Hard disc benchmarks and data safety

Out of a discussion with darix regarding optimal hard disc layout (using RAID levels and LVM), I happened to benchmark my setup with bonnie++. The machine runs openSUSE-11.3 with the kernel. Storage-wise it has two identical Samsung HD103UJ 1TB discs using Intel Matrix Raid. The main area of the discs use RAID-0 to max out performance. To be blunt, I don’t believe in RAID-1 security at all. IMO 99% of all disc failures are caused by human errors. A big portion of the rest goes to the mainboard controller (your real single point of failure). The remainder can be covered by regular backups to external media. That said, here’s the disc layout:

As you can see, basically everything that matters runs on a RAID-0. The backmost part of the discs is a RAID-1 backup partition that is only mounted occasionally (for writing backups). This assures moderate data security (way better than RAID-1 for your root-filesystem alone) but still depends on occasional external backup. However, the main advantage of this layout is that it is fast. Long story short, here are the numbers:

Maybe not as awesome as this HPC machine, but still quite nice 🙂


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