Storage Benefits to a RAID 6 Array


If you’re considering new enterprise level RAID storage, you may have heard about some of the drawbacks of RAID 5. RAID 5 arrays stripe data and provide parity, and can tolerate the failure of one RAID drive. The problem? A RAID drive failure is rarely an isolated event. When one drive in a RAID array fails, it puts stress on the other drives. This leads to cascading failure and, most often, the need for emergency RAID recovery from a professional data recovery service.

RAID 6 is very similar to RAID 5, but has become a preferred configuration for enterprise level RAID storage.

A RAID 6 array can tolerate the failure of two drives, simultaneously, before facing data loss. RAID 6 requires at least four hard disk drives, and supports a maximum of 16 drives. RAID 6 stripes blocks of data with parity across all drives. A second set of parity information for each block of data provides 100% data protection.

Adding two additional drives to a RAID 6 array, creating a 6-drive RAID 6 array, can prolong the life of a RAID array, because the two drives can be used to perform a hot swap in the event of drive failure. Although there may be a drop in performance with a RAID 6 array, due to the second set of parity, the added data protection makes it a good choice for storing mission critical data.

RAID 6 may cause some loss of performance because of the second set of parity, but in cases where security of data is more important than performance, RAID 6 is an affordable choice. Make sure you select a RAID controller that supports RAID level 6 configuration.

RAID 6 Data Recovery
Even with the capability for a hot swap of two disks in a RAID array, and parity on two levels, RAID 6 arrays can still suffer hard disk failure resulting in cascading RAID failure and the loss of mission critical data. It’s important to perform regular back-ups, even of a RAID 6 array, and to know there’s a data recovery service you can turn to when you need your RAID server recovered.

24 Hour Data specializes in all level of RAID data recovery, including RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 6, RAID 10, and RAID 50. Contact us for a free price quote within 24 hours and data recovery in as little as 48 hours in many cases. 

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