Here is my HighPoint RocketRaid 2300 review, for anyone who is looking to buy this card. Before we talk about the best and the cheapest RAID 5 server you can build using HighPoint RocketRaid, lets understand what RAID is. Redundant array of independent disks or (RAID) allows us to store information on multiple disks (striping) and with (parity). OK so what does this mean in simple English? Basically, RAID 5 uses a minimum of three hard drives to split data through out them while keeping backup data information. If any one of these drives were to fail, the data would be rebuilt when you attach a new disk of the same size. It is indeed a beautiful system that works. However, one drawback is that if more than one drive fails at the same time, recovery is not possible. It is wise to buy hard drives of the same size at different times or by different manufacturers to minimize the chances of two disks failing at the same time.
HighPoint RocketRaid 2300 Review, Parts & Setup
For my server I used 4 hard drives of 2 TB each, which is close to 6 TB of usable space in RAID-5. The main reason for this build is to store media files, pictures, music and other important documents. You can use any spare computer to build this server or you can build your own from scratch. We are setting up a hardware RAID solution for speed and efficiency. You must have a computer with a PCI Express slot for this guide. Yes, you can fit your PCI X1 card in an X4 or X16 slot.
Parts you would need to buy are a RAID controller card, hard drives & SATA cables. One of the best SATA cards to use is the HighPoint RocketRAID 2300 (Affiliate Link) which costs around $130. I have been running my server on this card for a few years without any issues.
UPDATE: Well I take that back, I’ve had my first RAID-5 failure with this card. HighPoint RocketRaid 2300 is best suited for RAID-10 and not Raid-5. Read more on that in my article RocketRaid 2300 RAID 10 review.
Good 2 TB or 3 TB hard drives to use are the Western Digital or Samsung Spinpoint F4, each hard drive would cost around $110. I have Western Digital Greens on here without any problems. You can also buy smaller hard drives for cheaper if you do not need the space like I do. I love Western Digital hard drives for the quality and ease of support they provide to the customer. If one hard drive fails during the warranty period I can easily “RMA” it. Here are some great Western Digital “RED” deals on Amazon.
HighPoint RocketRaid 2300 Installation
Installation is as easy as popping the hard drives into the hard drive bays in the case, installing the PCI Express RAID card, connecting the SATA and power cables. Once you install the physical components, you will see the RAID setup screen on boot. Here you can create arrays, delete disks or rebuild damaged disks. You would first create your RAID 5 array here using all 4 disks, this would combine to give you a single chunk of space after windows boots up. You may still have to go into disk management in Windows and format this space. This would be your RAID server, you will also be able to monitor how the system is operating via HighPoint’s web based GUI through any computer on the network.
You would then be able to use your RAID system as a media server, file server, backup server and more. Software such as Plex Media Center will allow you to run a media server on your newly built RAID system. Software such as Xlight FTP server will allow you to run a file server on your RAID system to be accessed from your network or the internet. Now that you have plethora of space with redundancy, you can even use it to back up your other home computer’s operating system and files. The possibilities are endless. Thanks for reading my RocketRaid 2300 review, you can see related posts below.