Using RAID 10 for OLTP databases

Paul originally wrote to comment on one of our Administrator tips written by Rick Cook, "The other RAID levels." He found it an excellent summary of the various RAID levels, including RAID 10. Paul had a few additional

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insights to share about the usage of RAID 10 for OLTP database environments, which we've included in the below tip.

Here are a few things to add about RAID 10.

RAID 10 can be looked at as a superset of RAID 1 (mirroring) for multiple disks. For example, if you are trying to mirror more than a single disk, there is NO good reason to use RAID 1. (On a large OLTP database server, you often want to mirror all database disks.)

RAID 10 will provide higher performance for EXACTLY THE SAME cost! This is important in OLTP environments, since RAID 5 is too slow for the many small writes in an OLTP database.

About the author: Paul Dodd is a security consultant at BEST Consulting. He is involved in network administration and storage management functions for enterprise companies in the Pacific Northwest.

This was first published in January 2001

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