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Robbie Ferguson

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About Robbie Ferguson

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  • Birthday 07/17/1979


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    Ontario, Canada
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  1. LOL, that I'm getting notifications that my thread from 2009 is getting bumped makes me smile. Glad some of you are still finding it useful. Yes, it could use an update. It's 11 years+ old :) But seems it's still working for folks, so that's cool. Just thought I'd say hi and thanks for continuing to use the tool :)
  2. While you apologize for rebirthing an old thread, I absolutely adore that folks are still using the capacity calculator, and it inspires me to enhance it. It was built so long ago that the interface is pretty ... ugly. LOL. I will put it on my to-do list.
  3. Upgrade complete. Thanks for the initial suggestions folks. I replaced the 500 GB drive with the pre-cleared 3TB drive, having pre-cleared it on the old server I had laying around. It took around 46 hours to pre-clear, but my array was up during that time since I didn't do it on the unRAID box. The only other note is that I ran a parity check beforehand. I wanted to know I had 0 parity errors before swapping drives. With 0 errors, I was fully confident in pulling that 500 GB and it went great. unRAID was only down for about 10 minutes while it came online with the new drive, then it proceeded to restore the data to the 3TB drive for me while everything was up. During that process, we watched a 720p movie on Plex without a single skip, so I was pleased Thanks again! Robbie
  4. bonienl yes, I could definitely do that, but I really want to maximize the space. And to be 100% clear, I have a full backup of all the important stuff on the array, off-site. So the problem of multi-drive failure is more of a time thing than a data loss thing for me. Yeah, I suppose I could indeed consider what you suggest, and it's a really good suggestion... deprecate those old 400-500 GB disks and maybe add yet another 3 TB in one of their place, reducing the power consumption of the rig, the chance of multi-drive failure and so-on... But that said, there is some truth in this: a 3TB drive is more likely to catastrophically fail and lose data than an old 400 GB drive The old saying rings true: they don't build 'em like they used to - haha!
  5. Just to reiterate what trurl said, I would still recommend a pre-clear. Here's the scenario: install a drive that is not pre-cleared. It may last a while (perhaps a few days after its warranty expires if Murphy's Law comes into play - lol!) and then fail. You'll have a bunch of [possibly private] data on it at that point, may be out of warranty, and will have a hard time RMA'ing the drive since so much time has passed, plus you'll have to take your array offline potentially to protect your parity (I wouldn't want to keep running with a failed drive for any length of time!). On the flip-side, you pre-clear it now, which essentially "burns in" the drive... makes sure it's "strong like bull". If it's gonna fail, it's gonna fail, and new drives CAN and DO fail. So this way, you're able to RMA it (return it, get a replacement) BEFORE you put any [private] data on it, and before it even becomes part of your array. So it's no harm done other than the frustration of the lost time. Pre-clearing does not guarantee a drive will not fail. It simply gives you the peace of mind in knowing that it likely won't fail right away, and that you can trust it with your data. Either that, or it will fail during the pre-clear and you can easily return it without compromizing your privacy. It is definitely worth it. Glad you figured out the issue. I knew it! Pain in your backside... back pain... backpane! It makes sense! Tom--cheers. You guys are great so it's only fitting that your community should at least try to live up to that standard.
  6. Just a brief update for ya's. Yes, the mobo I have in this old server only supports up to 2 TB as per the specs in the link I provided. It's a chipset limitation. So, today at work I asked the boss if we had any old SATA controllers hanging around and he found me one... a 6-port SATA I card! LOL. So... slow as a dog, but thankful it DOES work -- it picked up the 3 TB drive no problem. So I booted up the server from a flash drive with the latest unRAID Trial (6.0.1) and Joe's latest version of the preclear_disk.sh script from the forum, and immediately started pre-clearing the drive. It's the only drive in the box so no worries about finding the right one It's chugging along right now at about 83 MB/sec doing the pre-read, so it's certainly moving at an acceptable pace despite the old SATA controller. And since it's a separate box and my unRAID server (think: PLEX) are still online for the weekend, so I'm happy! Once it's done the pre-clear, I'll simply remove one of my 500 GB drives and replace it with the 3 TB drive. A note for n00bs... I have a couple 400 GB drives and a couple 500 GB drives. Note that I am replacing a 500 GB drive. The temptation might be to replace a 400 GB drive since a 500 GB drive will give me an extra 100 GB if I leave it in the array. Here's my reasoning: If I replace one of the two 400 GB drives, I will then have a 400 GB drive as a spare. If the other 400 GB drive fails, I can replace it. However, if any other drive in the array fails, I will have to buy a new drive. By replacing one of the 2 500 GB drives, I now have a 500 GB spare. That means if the other 500 GB drive OR either of the 400 GB drives fail, I have a spare on hand. My likelihood of having to buy new gear in event of drive failure was just cut by 2/3 and the only expense to me is 100 GB of storage (which is moot since I'm adding 2.5 TB).
  7. It's a good thing you're not saying I'm wrong because then you'd be wrong! hehe http://www.intel.com/support/chipsets/imsm/sb/CS-022304.htm This ol' board falls under the 632xESB column All I need to do is pickup a SATA card and I'll be flying.
  8. Ah poo! The SATA controller on the old server only supports drives <= 2 TB. Gonna have to get a controller card to do this...
  9. Correct, yes: the intention behind the preclear is that I want to make sure the drive can be trusted while it's new (eg., easy to replace under warranty if it has trouble)... after all, we're into a 3TB drive here... a lot of data to recover via Parity if it were to fail... I'd rather have that peace of mind. To further the discussion, I decided against USB because 1) it is too slow and 2) it was said that it may have trouble with SMART (which is a big part of why we're pre-clearing!). I will be temporarily repurposing an old server to do the pre-clear, this way I don't have to take my array offline until the time I'm actually ready to swap drives... and since the drive will be pre-cleared, it won't be down for much time at all. Also, regarding Screen... that's an extra unneeded step since I can plug a monitor and keyboard into the server (not use telnet). Only reason you'd need to do telnet / screen is if you don't have physical access to the server or wanna do it from a remote location (or other room). Did you want me to film the process to feature on the show? Thanks everyone!!
  10. Glad to help, but sorry for your luck! Hope you don't have too much trouble getting your money back. There are some great deals on Newegg. If you're in Canada let me know 'cause we're partnered with newegg.ca. I just got a 3TB Seagate NAS drive for my unRAID server and paid just $140.
  11. And you're sure the drives are getting power when connected directly to the motherboard? If yes, do you have another PSU you can test with (or better yet, a Frozen CPU or Thermaltake Dr. Power tester?)
  12. Do the drives spin up when you power on? First thing I'd be looking at is the power supply. If they do spin up, it means they're getting power (you can hear them spinning if you listen closely, or feel the vibration of it by gently touching the drive). Are all cables connected correctly? Are you using a backpane? You mention trays so I expect perhaps you are. Try with one drive only, boot up and see if that one drive is detected. If not, refer to my first questions (is it powering up?) Do the cables go directly from the motherboard to the drives? Or is there something in between (eg., the backpane). If there is something in between, try plugging the drive DIRECTLY into the PSU and Motherboard (just do one, you'll know if it works) and see if it then detects. If it does, you can point the finger at the backpane.
  13. Yeah bjp999 I really like the idea of doing it on a separate box. Nope, no SATA ports at all are free (including eSATA)... my rig is chock full. Even the PCIe ports are all full of controllers. LOL. My only option would be an SATA multiplier. I'll give it a go on the old box and see what comes of it. Being that it's a dual-cpu Xeon 3.2 with 8 cores, it may actually be really good for it! And nice that I don't have to take my main array offline. Cheers!
  14. Thanks sparklyballs. I saw that somewhere, but am not concerned on that front since I'd be downloading it fresh from Joe's thread -- so it should be the very most newest one Cheers!