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Dear Lazyweb- RAID/LVM Crossroads Decision

Dear Lazyweb-

I have a Lenovo ThinkPad T61 with an internal 100GB SATA drive and a modular 200GB SATA drive in the modular bay. Thus, I have 300GB of SATA glory at my disposal. I have been debating putting these together under a RAID array, possibly level 0 (I'm not that concerned about redundancy. This is a laptop after all.), then using encrypted LVM to manage the storage. I'm wiping the laptop clean soon preparing for a new install, and I can't continue until I make a decision. The only thing that is stopping me from making such a decision, is that I still have the DVD-RW drive. Do I need the drive? I could rely on others to burn discs for me, which wouldn't be all that often. Or will I miss it? I do travel for a living, teaching Linux, and may find myself in a hotel room needing to burn a CD for class. So, if you could help me with this situation, I would be much obliged. Should I add my modular bay drive to a RAID array coupled with LVM, or should I just use one hard drive, and keep the bay modular?

Thanks in advance!

{ 5 } Comments

  1. Sam Rowe | August 28, 2008 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    I'm confused about the word RAID in your post... if you're going to use RAID0, why not just have a 2 PV volume group and skip the RAID step?

  2. Matt Deaton | August 28, 2008 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

    I would use the hard drives the way you outlined, and buy an external 3.5 drive case and DVD-RW or just an external DVD-RW for the few times I might need it. Just toss in your bag and it's there if needed, Then you have your 300GB of SATA encrypted LVM RAID-0 goodness.

  3. jimcooncat | August 28, 2008 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    Gee, Aaron, 100 GB ought to be enough for anybody (tm)!

    With RAID 0, if one of your drives craps out, you've lost your data. You'll be trading lifespan for performance, and depending on your machine you might not get much gain for the trouble.

    If you're doing a lot of audio and video format conversion, you may want one drive to hold your "input" files, and the other one to "output" to.

    You could also use the modular bay drive for archiving your presentations. rsnapshot is a nice system.

    You could use use a usb drive lots of time you'd normally burn disks for. But yeah, I'd keep the bay modular and your flexibility high. You might want to pop a DVD in on some lonely hotel room night.

  4. Blaque | August 28, 2008 at 1:51 pm | Permalink


    I don't really know what you're looking for, if it's just plain performance with the RAID0 or something else, but have a look at mhddfs.

  5. Mike Hanson | September 19, 2008 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    If its not too late... Keep it simple. If storage is an issue just go with a bigger main HD. Use the modular bay for the DVD/RW. You have far more functionality that way. Then if you are so compelled, get an enclosure for the other 2.5 HD and connect it by USB if need be, for backups etc...

    I would however go ahead and at least do an encrypted volume on the main HD just for privacy sake.



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