[K12OSN] RAID Question

"Terrell Prudé Jr." microman at cmosnetworks.com
Thu Apr 9 05:58:42 UTC 2009

Joseph Bishay wrote:
> Hello,
> As per everyone's recommendation, I removed the fakeraid hardware and
> plugged the drives right into the motherboard and used the built-in
> Linux software RAID.  Everything seems to be working very well!  I
> appreciate everyone's recommendation on this issue.
> I have a follow-up question -- the RAID is made up of 2 refurbished
> drives we were able to obtain (cost issues).  I'd like to find a
> command / program that I can use to test them / stress them while they
> are still in their warranty period (90 days).  I've done some research
> and came across a lot of options: Bonnie++, badblocks, fsck, smartctl
> -t, etc etc.
> I'm not sure what is best to use -- I guess I want something that will
> check to see if there are any existing current issues and something to
> put the drives under some tests to see if any issues arise.
> The other side of that question is: will the drives being in RAID
> affect these tests at all? Should I run the tests on the RAID array or
> should I dismantle the array, run the tests, then re-enable the array?
> Thank you!
> Joseph

Here's what I used to do on Windows NT boxes back in the day to 
stress-test a hard disk.  The same idea would apply to any other OS.

1.)  Install the hard disk into your system.
2.)  Make two partitions of about equal size on the hard disk.  Use 
fdisk or whatever you prefer.
3.)  Format both partitions *simultaneously*.  That means start one 
format command, and then start the second one very shortly thereafter.  
In UNIX parlance, that'd be "make filesystems on each partition 

What will happen when you start that second "mke2fs" command is that you 
will hear the read/write head going back 'n' forth like crazy.  I would 
just do that over and over again for about a week, on each disk, on both 
partitions.  This is, of course, scriptable, so you can set these 
"mke2fs" commands in a do-forever loop and just let it do its thing.

No, there's nothing saying you can't install both hard disks and have 
both of them subjected to this treatment at the same time.  Probably 
save you some time to do so.

Yes, I am cruel.  And I'm proud of it.  :-)

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