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RAID Types and How to Change Them – G-Blog: G-Technology

When working in media of any kind, having a comprehensive and thorough workflow for your storage is imperative.  Now more than ever, staying on top of your data storage so important.  Too many media professionals don’t understand how RAID configurations play a major role not just in saving your media, but backing data up, managing files and securing them.  G-Technology has gone above and beyond to not only implement these RAID types into their products that are capable of doing so, but also getting users to understand how these different setups work and what their benefits are.

This article is a breakdown of an animated video that G-Technology put up in their G-Blog on the different RAID configurations and how to change them when necessary.  For anyone working in media whether as an industry veteran or freshmen in college embarking on their dream vocation, having some sort of storage solution is the first thing you’re going to need.  G-Technology has been supplying users of all kinds all over the world with their storage devices like the Shuttle XL series, G-DRIVE’s, and of course the G-RAID’s they might be most known for.  With articles like this and even quick tutorial videos like their animated video which is the basis of this article, G-Technology proves once again that in storage, their users are not alone and should feel confident G-Technology has their back.

A hard drive or SSD is basically a parking lot for data. Cars (data blocks) come in, park for a while, and often go out again. With one drive in play, you have a single parking lot. And you know what happens when a lot of cars try to enter a parking lot at once: congestion. Everything bottlenecks at the entrance.

RAID 0 opens more parking lots to accept that traffic. If you have two drives, then you have two parking lots available, thereby cutting the congestion at each entrance nearly in half. (Technically, the congestion is caused more by cars pulling into their spots slowly, and thus blocking traffic, but we’re simplifying here.) The more drives you have in a RAID 0, the faster the total performance, although there are diminishing returns with each addition.

Drives fail for all kinds of reasons, including cosmic particles, extreme wear, and cats. Obviously, this is why we back up data. You want that protection process to be as fast and brainless as possible. The more you have to interact with the backup operation, the higher the chance of mishap and human error.

RAID 1 simply says, “Oh, you’re writing something to that drive there? I’ll just make an instant copy over here.” This way, if one drive fails, you have the other functionally identical drive(s) up, running, and ready to step into service with zero downtime.

You understand that different RAID levels are appropriate to different drive counts and storage priorities. Similarly, you may find it advantageous to change RAID levels in the same enclosure as your needs for that enclosure change. For example, say you have an eight-bay G-SPEED Shuttle SSD purchased for editing on a multi-camera 8K project. You’re generating over a terabyte of footage per day on a tight deadline, and editing speed is paramount. RAID 0 might be appropriate if you have a couple of moderate-capacity Thunderbolt 3 enclosures in play that won’t slow down the workflow. If you need to balance protection and speed, then the default RAID 5 is likely a good choice. If your career hangs on the content of this box and no other backups can be brought online, then definitely go for RAID 6….[continue reading]

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By Edward Blumenthal, October 22, 2018