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DL380 G5 Getting started with RAID 5 and OS

Occasional Visitor

DL380 G5 Getting started with RAID 5 and OS

Dear Sir/madam,
I just purchased two nos. of HP DL380 G5 with 3 nos. of 146GB SAS
Product ID: 458567-421
OS : MS Windows Server 2003 R2
I am first timer with server.
All this time i used to run my application using Normal office grade Desktop PC but for this project our client insisted that we have our softwares running on Server grade PC and we ended up purchasing DL380 G5.

Below are the softwares for both the servers.
both servers are of same product ID / same spec.

Server no.1:
Called as Application Server. runs Windows Server 2003 OS and our application program which is basically a HMI / SCADA program (HMI - HUMAN MACHINE INTERFACE) for industrial control and automation or factory automation.

Server no.2:
called as Historian server. runs windows server 2003 OS and our Historian software which has its own real time database to store datas coming from the factory. it stores these data some are digital data where it stores on (1) or off (0) state of a plant device status and also analog data which is numbers in real / float format to represent plant pressure / temperature / flow etc.

my questions are:
1.) what RAID should i choose for my application
(as i started the server PC it asked me to configure the logical drive and it itself was showing me Raid 5 but it was showing me only 275GB as logical drive 1 (what happened to my third 146GB SAS drive. why it did not add that also). I never proceeded further as i donot know what my actions will be. so i aborted. now i have started reading "Configuring Arrays on HP Smart Array
Controllers - Reference Guide". after reading few pages i thought for Server 1 i will go with Raid 5 and then during OS installation i will do two partition C and D. In C i will keep just OS and in D i will keep my HMI software. Similarly for Server 2 i will keep C for OS and D for Historian software. Is this what to be done for the best.

2.) my other question is i am supposed to provide a backup method for one to recover the PC in case of crash and two for the application. three for the data / logs generated by the software. in this case do i have to buy any additional backup software. I have a HP DVD-RW drive. My client was insisting i provide a backup software. I thought basic windows OS backup be used. i never tried that but just my thought. in this case what will be the best backup method without spending further.

3. Also i want to show the health of both server in my HMI software to the plant operators who will be watching their factory / plant (like fans are OK, server 1 is fault, server 1 power supply 1 failed running on Redundnant power supply). how can i get these data from server.

4. does tape drive better than DVD backups. initially Tape drive based backup were expensive when i was making the purchase decision as i have a limited budget in this project so i went with DVD-RW for backup. but just wanted to know why tape is preferred. just to know so that in future projects if i have budget then i will go with tape if it makes life easy compared to DVD-RW.

5. I have in my server iLO2 RJ45 ports/UID's etc what are these for. are they similar to noraml NIC port where in i can connect them to network and via which my server will be networked. i got a rough feeling from my guess that these are for management of server but will that be useful for me too in this project?

6. And in future how to choose a server which will be economical. I wonder why we went 380 G5 and why not other series like 350 or 360 which will make a deciding factor for my application. how can i make that decision. even the CPU specs. is there a document to understand something about server for begineers like me. I went through HP quick spec with 46 pages could not make much decesion as you dont know what price impact these options will have.

Thanks & Sorry for this lengthy one