Raid 5 on Windows XP Pro
We have a CCTV system which relies on a Windows XP based system for monitoring and storage of video. Recently this suffered a hard disk issue of which a chkdsk managed to repair. However, we would like to add some redundancy and it has been suggested that we should add a hardware based raid controller (which can support raid 0-5) and create a raid 5 array which will give us a good level of redundancy. We can then clone the current image across to the new logical drive etc.
However, I am not convinced Windows XP Pro will support raid 5 and googling some articles seems to back this up, including those from microsoft.
Am I totally wrong here? Can it be done?
This is possible, I'll send you a PM with a few options.
Windows XP doesn't have built-in software RAID 5, but there are plenty of add-in cards that will work just fine under XP and will give you RAID 5 support.
That said, unless you need the space efficiency of RAID 5, I would recommend simply using RAID 1 mirroring. RAID 5 doesn't give you any additional fault tolerance (more than 1 disk fails, and it's game over), and is more complicated to recover from if there is a failure.
If you're looking at raid5 with the size of todays disks you should do raid6 either would require an add-on card.
XP can probably do mirroring in s/w.
Windows XP can do RAID1 through drive mirroring as part of software, to do RAID5 will require a hardware RAID controller (eg something from LSI).
You may have issues getting the clone to work though as you will be going from one storage system (built in single drive) to a completely different one (hardware RAID). I'd like to bet you could do it with Windows 7 or Server 2008 R2+ would do it though.
Either way we managed to built a new CCTV server with RAID5 (over RAID1 for more storage) for £600 using a custom server case and some new desktop PC parts so maybe it would be better to just start a new (budget allowing!!).
Thankyou for the answers so far. Looks like getting RAID 5 to work is the easy part, however, transferring the image across to a new disk configuration is going to be the tricky part!
May I suggest you consider if virtualising it is an option.
Currently undergoing the 'migration' route, as the software has a migration utility to move from 1 pc to another. Will build a brand new image using Windows 7, and then migrate the CCTV software across.
if their IP based cameras, I would opt for moving to a device like we have at the school here - QNAP VioStor NVR Standalone DVR - its a nice little NAS type box that you access through a web interface, scalable and backups can be carried out easily on it
Having a few issues with the Sil3125 RAID card and 3x HDD's. Locking up in windows 7 when approaching the end of the install and running a little too slow for my liking if we try windows XP. Putting the former down to the driver which is apparently 7 compatible but is only passed for XP/2003.
Just a quick question really. As I've only ever been familiar with RAID 5 in a server based environment, will RAID 5 cause any performance issues if used with a workstation OS?
No more so than if it was in a server, which underneath it all is just a powerful desktop PC with a few more services running. FWIW, however, I'm going to go with another poster above and say RAID 1 will be better. Less complicated recovery in event of a failure, same level of failure protection (one drive failure = ok, two = bad).
Originally Posted by superatticman
Having listened to what has been said on here, I may well go ahead with RAID 1 instead, keeping the 3rd drive in the unit as an offline spare. That RAID controller card I'm using has not had particularly good reviews, some even stating that you are better off using the onboard controller! So thats gonna be going back to the suppliers.
You will also have issues if you try to Image a Windows XP System running on a RAID Array, last time I tried Ghost said three weeks to create an Image as it does not support dynamic disk setups.
how about an external disk array to hold your data and just mirror the OS disks?
Qnap TS-412 Turbo NAS review | Storage appliances | Reviews | PC Pro
Just to confirm we are going to be starting from scratch O/S wise and migrating the CCTV software across using the inbuilt migration utility. There will be no complicated boot file editing etc required thank goodness!
Have tested the onboard RAID controller on the HP dc7800 tower unit as a RAID 1 configuration, and its literally about 4 times as fast as when using the PCI add on RAID card!!! Either that SiL RAID card is total crap, is faulty, or simply doesn't like the hardware its plugged in to.
We can use the HP Matrix Storage Console interface to manage and monitor the RAID 1 array. Looks like we're finally going to get there in the end :)