HD's: How Many Is 2 Many For 1 PC?

Suppose my PC HD needs are around 1TB. What makes

more sense, in terms of longevity, speed and reliability:

- To have the data divided amongst 6 drives of varying

capacities (80-500 GB) ... OR

- To have the data stored in 2 large capacity (300/500GB)

drives ?.

That, in the backdrop of a Motherboard and Power Supply

(300W) that right now seem to be struggling with 5 HDs.

I am going to shortly get a PSU around 500-600W, but

the idea of managing multiple versus couple of HDs remains.

What it boils down to, is whether the large size HDs are

just as susceptible to failure as the smaller HDs, and if so

should you be putting all your 'eggs' in 1 or 2 baskets,

considering the current PEPCO situation that is doing HDs

no favors ?.

Would be obliged to hear some considered thoughts on

this subject.

.

.

.

Sheikh 'Risk Mgmt' Chilli

Depends on your pocket (money). Here are few options:

1) Get RAID 5 card (or RAID 6 hot swap-able HD card but it's over kill because you are not running an important server.) A RAID 5 card with hardware controller chip will be enough. But that's expensive card. Moreover, with my experience, I'll recommend you to buy two identical cards. Just in case one card is fried then you can use second card otherwise your RAID will be ruin. By the way, hardware control chip gives you best speed.

2) I shall recommend this because it's inexpensive. Either hack Windows XP (I have done this too) or install Windows 2003 Server (did this too). Create software RAID 5 of your harddisks. Even if your Windows is ruin and you need to format or take all harddisks to new computer, you can "reactivite" RAID in Windows because it's software. It's slower than hardware-card but benefits are awesome. All you need is a good dual-core processor to feed the needs of checksum in software RAID.

3) Put a dedicated PC as File Server and install *nix (there are special version of *nix available that do this job). This server will use RAID 5 and allow network-harddisk access over TCP/IP for Windows, *nix and Mac. I only did it once for a client and it was good.

--------------------

For my personal items, I use 2nd option, Windows' Software RAID. RAID 0 for page-file and RAID 5 for data. I have hacked Windows XP to use option of RAID 5. I am also using Windows 2003 Server for RAID 5.

If your goal is to put movies and audio files on 3 or more harddisks then do the software RAID 5. This is best for your needs and it gives enough output to play everything smoothly.

By the way, even with software RAID 5 you'll get quite good speed when compare to single harddisk.

Oh, I forgot to tell you that if any mishap happens due to electricity (any harddisk fails) then with your RAID 5, your data is secured and safe. All you need to do it to replace failed harddisk with new one and rebuilt RAID (which take couple of hours depending on size of data) and you are good to go without loosing even a single bit. :)

Any questions? :)

well you must have broad band right?? if your data fails on you for some reason then does it matter?? you can download all the movies and series again dude... my 2TB of data was recently wiped out for the 2 time.... i know i will get it all back... and the "important" stuff can never ever exceed something like 50gb or 100gb(which i am exaggerating like hell).... you can burn it+back it up on internet too... i used to get concerned about stuff now i just don't care...

i think there's a limit to how many you can have. i think its 6 or 7 for most boards. there's nothing wrong with having that many. just have proper ventilation as they will produce a lot of heat

Hey guys, are 1 tb harddisks already available in the market?

Why not just get an external hard drive to backup all your data, i'm pretty sure it'll cost less than 5-6 hard drives and you can move around data from one computer to another easily

WESTERN DIGITAL 1000GB 3.5" MY BOOK ESSENTIAL (WDHIU10000) is rs.12700 from galaxy.com.pk though on newegg.com its $95 which is rs.7600

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136186

@ zonglover

i dunno if 1tb hard drives are available here in market but there are hard drives over 1tb, on galaxy.com.pk it says 1tb is expected and 1.5tb is on available on order

Sheikh Chilli,

I'll suggest to keep the HDDs to a minimum unless you want to use them in RAID for hyper-sensitive-important data.

Each HDD you add should suck an average of 20Watts, so thats an increasing burden on the Naatwaan shoulders of your PSU.

Today my WD 400GB secondary HDD started action up, Games running from that HDD would freeze up, torrents are acting strange etc this hdd is hardly 5months used. Although my primary 200GB Seagate HDD is working just fine. I'm not sure if its my PSU or the HDD thats causing the problem, but i'd suggest to not exceed more than 3 HDDs. 500GB x3HDDs should be enough for you even if you're a multimedia/gaming freak.

میرے دو پیسے

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

Why not just get an external hard drive to backup all your data, i’m pretty sure it’ll cost less than 5-6 hard drives and you can move around data from one computer to another easily

WESTERN DIGITAL 1000GB 3.5" MY BOOK ESSENTIAL (WDHIU10000) is rs.12700 from galaxy.com.pk though on newegg.com its $95 which is rs.7600

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822136186

@ zonglover

i dunno if 1tb hard drives are available here in market but there are hard drives over 1tb, on galaxy.com.pk it says 1tb is expected and 1.5tb is on available on order

[/quote]

since you suggested backup, I would like to ask if you or anyone else would recommend any software to make backup (open source or free one is better :) ), I am thinking more in terms of daily incremental backup style rather than bare copy/paste…

Wow, thanks guys. That's a lot of good information right

there. A few years back, a 10GB HD seemed like a awful

waste, since few could dream of filling it up on a 4 KBps

connection. Now we're talking GBs, while the world has

moved to TBs.

wampyr, I know your recommendation is awesome even

though I understood about half of it and the rest I will

have to do research on. Right now I have 3 SATAs and I

believe I have two configured in some sort of a RAID 0/1

assembly. What little I understood of RAID is that from

among the different configs it offers, some end up having

mirror copies of data on several HD in your array. I always

wondered if it is economical (space wise) to have multiple

copies of data on the limited space one has on HDs ?.

h4tEbr33d, it takes a lot of time and effort to gather the

data and I just don't want to make it easier for PEPCO to

screw me over royally. :)

osmanzubair658, external HD is a good idea, but if I will

be using it every day and it will be connected to the PC

24/7, it will also be exposed to the vagaries of KESC. I

believe Galaxy keeps 1TB, although it usually tends to run

out of it every month (I have been following the case).

AbbasJin, first of all dude where have you been keeping

yourself !?. Exams over aaj kal ?. And yeah, I get what

you are saying. More than three is asking for trouble on

a P4 with 300W PSU. Right now the PSU is making the

sort of noises our bakra was making on the last Eid...

.

.

.

Sheikh 'Hoarder' Chilli

@sheikh_chilli

Brief view:

RAID 0 = 40GB + 40GB = 80GB RAID 0

No space is wasted. But it has no data safety as no parity is saved. One harddisk dies, all data is lost. Fast (double speed) on read and fast (double speed) on write. Good for Page-File and temporary files (that's how I use it).

RAID 1 = 40GB + 40GB = 40GB RAID 1

Everything is mirrored on harddisks. Very secure but lots of space is wasted. Even if one harddisk dies, data is secured on other harddisk. Good for securing data with only two harddisks. Not economical.

RAID 5 = 40GB + 40GB + 40GB = 80GB RAID 5

Distributed parity on all three (or more, better with 5+ harddisks). Even if one harddisk dies, you can replace that harddisk and reconstruct RAID array using parity check and your data is secured (until more than one harddisks dies simultaneously).

With 5 harddisks:

40GB + 40GB + 40GB + 40GB + 40GB = 160GB RAID 5 (only 40 GB in lost in saving parity)

RAID 5 is very economical to secure data. Software RAID 5 in Windows is very easy to do and easy portable too.

I hope that I make some sense in this post :)

@AbbasJin

Good to see you :)

There is no Jin in Tekken who stands in last except AbbasJin :)

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

Suppose my PC HD needs are around 1TB. What makes

more sense, in terms of longevity, speed and reliability:

- To have the data divided amongst 6 drives of varying

capacities (80-500 GB) … OR

- To have the data stored in 2 large capacity (300/500GB)

drives ?.

That, in the backdrop of a Motherboard and Power Supply

(300W) that right now seem to be struggling with 5 HDs.

I am going to shortly get a PSU around 500-600W, but

the idea of managing multiple versus couple of HDs remains.

What it boils down to, is whether the large size HDs are

just as susceptible to failure as the smaller HDs, and if so

should you be putting all your ‘eggs’ in 1 or 2 baskets,

considering the current PEPCO situation that is doing HDs

no favors ?.

Would be obliged to hear some considered thoughts on

this subject.

.

.

.

Sheikh ‘Risk Mgmt’ Chilli

[/quote]

I think you need to go for a balance. Two or three large hdds are better than a whole lot of smaller ones. It gets confusing when you have too many hdds. Also you waste space due to disk fragmentation. Windows for instance needs 15% free disk space to defragment a single drive. If you have more smaller drives that means you have to manage it all such that each drive has 15% free space. Very complicated indeed!

Also if there is a power surge all your HDDs are going to be affected. So I have to wonder how much of an advantage there is in having more that one large drive?

Maybe its better if you invest some money in a good UPS/power stabilizer.

It is better to keep the number of HDDs low but enough so that if one disk fails, you are not left helpless. For instance, for 1TB, 2 x 500GB or 3 x 320GB or 1 x 500GB and 2 x 320GB combination should work. That way, if any of the disk fails, you can still keep working.

Moving on to the issue of power consumption, assume a 20-25W load per HDD. Even using 4 HDDs amounts to an approximate of 100W (max). A Chinese 30 Watt PSU delivers maybe 225-250W max. a 100W load on that is a very significant amount considering power needs of other devices like Mainboard, RAM, CPU and Gfx. Card.

Buy an IBM Blade Rack. You will get all the reliability and speed you want

@Sheikh_Chilli

Hey :)

I've been hear, keeping an eye on the threads as a silent reader. Yup done with exams. YOUR activities here have decreased too compared to what they were a year ago. Howz you? and life?.

Couldn't stop laughing at the 'making sounds like what our bakra made last on last eid' that'as hilarious. My PSU has the same noise for the first 5 mins when I turn it on. But the noise is gone once the engine gets 'garam'.

@wampyr

Hey :)

you still on wateen ?

Thanks for zi jin praise *fanboyist me* lol :D

@AbbasJin

My PSU (fan to be specific) also make same noises like a car engine until it gets warm enough (on choke like a car in winters) to work smoothly :D

Hanging with Wateen, waiting for PTCL EVDO's USB or other options (other than PCMCIA card) :)