Showing posts with label hardisk. Show all posts
Showing posts with label hardisk. Show all posts


RAID monster Redux

So the first build was a lot of work and shortcuts were made. Screws not fitted, no cable management, no extra cooling, etc.

The summer is coming and that means hotter indoor temperature. Better fit those extra fans now! It will surely extend the lifetime of both the disks and the computer.

I had a whole bunch of Akasa & Noctua voltage reducers to decrease the overall noise level of all the fans.

System seemd to average at around 26 degrees celsius according to Speccy. :D Room temperature is 25.1. So that's pretty decend. That machine runs 10 hardisks, a Phenom 960T, 4 GB of 1066Mhz RAM + 10 fans. It only runs a limited 64MB old Nvidia card at the moment. This rig draws about 197 watts, So the fitting of 10 fans increased the watt usage by about 10, even after ALL of then was fitted with voltage reducers.

Work in progres! 

80mm fan attached with softmounts, diagonally :)

Rear fans & PSU fan:

  1. 2x80mm rear exhausts and a stock Phenom fan
  2. 1x80mm internal intake
  3. 1x80mm external intake

Front intakes: (Both covered with dust filters.)

1x120mm Akasa (SYSFAN)
1x80mm Somethingsomething (power siphoned from molex)

Cable managemnet done!

Custom fitted 120 and 80 mm fans blwing on the
side of the lower 6 disks trough chassis holes

Finished ! With a 8mm green led outtake in front of the CPU fan.


The Demise of a Harddisk

So, you don't need to be a computer expert to have realized that Maxtor harddisk are about the lowest quality disks you can buy. My stack here of about 7 broken Maxtor Disks, while almost every other disk (newer or older) works fine.

So here's how a Maxtor drive eels it way trough detection mechanisms before they go titsup without warning.

I had two 320GB Maxtor harddisks (salvaged from their horrible OneTouch external USB drives with notoriously faulty controllers)

So here is what's inside one of these:
Some custom IDE-2-USB interface
That disk is a regular 3.5" IDE drive.

When the controller fails (as both mine did about at the same time) you can take the disks out, they are still (Maxtorwize) ok.
It was two such disks that became one of the RAID0's in my file server.
I set up in RAID0 on a Medley RAID SiL controller. Suddenly my clients complain about the drive not beeing available.

Just some time before before this, I noticed that one of the drives had trouble syncing speed up to the other drive. I could hear it ticking, like 2-3 times per hour. That's how I got suspicious first. Since then, I proactively moved stuff from the drive to another drive (after a proper checksum check).

I then check out the fileserver with the RAID, and lo and behold, the controller software had issued warnings about a drive. Their SMART status was OK, but still the RAID controller was complaining.

So I am beginning to think that Maxtor drives fakes their SMART status and dies off without any warning.

Right now I am shuffling about as much as I can from the RAID :)

Anyway, after a 3rd reboot of the fileserver, and stopping other clients from accesing that RAID, I seem to be able to move files from it, uninterrupted, locally on the machine. I just hope this will hold until the disk dies. I'll reconfigure the two disks to RAID1 and wait for the first one to fail. At least then I've only lost 320GB of free space and not 640GB of stuff. (That particular RAID was purely a playground and download setup.)

I have a RAID10 setup of WD disks, let's just say I have a lot more confidence in that! Also I have a spare disk for that RAID should it ever become needed !

UPDATE: May 8th 2012:
The RAID10 actually failed! It went better than expected