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win server 2008r2 raid software

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#16 OP CPressland

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 14:40

I had looked at unRAID but I don't feel the technology was explained well enough, again, I'd rather have a single large pool of Data with a folder structure instead of multiple filesystems being linked together in some mysterious way; that said being able to use any old disk I have lying around is a great idea. FreeNAS was another I was looking at; as was OpenFilier.

I guess I just want an easy 'just works' solution.


#17 +BudMan

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 16:25

If your trying to understand how their parity drive works, this is a start
http://lime-technolo..._parity_work.3F

With links to deeper discussions.

You would have a large data pool, with 1 folder structure.

To be honest if what your looking for is folder structure and ease of access - what does it matter what the filesystem is or standalone on multiple disks vs striped across. I would worry about striping across spindles for performance. But if performance is not of primary concern, to be honest the tech used to provide you with your 1 common folder structure should be of secondary importance.

I fully agree with understanding the tech, at least at a basic level before using it. But its really not all that different than parity in a normal striped raid setup like 5. Just that the parity is stored on 1 drive vs stripped across all of them in the array.

One of the cool things about it and some of the other options, is that unlike with a typical raid where parity has to be created on the fly when you write the file. With unraid the parity can be created in the background after the fact for performance increase with the use of a cache drive. And my other below options also have ability to not have to do realtime parity creation.

I was a couple of minutes a way from going with unraid on the N40L, and even running it as a VM just like doing with my current setup. But the ability of the drivepool addon to add my existing data into the pool without having to wipe drives pushed me to go my current route. As long as I can have duplication of specific data that I don't want to have to recover from backup on a loss its a win win for me.

I get my common folder structure that spans the multiple drives for ease of use. I have a media folder, and then under that subfolders for tv/movies/music/etc -- I don't really care what filesystem its on. What is nice with this setup as well - is if need be I can directly access the files off the disks on any system that can read NTFS - with same folder structure and names.

My point being is I would expand your view of what is available - and not get stuck using the old standard raids and methods of file storage/parity and access.

If your priority is ease of file management (folder structure) and ease of expandability and ability to use nonlike drives I would look to some of the newer methods vs just plain jane raid 5. I have been very impressed with using the drivepool on my windows based server - you can use WHS if you want.

Other options that will work on just plain server or desktop version of windows is http://snapraid.sourceforge.net/ (free) another is http://www.flexraid.com/ (cheap!)

There are other things to look today other just standard raid 5 - that is for damn sure! Expanding your options is always a good thing!

All that being said if you want to stick with 5, there are cards out there even on soho budget that allow for expansion of the array on the fly. The intel matrix storage stuff is pretty freaking slick for example

#18 OP CPressland

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 16:44

I may review unRAID again in the future, for now I have about 500GB left on this Server so I'll clear out some of the junk that has been mounting up for a while and streamline things a little.

I guess one of the other huge bonuses of unRAID is being able to have discs spun-down when not using them, that could potentially save a lot of power when the Media Drives aren't being accessed.

Like I said, I'll research this and see what I can dig up, Ideally I'll also need AFP support and Active Directory authentication.

Thanks for all the recommendations thus far.

#19 +BudMan

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 17:06

Yeah I do believe AFP is in the 5.x line and AD integration as well.

#20 OP CPressland

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 07:07

Just wish I could install it in a VM to test out, just can't seam to get the USB image to mount.

#21 +BudMan

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 12:27

So you want to test Unraid virtual -- this should get you up and running

http://lime-technolo...hp?topic=7914.0

#22 Vice

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 12:44

I don't know about the other home users here but my home server is quite beefy. 70TB of Storage, SAS Expanders + Three RAID Cards. 30 disk hot swapping in a Lian Li 343B case. Even the CPU is a power hungry Core i7 940 and I have 24GB of RAM installed, although I'm intending to put 48GB of RAM in it soon.

You asked about why would someone run RAID in the home BudMan. For me I run RAID6 on my arrays because I want redundancy. If my drives were to fail I would need to rely on my backups. What if those backups were to fail at the same time? Or what if some data that was mirrored to those backups a year ago was corrupted and I never knew? For me I don't want to lose any data and I also don't want to spend time worrying about it or managing it. And I definitely don't want to spend a weekend copying from backups to my main server.

I agree with what you're saying about parity, it is annoying spending extra money on a drive that is simply being used for parity. But to me it doesn't feel like a waste of my money, it feels more like insurance for time saved in the event that one or two drives fail simultaneously. I'm willing to incur that extra cost today for peace of mine and time saved retrieving files from my backups in the future.

Apart from just using RAID6 and having on-site backups. I also have a paid subscription to CrashPlan where my server is constantly backing up everything. They offer a great service by the way.

I can say this though it would be devastating to lose all my home movies, family pictures, my personal music collection etc these are things that are mostly not replaceable and so I'm taking multiple steps to safeguard it I'm not just going to rely on my backups that I rarely interact with to save my files in the event of a catastrophic drive failure.

#23 +BudMan

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 12:56

"all my home movies, family pictures, my personal music collection"

So you have 70TB of "home movies" and pictures and music you created? Really?

I find that a bit difficult to believe to be honest..

And no that setup would not be a typical HOME setup ;) -- What does that cost you in power?? Do you have killawatt or ups that shows you what its drawing - just curious.

And you also have backed up all 70TB to the cloud -- what kind of internet connection do you have?

Hey more power too you - but to be honest that whole setup seems more like a hobby of yours in what you can do. Not what you actually need when on a budget ;)

I agree -- it not an option to loose your Home Movies/Pictures - these things are irreplaceable. Multiple backups, on multiple types of media in multiple locations for SURE!! But to me raid 6 seems a bit excessive to be honest. You have these files backed up do you not. To the home budget minded person running raid 6 is not very cost effective way to store media that can be replaced. What your spending money on is yes insurance from having to restore from backup. But with running that sort of hardware, I think its more a hobby of yours than actual need of insurance ;)

#24 OP CPressland

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 19:47

So you want to test Unraid virtual -- this should get you up and running

http://lime-technolo...hp?topic=7914.0


I'll give that a miss; I'll wait on them to push an ISO before I begin messing around with Datastores etc. Plus RDM doesn't seam to work on my build of ESXi, maybe because it's free?



#25 +BudMan

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Posted 01 July 2012 - 13:58

What, we are running the same build and RDM works just fine.

Here
http://www.vm-help.c...i/SATA_RDMs.php

mystoragevm.png

myrdms.png

#26 OP CPressland

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 16:12

Right - Well I just basically spent two days reading up on unRAID solidly, I've purchased it and am currently preclearing my disks with the script prior to getting the array back online. Should be done in 6 hours but I'll be asleep by then, so I'll migrate the Data back to the Server tomorrow.

Setup will be:
250GB /dev/hdb - Data
2000GB /dev/sdb - Data
2000GB /dev/sdc - Data
2000GB /dev/sdd - Data
2000GB /dev/sde - Parity

My understanding is I'll need to upgrade the Parity Drive before I can expand those other disks beyond 2TB, so I'll need a way of identifying that drive in the MicroServer, or I'll just boot a LiveCD on a USB and find which drive has a bizzarre FileSystem on it.

Next upgrade will be 4000GB drives, but that won't be till mid-next year.

#27 +BudMan

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 18:08

So you going to run it vm with rdm, or going to use the whole thing as just unraid?

Yeah your parity drive has to be as large as your largest data disk. So if you want to go with bigger than 2TB data, then you will need to update your parity to 2.5 or 3, etc.

#28 OP CPressland

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 19:43

I have converted 'Galactica' the 8TB Server to run unRAID. Eventually I'll run 5x4TB on it. Just wish I'd moved the parity drive to the HDB slot...

#29 OP CPressland

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 20:43

Looks like External USB Hard Drives can be added to the Array also, interesting, but I think I'll have the Server share them as separate, non-redundant, drives.

Maybe for backups of the N40L... hmm..

#30 +BudMan

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Posted 02 July 2012 - 21:13

If you going to do that you might want to look at the snap addon

http://lime-technolo...ID_Add_Ons#SNAP