Hard Drive setup for designer - how does this setup look?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Sean Dempsey, Jul 4, 2007.

  1. Sean Dempsey macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Aug 7, 2006
    What are you using for your hard drive setup? I am trying to determine what would be the best and most affordable option for me.

    The machine comes with the 250gb, which is plenty for the OS and my applications. Right now, all my data (not including backups) is barley around 100~ gigs... so not that much really. But of course, I only have an 80, 80, and 120 in my current PC, so not really a ton of room to begin with.

    But, I realize that a new machine and new drives might change that. I want some fast drives, I am considering getting at least 1 Raptor X 10,000 rpm drive, and then a Hitachi 400gb drive (or similar seagate/wd). But also, for backups, possibly adding another 400gb drive. I do have a 200 gig external right now (firewire), but it's not SATA or real fast. It's just more for some external storage.

    I don't really know if the Raptor is worth it right now. I know it's faster rpms, but on the specs it reads that the drive has a 1.5gb/s standard, while all the other larger drives now have the 3.0gb/s standard. People have said that the 3.0gb/s perpendicular drives can be just as fast as the raptor, with tons more space.

    I suppose right now, I'm considering this:
    250 for OS and apps
    150 raptor for scratch disk
    400 for data
    400 for backups/redundancy.
    200 (slow) external IDE for backups/redundancy.

    This is alot of empty/wasted space though. a $240 raptor just for a scratch disk, sitting empty, and then some odd 50 gigs of data on a 400 gig drive, and then another just for automated backups.

    Does anyone see anything I'm doing wrong with this, or another option I can use?
  2. Glenn Wolsey macrumors 65816

    Glenn Wolsey

    Nov 24, 2005
    New Zealand
    Why not do something like this:

    Bay 1 - 150GB Raptor (Boot/Apps)
    Bay 2 - 250GB (Raid 0)
    Bay 3 - 250GB (Raid 0)
    Bay 4 - 500GB (Backup for Raid 0)
  3. Sean Dempsey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Aug 7, 2006
    Well, I'm not opposed to the idea. My hurdles are
    1) I have never installed an OS on a mac, and don't know how to do it. If it's not hard, I suppose I could pull the 250 out of the main bay and reinstall the OS on the raptor right when it arrives.

    2) I don't know how to set up a raid 0 either.

    If I did put the raptor in as the boot drive, will the CD that comes with my machine install the same software that comes preinstalled? drivers and all that?

    That idea might not be bad. I am curious if I can run all my data and the scratch disk off the raid 0 setup and not suffer a performance hit.
  4. suneohair macrumors 68020


    Aug 27, 2006
    Raid 0 is worthless unless you are doing very disk intensive stuff. The typical data access patterns of a designer are ones that would utilize a RAID 0 fully.

    While it doesn't cost you any extra money if you are doing a software RAID, I don't see much of a point overall. You are taking up two bays when they could be used for storage or something else.

    You initial setup is a bit too redundant in the wrong ways. The external is too small. And one of your backups is inside the computer. Here is a scenario that wouldn't be good.

    Rainy day, lighting of course. A surge hits your computer area, assuming your external backup is plugged in, it and your computer get toasted. Your data is mostly gone outside of professional recovery.

    If the external wasn't plugged in, but your data drive was mostly full, that 200GB external couldn't hold it all, so some of your data is missing.

    Depending on how important your data is I would have two external drives. One always going and another that is only powered to do a weekly backup. Heck I would even keep that one off site depending on the importance of the data. But putting it away is a fire safe box would be good too.

    So, personally I don't think your access patterns would benefit from a RAID 0 in any noticeable way. You can do it, I just don't think it will offer you much speed especially if it is software.

    Beef up your external backups if you want true redundancy and have on of those off power or off site except when doing a backup.
  5. fredr500 macrumors regular

    Apr 12, 2007
    Why 250GB

    Looking at Newegg and TigerDirect and others, it appears that 500GB is the sweetspot on hard drives right now. They can be had for $105-$130, so why mess with any 250GB drives?

    6 months ago 320GB was selling for the same price, in 6 months the 750 will probably be close to that. I suggest just buying what you need today, and add as you need it. Drives will always be cheaper "tomorrow."

    And as one who lost all the electronics in my house to lightning, I too endorse exteranl backup that is only plugged in A)when there is no storm around and B)when you need it. Backup and disconnect.

  6. Apple Corps macrumors 68030

    Apr 26, 2003
    Sean - I do not think you understand the 1.5 Gb/s (SATA I) vs 3.0 Gb/s (SATA II) thing. NO SATA drives on the market get anywhere near that data flow - especially as the drives fill up and data resides on the inner tracks where the linear rate under the heads is much slower. It is primarily marketing hype.

    That said - the 10,000 rpm Raptor is noisy and hot. The newer SAMSUNG F1 drives with PR AND very high density per platter are fast, quiet and run cool. Probably the way to go. My two ¢ is that WD has about run its course at the top of the heap.

    My set up (currently) is:

    WD 150 GB Raptor (Boot & Applications)
    Seagate 750 GB (On Board data)
    Two Bay external drive enclosure (Back up - Hitachi drives - run hot also)

    I will be migrating to the new SAMSUNGs once they are available.

    Most of my serious work is Photoshop on very high resolution photographs, light video editing, and Keynote / Powerpoint presentations - no raid.
  7. Sean Dempsey thread starter macrumors 68000

    Sean Dempsey

    Aug 7, 2006
    Well, I ended up feeling good about Seagates, so that is what I went with this morning.

    I'll have the 250 that ships with the mac pro, and then right now I'm adding

    seagate 320 for Data and music
    seagate 320 for scratch disc and maybe some infrequent access things. Probably put a partition on each drive as well, split it up into 100/220 probably.

    and then I bought the OWC Mercury Elite Aluminum FW 800/400 USB2.0 external with a Seagate 500.

    So.. hopefully those work out. I read and read and read about the Raptor, but in the end just wasn't convinced that I personally wanted it. Plus, I've got an empty drive bay still, so if I feel the need, I can get it.
  8. Apple Corps macrumors 68030

    Apr 26, 2003
    My experience with Seagate has been positive - you should be pleased. The SAMSUNG will be a hit - but you simply can not purchase them yet - at least not that I have found :eek:

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