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RAID-5 on DFI NF4 Expert motherboard, also WinXP Soft-Raid 5.

Discussion in 'AMD Overclocking' started by Erik Harris, Dec 31, 2005.

  1. Erik Harris

    Erik Harris Guest

    I've read on various sites that the Silicon Image sil3114 chip used for the
    secondary RAID controller (which supports RAID5 via driver) is made to run on
    the PCI bus at either 33MHz or 66MHz. Some motherboards are noted to use
    this only on the 33MHz bus, which limits its performance. I can't find any
    information on which speed the implementation on the DFI LanParty UT NF4
    SLI-DR Expert (which I've got in transit on its way to me) uses. Does anyone
    know?

    Also, there's an article on Tom's Hardware
    (http://www.tomshardware.com/2004/11/19/using_windowsxp_to_make_raid_5_happen/)
    about activating purely-software-driven RAID-5 in Windows XP (apparently the
    feature is in Server edition and was simply disabled for XP). Does anyone
    know where I can find any reviews benchmarking the relative performance of
    RAID-5 on the sil3114 chip vs. WinXP soft-RAID-5? Since the sil3114's RAID-5
    implementation is essentially software-driven, I wouldn't be surprised if its
    performance was no better than using the native WinXP RAID support. If this
    is the case, it seems as though it might make sense for me to go that route,
    and use the faster nForce4 SATA2 controller, rather than the secondary RAID
    controller.

    Erik Harris http://www.eHarrisHome.com
    [email protected]$harrishom$.com - replace each dollar sign with an e
    Chinese-Indonesian Martial Arts Club http://www.kungfu-silat.com
     
    Erik Harris, Dec 31, 2005
    #1
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  2. Erik Harris

    spr Guest

    look later in this article and you'll see that hardware raid is always
    faster than this mode.
    i did this mod on one of my systems and it does work fine though.
     
    spr, Jan 4, 2006
    #2
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  3. Erik Harris

    Erik Harris Guest

    My question, though, was on the siI3114 chip vs Windows RAID - even though
    the siI3114 is a piece of hardware, its RAID-5 support is purely
    driver-driven - i.e. it IS a software RAID. (The chip didn't even support
    RAID-5 out the door; it was added later)

    I did eventually find what I was looking for, and decided that even with a
    relatively pricey RAID-5 controller, the performance hit when writing was
    more than I was willing to accept, and scrapped the idea of RAID-5
    altogether. I'm now running a RAID-0 setup (using the faster nForce4
    controller instead of the SiI3114 controller) with 2 drives and a third drive
    that I use partly for periodic manual backup of the important stuff (and a
    drive in an external enclosure that I use for less-frequently backed up stuff
    and added redundancy on certain files). Cheaper, quieter, and cooler than
    RAID-01 or 10, and faster than RAID-5, higher capacity than any of them, and
    with a risk level I'm willing to accept.

    Incidentally, even though both are software implementations, it appears that
    the one based on the siI3114 is faster than Microsoft's solution. Maybe it's
    because the RAID chip helps give it a hardware boost, but the main
    computational burden (the XOR operation) is done purely by the CPU in both.
    <shrug>

    Erik Harris http://www.eHarrisHome.com
    [email protected]$harrishom$.com - replace each dollar sign with an e
    Chinese-Indonesian Martial Arts Club http://www.kungfu-silat.com
     
    Erik Harris, Feb 1, 2006
    #3
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