[Novalug] best hard disk setup for home file server?
Bryan J. Smith
b.j.smith at ieee.org
Tue Oct 13 10:23:05 EDT 2009
First off, How are you doing your RAID? MD? I don't recommend LVM
atop of MD (long, long history). I like LVM, just not atop of MD.
Secondly, do _not_ use USB as system disks (long, long history). Beyond
the performance hit, they are unreliable. Even FireWire has its issues.
I don't trust eSATA either. I only trust SAS for external (again, my history).
Fourth, this is why I use 2.5" drives (which will be much faster than USB)
and buy units such as ... (tray-based)**
And ... (trayless, great for backup hot-swap)
**NOTE: I don't recommend "saving a few bucks" and getting the SATA-only
version (without cooling fans) of the first:
Again, I cannot emphasize enough that USB/FireWire on 24x7 systems, just
for backup and not even system disks, have pulled out so many hairs at so
many clients over the years. Once I introduce them to 2.5" options that are
internal and take up virtually no room, they change their views.
Especially when internal 2.5" blows away USB/FireWire performance.
With the 2x2.5" in a 3.5" bay, you can typically put in a 500GB RAID-1 for
$150 in a small netbook/Mini-ITX form-factor (or even 4x2.5" if you get
a larger cube with a 5.25").
I wouldn't recommend it if I didn't do it myself.
----- Original Message ----
From: Richard Ertel <richard.ertel at gmail.com>
To: Novalug <novalug at calypso2.tux.org>
Sent: Tue, October 13, 2009 9:38:00 AM
Subject: [Novalug] best hard disk setup for home file server?
in light of the current problems i am having with my home file server,
i want to reconsider my choice for how i configured hard disks in my
as said before, i currently have two 1.5 TB drives and two 1.0 TB
drives, all standard 3.5" internal disks.
four 1.0 TB partitions are in RAID-5 configuration, and the remaining
two 500 GB partitions are RAID-1. these two arrays are combined via
LVM into one logical volume of 3.5 TB.
my current situation has the new brand new 1.5 TB drives dying, which
of course kills all my data. they are identical drives (seagate), same
model number, maybe same manufacturing batch. both dying at the same
does anyone have any experience RAIDing external USB drives in linux?
should i expect reliability to increase if i move all 4 drives to 4
external SATA to USB enclosures (5.25" enclosures with fans)? are
these enclosures suitable for 24/7 operation? would read and write
speed suffer (all transfers are over gigabit network)?
if all those USB drives running through a USB hub to a server is ok,
then what about ditching my tower and running them all to a netbook as
a server? i've seen that argument made once before, citing built-in
ups (battery), built-in monitor, low power draw and other factors as
big benefits to a netbook as server.
or am i worrying too much and what i have on my hands is just a fluke,
and in the future i should mix drive manufacturers/models to avoid
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