Sunday, May 15, 2016

Storage Spaces

When I was building "The Trump" I wanted to RAID-1 my internal data drive. I was hoping that the Asus motherboard supported RAID but that was not to be. As I Googled around looking for that answer though I came upon lots of discussions of "Fake RAID". This is one example:
Fake RAID is essentially software RAID provided by the BIOS on the motherboard, however, it has none of the benefits of Software RAID and none of the benefits of Hardware RAID...
And it went on:
[I]f your motherboard dies, your data is probably lost unless you can find another identical motherboard.
So I guess it was good that my motherboard didn't support RAID. But what to do?

What I found was Windows' Storage Spaces. Windows Central has a really good article on it.

I used 2 2TB drives and created a mirrored Storage Space as drive D:. To prepare the drives I used diskpart and cleaned the drives.

Storage Spaces can use Microsoft's Resilient File System (ReFS).

The features compared to NTFS are:
  • Improved reliability for on-disk structures
  • Built-in resilience
  • Compatibility with existing APIs and technologies

In this BetaNews article, the author performed the ultimate test.
I shut my Dell 840 server down, pulled out the drive caddy, and connected one of the mirrored drives into my Thinkpad X230 laptop for some spot checks on my data.

What did I see when I plugged it in? Exactly what I wanted to see.
Nice. But keeping my fingers crossed.

By the way, to migrate the data from "Big Honker" to "The Trump" I used Drive Snapshot. I think that I have mentioned that you ought to TEST restoring your backups. I practice what I preach.

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