If you have lots of data to store and are figuring out how to lay out your disks, check out Roch Bourbonnais’ WHEN TO (AND NOT TO) USE RAID-Z. (Hey Roch; could you find a slightly less brutal way to format your blog?) For RAID & filesystem wonks only. It’s a lucid, quantitative explanation of the trade-offs between mirroring, striping, and RAID-ing. Some of the narrative is ZFS-specific, but I suspect that the lessons are pretty general. Out there in the real world of production applications, you’d be surprised how often it is, when you’re waiting for a slow app, you’re waiting for the disk, not the CPU. This stuff matters.