It's 2022. I'm setting up a SQL Server that will support a single medium size web app. I have physical hardware with 4 NVMes that I need to configure. What's the best practice? On which physical drives do the volumes for OS, data, logs, tempdb, and backups go? Or should I just go RAID 10 and create a volume for each concern?

  • So just to be doubly clear, this isn't a VM and those 4 disks are actually dedicated to this box?
    – J.D.
    Apr 1, 2022 at 19:09
  • 1
    It's a bit of an obscure question in 2022. It's a bare metal machine with 4 physical drives. Apr 1, 2022 at 19:15
  • It's not that obscure IMO, and actually makes it an easier question to advise on given that your drives are dedicated to that box. 🙂
    – J.D.
    Apr 1, 2022 at 22:03

1 Answer 1


I'll keep this short and sweet, because you have one of the simplest cases:

  • Drive 1: OS
  • Drive 2: Data (MDF) Files
  • Drive 3: Log (LDF) Files
  • Drive 4: tempdb

Backups I'd recommend offloading to a remote place so you're not hosed if the server itself has an issue. (Been there, done that, not fun.)

I'd recommend pre-growing your Data and Log files to the size of the disks (since each disk is dedicated to each function), and monitoring their consumption inside the SQL Server instance, to maximize performance.

Alternatively, follow Brent Ozar's recommendation on auto-growth settings for your database.

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