Software RAID

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What Does Software RAID Mean?

Software RAID is a type of RAID implementation that utilizes operating system-based capabilities to construct and deliver RAID services.

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It utilizes host system resources such as the CPU, without a RAID controller or specialized hardware to provide RAID services. Software RAID generally requires installation of a RAID driver or software (other than the operating system) to create and manage the RAID infrastructure.

Software RAID is also known as software-based RAID.

Techopedia Explains Software RAID

Software RAID is normally implemented on the host system and utilizes its native hard disk to construct RAID. It communicates with the local disk using the local adapters or interfaces.

Software RAID has better compatibility than hardware RAID. The same RAID array can be implemented on another computer or server system running the same operating system. It is also cheaper than hardware RAID as it does not require much dedicated hardware except for the storage array. Because it utilizes the computing power of the host system, software RAID performance and reliability is less than that of hardware RAID.

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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.