Pair SSDs In A RAID 0 For A Huge Speed Boost

Pair SSDs in a RAID 0 for a Huge Speed Boost

You know what's even better than one solid state drive? Two solid state drives. If you want dramatically faster performance from your drives, pair them together in a RAID 0 configuration.

PCWorld ran some tests comparing three types of drives in single configuration versus those paired in a RAID 0. They found as much as an 88 per cent speed improvement when writing and reading files to disk when two drives were paired in the striped array, where your data is split evenly across two or more disks.

One caveat is you should definitely have a good backup system in place, because you'll lose all the data if one drive fails. But you should already be backing up anyway. Also, this applies most to desktop PCs, since not many laptops support two SSDs.

See all the speed test results at PCWorld below.

Feed Your Greed for Speed by Installing SSDs in RAID 0 [PCWorld]


Comments

    Better off getting a pcie ssd IMO.

    How about comparing this to RAID 1 for read performance?

    I ran two SSDs in RAID 0 for around two years. Sure the benchmarks looked great but the actual gains when using the PC were minimal compared to the gains achieved going from a HDD to an SSD. The downside to running the SSDs in RAID0 was the lack of TRIM support on my older motherboard. My boot time actualy increased as the Intel RAID OPROM had to be loaded at boot. When installing Windows 7 I had to make sure I had the Intel RST drives on the installaiton media so that it could detect the RAID array (can't remeber whether I had to do it for Windows 8 as well). This step isn't really explained anywhere and most users wouldn't realise why they can't see their RAID array. It was also more costly to buy two SSDs than one at the larger capacity. Also, the speed of most SSDs increases as the capacity increases (up to a point).

    When I replaced the two drives with a larger single drive, I forgot to delete the RAID array before removing the drives. When I put the drives into another PC to run in a non-RAID configuration, Windows wouldn't initialise one of the drives, and I had to download and boot GPARTED to configure the drive.

    For average users I would recommend sticking with a single drive. Less hassle and complexity.

      ^ this. TRIM won't work so if you do heavy workloads, watch those things die very quickly. You also can't upgrade the firmware as the devices can't be seen behind the RAID controller.

      Thank you for such an insightful comment.

      @kasawi - I hope you outsourced as a senior consultant or training the next generation of IT professionals. It is is rare to find anyone in the industry these days who demonstrates that level of analysis and evidence-based recommendations.

        Thanks for the kind words. I don't even work in IT, it's just an interest.

    I would prefer raid 1 (or not even raid them at all and have 2 SSD's) - SSD's are definitely fast enough as they are and your bottle-necking would just shift somewhere else although this has potential in rare cases it's not something I would suggest to standard users - it is interesting none-the-less to see this potential.

    RAID 0 is a bad idea in the long run. Especially with SSDs being incredibly prone to failure.

    If one of your drives fails, all of your data is gone. I'd go with a RAID 1, really. Redundancy is the key here.

      For people who have constant/daily backups running, RAID0 failure wouldn't really be a problem.

        Yes but what kind of end-user is going to have hourly data backups running on their home computer?

          anyone who pays $5 per month for crashplan.

          These days there is no excuse.

      Disagree.

      SSD is for c: (System).

      Operating system and applications. 100% disposable, and actually performs better with a 12-month re-install.

      C:\Users\user\.. Has important information which is backed up with CrashPlan. And on an IT person's PC, is robocopy'd to D:\.

      Spinning Metal+Magnets contains D: (Data). Backed up with CrashPlan, it has photos and documents.

      E: (3TB), F: (3TB), G: (3GB) Spinning Metal+Magnets contains stuff that was downloaded, and is not backed up. If the drive fails, it can be downloaded again.

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