El Capitan: No RAID GUI?

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by sumo.do, Sep 20, 2015.

  1. sumo.do, Sep 20, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2015

    sumo.do macrumors member

    sumo.do

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    #1
    I can't believe Apple has removed the Apple RAID GUI from the revamped Disk Utility.

    :(

    I know you can still use diskutil in Terminal, but I have always used the GUI so I am having trouble moving forward from the base diskutil command.

    Can anyone please set out the terminal commands for creating the 'old' GUI options of striped, mirrored and concantenated? I generally used striped (RAID 0) option with my setup, but for the records it would be good to have the other two.

    Alternately, does anyone have a good summary or weblink to do all this? I think because most people rely on the GUI there is minimal stuff out there.

    Thanks in advance for any help.
     
  2. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #2
    If you scroll down to the appleRAID section of this MAN page it gives instructions for all three along with some examples. Hopefully that helps. :)

    I am assuming here the appleRAID command still works the same.
     
  3. sumo.do thread starter macrumors member

    sumo.do

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  4. barefeats macrumors 65816

    barefeats

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    #4
    Works for me. Used this to stripe four SSDs:
    diskutil Appleraid create stripe <volume_name> JHFS+ disk1 disk2 disk3 disk4
     
  5. Harry322 macrumors member

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    #5
    Perhaps this is a non-starter, but couldn't some enterprising app developer create a third party "Disk Utility" that reinstates a lot of the missing features as well as some new features aimed at power users?

    Since the terminal commands still exist, I imagine it wouldn't be too hard to make a new GUI. Not sure what else goes in to such a task, so forgive me if I've over-simplified.

    I really wish El Cap had a more full-featured disk utility. :-(
     
  6. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #6
    I would think that would be doable. Some app like Onyx are really just a bunch of scripts with a GUI cobbled around them, so I don't see why a dev. couldn't to the same for this RAID issue.
     
  7. sumo.do thread starter macrumors member

    sumo.do

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    #7
    Same. But it would be good if RAID could be built into some of the common utility apps around but most of them don't seem to focus on building drives. ONYX, CCC, SuperDuper, iStat Menus, Drive Genius. Drive Genius could definitely incorporate it but it is not a cheap app.
     
  8. MagnusVonMagnum macrumors 601

    MagnusVonMagnum

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    #8
  9. sumo.do thread starter macrumors member

    sumo.do

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    #9
    Yeah what a joke. Soft Raid does have a few advantages with more RAID options but the price is nothing short of criminal. Particularly given it is set and forget software. Also, does Soft Raid simply use OS X commands for its RAID 0 and 1 options? If so, it is an even bigger waste of money. If not, then I would prefer not to use a proprietary system for RAID. I remember when Zevo and Zfs were bought out and wound down and I had to convert all my drives back to Hfs+. Not so much a waste of money with Zevo as it was only around $30 or so from memory, but using the proprietary format was a complete waste of time for me.
     
  10. powerless macrumors member

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    #10
    But fear not, I've seen the Lite (on the same page).

    SoftRAID Lite will ship before the end of October at a price of $49.00.
     
  11. sumo.do thread starter macrumors member

    sumo.do

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    #11
    The lite version appears to be only for RAID 0 and 1 (from that article noted above by Magnus) so you will effectively be paying $49.00 for a GUI of Apple's AppleRaid terminal commands by the look of it.

    CCC $56.96
    Drive Genius $99.00
    Onyx $0
    iStat Menus $18
    Parallels $99.95
    SoftRAID $179.00

    Surely Parallels and Drive Genius are of similar complexity (if not far more complex) as an app to SoftRAID? And the lite version is probably no different to Onyx ($0) in terms of GUI'ing terminal commands.

    I invite (no... dare...) Tim Standing (developer of SoftRaid) to come on this thread and explain the benefit of his 'gold plated' software versus Apple's command line version and justify the price.

    Sorry for the winge...
     
  12. MrNomNoms macrumors 65816

    MrNomNoms

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    #12
    If you're a power user then using the terminal should be a non issue.
     
  13. MagnusVonMagnum macrumors 601

    MagnusVonMagnum

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    #13
    If you're a power user, aren't you using Linux or even Windows where excess work to get something done is expected? The Mac is supposed to JUST WORK. :p
     
  14. chabig macrumors 68040

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    #14
    Loved that comment!
     
  15. MagnusVonMagnum macrumors 601

    MagnusVonMagnum

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    #15
    I'm just sick and tired of the fanatics making excuses for every bonehead move Apple does anymore. It's downright sickening. Send feedback instead. They won't read it unles their web site gets jammed with bad publicity to the nth degree, but it's more constructive than telling people to deal with it.
     
  16. chabig macrumors 68040

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    #16
    I think the new Disk Utility is a work in progress. I'd be surprised if the RAID interface isn't put back in a subsequent version.
     
  17. rnbwd macrumors regular

    rnbwd

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    #17
    I'm sure someone could, but someone could combine the commands into a single one (I use a command 'flash' for sd cards that can find the right disk name and do the commands), so thats way easier than a gui, but you could prob figure it out in half an hour honestly.
     
  18. tevion5 macrumors 68000

    tevion5

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    #18
    Still waiting on Wired Clients to show in the new versions of Airport Utility...

    Prepare to be surprised.
     
  19. JohnDCCIU macrumors newbie

    JohnDCCIU

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    #19
    I'm not Tim, but I'm a happy SoftRAID user. The big advantage of SoftRAID is for RAID5 (soon RAID6 too) in software. It's way, way cheaper than a hardware solution and the performance is very good. Implementing RAID5 in software that people will be relying on with critical data and maintaining it properly (including keeping up with Apple and OS X, as SoftRAID drivers are included with OS X) is of course an extremely large task, so I think the price is worth it.

    For RAID0 or RAID1 (for which I've used Apple's software RAID), it's more along the lines that Apple's solution is super-bare-bones: nothing but the RAID. There's no notifications of failed disks or SMART errors or anything else. You have to add ons utilities like SMARTReporter (excellent utility for any disks, actually), and Apple really pays little attention to it...the code is super old.

    SoftRAID does extensive testing of your disks before you deploy and monitors them like little babies and notifies you if they are even hinting at going south, and it even notifies you when they start to get old.

    Because of their work with Apple and integration with OS X, you can use Firewire/Thunderbolt Target Disk Mode with a SoftRAID volume. Knowing how what a giant PITA Apple can be for just some lousy iOS apps, can you imagine the hoops that SoftRAID needs to go through to convince Apple to include their driver by default with every copy of the OS? *shudder* That's a ton of work, I guarantee you.

    IMO, all that stuff is worth it: if you're doing a RAID you're probably pretty concerned about the accessibility of your data and uptime, etc and SoftRAID is way better at guaranteeing that than Apple's bare-bones feature.

    To be pretty much perfect, SoftRAID needs RAID6 and hot-spare functionality, both of which are coming, according to them.
     
  20. JohnDCCIU, Oct 30, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015

    JohnDCCIU macrumors newbie

    JohnDCCIU

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    #20
    As a follow-up, LLoyd Chambers, storage expert extrordinare at diglloyd.com, had an excellent blog post bemoaning the way that Apple unceremoniously ditched the GUI version of their RAID support, the disturbing lack of software QA in this (and other) realms these days at Apple, and recommending SoftRAID Light for RAID0 and RAID1 support going forward (as well as SoftRAID for RAID5, RAID10, etc). Couldn't agree more.

    As hard disks are giving way to SSDs, SoftRAID also offers additional features, including TRIM support and Wear Level monitoring that are very important in storage-critcial environments. I have a few AppleRAID RAID1 volumes using SSDs that I'm going to be moving to SoftRAID Lite when it arrives for these reasons.
     
  21. sumo.do, Oct 30, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015

    sumo.do thread starter macrumors member

    sumo.do

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    #21
    Appreciate your comments. They are informing. Doesn't necessarily warrant the price SoftRAID is charging. I agree with the benefit of software RAID 5 I have eyed it off for a while. I originally looked at SoftRAID for RAID 5 and found it was cheaper for me to simply buy two massive drives and RAID 0 them. Yes I know the redundancy issues with that setup versus RAID 5.

    All that said though... I have a few questions you may be able to answer...

    Do you know if RAID 0 and 1 in SoftRAID is using their own proprietary commands/controls to RAID the drives or is SoftRAID using the Apple command lines? Secondly (and most importantly for me), does OS X recognise a SoftRaid array when you plug it into a Mac without SoftRAID installed? For example you can simply plug a RAID 0 Apple RAID array into another Mac and the array is recognised. Or do you need SoftRAID installed on the Mac to recognise the array? Finally, does SoftRAID recognise an Apple RAID array or do you need to rebuild the RAID when you get the software?

    Appreciate you comments.
     
  22. JohnDCCIU, Oct 30, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015

    JohnDCCIU macrumors newbie

    JohnDCCIU

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    #22
    Yeah....that setup would scare the heck out of me. It would be ok as a "scratch" drive or for stuff that you're backing up constantly somehow, but one drive burp and it's instantly toast. If the drives are that massive, then you might want to RAID1 them, which would protect the volume against one drive failure, at the cost of one drive's capacity. On the other hand, if you don't care about downtime and can restore from backup or whatever, then that's going to be fast. And if you don't care about failures and can just start over in case of a problem, then SoftRAID isn't going to really give you much advantage, since it's all about reliability and warning about drive failure beforehand.

    SoftRAID is definitely not using OS X's AppleRAID functionality or any "diskutil raid" command line stuff: they built their own drivers and functionality way back before AppleRAID even existed, back in the "classic" Mac OS 7 days in the mid-1990s.

    Yep, I mentioned in my first post that SoftRAID volumes are recognized in Firewire/Thunderbolt Target Disk Mode. The SoftRAID driver is included with Mac OS X out of the box, which is what makes that possible. If you look in /Library/Extensions/ on any Mac, you'll see "SoftRAID.kext" because Apple distributes the SoftRAID driver as a built-in part of OS X. The same goes for moving an external SoftRAID volume from one Mac to another: it should just work. In that case, you should probably download the latest version of SoftRAID on the new system and run it just to make sure all the drivers are up-to-date first, plus you're going to want all the SoftRAID functionality on the new system anyway, so might as well.

    Yes, SoftRAID recognizes an AppleRAID volume and will convert it to SoftRAID format, no rebuilding necessary. The only extra step is if the AppleRAID is your boot volume: if that's the case then you'd just need to boot from another startup volume (or connect the AppleRAID box to another box via Firewire/Thunderbolt Target Disk Mode) and then launch SoftRAID and convert the boot volume to SoftRAID format. Thereafter, it will boot as a SoftRAID volume.
     
  23. MagnusVonMagnum, Oct 30, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015

    MagnusVonMagnum macrumors 601

    MagnusVonMagnum

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    #23
    Yeah, I can't agree more too about spending $179 (OUCH!) to replace something that used to be available for FREE. :confused: :confused: :confused:

    I could get a new Apple TV for that (or the newest Logic Pro for only $19 more!) instead if I can be bothered to use the command line for a ONE TIME OPERATION. Maybe they need a "light" version that doesn't do RAID 5/6 whatever and just replaces the functionality of Disk Utility Plus a trim switch (all of which can be done by command line). Such a product should not cost more than $20, IMO given the type of software I can get for that price range +/- $50 (Logic Pro, M$ Office Home, Adobe Lightroom or Elements, etc.)
     
  24. sumo.do thread starter macrumors member

    sumo.do

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    #24
  25. JohnDCCIU macrumors newbie

    JohnDCCIU

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    #25
    I'd think that the economics of a relatively "small-batch" software system that involves many low-level drivers, coordinating with Apple Inc, people's critical data, and unique capabilities that are not available anywhere else (i.e. RAID5) would be fairly obvious. There's a lot of effort involved in creating and maintaining this software, and there are relatively few buyers (compared to some of the mass-market stuff that is mentioned).

    Logic Pro is an Apple product and used to be $1,000....Apple is massively subsidizing the cost of Logic Pro as a way to attract/keep musicians on the platform....you can't compare that to a small third-party developer doing a very specialized disk/RAID driver.

    In any case, it's really up to you if the value of the software justifies the cost. To me as an IT type supporting Macs in an enterprise environment but trying to keep costs down, using last-gen Mac Pros with internal drives or new ones with a Thunderbolt JBOD box and adding SoftRAID is a good value proposition compared to the available hardware solutions in some situations.
     

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