mckenzie river, central oregon, forest @ Pixabay

I have never had a failed RAID drive. Maybe I’ve had a few that did show signs of failing, but I’ve never had a failed RAID drive. And yes, I have no idea if it was on purpose. When I’m dealing with raid drives, I never think about it or even think about it. I just try and keep everything in the cloud, so it’s all at my fingertips. I just don’t think about it.

It’s a sad state of affairs that drives fail, but its a sad state of affairs more than a few people think about. But the fact is weve all had drives fail before. RAID is one of those things that we have no idea how to fix, and since you can’t fix drives, we don’t know how to fix drives. Just like how we dont know how to drive a car, we dont know how to fix RAID. But we have to at least try.

RAID is a form of file-based backup that allows you to back up data, in a structured, sequential order, across several physical drives in a single computer. The way RAID works, data is striped across all of the drives so that if one drive fails, another drive can continue to operate normally. When this happens, you can then make a copy of that data across to a new drive and then restore that backup.

RAID, although a good idea, is a pain in the butt. It works best when you have multiple drives, but only if you can get access to them, and if you can afford the cost of the hardware. With today’s prices for hardware and the cost of maintaining RAID software, most computer builders are reluctant to try the RAID method.

Intel’s Intel Rapid Storage Technology, or rst, makes this process much easier. You simply buy two drives. One is for a backup drive and the other is for a storage drive. You then mount them on a machine and connect them to the new drive. This way, you can back up and restore multiple data sets across to the same drive. If one disk fails, you can simply replace it with the other.

In most ways, it’s a lot simpler. In fact, rst is so easy that it’s actually easier to make backups of data. rst is also much more inexpensive. For example, in our testing, we were able to build a data loss tolerance of 1MB by using just a single drive. In addition to the lower cost and easier restore times, rst also makes it easier to make a backup.

For me, a data loss tolerance of 1MB seems like a big deal. I think the bigger question for me is this: How many MBs of data can I trust in a single drive? The answer is that I can’t, and the answer is that I would be stupid to trust it. But, if you were to use rst to back up multiple drives, you’d find that you can save hundreds or even thousands of MBs of data.

A 1MB drive is more than enough to hold all your data. For me, the question is how much of your data you can actually afford to lose. If you store a million documents, photos, movies, and music to a single 1MB drive, it will work just fine. But if you store a million other data to that same drive, you’re going to be in a world of hurt.

This is where rst is not so good. That 1MB drive is going to be the largest single data point in your system. Your RAID arrays are just glorified hard drives. You can only backup 1MB at a time. You can’t backup more than 1MB at a time. The bigger the data, the harder it is to transfer the data. So, if you need to backup 10GB of data, youre screwed.

Now, there is a reason I love rst because it is so much more than a simple method to backup data. It is what the RAID controller looks like and what rst is used for at a very granular level. In fact, rst is not just used to backup data, it is the engine of RAID. For a RAID array to work, you need to have the same drives in the array and rst can help you do that.


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