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> External Storage Problem, Solutions Please
Fuzzy Features
Posted: Sep 12 2006, 05:09 PM
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Hi there,

Currently I have 3 IDE Seagate Barracuda HDD in 3x Icy Box External Enclosure IB-351UE-B-BL. They are daisy chained via firewire (for those of you not familiar with the term daisy chain. It means connected to each other in turn and then to the pc).

This solution to my storage needs is causing problems 1. they're no that quiet! 2. they're not that cool. 3. Using the daisy chain method will eventually result in poor speed as bandwidth is taken up. They do look cool though:)

What i'd ideally like is some form of server esq storage system built into an old case or perhaps a new one. Capable of handling several HDDs. (8+ if possible to future proof) Ideally this would link to my HTPC via the minimum of cables. Perhaps through my ethernet hub.

A solution I would like but is above my budget is

http://www.atechfabrication.com/products/mass_storage.htm

Is there any solutions I could use/create more cheaply than the above?

Thanks in advance for any help you can give.
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SsZERO
Posted: Nov 12 2006, 02:53 PM
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External hard drives are convenient for backup purposes, but if you are trying to use multiple hard drives for active storage then you should be looking into NAS (Network Attached Storage). You can buy an empty NAS box that holds 4-6 SATA drives for $550 or so, or you can make your own using old PC parts and a free NAS server like Free NAS. Make sure you go gigabit on the network connection, and use Raid 5 for the drive array config (needs at least 3 equal-size drives). Also be sure that you use cat-5E or better yet, cat 6 network cable to get the fastest network performance.

THe best part of this is you can hide your NAS box in the basement or garage and connect it to your HTPC by a single network cable. You can also make it accessible via Wifi.


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Fuzzy Features
Posted: Dec 11 2006, 09:28 AM
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Sorry bout the delay in replying been working away from home. Thanks for your reply.

Ok I have an old 600 celeron based PC would I be able to use this as the server? Also regarding the RAID 5 comment. I'm not sure this would be right for me as (unless i'm mistaken) i'll only get for example 500GB with 3 500 GB drives.

As it'll just be one pc accessing the data which is all replaceable and speed is not a major issue perhaps JBOD would be better or Perhaps Raid 0.

Could I just set the drives up in a standard IDE pc config and acces them as a selection of disks?
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SsZERO
Posted: Dec 14 2006, 02:44 PM
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If the data is not important then just run the drives in Raid 0, which will give them a higher sustained transfer rate. Raid 5 is good if you want some security against disk failure. Raid 5 uses at least 3 drives of equal size, and you lose one drive for storing the backup data.

Seagate has a few 750 GB drives out, they should be cheaper now...though I don't know if the price per GB is down to where 500GB drives are.


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