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Improve performance by spreading data

Monitoring and Administration expert Kevin Kline discusses the possible performance gains or limitations of spreading data across multiple files on the same hard drive.

If data is spread across multiple files, but the files are on the same physical drive (or redundant array of independent disks), how does this setup improve performance? Wouldn't the single drive still be a bottleneck, so multiple requests to read/write to multiple files would need to be processed sequentially?
Yes, you are correct. You only get a performance improvement when spreading data files across physically separate volumes. It doesn't help to spread data files across logically separate but physically identical drives. It never really helps to spread the transaction log files across multiple drives since, as you mention, transaction log files always write on the last data page of the last drive in the transaction log file volume.

 


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