or Why I Almost Lost Data Today
Some of you who follow my twitter may already know that one of the inevitable misfortunes that can happen within a computer centric lifestyle is Hard Drive Failure. Let me tell you what has happened to me.
For one person, I have a lot of hard drives floating around.
*1x Intel SSD 80GB (Bay, Thinkpad X61 tablet)
1x Hitachi HDD 160GB (From Bay)
*1x Intel SSD 120GB (Work laptop, Thinkpad X201)
*1x Western Digital Caviar Blue WD10EALS 1TB (Juniper, ZaReason Limbo 6000A)
*1x Samsung Spinpoint F2 EcoGreen HD103SI 1TB (Parsley: HDD1 aka. HDA, QNAP TS-459 Pro)
*1x Samsung Spinpoint F1 HD103UJ 1TB(Parsley: HDD3 aka. HDC)
*2x Western Digital Caviar Green WD10EADS 1TB (Parsley: HDD2,4 aka. HDB/HDD)
1x Western Digital Caviar Green WD20EARS 2TB
1x Maxtor DiamondMax 6L200M0 200GB
2x Seagate Barracuda 250GB
* denotes a drive that is “live”.
I think I have more, just not near me. This list also does not include the many drives that I have killed over the years. I’ve learned a few things about hard drives. For instance, NEVER buy, borrow or otherwise acquire a hard drive that was manufactured in the Philippines, in my experience they die in less than a year. The worst example is when I bought a 500GB external drive in my first year of university, that lasted 3 months… the enclosure is still in good use.
My collection has spawned by harvesting old drives from computers that get replaced over time (see Maxtor and Seagate drives). The Spinpoint F1 was the first 1TB drive I owned, mostly for storing Anime and backups that wouldn’t fit on a laptop. Over time, I started to load up Nutmeg (predecessor to Juniper) with terrabyte drives when I experimented with setting up a home server and LVM. I could leave Nutmeg active to do some number crunching while I went about my day; The WD Cavier Green lineup appealed the most, boasting low power consumption and high density.
Now when I got a dedicated NAS with an extensive feature set provided by QNAP, 2TB drives were still a little bit too expensive, so I transferred the 4x1TB drives in Nutmeg to Parsley. Cleaver juggling of bytes to the smaller drives let me transition to this new solution without loosing data.
Of course, now my big drives are all in one basket so the 2TB Caviar Green, the latest of my drives, is used as redundancy that I keep in the enclosure mentioned above. It also helps data juggling when I need to do maintenance/experimentation on. I should note that QNAP puts a lot of scripts and abstractions on their NAS (in the name of user friendliness I presume), unfortunately this prevents me using LVM and hence I’m resorted to store data on single drives.