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About bman

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  1. I haven't been able to find or devise a way to get what I'm after so hopefully I can explain it well enough, and maybe someone more versed can lend some ideas. I'd like to be able to have unRAID cache active reads and serve them up from the cache location. The cache should be configurable such that it can be placed anywhere (such as /mnt/cache if one has an SSD, or /tmp if one has a bunch of RAM to throw around). The idea is to allow multiple users to stream content from unRAID simultaneously and also for the administrator (me) to be able to copy new files to it without disrupting the flow of bits to the rest of the family. Often there are a couple of users wanting content from the same disk I am trying to write new files to, and this can get annoying with dropouts if I start writing more than one or two files at a time. So if there was a way for unRAID to cache reads from specific IP addresses (or not from explicitly defined ones to avoid it caching torrents or other less important streams) it would certainly help in this regard. Alas it seems large SSDs are not going to be affordable enough to replace spinning disks in the array any time soon, so to me at least this seems a pretty decent upgrade in the interim. Does anyone have thoughts on how this might be accomplished?
  2. bman

    Am I stuck with AHCI?

    Got another PERC controller and booted with motherboard SATA controllers disabled, so no need for AHCI drivers anywhere. Hasn't solved the issue of fluctuating write speeds with periodic drops to zero.
  3. bman

    Supermicro unRAID System From MrRackables

    My own experience with the same vendor is positive. I've purchased a few 4U Supermicro chassis from them, all with 24 hot swap bays and rack rails and SAS backplanes and PSUs included. One time they sent me the wrong outer rails to go with the chassis rails. I couldn't figure out what was happening but I couldn't get the chassis into the rack rails. I contacted them and they said to send a photo. After I did they responded quickly to apologize for sending mismatched rails to me. They sent the correct ones quickly with no extra charges to me. So +1 for good experiences with them. (I unfortunately haven't received any freebies - but I agree they are reputable sellers!)
  4. bman

    Upgrade and Migration advice

    SSD is preferred for app drives due to the seek + access times being so short; but SSD is not necessary. As with anything, performance is based on the slowest part of the system. Using a cache drive, even an HDD should net you better speeds than 25MB/s since unRAID doesn't have to update parity at the same time you're writing to cache. (Once mover is invoked according to its schedule, parity is updated as files are moved from cache to array.) For what it's worth, I also choose SSD for cache (specifically, and only Samsung Pro series devices) because they have more longevity and reliability than magnetic drives. That eases my mind enough that I don't worry about using a single cache drive rather than an array of them for RAID1 cache. Saves me a bit of cash to boot!
  5. bman

    New Build Advice

    I agree with bjp999 re: SSD too small. Granted you can always install another SSD should it come to this, but in my mind with a system with that much capability I don't think it would be too long before you found additional Dockers and VMs you'd like to run.
  6. bman

    Upgrade and Migration advice

    Having just done this I'd advise to keep the old i5 and mobo you've got if you're confident those parts have good life left in them. I just bought a new "gaming" board and have had a lot of frustrations with it, at least for my own setup. - It has no VGA output on built-in video, so I need to add a card or run DVI <-> HDMI converters and cables and thereby not be able to use my KVM switch any longer - it expects a boot device of some sort to be present before I can get into the BIOS - It only sometimes POSTs with a single stick of RAM. It seems much happier with two. I spent a lot of time puzzling these bits out - next time I will avoid gaming boards (this is an Asus Z270E Gaming fwiw) with features I will never get to use with unRAID... but it was what was on the shelf at my local shop and I was down one server for too long. Otherwise, agree with building a 'new' server that is unRAID 6 and just copying over what you need from your current running v5 one. Then re-use the v5 drives in your new server when done the copying. +1 on the XFS too, not least of which for me is because I like the File Integrity plugin which is not recommended for use with ReiserFS drives,
  7. bman

    Am I stuck with AHCI?

    Just had a server go down due to motherboard (or CPU) troubles. It was old. I bought an Asus Z270E Gaming board and Kaby Lake CPU and upgraded to unRAID 6 on that server. Now I think I am having the AHCI driver issue where file transfers fluctuate between full rate (100+ MB/s) and zero throughout. Moving loads of large files with rsync from reiser disks to new XFS disks, so it is not a network issue. In the Asus' BIOS I have only AHCI or Intel RST (RAID) options for the built-in SATA ports. Is there a way to use another driver for the AHCI ports or do I just need to find another PERC controller and not use the motherboard ports? I'd like to use the motherboard ports as I only have one more PCIe slot available, and it's an x4 instead of the full x8 needed by the PERCs. Any thoughts?
  8. bman

    WD 10tb Gold

    Mmmm, 10TB gold.... come on lotto numbers, papa needs some brand new storage!!
  9. bman

    WD 10 TB RED - who's going to buy it.

    Agreed - it's worth it (to me at least) to pay $120 more to get two more years' warranty and the relatively high (550 TB annually) workload rate compared to the Red's 180 TB rate. That extra $120 in theory should net you a drive lifespan at least double the Red's warranty period (though I suspect the Reds are good for five and the Golds good for 8 to 10 years' use with unRAID).
  10. You can add more USB adapters too, until you run out of slots or PCIe lanes. IMHO it's all a bit fidgety and I would just pop them into some 5-in-3 hot swap bays and attach with SATA/SAS and be done with the USB translation in the middle.
  11. bman

    WD 10tb Gold

    Golds are better anyway. Same speed as Blacks when comparing same-size drives, but Golds use less power, have an order of magnitude lower non-recoverable read error rate, twice the load/unload cycles (whatever that means) and 5 year warranty. AFAIK Blacks have always had 5-year warranty - except maybe for a brief period after the Thailand floods several years back. Given the specs though I would expect Golds to last a bit longer. I'm looking for 10 years from them - but not holding my breath.
  12. bman

    Unraid as location for Photos backup

    Technically you can have just one drive in a "group" for use with FreeNAS, but if I understand your question correctly, then the answer is yes, they spin in groups. And need to be upgraded in groups, too... that's my personal "nope!" decision point. I like being able to upgrade one drive at a time as needed.
  13. bman

    WD 10tb Gold

    I'd be happier with WD having a 6 year warranty - I mean c'mon, they're frikkin GOLD! (and Red Pros and Blacks already offer 5 years... soo) But I am happy with them thus far. Will know more after 5 years of (ab)use.
  14. bman

    The Power Supply Thread

    I guess if you measure its outputs with an oscilloscope under different loads to check ripple and general quality of the signal, as well as deviation from expected output, you could be suitably impressed by a PSU. Or maybe it's nicely lit and has an LED readout telling you how much power you're using... not performance related, but lights and gizmos generally impress on a subconscious level if nothing else!
  15. After 9 - 11 years of running the same system I usually upgrade to something newer. Never had any thermal interface material (silicone paste or otherwise) let me down over long periods, because I never remove the heatsinks after first installation. So I guess what I'm sayin' is, I wouldn't bother with a 3 year repaste regimen because it's not as good a use of my time as, say, trying some trendy new beer

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