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Vol. 7 Num. 12 January 2009

Faster disk drive rebuilds: Hot Spots

RAID might not be the best choice for high-capacity drives. It's time to rethink your rebuild strategies.   There's a lot of talk about shortening rebuild times for large capacity disk drives in today's storage environments. Fast rebuild technology is widely deployed nowadays, but plenty of users still don't think in terms of hardware RAID and individual drive rebuild times. And here's a new angle on the discussion: perhaps the best way to shorten rebuild times is to not have to rebuild in the first place. Roughly 50% of failed SATA drives returned to vendors result in a diagnosis of "no trouble found" and are returned to service as replacement drives that typically function like new. That's because SATA drives were originally designed for lightly loaded desktops and laptops, rather than high-performance enterprise arrays, and they occasionally experience slowdowns in performance that result in a disk being diagnosed as non-responsive. As a result, several vendors have introduced technology to diagnose these issues and determine...

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