Redundant Array of Independent Disks, or RAID, is a method of storing content on multiple hard disk drives at the same time. A RAID could be software or hardware depending on the drives which are used - physical or logical ones, yet what’s common between them is the fact that they all function as one single unit where your information is stored. The biggest advantage of using a RAID is redundancy as the data on all of the drives shall be identical all of the time, so even in case a drive fails for whatever reason, the information will still be available on the remaining drives. The overall performance is also enhanced as the reading and writing processes will be split between a number of drives, so a single one will not be overloaded. There're different types of RAIDs where the efficiency and fault tolerance may differ depending on the specific setup - whether data is written on all of the drives real-time or it's written on one drive and afterwards mirrored on another, what amount of drives are used for the RAID, etc.
RAID in Shared Website Hosting
The hard drives which we employ for storage with our revolutionary cloud Internet hosting platform are not the standard HDDs, but extremely fast solid-state drives (SSD). They work in RAID-Z - a special setup developed for the ZFS file system that we work with. Any content that you upload to your shared website hosting account will be stored on multiple hard drives and at least one of them will be used as a parity disk. This is a special drive where an additional bit is included to any content copied on it. If a disk in the RAID stops functioning, it'll be changed without any service interruptions and the info will be rebuilt on the new drive by recalculating its bits thanks to the data on the parity disk along with that on the remaining disks. This is done to ensure the integrity of the data and together with the real-time checksum validation which the ZFS file system performs on all drives, you will never need to worry about the loss of any information no matter what.
RAID in Semi-dedicated Hosting
The RAID type which we use for the cloud hosting platform where your semi-dedicated hosting account shall be created is called RAID-Z. What's different about it is that at least 1 of the disks is used as a parity drive. In simple terms, whenever any kind of data is copied on this specific disk drive, one more bit is added to it and in the event that a malfunctioning disk is replaced, the information which will be copied on it is a mix of the data on the other disk drives in the RAID and that on the parity one. It's done this way to make sure that your info is intact. During this process, your sites will be up and running normally since RAID-Z allows for a whole drive to fail without service interruptions and it simply works by using one of the other ones as the main production drive. Using RAID-Z together with the ZFS file system which uses checksums to warrant that no data will get silently corrupted on our servers, you will never have to worry about the integrity of your files.
All virtual private server accounts that our company provides are generated on physical servers that take advantage of SSD drives functioning in RAID. At least one drive is intended for parity - one extra bit is included in the data duplicated on it and in case a main disk breaks down, this bit makes it simpler to recalculate the bits of the files on the failed drive so that the correct info is restored on the new drive included in the RAID. In the mean time, your sites will still be online since all the data will still load from at least 1 other drive. In case you add routine backups to your VPS package, a copy of the information will be stored on standard hard disks that also work in RAID as we would like to make sure that any sort of site content you upload will be safe and sound all the time. Employing multiple drives in RAID for all main and backup servers enables us to offer fast and reliable hosting service.