OSX: What should I put on my really fast RAID0 drive?
February 1, 2008 1:44 PM   Subscribe

OSX: What should I put on my really fast RAID0 drive?

I have a RAID0 array in Leopard. What non-critical things (i.e.: if the drive dies, I don't care about restoring it) can I move there besides the photoshop scratch disk?
posted by Caviar to Technology (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'd think the system's swap file would be first candidate. I don't really know how to do this on OSX, but here's a howto.
posted by pompomtom at 1:58 PM on February 1, 2008

Personally, I'd run my OS install on the RAID0 drive, for maximum snappy-ness. Just keep a backup.
posted by mphuie at 2:49 PM on February 1, 2008

Response by poster: I have the OS on a RAID1 drive. Backups still take time to restore, and I can't even say how much time having my desktop install on a RAID1 array has saved me in the past. It's still snappy for reads, and hopefully I'm not writing to the OS partition all that much anyway.
posted by Caviar at 4:59 PM on February 1, 2008

In addition to the swap files, I'd symlink your ~/Library/Caches folder to the RAID0 for a minor speed boost to applications. To do so, you'll need to boot in single-user mode. To do that, hold down Command-S immediately after the boot chime. And release when you see white text on a black screen.

You'll eventually get a static screen with a prompt. At the prompt, type the following:

fsck -y       
mount -uw /
mkdir -p /Volumes/[RAID0-name]/Caches
chown [username] /Volumes/[RAID0-name]/Caches
sudo chmod 700 /Volumes/[RAID0-name]/Caches
sudo rm -Rf /Users/[username]/Library/Caches
sudo ln -s /Volumes/[RAID0-name]/Caches /Users/[username]/Library/Caches
posted by pmbuko at 6:00 PM on February 1, 2008

please ignore the <>. I had a comment in there that was stripped.
posted by pmbuko at 6:01 PM on February 1, 2008

Swap, but I'd think hard about putting the system on it.

I would not put Applications on there, because from experience they can be a real pain to have to reinstall from original media, if you have a lot of them. And I'd also symlink all the preferences and Application Support files off onto a non-RAID0 volume.

If you use Final Cut, I'd put its temp files on there too. What other applications do you use? What kind of work do you do with the machine? Obviously the more frequently used stuff you can move to the array, the more benefit it'll be to you. There's no point in moving data that you only access occasionally.

Honestly it depends on what you have backed up. I'd not keep anything on that drive that you don't have in nearline backup (say a cheap external hard drive), but I am very risk-averse.
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:15 PM on February 1, 2008

RAID 0 is great for Final Cut Pro, or any other media app's capture scratch (especially HD and/or uncompressed video), or any other scratch files. I wouldn't put anything on there that either A) you can't easily re-create (e.g., video files captured from a tape you'll keep on a shelf), B) you don't care about, or C) that you meticulously back up on a regular basis.
posted by mboszko at 9:20 AM on February 2, 2008

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