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What is the diffence between Raid 0 and Raid 1?

I'm thinking about getting a external hard drive and I think that raid would be the way to go. I've found a nice hard drive enclosure that supports two hard drives and raid 0/1. I'm not sure what the difference is between the two different raid technologies. i'm not looking for redundency, I'm just looking for extra storage. could someone explain to me what the difference is between raid 0 and raid 1 and all the other raids up to 5 for that matter. and what are the best uses for each type of raid.
Basically, in RAID 0, data stripping occurs. This is the process in which data is splitted evenly between two hard drives. This is best if you want to increase performance. And by the way, it's not redundant like the other RAID levels.

RAID 1, mirroring occurs. Basically, the content of one hard drive is copied to the other. In short, all the hard drives carry the exact same data. One notable advantage of this is that you have multiple hard drives having the same data. In case one hard disk fails, you would still have "back up" copies of your data, thus, data loss is very unlikely to happen. The other benefit of this is comparable to that of RAID 0. Because you have multitple disks, you could access different parts of the data from each of the hard drives simultaneously, thus transfer rate is increases linearly as the number of disks increases. RAID 1 offers reliability and speed.

The combination of RAID 0 and RAID 1 would result in a higher gain (as far as transfer speed and reliability is concerned) than when using the individual RAID 1/0 levels. Intel offers this kind of configuration (Intel® Matrix Storage Technology).


Speed: Summation of individual HDDs' transfer speed
Capacity: Summation of individual HDDs' capacity


Speed: Summation of individual HDDs' transfer speed
Capacity: Limited to the capacity of the smallest HDD (in terms of storage)

Hope that helps... Smile
yes that helps a lot. I knew that one of them was for redundancy and the other wasn't. I'm not gonna set up a server or anything like that that need back up and redundancy. I just need more hard drive space for now. I do my programming on two notebook computers and my external 250gig drive is starting to get max'd out. so I'm looking into expanding it to a raid.

are there any restricitons on the kind of drive that I stripe? for example if I just want to stripe 2 drives, I'm assuming that they need to be the same capacity and speed. what other kind of hardware if any would I need to configure a raid 0? I have a 250 gig Lacie drive and I'm probly just gonna get second one just like it. owc has a nice enclosure that is configured for raid 0/1 but its like $150 just for the enclose. so I'm think that it would be cheaper to just get a second drive and raid the two that I have.
Most PC's do not have RAID capability built in although it is becoming more popular with SATA drives. You can buy a RAID PCI card that will allow you to connect multiple drives and then use RAID. You will need to check the specifications of the RAID card to see which RAID levels are supported.

If you just want to add a drive, you can do that without using RAID. Your computer would see two separate drives instead of one big drive but this method requires no RAID card. Your PC should already have a drive cable that supports two hard drives. All you would have to do is assign a drive letter to the second drive and use it as needed.

Keep in mind that if you decide to use RAID 0 and you want one large volume, you will have to either reformat your existing drive or use partitioning software to extend the volume.
I'm on a powerbook so installing a second drive internally isn't an option. and I only have limited firewire ports to connect external hard drives. I realize that I could set up the hard drive as a second separate volume. but The main reason that i was looking into striping a raid is because of the speed advantages, and to save firewire/usb ports for other periferals like my dv camera. I wouldn't be able to capture video if all ports are used up by my hard drives. I found a hard drive case made by OtherWorldComputing that can hold two drives and has a card that supports RAID 0/1. check out the enclosure: is this all that I need to set up a RAID 0? or is there another pci card that I need to be able to configure it? from reading the description on OWC's website, it sounds like enclosure already has the card and is configured for raid.
If you are using Windows XP, and the OS is not installed on the RAID drives; then you can use Windows to do the RAID for you. XP has built in software controllers for striping hard drives.

I'm not sure you will get any speed benefit if you are connecting via USB2, or Firewire. These ports run slower than a hard drive by itself, so the limiting factor is the connection to the PC, not the drives themselves. USB 2 will transfer at 480Mbits/s; Firewire at 400Mbits/s (although in tests firewire outperforms USB2). Compare this to a standard ATA/133 drive that can transfer data at 133MB/s (1064Mbits/s). OK, so hard drives can't read quite that fast, but they can outperform Firewire by themselves, so with 2 of them, there really will be no performance gain.
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