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Beyond AppleRAID: SoftRAID Gives Data a New Software RAID Home

img_tb4softraid2In 2009, Apple stopped actively working on AppleRAID and eventually removed full support for the feature completely in OS X El Capitan. This means that if your existing AppleRAID volumes develop a problem, Apple can’t help you. Fortunately, with the help of SoftRAID, there’s a solution.

Lossless Conversion of Your AppleRAID Volumes to SoftRAID
With SoftRAID, AppleRAID stripe (RAID 0) and mirror (RAID 1) volumes can quickly and easily be converted to SoftRAID volumes without losing any of your valuable data. SoftRAID volumes are up to 86% faster than equivalent AppleRAID volumes, and SoftRAID also offers an extensive feature set, renowned reliability and speed, as well as excellent technical support. SoftRAID is available free for 30 days and use can be continued for as little as $49.

Detect a Problem Before It Becomes a Problem
Among the features SoftRAID offers are Certify Disk – which checks that disks are reliable before you start to store precious data on them – and SoftRAID Monitor, which constantly checks disks and volumes for potential problems and can email you if it detects a problem such as a disk which is about to fail.* Not only is your data well-protected, but you’ll know in advance of any problems a disk might be having. Unless you’re using RAID 0 volumes (which are unprotected), you’ll never have to run the risk of losing your valuable data through sudden disk failure again.

Personalized Technical SupportRAID5_ThunderBay
With the full version of SoftRAID, you get access to SoftRAID’s personalized email support with support engineers available to work with users to solve any issues. With SoftRAID Lite, standard support is provided for free via SoftRAID’s moderated user forum, or get the same personalized support as the full version for a small annual or per-case fee.

SSD Support and Five RAID Levels
Both SoftRAID and SoftRAID Lite have full support for SSDs, with the full version offering five RAID levels to choose from – RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 4, RAID 5 and RAID 1+0. With SoftRAID Lite, available for $49 after a free trial, all of the features of SoftRAID (apart from email support and notifications) are available for RAID 0 or RAID 1 volumes.

Download Your Free Trial Today
Download and try either the full version of SoftRAID or SoftRAID Lite FREE for 30 days – with no credit card required. After your trial period, if you do decide not to purchase SoftRAID, you can simply convert your volumes back to AppleRAID exactly where they started.

*Personal email support and emailed alerts available only with the full version of SoftRAID

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  • If you don’t need raid5, you’re good with the built-in macos disk utility. To build raid10 of 4 drives, build 2 raid1 arrays, then build raid0 of these 2 arrays. You can combine and stack arrays, something you can’t do with Softraid.

  • SoftRAID is pretty kickass: it’s been an amazing product for many years, works perfectly, has tons of features that watches your disks and data, and keeps improving with age; I’ve been using it for RAID5 volumes with our OS X servers with great success since Apple deprecated their hardware RAID card. It truly is better than hardware RAID in many cases.

    That said, there are two glaring issues with SoftRAID right now that I hope they will fix soon:
    1) Lack of RAID6 support (with larger drives, this has become critical)
    2) Lack of Hot Spare functionality (also important with larger drives).

    The RAID1-only product is great and more affordable, but lacks email notification or any automated way to remotely monitor it, which makes it a non-starter in many environments, especially when a combination of AppleRAID and a utility like SMARTReporter offers that combination very inexpensively.

  • SoftRAID has provided me with flawless RAID management for critical business data. If I ever decide I have a question they are very quick to respond with detailed answers.

    I believe the only way you would get true support for AppleRAID is if you bought a Mac Mini Server that had Apple Care support included for the everything in the Server GUI.

    I would argue SoftRAID is better than HW RAID in many cases.

  • While I have seen Apple return raid support in the GUI, I have not seen raid 5 support. Granted I do not have the beta on the machine with the OWC raid enclosure. The other issue is drive speed Apple vs Softraid. I’m using Softraid in RAID 5 and getting over 500meg speeds. Plus Softraid offers notifications via email of problems.

  • I agree with Chris on this one. Even better : RAID is coming back to Disk Utility in macOS Sierra.

  • While I personally like SoftRAID myself, the following statement you made is not true (and sensationalized):

    “In 2009, Apple stopped actively working on AppleRAID and eventually removed full support for the feature completely in OS X El Capitan. This means that if your existing AppleRAID volumes develop a problem, Apple can’t help you.”

    Apple has removed many options from the DiskUtility GUI, but those options still remain when using the command line. Check “$man diskutil” for further info.

    • I believe the beta for macOS Sierra has added the gui back into disk utility app. I would call the feature still supported for that reason.

    • Chris;

      We at SoftRAID approve the accuracy of the text in this blog post.

      The Apple RAID driver is open source. We actively compare the code and look for enhancements with each OS release. Until this year, the driver had not changed until 2009 and the only change made was to make the driver slightly more secure against hackers.

      That is what is meant by “stopped actively working on AppleRAID”. Its true.

      Yes, RAID is available via command line, but no, it is not being worked on.
      (Some of the Apple RAID GUI functionality is apparently coming back in Sierra)

      There are still bugs and data corruption issues in the Apple RAID driver implementation. These kinds of issues have not been addressed by Apple in over 7 years.

      Free is great, but if you have mission critical data, consider investing in a product that has been continually improving for over 20 years.