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External Enclosure Questions.

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
My media is growing beyond the 600GB that I have set aside in my current Raid 0 configuration. Instead of building a separate media server I have just decided to add external storage in the form of a multi-drive enclosure.

Is there any downfalls to this kind of configuration? So you guys know what I am using it for here goes.

I use Apple TV and iTunes quite often. I purchase through the iTunes store to my current media partition. However it is quickly expanding beyond that. My wife uses to store her photography pictures. That is also very quickly expanding. I play movies through my home theater system (I mention cause I do not know if there will be audio latency issues in a setup like this) and that's really about it.

I am looking to go with a 4 Drive Enclosure with4 1TB drives in it. Any suggestions on a better way to do it or other solutions entirely I am completely open to. You guys have always been great with helping me and I just want to say thanks again for all your help over the years.
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post #2 of 11
Will you be using the drives in RAID 0? If so, i would recommend just buying 4 1TB drives and mounting the brackets into an enclosure yourself. The one's you get on the market are outrageously priced and they come with useless features such as USB 2.0 ports at the back.
You're better off just buying or making the skeleton yourself as this would enable you to use SATA 2/3 ports yourself straight off the motherboard.

If portability is what you're looking for i would wait for a while, i hear Intel is releasing a drive enclosure via the thunderbolt I/O which will allow daisy chaining and up to 6 drives.

Other than that if you could give us a price range, that would be helpful.
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post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply.

I am looking to spend 200 on the enclosure (or other provided solution) and whatever the HDDs will run me. I think the Egg had them at $72 for 1TB drive.

I have the room in my current PC to mount more drives but a friend of mine is trying to convince me to go external and keep it separate from my gaming. I am currently running Raid 0. So I would be looking to run this as well at Raid 0 as I care about reads more than writes.
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post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grumpel View Post
Thanks for the reply.

I am looking to spend 200 on the enclosure (or other provided solution) and whatever the HDDs will run me. I think the Egg had them at $72 for 1TB drive.

I have the room in my current PC to mount more drives but a friend of mine is trying to convince me to go external and keep it separate from my gaming. I am currently running Raid 0. So I would be looking to run this as well at Raid 0 as I care about reads more than writes.

What kind of enclosure do u want?? How about this Mediasonic 4-Bay RAID USB/eSATA Enclosure? It might meet your needs well. Hope u find the best bet.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
That looks like it will fit the bill nicely.

I will do more research into this type of storage and this unit specifically. I really appreciate it guys.

If you think of anything else that could fit the bill or another solution do not hesitate to reply I am very open to all ideas of accomplishing my goal. Thank you again.
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post #6 of 11
RAID-0 is kinda stupid for something that you will be connecting to your PC via USB 2.0. It's not as if you'll need the speed for things such as movies, etc. Heck, even Blu-ray maxes out at 5MB/s. Another thing, unless you plan on keeping backups of your data, even a single drive failure would mean your whole array (and whatever data it contains) goes kaput with RAID-0.

If I were you, I'd grab something like this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16817121405 and just stick to JBOD. You don't need to go with 7200 RPM drives, either. For $70~80, you can get a 2TB 5400 RPM drive, and given their areal densities, performance (particularly sequential read/write) can be quite close to or even exceed older/lower capacity 7200 RPM drives.
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post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
I understand the concerns you bring up with Raid 0. I currently have my box setup as Raid 0 now and then I short stroked it from recommendations from here. So I am familiar with the downfalls and I do have backups of data only. I do not care much about the programs as I have all the disk ect. The data however is where its all at and that is safe and backed up.

That's definitely a good price and I can see doing this. I like the hot swap option. Its not a must but is nice to have. It seems though that this just works like the bays I already have free in my PC now. The solution as you present it is essentially just buy more HDDs and set them up individually in my PC and forget raid and whatnot all together? Which I can do and is simple and easy. Hmm maybe I was making this way to complicated and as a justification for more toys.

Thanks you have given me something to roll around in the old noodle. Much appreciated.
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post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Grumpel View Post
That's definitely a good price and I can see doing this. I like the hot swap option. Its not a must but is nice to have. It seems though that this just works like the bays I already have free in my PC now.
If you've still got free HDD bays, then go ahead and use those. Personally, I have hot swap bays installed on all my PC's for convenience's sake. Besides, it's kinda nice having a 2TB "floppy".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Grumpel View Post
The solution as you present it is essentially just buy more HDDs and set them up individually in my PC and forget raid and whatnot all together? Which I can do and is simple and easy. Hmm maybe I was making this way to complicated and as a justification for more toys.
For me, JBOD just makes more sense for large media collections. I've spent months archiving my Blu-ray, HD-DVD, DVD and CD collection to HDD. It's much easier to replace the contents of a single HDD in case of a drive failure as opposed to a whole array. Granted, my JBOD array happens to be parity protected (unRAID) so it can withstand a single drive failure without losing any data.

If you do go for striped RAID, at least go with RAID-5 or something (Linux software RAID is pretty decent and "portable"). Of course, you might still want to consider your friend's advice of completely separating the media storage from your gaming rig. Something like the HP ProLiant MicroServer would probably work quite nicely.
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post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Sorry its been so long since I replied. I have been doing research on which way to go. I decided on Jbob and I am picking up two 2TB drives. I am considering going with these but I can't find out what RPM they are WD20EARS. Will these be sufficent for what I am trying to do? I even tried WD site and the spec sheet but it was not very helpful. Should I even care what the RPMs are?


**rep**
Forgot to Rep those who helped.
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post #10 of 11
Wd is a well known reliable brand...

Others include but not limited to...
Samsung
Hitachi
Some may reccomend seagate but i personally will not buy there drives for failures in the past.
Those wd drives you mentioned are either 5400rpm or 5900rpm they are the "green series" drives meant to help conserve power. Some people complain about frequent head parks on the drive since it spins down every so often to conserve energy. This can cause excessive wear on the drive.
I personally have 3x 2tb samsung spinpoint f4's which do about 100MB/s average and a latency of about 13-14ms. They have been reliable and very cheap so far. 75$ on sale from newegg...
Hope this helped...
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