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Using Software RAID-1 with FreeBSD

Post date: November 29, 2005, 03:11 Category: Views: 3633 Comments
Tutorial quote: Have you ever needed a software RAID solution for a low-end server install? Perhaps you've wanted your workstation to take advantage of the redundancy provided by a disk mirror without investing in a hardware RAID controller. Has a prior painful configuration experience turned you off software RAID altogether on Unix systems?


Since 5.3-Release, FreeBSD comes with gmirror(8), which allows you to easily configure a software RAID 1 solution. While tutorials on gmirror exist, I found them to require either manual calculations of partition sizes with bsdlabel or the use of a fix-it floppy on an existing system.

It made more sense to me to configure RAID during the install of the operating system. I also wanted a procedure that was easy to follow and didn't introduce human error in the form of a math miscalculation. After cobbling together the available documentation and experimenting my way through various configurations, I came across a procedure that has worked well for me on several different systems. I also received valuable feedback from Pawel Jakub Dawidek, the author of gmirror, who gave some insight into some of the not yet documented features of gmirror.

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