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Thread: NAS or Array?

  1. #1
    Kermit911's Avatar
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    Question NAS or Array?

    Hello all, I was thinking about buying around ten 2TB hard drives for my media collection I have. New Egg has a 2TB for around $80.00 but is there away I can connect them all to the save computer/laptop? I can get 10TB for about $500 or 1 NAS server with 4TB for the same price. Any help would be great.

    Thanks all

    Dave
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  2. #2
    satis's Avatar
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    All you need to do to get 10 hard drives onto the same PC is have a PC with 10 SATA connections. My motherboard has 8 SATA connections and 2 SATA 6GB connections, so assuming you're using non-SATA 3.0 drives I could do it with my stock motherboard. In cases where you don't have enough SATA ports, you could buy SATA expansion cards. I'm not aware of windows having any limitations as to how many drives it can use.

    What are you planning on doing with 10TB? Are you going to run them in some sort of RAID array? Since it's for storage, performance wouldn't be that big of a problem, so you could use software RAID-1 to mirror the data across 2 drives... that would cut your array to 5TB, but give you redundancy in case one of the drives fails. Windows can do software RAID. Or you could get more creative and get some RAID 5 cards or something.

    You'd need to be sure to get a case big enough to fit 10 drives, of course, but that shouldn't be too hard. I'm also not sure what kind of cooling you'd need to support that, or what power supply. You'd need to do research on all that... it would suck to go through so much effort only to have it fall over the first time you tried to write a movie to it.

    Lastly, you need to think about disaster recovery. You'll have 10TB worth of eggs sitting in one very small basket. What if something crazy happens and the whole PC fries, including your 10 hard drives... do you need offsite storage, or does losing that matter? Something to keep in mind. May I suggest you minimize that possibility by investing in a quality power supply and a UPS with line conditioner.

  3. #3
    Kermit911's Avatar
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    New Egg has these: HITACHI Deskstar 5K3000 2TB 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822145475

    I only need five 2 TB Hard Drives not ten, that's my fault.

    I have a PC to run everything, It's not that big so I am limited on the number of open slots I have. I was interested to know if I could make my own hard drive array maybe, for five 2TB hard drives.

    Redundancy would be a good idea, just more money. All I plan on doing is saving a butt load of DVDs to these hard drive and use a media server to play them. I just have to find a media server that will play .iso files. I'm am playing with mediaportal right now. Unfortunately it will not play .iso files.

    I also have no idea on the amount of power and cooling it will need. I wish I could find an empty 5 bay array or something similar that will hold 2 TB hard drives.

    I have all the original movies, it would just suck to have to rip them all into .iso files again. 653 DVDs at an average of 8 gig each = 5224 gig or 5.5 TB (I'll round it up) Roughly 30 min. per DVD = 13.5 solid days of ripping. I use a MONSTER Power conditioner with the system so that should help.

    Thanks for your help
    Dave
    How do you keep a programmer in the shower all day?
    Give him a bottle of shampoo which says "lather, rinse, repeat."

  4. #4
    satis's Avatar
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    Heh, I did something similar not too long ago, actually. I got 2 x 2TB drives and ripped a big chunk of my movies to them. I had the 2 drives in a RAID 1 (mirrored) array...when done I put one in my media PC and the other in my fire safe. Obviously, I don't have as many movies as you. But it removed a significant amount of clutter from my living room. The physical DVDs are now in plastic bins in the garage. Hopefully they don't melt in the Texas heat.

    Regarding apps to play ISOs, I used Magicdisk to mount the ISOs as DVDs. I believe that XBMC will play ISOs, so you might want to check that out. I played with it a year or two ago for MP3 playback but didn't really like it. Still, it's meant for a home theater PC, so it may be up your alley, plus it's open source, so probably has improved quite a bit in the interim.

    http://xbmc.org/

    So... you can't physically fit the 5 drives into your current box? If not, I'm not sure what your options are, sorry. You're not necessarily out of luck, but it's not something I have experience with. If you want to go SATA 3.0, your options are going to shrink some as well, since that's still somewhat new and not all that well supported yet. Then again, I suspect that SATA 3.0 on magnetic hard drives is probably overkill. I'll bet that only an SSD can really push the SATA 3.0 envelope.

  5. #5
    Kermit911's Avatar
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    Thanks for all your help satis, I found a program called Daemon that will mount .iso files in a virtual drive letter. I don't think I can mount 650 DVD though threw Daemon. It's going to be a headache trying to figure this out. :-) Thanks again for your help.

    Dave
    How do you keep a programmer in the shower all day?
    Give him a bottle of shampoo which says "lather, rinse, repeat."

  6. #6
    satis's Avatar
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    daemon tools? That works too. Typically what you would do is just have one "virtual" DVD-rom and mount one DVD at a time, rather than have all 650 DVDs mounted simultaneously.

    If you come up with some solutions, please post back, since I'm in a similar boat.

  7. #7
    Kermit911's Avatar
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    I found something that works perfect. Check this out:

    http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/11071...-media-center/

    This will automatically mount any iso file you want to watch threw Windows Media Center. I tried it out and it is so easy my 4 year old could do it. Just download and install Virtual Clone Drive and Mikinho Mount Image and that's it. Take all the defualts and you are ready to go.
    How do you keep a programmer in the shower all day?
    Give him a bottle of shampoo which says "lather, rinse, repeat."

  8. #8
    satis's Avatar
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    oh yea, that's very cool. Thanks for sharing. Now I just need to upgrade to some 3TB drives so I can actually rip my whole DVD collection.

  9. #9
    Kermit911's Avatar
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    LOL, I know how you feel! Thanks for all the help
    How do you keep a programmer in the shower all day?
    Give him a bottle of shampoo which says "lather, rinse, repeat."

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