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Striping | Hard Drive Striping

Striping is a bit more complex.  Striping is used to increase performance.  This increase in performance is achieved by splitting the read and write data down into ‘blocks’ and then writing or reading that data simultaneously onto two or more physical drives on the same sector of each respective drive.

In a simplified example imagine that you are writing 100 megabytes of data out to a striped array.  If you were to take that data and split it into two 50 megabyte chunks and then write both of those chunks simultaneously, one 50 megabyte chunk to drive (a) and the other 50 megabyte chunk to drive (b), you would theoretically half the time required to perform the process.  That, in essence, is the theory behind striping.

Striping provides a significant increase in performance but it is also the most dangerous of all the RAID levels when used alone.  Not only is there no redundancy but if either or any of the drives in a striped array fails, all of the data from the entire array is completely lost.

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