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Smitty2k1

How would you expand?

11 posts in this topic

Hi Everyone, mITX unRaid user here. My motherboard and case support a 6 HDD array. I've currently got the following:

 

Parity - 4TB 5,400 RPM standard drive

Disk1 - 4TB 5,400 RPM NAS drive

Disk2,3 - 4TB 5,400 RPM standard drive

Disk4,5 - 2TB 5,400 RPM standard drive

 

All drives are almost full except for Disk5 which is empty. Disk5 is also a very old, very slow disk which needs to go before I start to put data on it. Therefore I see myself in the market for one of the following:

 

Option 1) Standard 4TB drive. This is my cheapest option, as they can usually be had for ~$99. It gives me 2TB of additional storage and replaces a 'must be replaced' drive.

Option 2) NAS/high performance 4TB drive. This is my 2nd cheapest option. I would replace the parity drive with this NAS drive for additional durability/performance and use the current parity drive to replace disk5.

Option 3) Standard 6TB or 8TB drive. This would replace the parity and give me easier future growth. Use the current parity to replace disk5. This is additional cost with no performance upgrade or immediate returns.

Option 4) NAS/high performance 6TB or 8TB drive. This is my most expensive option but sets the array up for the best possibility for future growth. 

 

I don't have an exact capacity increase amount, but I would say I am putting ~2-3TB of data on my server each year. Therefore, if I get a single 4TB drive to replace my 2TB drive I have at least one year before I need to purchase another drive. 

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Option 1 now, option 3 later to replace your parity drive, then this disk replaces disk 4.

 

Done.

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Option 3 is how I would go about it. Replace parity with 8TB drive , let parity rebuild and then use the old parity drive as a replacement for disk 5. No need to pre-clear, just format and then rebuild disk 5.

1 hour ago, Smitty2k1 said:

Option 3) Standard 6TB or 8TB drive. This would replace the parity and give me easier future growth. Use the current parity to replace disk5. This is additional cost with no performance upgrade or immediate returns.

Here is a great price on 8TB drive 

 

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I prefer option 3 or 4.  No need to go crazy, but I like WD Red, HGST, or Seagate Ironwolf.  I don't think you should continue to invest in 4TB disks if you want to stay in an SFF case, since you're nearly full using them now.

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Definitely 3 or 4. You said 3 gives no immediate returns, but actually option 3 or 4 gets you 2TB additional capacity since you will replace a 2TB with the old 4TB parity.

 

Since you can't add any drives (ashman70 has 36 bays, I have 2 mITX servers myself) I would say don't ever replace any drives without going larger, so NO to options 1 and 2. And going larger parity now will allow you to also go larger in the event you need to replace a failed data disk.

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4 hours ago, Smitty2k1 said:

Disk5 is also a very old, very slow disk which needs to go before I start to put data on it.

 

I just wanted to comment on this. You say you don't trust the drive to put data on it, but by even having it in the array, you are trusting it to be able to rebuild another failed drive.

 

Don't do that. If you don't completely trust the drive, don't put it in the array. EVERY drive must be perfect to correctly reconstruct a failed drive.

 

I realize my comment doesn't directly address your immediate concerns, but the way you worded your comment reminded me of my 1st and only data loss with unraid MANY years ago. I had a mostly empty drive I didn't care about and knew was flakey in my array, and a drive I thought was perfectly healthy failed with important data on it. The rebuild failed because of the flakey drive.

 

Learn from my mistake.

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+1 on having no flaky drives in your array. We're not talking pastry.

 

You can get a lot of space in your shell using 8TB or 10TB drives, and the sooner you start with the big drives, the happier you'll be down the road as you replace worn out drives in your system.  For most of us there's no way to go but an increase in storage capacity as the years go by.

 

If you can swing it, get an 8TB drive with a 3 year or 5 year warranty, as they generally last longer than the cheap 8TB externals and similar.  Sometimes you get lucky (I have a WD Green drive that's 22 000 hours over its expected lifespan) but mostly you end up replacing lower quality drives more often.  The total cost of ownership either way is hard to predict, but higher grade drives should last long enough to be worth it, if for no other reason than you're not replacing drives every 3, but rather every 7 years.

 

 

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Thanks for the input everyone! I'll definitely look at 6TB or 8TB drives.

 

Since this will be my parity drive for quite some time, I think I should invest in a "NAS grade" drive like a WD Red. However, what are your thoughts on the 7,200 RPM NAS drives like the Ironwolf or WD Red Pro? Worth the extra $$$??

 

Harro: the 8TB drive you posted is one of the Seagate "backup" drives right? Aren't those supposed to be BAD to use as a parity drive? 

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5 minutes ago, Smitty2k1 said:

Also I see this 8TB model is on sale for $179 at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01HD6ZLQ6/ref=psdc_595048_t1_B01HAPGEIE

 

Is it a different drive then the 8TB listed earlier in this thread? Are either drives appropriate for a parity drive in unRaid?

The link is to an external drive. I personally don't like to mess with shucking them just to save a few bucks, others have had some successes and some problems depending on specific external drives.

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53 minutes ago, Smitty2k1 said:

Thanks for the input everyone! I'll definitely look at 6TB or 8TB drives.

 

Since this will be my parity drive for quite some time, I think I should invest in a "NAS grade" drive like a WD Red. However, what are your thoughts on the 7,200 RPM NAS drives like the Ironwolf or WD Red Pro? Worth the extra $$$??

 

Harro: the 8TB drive you posted is one of the Seagate "backup" drives right? Aren't those supposed to be BAD to use as a parity drive? 

I have not had any problems with the 8TB drive as parity. Last parity check I ran was on 2017-04-14,took 21 hr,48 min,20 sec  at 101.9 MB/s with 0 errors. That is on 17 drives.

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