PE2900/PERC/RAID recommendation?

Steve Thompson smt at
Mon Jan 8 08:22:31 CST 2007

Hi folks,

We are looking to purchase a PE2900 + Perc 5/E + MD1000 configuration and
I am looking for some input from folks with real-world experience before
we go ahead (these will be my first Dell servers). The single MD1000 will
be fully populated with fifteen 300 GB 3.5" SAS drives, and we're looking
to build seven RAID-1 sets with one hot spare. The system will run RHEL AS
4 U4 or perhaps CentOS 4.4 (decision not yet made). So, in brief:

(1) There will be a second PE2900 + Perc 5/E in the same rack. The Perc
card will have nothing connected to it. If I use hardware RAID-1 on the
first Perc, how easy is in in practice to replicate the configuration to
the Perc in the second PE2900 if the first PE2900 or first Perc bites the

(2) Am I better advised to set up all the drives as single-disk JBOD's and
use software RAID-1? I'm personally more comfortable with this since I
have used software RAID successfully for several years, and I can easily
manage the above-mentioned failure scenario. I have no Perc's at present
and so have no feel for how they work in the real world.

Steve Thompson                 E-mail:      smt at
Voyager Software LLC           Web:
39 Smugglers Path              VSW Support: support at
Ithaca, NY 14850
  "186,300 miles per second: it's not just a good idea, it's the law"

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