SUMMARY: Raid considerations/experiences

From: Tim Feeney (
Date: Mon Apr 29 1996 - 12:47:41 CDT

     First off let me apologize for my Freudian slip, it is Inexpensive not
     It was pointed out that my statement regarding needing to remove an entire
     tray to replace one drive was correct. However there were a couple of
     notes that this only posed a problem if you did not configure the system to
     take this fact into account.
     From a Sun sales rep I was informed that the new Raid effort is only
     available for the new Ultra's, with a Q3 projection for general usage.
     Here is the response from Michael J. Shon from Sun Professional Services
     that gives a general description of the new device:
>We are looking into purchasing a Raid system that will be running on one
>of the new Sparc Ultra Servers. I have experience with some 3rd party
>Raid solutions, but none with Sun's solution. As I understand it the
>current Raid offering has a problem in that if a drive fails you need to
>remove the entire tray that it is on in order to replace it.
>>You need to arrange it so that either the disks in that drawer are not
>>being used, or that the system can continue without them (by using
>>well-designed sparing and/or mirrors.
>>The original Storage Array was designed around trays of disks in order
>>to get high capacity in a small package; the best fast/small disks at the
>>time were only 512Mb. 30Gb per array was quite a feat.
> This is far from Raid,
> Redundant Array of INDEPENDENT Disks.
>>It used to be INEXPENSIVE disks.
>>No one was worried about independence.
>>For that matter, the whole idea of combining disks into arrays throws the
>>whole *independence* thing right out.
>I have heard that they are coming
>out with a new solution that does not have this problem. Does anyone know
>about this new system? Any comments, experiences, or gotcha's are
>appreciated. Thank you.
>>Yes they are, and it is quite a nice unit.
>>Designed for excellent RAS (Reliability, Availability, Serviceability) .
>>Now that disks are bigger, you can get a reasonable amount of storage
>>from a rack of disks which are each individually accessible from the
>>front so that they are easier to service.
>>Please talk to a Sun Salesperson about the whole line of new storage
>>units; they have lots of good features at a competitive price point.
>>Michael Shon michael.shon@East.Sun.COM
>>Any information or views presented here derive from my own experience,
>>and are definitely NOT official Sun recommendations or policies.
     Margarita Suarez said that the new array is called the 214 RSM, with more
     information available at :
     The full number of responses are to many to include here. If you would
     like me to forward them to you please e-mail me. If you would like to hear
     about my experience with this new array, should we go with it, please
     e-mail me your request and I will do my best to get it to you.
     Thank you all for the quick and informative responses.
     PS. If any one is going to the SANS conference I would be happy to get
     together for a drink(s).

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