[nycbug-talk] cheap way to add drives to a 1U?

Pete Wright pete at nomadlogic.org
Wed Oct 28 19:40:57 EDT 2009

On Wed, Oct 28, 2009 at 07:08:45PM -0400, Charles Sprickman wrote:
> Any ideas?
> I've got a 1U server available that has two SATA drive bays.  I need at 
> least four drives...
> Any cheap way to bundle 2-4 drives in some kind of external case and bring 
> them back via eSATA or an SATA multilane cable?

hey charles - i've used these guys in the past to build some relativly
cheap fast storage for some video playback systems:

they have a 1U 4 disk external controller, as well as "shoebox" systems
depending on what form factor suits you.  we also used the Internal SATA
to External adapters which worked pretty well.  The cables are actually
compatible with infiBand - so if you got an IB system laying around you
are all set :)

> I'm also on the fence about hw vs. sw RAID for this one.  In the past I've 
> noticed many folks running ZFS over a bunch of SATA drives tend to use a 
> decent HW RAID controller since historically some of the cheap 4+ port 
> add-on SATA cards are either buggy or not well supported.  If anyone has 
> input there regarding FBSD 8.0, that would be welcome...

i've been a fan of building raidz pools using ZFS lately.  except for
super high performance workloads it works quite well and you can config
it to have double parity drives in your pool plus hot spares.

sun just released a patch to solaris 10 that allows you to drop in SSD
drives into your zpool config which can be used as caches which
in theory should give similar benefits of RAID controllers with BBU's.
but thats solaris not in fbsd yet...soon hopefully though :)


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