From what I understand, to implement RAID 5, one would need a minimum of 3 disks, where 2 would be for data storage, and the third would be for the parity. But what is the maximum number of disks one can have?

For example, let's say each disk is 1GB, but I have 5GB of data, would I be able to make a RAID 5 with 6 disks? Is there a mathematical maximum?

  • $\begingroup$ What do you think? Do you see any mathematical obstacle? $\endgroup$ Nov 21 '16 at 7:53
  • $\begingroup$ Increasing the number of disks increases the chance that two disk failures will occur "simultaneously". In addition, if there is a limit on total I/O bandwidth (one would generally not design a system so overprovisioned with bandwidth for the typical case of significant seek and rotational delay to be able to handle sustained sequential reads) recovery time can increase making "simultaneous" multiple failures more likely. The limit depends on the acceptable system failure rate. $\endgroup$ Nov 21 '16 at 14:00

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