RAID Card Question

Joined
Feb 17, 2010
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montreal , canada
Your Mac's Specs
MacBook Pro 17" i7
Hi
i was wondering , what is the use of a raid card , i've looked on wikipedia but i'm too noob to catch what they say.

i'm asking that because i'llbe buying a new mac pro and its an 700$ option
i'll mainly use my mac for 3d desing an randering . also i'm planning on installing win7 for gaming .

thanks
 
Joined
Jan 17, 2005
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Toronto, Canada
Your Mac's Specs
Mac Pro 8 Core, MacBook Air 11
Raid

Hi
i was wondering , what is the use of a raid card , i've looked on wikipedia but i'm too noob to catch what they say.

i'm asking that because i'llbe buying a new mac pro and its an 700$ option
i'll mainly use my mac for 3d desing an randering . also i'm planning on installing win7 for gaming .

thanks

A hardware RAID card allows you to use fast and more reliable 15K RPM SAS drives with the added security of RAID 5, 6, etc... This is usually more a concern for server or enterprise data mgt than the average home user.

If extra speed, reliability and redundancy are not mission critical to you, a software RAID array can be easily setup in a RAID 0 or RAID 1 configuration in MAC OS for free. Just be sure to make frequent backups if you go with RAID 0 using SATA drives. I've tried software RAID 0 with four 1TB Samsung Spinpoint drives and the performance improvement was quite noticeable. I was up to 350-400 MB/s as opposed to a single drive averaging 60-100 MB/s. If you do go with a RAID card take a look at third party options e.g. CalDigit, as the Apple RAID Card has a long history of problems and is severely overpriced.

What I can tell you from my experience is that after the fun and novelty wore off I didn't really see the need to keep using it and am back to using a single drive for boot and only use RAID to span my other disks into one large 3TB time machine volume. RAID was actually a bit of a pain for my boot drive because maintenance become unduly complicated. DiskWarrior, TechTool and even Disk Utility had a tough time working across spanned disks.

Good luck and have fun!
 

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