it using CBROM. Check your e-mail.
    I suspect you have a memory or power supply problem.

    What are your CPU and system temps running at?

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 18, 2003
    #11
  12. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    I've been using it on my system since the day the DN BIOS was posted to
    the Abit site. Check your e-mail.
    There is absolutely no reason at all that you should have to reinstall
    WinXP. Just install the drivers in XP, then boot to DOS and flash the
    BIOS.

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 20, 2003
    #12
  13. Rittercorp

    John TL Lee Guest

    Doug,

    Thanks for the BIOS!.. didn't fix the problem, but at least everything is
    current. So, here's some stuff I remembered / learned this weekend.

    1. Proc is bad. Finally installed HWDoctor from Abit and was able to
    monitor CPU temp. Surface temp was consistenly going from 47C to about 67C
    in the space of about 2 min of playing BF1942. Replaced proc with old 1Ghz
    I had laying around. No spontaneous reboots! Temp climbed to 55-56 or so,
    and stayed there even under load.

    2. Powersupply is 300 Watt ATX by JGE. Not AMD approved, but has been
    running the 750 Slot A for several years with nary a problem. (The slot A's
    were notorious power hogs and sensitive to voltage drops.)
    http://gpb-jge.com/file/a30.html Still don't think its a problem.

    3. Windows XP does not like to be installed when RAID is active. I seem to
    have the best success when I install XP with the raid driver, but without
    Raid 0 actually in effect.

    JL
     
    John TL Lee, Jul 21, 2003
    #13
  14. Rittercorp

    Leif Guest

    67C

    I got the same here! I have the Barton XP2500 Box and it runs hot in no
    time!
    How do you do that? You don´t install XP on the raid 0. I guess you mean?
     
    Leif, Jul 21, 2003
    #14
  15. Rittercorp

    John TL Lee Guest

    I pulled the plug on the IDE cable for the 2nd drive. Left the first drive
    on IDE 3, then installed windows. On the XP2000 CPU I was using a
    Thermaltake 6CU as my fan/heatsink combo. However, I transplanted the CPU
    from an Epox board that had gone bad...I suspect it took the CPU with it
    when it went. (Shoudl've considered that when I first started to have
    problems.) DOH!!
    JL
     
    John TL Lee, Jul 21, 2003
    #15
  16. Rittercorp

    Leif Guest

    So you don´t have XP on a raid 0 now?

    CPU I was using a
     
    Leif, Jul 21, 2003
    #16
  17. Rittercorp

    Doug G. Guest

    I think your problem is 'very likely' the power supply. The systems of
    today have very different power demands then the old slot systems, and
    power supply design has changed to reflect those differences.

    For one thing, the new CPU's draw their power from the 12 volt rail of
    the power supply, where the old slot CPU's took their power from the
    3.3v and or 5.0v rail.

    When I look for a power supply these days one of the things I look for
    is if it can supply at a minimum 16 amps on the 12 volt rail, and 18
    amps or above is better. Your supply is only rated at 12 amps on the 12
    volt rail, that's not enough, and as you said, your supply is years old,
    so it's probably even weaker then it was new.

    Your system is under powered.

    Doug
     
    Doug G., Jul 21, 2003
    #17
  18. Rittercorp

    John TL Lee Guest

    Hmmm. So, any particular power supply you recommend?
    JL
     
    John TL Lee, Jul 21, 2003
    #18
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