willsmith

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About willsmith

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    Oxfordshire, UK
  • Interests
    Flying giant kites. Geeking around.
  1. Confusion over NAS/DAS

    If you mainly use one machine and want to prioritize that for speed, and are willing to leave it on 24/7, go with DAS. You can get far higher transfer speeds with DAS than you'd get over a network : with gigabit you are limited to ~110Mb/s (120 megabytes per second ~= 1 gigabit per second). Significant extra hassle with "link aggregation" will allow you to double that speed at most. The speed is not necessary for streaming but is useful for the initial population / moving files around. If you want your files to be equally shared round the house and don't want any machine on 24/7 (I guess that might be difficult if you took your Macbook travelling) then go with NAS. With NAS just choose what total capacity you want and add some overhead for RAID. RAID5 is the most commonly used, RAID10 is safer and usually faster but you'll need 2x as many disks as the storage you require. RAID1 (again safe) only works with maximum 2 disks. Although theoretically you can upgrade the disks in your NAS/DAS box, you're correct, best to install large disks at the start and leave it at that. Growing the box later introduces slight risk (mainly, if you get the procedure wrong you might lose the lot). Assuming you go with RAID5, a 5-disk 3Tb solution will give you around 4 x 3 Tb = 12 Tb. Remember you still need backups unless you are willing to lose all your media - maybe the case if its just TV series etc. RAID won't protect you from an accidental deletion, filesystem corruption etc. Maybe, continuing with Synology range, 2 lots of 411J might be suitable?
  2. If your aim is to make your data unreadable for old / failed drives, I use the following stages: 1) if the drive is still readable, use shred under Linux - just pop the drive in an eSATA caddy and set it running. 2) Using torx screwdriverss, remove the PCB and physically destroy it. Even if stage (1) can't be done, only somebody very dedicated will take a working drive and find the correct PCB to recover your data. 3) If time allows, and the disk wasn't already using an encrypted filesystem (I sometimes use LUKS on Debian), now open up the drives and scratch the platters with a screwdriver. 4) I never resort to this bit, but I've known people now smash the platters with a hammer (to satisfy client data destruction requirements). Generally stage (2) only takes seconds and is a pretty good way to protect data on a failed drive.
  3. According to the spec sheet for the RED range www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-771442.pdf the non-recoverable read error rate for these drives is no better than the others at <1 in 10^14 bits. (warranty, 3 years). For the BLACK range, spec sheet is at www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-771434.pdf and the read error rate is also <1 in 10^14 bits. (warranty, 5 years) For the GREEN range, spec sheet is at www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-701229.pdf and the read error rate is also <1 in 10^14 bits. (warranty, 2 years) It's only the RE4 editions, spec sheet www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-701338.pdf where the error rate is <1 in 10^15 bits. (warranty, 5 years) For the VeliciRaptor, the error rate is even better, show its enterprise origins: www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-701284.pdf at <1 in 10^16 bits. (warranty, 5 years) And there's potential confusion with the little-mentioned RE4-GP - RE4 with lower power: www.wdc.com/wdproducts/library/SpecSheet/ENG/2879-701312.pdf (1 in 10^15 bits, warranty 5 years) Although I suspect this family doesn't have much of a future, given how well hidden it is on the Western Digital webpage. So with capacities of 3Tb there's a 24% chance of a read error on one drive at 1 in 10^-14. Multiple that up to RAID5 and the RED range is not really suitable for NAS after all if you are worried about RAID rebuild errors. From examining these specs and the rest of the spec sheet (rotational speed, power, acoustics), it's pretty clear that the RED edition is a modified GREEN edition with custom firmware rather anything with RE4 heritage.
  4. Currently the article link to the discussion page is wrong - it just points back to the article. So don't expect much discussion on your article until this is fixed! Fixed!
  5. Best RAID Option Int/Ext?

    Read up on RAID10 over RAID 5 and RAID 6. RAID6 can become limited by CPU to give you the multiple failure redundancy option. RAID10 is just simple mirroring of 2 RAID0's - no CRCs needed. It also supports multiple failures (unless you are really unlucky and both drives of a pair fail). So in a 4 disk RAID10 setup, 66% of 2-drive failures will be ok. There's other advantages during the recovery phase, which is less disk-intensive on RAID10 than 5 or 6.
  6. Best RAID Option Int/Ext?

    5 disks in RAID0 - so 5x the chance of it dying over a single hard disk, and no redudancy. I guess you are just using this as a scratch disk and don't care if it dies? RAID10 is "the new RAID5", by the way - faster than RAID0 in READ, but double the disks needed for redundancy (and better redundancy than RAID5). Plus you get almost the write speed of RAID0.
  7. Manufacturer: Seagate Family: Barracuda Released: Q4 2011 Model Name (product family): Barracuda 7200.14 Model Number: ST2000DM001 Capacity: 2000 gigabytes Interface: SATA Spindle Speed: 7200 Seek: 8.5ms (read) 9.5ms (write) Buffer: 64MB Density: 1TB per platter
  8. Spin down when not in use

    You could try one of the plugin devices that measures your PC's power consumption. Maplin in the UK sell one for £10. Then look for a sudden drop of 7W or so when the drive turns off. With most of my drives (mixture of Seagate, IBM) you get a slight click as the head gets locked away from the drive surface. When they come back on, look for a sudden jump of about 15W, falling to 7W after a few seconds. In Linux you can do /sbin/hdparm -C /dev/hdx, you'll either get 'standby' or 'active/idle'. Sorry, appreciate I did not directly answer your question...
  9. I have a 7200.8 (300Gb, PATA) mounted in an external USB mounting "IcyBox", sitting right in front of me. Every 7 minutes 10 seconds it does a loudish SMART / thermal recalibration phase, lasting around 30 seconds. I have an identical drive (purchased different time) mounted internally. I never hear such noises from that, but it could be that the internal mounting damps the sound. Has anybody else had the same experience? Unfortunately I cannot get the SMART statistics out - doesn't seem to be reported through USB. Other than that the drive runs fine, although it's low usage - a backup drive, with backup done once every 2-3 days, maybe 5 minutes per backup. Thanks Will Smith
  10. Due to the risk of (1) somebody stealing your computer, especially laptop, and snooping at your data (2) your hard disk failing, you sending it back, and somebody snooping at your data I recommend that all personal data (e.g. maybe not your Windows drive, but your data drives) are encrypted. If you use Linux, I've just completed a HOWTO on taking a new hard disk and encrypting it under Linux, using the upcoming Linux standard for hard disk encryption, LUKS. http://www.saout.de/tikiwiki/tiki-index.php The downside is you loose some performance. I am seeing approximately 10Mb/s copying large files from one encrypted drive to another on an AthlonXP 3200+. Just one more reason I should go to dual core Maybe some day public employees will do this their laptops. Then we can reduce the amount of confidential information the Govt leaks: Laptop with credit card info for 80,000 DOJ workers stolen MI5 (UK secret service) laptop containing secret data stolen FBI : Average Laptop Theft Costs Companies $47,000 Thief gets personal data of 100,000 UCB graduates ...
  11. Due to the risk of (1) somebody stealing your computer, especially laptop, and snooping at your data (2) your hard disk failing, you sending it back, and somebody snooping at your data I recommend that all personal data (e.g. maybe not your Windows drive, but your data drives) are encrypted. If you use Linux, I've just completed a HOWTO on taking a new hard disk and encrypting it under Linux, using the upcoming Linux standard for hard disk encryption, LUKS. http://www.saout.de/tikiwiki/tiki-index.php The downside is you loose some performance. I am seeing approximately 10Mb/s copying large files from one encrypted drive to another on an AthlonXP 3200+. Just one more reason I should go to dual core Maybe some day public employees will do this their laptops. Then we can reduce the amount of confidential information the Govt leaks: Laptop with credit card info for 80,000 DOJ workers stolen MI5 (UK secret service) laptop containing secret data stolen FBI : Average Laptop Theft Costs Companies $47,000 Thief gets personal data of 100,000 UCB graduates ...
  12. OLED Monitors

    The motley fool (fool.com) investment board often covers OLED - one of their advice services ('rulebreakers') recently recommended investing in one of the companies working in OLED. Will Smith
  13. Disabling Seagate power saving mode

    The command is /sbin/hdparm -S 0 /dev/hdwhatever This works fine on my300gb 7200.8 in Linux, but I'm pretty sure it's not persistent over reboots. In fact, I set my timeout to 30 minutes (-S 241 ) to save power and keep my computer cooler and therefore also quieter (I have 5 drives inside it, and temperature controlled fans). Will Smith
  14. Maxtor 500Gb in Q3.

    Whichever way you look at it, they'll be available in bulk by Q4, which is only ~5 months away. And this will no doubt push the price of the 400Gb models down, to become the new 'sweet spot' (currently I'd say the 250Gb and 300Gb models occupy this niche). Are these likely to be 4 platters of 133Gb each, short-stroked to 125Gb to make 500Gb, or is 166Gb/platter x 3 platters yet possible? Will
  15. Maxtor 500Gb in Q3.

    7200rpm, of course. Apparently will be in all major ranges, MaXLine, DiamondMax, Shared Storage and OneTouch. Both SATA and ATA133 versions, according to the press release. Now if only Western Digital would up the capacity on the Raptor, 76Gb is a bit stingy these days - I want capacity and performance, not just one! I also have to work out how to add another HDD to my PC : 5 drives already, 2x180GXP (180Gb), 1xRaptor 76Gb, 1x7200.7 (200Gb) and 1x7200.8 (300Gb)