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  1. #1
    PC Raid compatability

    Member Since
    Mar 12, 2010
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    PC Raid compatability
    I am looking at switching from PC to iMac and was wondering what the compatability is of my current Raid array.

    I am running a 4 drive (700gb each) internal SATA RAID on my PC. It houses mainly multi-media data. Can I simply buy an external RAID case, remove all 4 drives, plug into the case and then plug into the iMAC? Or do I have to buy an entire new 4TB Raid array and xfr all my data from the PC Raid onto this new MAC Raid?

  2. #2
    PC Raid compatability
    chas_m's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 22, 2010
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    Victoria, BC
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    Specs:
    Mid-2012 MBP (16GB, 1TB HD), Monoprice 24-inch second monitor, iPhone 5s 32GB, iPad Air 2 64GB
    First off:
    A Mac is short for "Macintosh." It's not an acronym, thus it should not be capitalised.

    To put it another way:
    mac: a waterproof raincoat made of rubberized fabric
    MAC: a data communication protocol sub-layer, also known as the Media Access Control
    Mac: a brand name which covers several lines of personal computers designed, developed, and marketed by Apple Inc.

    Ditto for iPod.

    The iMac has Firewire 800, so be sure that the RAID case you buy has that compatibility (its waaaaaay faster than USB2, which is your only other option).

    Basically I think you will end up wanting to buy a new RAID array, though this is not really my area of expertise. You could certainly re-use the drives you have if you wanted, though -- they'll just need to be erased/reformatted/re-set-up as a RAID array.

  3. #3
    PC Raid compatability

    Member Since
    Feb 25, 2009
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    Late 2013 rMBP, i7, 750m gpu, OSX versions 10.9.3, 10.10
    Yeah, if you're going to want to have a raid on your new Mac, you'll need to setup a new array and transfer your data (assuming you want to keep your data ) - chances are your internal raid is probably running on a raid controller on your motherboard? Well, that right there would present a major problem as RAID arrays are generally not cross-RAID chipset compatible (ie: even if you got a different motherboard, unless it had an identical RAID controller chipset the array would be un-useable) let alone cross platform (Mac raid controller card vs raid controller in a general windows box) compatible.

    You're best bet - as Chas_m stated was to get an external array and transfer your data over. There are many good options out there - either NAS or direct connect via firewire/usb (preferrably firewire). Personally, I really enjoy using a DROBO as it makes it very easy to expand an array without having to transfer data and rebuild an array then transfer the data back on.
    My Macs: Late 2013 rMBP w/ 750m; Mac mini G4, 1.25 GHz, 512m ram (server); Late 2011 11" MBA, 1.8GHz i7, 4Gig Ram, 256Gig SSD, HD3000; Powerbook 12" G4 1.33GHz running Debian as a server; Apple TV (1080p version)

  4. #4
    PC Raid compatability
    TechieJustin's Avatar
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    How about an external NAS that is RAID?

  5. #5
    PC Raid compatability

    Member Since
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    A NAS is just that - an external networked storage device - how the storage is handled by the NAS device is insignificant to the client systems that communicate with it (as long as the NAS supports network access compatible with the clients (like SMB or NFS or AFP, etc.)) A raid unit that connects to the computer via USB (similar to a DROBO) will work on either platform and, if the storage is formatted in a way compatible with all OS' that might access it, the raid functionality is irrelevant as it's handled internally by the box and the computer just sees it as a giant storage unit connected via USB or Firewire or eSata, etc.
    My Macs: Late 2013 rMBP w/ 750m; Mac mini G4, 1.25 GHz, 512m ram (server); Late 2011 11" MBA, 1.8GHz i7, 4Gig Ram, 256Gig SSD, HD3000; Powerbook 12" G4 1.33GHz running Debian as a server; Apple TV (1080p version)

  6. #6
    PC Raid compatability
    TechieJustin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nethfel View Post
    A NAS is just that - an external networked storage device - how the storage is handled by the NAS device is insignificant to the client systems that communicate with it (as long as the NAS supports network access compatible with the clients (like SMB or NFS or AFP, etc.)) A raid unit that connects to the computer via USB (similar to a DROBO) will work on either platform and, if the storage is formatted in a way compatible with all OS' that might access it, the raid functionality is irrelevant as it's handled internally by the box and the computer just sees it as a giant storage unit connected via USB or Firewire or eSata, etc.
    Yes...
    Except a NAS would connect through the network - not USB or firewire.
    Hence the N.

  7. #7
    PC Raid compatability

    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by TechieJustin View Post
    Yes...
    Except a NAS would connect through the network - not USB or firewire.
    Hence the N.
    You would also notice that I did not specify a device that connects via usb or firewire as a NAS - but rather that a device that handled raid internally that connected via firewire or usb - whether it be a NAS unit or a usb or firewire attached raid unit, if the raid functionality is handled internally, the OS will be oblivious to it.

    Also, as you may (or may not) there are devices available that can convert a USB or Firewire storage unit (raid or not) into a NAS - for example: Apple Airport Extreme has usb ports for external drives which will now make them appear as a NAS, Linksys also has a device that does the same feature, and the Droboshare device will take a DROBO and make it accessible as if it were a NAS - basically, what I was trying to say was - whether it's a NAS device or a directly attached device - if that device handles raid internally - that functionality will be usually shielded from the OS and the OS - whether mounting the device remotely across the network via SMB, NFS, etc. or locally by firewire or USB, the storage will not magically change. The same is also true for SAN units (in case you don't know what they are, it's another technology for network storage) where these days, iSCSI is used commonly to connect to the device - the device itself handles the raid functionality and as long as the OS has iSCSI drivers, it can communicate and utilize the network storage and ignore how the drives are configured.

    My goal in my post was to make sure it was clear that an external device that handles its' own raid functionality, and has a commonly used connection technology (whether ethernet/wifi, USB or Firewire), that device will be available as storage on either platform if the OS supports the appropriate connection technology.

    So please, although I'll admit, I may have worded the post perhaps a bit shorter with a bit less explanation than I should have, the sarcasm in your reply is not necessarily appreciated.
    My Macs: Late 2013 rMBP w/ 750m; Mac mini G4, 1.25 GHz, 512m ram (server); Late 2011 11" MBA, 1.8GHz i7, 4Gig Ram, 256Gig SSD, HD3000; Powerbook 12" G4 1.33GHz running Debian as a server; Apple TV (1080p version)

  8. #8
    PC Raid compatability
    TechieJustin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nethfel View Post
    You would also notice that I did not specify a device that connects via usb or firewire as a NAS - but rather that a device that handled raid internally that connected via firewire or usb - whether it be a NAS unit or a usb or firewire attached raid unit, if the raid functionality is handled internally, the OS will be oblivious to it.

    Also, as you may (or may not) there are devices available that can convert a USB or Firewire storage unit (raid or not) into a NAS - for example: Apple Airport Extreme has usb ports for external drives which will now make them appear as a NAS, Linksys also has a device that does the same feature, and the Droboshare device will take a DROBO and make it accessible as if it were a NAS - basically, what I was trying to say was - whether it's a NAS device or a directly attached device - if that device handles raid internally - that functionality will be usually shielded from the OS and the OS - whether mounting the device remotely across the network via SMB, NFS, etc. or locally by firewire or USB, the storage will not magically change. The same is also true for SAN units (in case you don't know what they are, it's another technology for network storage) where these days, iSCSI is used commonly to connect to the device - the device itself handles the raid functionality and as long as the OS has iSCSI drivers, it can communicate and utilize the network storage and ignore how the drives are configured.

    My goal in my post was to make sure it was clear that an external device that handles its' own raid functionality, and has a commonly used connection technology (whether ethernet/wifi, USB or Firewire), that device will be available as storage on either platform if the OS supports the appropriate connection technology.

    So please, although I'll admit, I may have worded the post perhaps a bit shorter with a bit less explanation than I should have, the sarcasm in your reply is not necessarily appreciated.
    Next time be clearer.
    Those Firewire, USB2 to ethernet adapters are generally crap and should be avoided.

  9. #9
    PC Raid compatability

    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by TechieJustin View Post
    Next time be clearer.
    Those Firewire, USB2 to ethernet adapters are generally crap and should be avoided.
    Depends on the device, the little ones that are just adapters are usually crap. Some devices, like the Airport Extreme are not as "crappy" as your statement would apply as they do use a usb drive to be able to be accessed in a network environment as a NAS.

    Next time, I will be more clear. Next time, how 'bout you be a bit less sarcastic? At that I think this thread has run its course, at least for my own attention span.
    My Macs: Late 2013 rMBP w/ 750m; Mac mini G4, 1.25 GHz, 512m ram (server); Late 2011 11" MBA, 1.8GHz i7, 4Gig Ram, 256Gig SSD, HD3000; Powerbook 12" G4 1.33GHz running Debian as a server; Apple TV (1080p version)

  10. #10
    PC Raid compatability
    TechieJustin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nethfel View Post
    Depends on the device, the little ones that are just adapters are usually crap. Some devices, like the Airport Extreme are not as "crappy" as your statement would apply as they do use a usb drive to be able to be accessed in a network environment as a NAS.

    Next time, I will be more clear. Next time, how 'bout you be a bit less sarcastic? At that I think this thread has run its course, at least for my own attention span.
    I suggest the Thecus MiniNAS N0204. It uses laptop hard drives which tend to be more reliable.
    There's also the N2100SM - also from Thecus. It used normal 3.5" drives.
    All speak AFP with no problem.

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