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PianoPlayer88Key

wanting to get a few SSDs/HDDs, get rid of old HDDs.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

 

Hi...

 

I have a few too many hard drives and need to get rid of some old ones.  Also I'd like to get a couple high-capacity HDDs and a few SSDs.

 

For 3.5" hard drives, I'm looking at a couple 12TB or 14TB drives.  Some models under consideration include:

  • 14TB Seagate Exos X14 ST14000NM0018
  • 14TB Toshiba Enterprise Capacity MG07ACA14TE
  • 14TB WD HGST DC HC530 WUH721414ALE6L4
  • 12TB Toshiba Enterprise Capacity MG07ACA12TE
  • 12TB Seagate Exos X14 ST12000NM0008


I'd like them to be reliable, good for 24/7 operation with multiple drives in close proximity (like NAS / enterprise grade), 7200 rpm, definitely not SMR, among other things.
 

I basically want to use one for main data storage, and the other as a backup for it.  Right now I'm leaning toward the 14TB Toshiba and WD.  (I'm a bit wary of Seagate right now, but might be willing to try them out if I can buy one Seagate and one from a different brand.)

 

There's a chance I may also want to get an 8TB drive as well.  I'd also consider WD Gold or Red (but not 5400 rpm), Toshiba N300, Seagate IronWolf, or a few others.  (I have 2x 10TB and 3x 8TB HGST Deskstar NAS drives, maybe a 4th 8TB might be a good idea.)

 

 

 

For 2.5" SATA SSDs, I'm basically wanting to get like 3 or 4 or so, around 500GB or 1TB.  Some brands/series under consideration include:

  • ADATA SU800
  • Crucial MX500
  • Kingston KC600
  • PNY XLR8 CS2311
  • Samsung 860 Evo
  • SanDisk Ultra 3D
  • Seagate BarraCuda 120
  • SK hynix Gold S31
  • Team L5 LITE 3D
  • Team T-FORCE DELTA RGB
  • Team T-Force VULCAN
  • WD Blue 3D
  • WD Red SA500

 

I'm basically looking for something with DRAM cache and TLC, something that doesn't slow to a crawl when doing extended writes (like if I write to the entire drive all at once I don't want it slowing down to like 80 MB/s after a while, but stay around 500 MB/s if my source can keep up), and has decent longevity / write endurance, among other things.  Also I want 500/512GB or 1TB, not 480GB or 960GB for the SATA SSDs.

 

These will mostly be for extra OS installs, housing VM files, etc.  I have a couple clones of my 256GB boot drive SSD on hard drives (a 750GB and a 1TB), and would like to move those to ~500GB SSDs, with some Linux VMs (that are currently on a 2TB HDD that's probably only ~10-20% full last I checked)) going on a 1TB or 2TB SSD.

 

 

 

 

As for an NVMe SSD, I'm looking at getting a 2TB M.2 NVMe to put in my laptop (Clevo P750DM-G).  I'm trying to choose from the

  • ADATA XPG GAMMIX S11 Pro
  • ADATA XPG SPECTRIX S40G RGB
  • ADATA XPG SX8100
  • ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro
  • Corsair MP510
  • Crucial P5
  • HP EX950
  • Mushkin Pilot-E
  • Patriot VPR100 RGB (unless its heatsink would be too thick to fit in my laptop)
  • Pioneer APS-SE20G
  • PNY XLR8 CS3030
  • Sabrent Rocket
  • Samsung 970 EVO Plus
  • Seagate FireCuda
  • Silicon Power P34A80
  • WD SN750

 

Again, I want DRAM and TLC, something that doesn't slow to a crawl with extended writes (preferably maintaning at least 1-2 or even 3 GB/s after exhausting any DRAM or SLC cache), good endurance (preferably at least 3 PB), excellent random I/O (like at least 400-500K+, among other things.  (For the NVMe I'd maybe consider 1920GB for a good price with a good quality SSD.  Would still prefer the full 2TB but reaching "the actual capacity tier" isn't quite as much a requirement for my NVMe SSD like it is with my SATA SSDs.)  What would be some arguments for or against some models I've listed, or maybe something else I should alternately consider?

 

Once that SSD goes in my laptop (for general data storage), I'd be moving my 1TB 970 Evo to my desktop (board is an ASRock Z97 Extreme6), putting a fresh install of Windows 10 on it, and repurposing the desktop's current main boot drive (Crucial 256GB M550 2.5" SATA, dual-boot Windows & Linux) to be a dedicated Linux boot SSD.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also.... I'm needing to get rid of a bunch of old hard drives.  Picture below of the ones I'm looking at "ejecting", although there's a couple I might want to keep.

HDDs_Maybe_Get_Rid_Of_--_2020-08-05.thumb.jpg.6c6bd9d354302515c605562c994aa1d4.jpg

 

I've uploaded some screenshots of benchmarks, SMART info, etc, on those and other drives I have to a folder in Google Drive.

 

A few of them are basically dead (one of the 8.4GB IBM PATA and one of the 40GB Maxtor PATA are both clicking and not detected, and the two Transcend 256GB SATA SSDs might be detected when first plugging them in but drop off within a few minutes or less.

 

For the dead ones, what might be some good crafts to make from the parts?  Also maybe I should take apart some of the older but still working PATA ones cause maybe they'd be too old to be useful for anyone else, unless maybe someone like LGR, 8-bit guy, or some other person doing retro computers might want them?  I had someone in another post offer to take some off my hands as well.

 

For the not-as-old SATA drives, should I list them for sale somewhere, and if so what should I maybe ask?  Or maybe I should donate them?  (I've run DBAN on the working IDE drives, would also do the same for the working SATA drives that I get rid of, once I migrate any still-existing data to other drives.)

 

 

 

As I mentioned earlier, I might consider keeping a few of them, for example:

  • 8.4GB IBM IDE DTTA-350840 #WE0WEFR8284 - in a test copy I did, took just under 12 minutes to fill the drive from empty.  Beat that time with a modern 16+ TB HDD or 8TB QLC DRAMless SSD.  (Or, if I could get my hands on a <~40GB IDE HDD and benchmark that... I'd maybe go for like a 5MB or 10MB MFM HDD but my system wouldn't support it.)  This drive has 5 reallocated sectors.
  • or 20GB Maxtor IDE 32049H2 #L2R0189C - test copy took 12 minutes on this one too.  This drive has 1 offline uncorrectable and 5 soft read error rate.
  • or 40GB Maxtor IDE 6E040L0 #E1TDCPME - test copy was 12:12, SMART has no complaints, but error log has some "interface crc error command aborted" entries.
  • Also 80GB WD800BB-32CAA0 #WD-WMA8E1004969 - this was the first drive I personally bought.  Interestingly the label says WD800BB, but SMART says it's WD800JB-00CAA1.  Also one screenshot i have shows it benchmarking at 49-50MB/s reads and writes, and another screenshot shows it reading around 49 MB/s but writing around 6.7 MB/s.  At one point this drive was actually "dead" (had been sitting in a box for several years then when I plugged it in it was clicking) ... but somehow when I plugged it in after several months it resurrected itself after a few clicks.  After a bit of "grogginess" from waking up (it clicked again briefly), it's fine now, all it has to show for its illness is a single reallocated sector.
  • maybe 750GB WD7500AAKS #WD-WCAPT0467717 - first SATA HDD I bought.  Was at a local store, and at the time was both the largest capacity available AND the cheapest per GB, iirc.  Not showing any SMART errors.
  • Maybe the 5TB HGST drives, or some of them, or maybe a 4TB or two as well.  The 5TB ones seem to run a bit hot in my Define R5 though - was seeing them upwards of 55-60°C or so and they were almost too hot to touch.  I don't have as much heat issues with the 4TB ones, or the 8TB or 10TB ones.  (Sometimes some of them can be a bit loud though - my entire case will rattle when they do power-on seek tests or random reads/writes - I can often hear it in an adjacent room.)

 

 

As I've mentioned in a couple other topics today, I feel like I"m leaving some possibly important stuff out.  (However, this is already getting to where it might be a wall of text if I made it all one paragraph, used a 300+ point font at 300% zoom, and rendered it on one of those multi-monitor video walls. :P )

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8 minutes ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

 

Hi...

 

I have a few too many hard drives and need to get rid of some old ones.  Also I'd like to get a couple high-capacity HDDs and a few SSDs.

 

...

 

A few of them are basically dead (one of the 8.4GB IBM PATA and one of the 40GB Maxtor PATA are both clicking and not detected, and the two Transcend 256GB SATA SSDs might be detected when first plugging them in but drop off within a few minutes or less.

 

For the dead ones, what might be some good crafts to make from the parts?  Also maybe I should take apart some of the older but still working PATA ones cause maybe they'd be too old to be useful for anyone else, unless maybe someone like LGR, 8-bit guy, or some other person doing retro computers might want them?  I had someone in another post offer to take some off my hands as well.

 

For the not-as-old SATA drives, should I list them for sale somewhere, and if so what should I maybe ask?  Or maybe I should donate them?  (I've run DBAN on the working IDE drives, would also do the same for the working SATA drives that I get rid of, once I migrate any still-existing data to other drives.)

 

If they are clicking, the controller board might still be usable for someone who needs a controller board, but generally clicking means the drive heads are striking the side or spindle motor and are dead dead. Sometimes you open them and find that the heads are just dangling or bent rather than aligned to the drive. If the cylinders are still good, could always make a clock.

 

Otherwise, other than making a tear-down video of the drive itself, dead drives should probably be recycled, their value as "parts" is usually pretty low, and as far as crafts go, you can only make so many HDD clocks. The magnets in the drives however might be fun to screw around with, just keep in mind that the magnets in the 3.5" drives are usually powerful enough to pinch skin and crush fingers. The 2.5" drives are usually still pretty strong. Someone prior to me in the office had a habit of dismantling drives and leaving the magnets stuck to metal things in the room, it was a bit of a pain to get them off of things without scratching up what they were stuck to.

 

Anyway, SATA SSD's are basically worthless if they don't work, other than someone bothering to pull the flash chip off and replace it, basically not worth the effort to salvage, so you can probably just toss those PCB's in a shredder for fun. 

 

If you are seeking new drives to replace old drives, the rumor is that all consumer hard drives >2TB are shingled, and not super-reliable, and large drives are not reliable unless they are designed for an Enterprise NAS. So 12/14/16TB drives are very very fragile since they may have 6/7/8 platters in them, which means they shouldn't go into desktops.

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Ahh @Kisai.

 

The two drives that are clicking (an IBM 8.4GB and a Maxtor 40GB) sound quite different from each other.  The Maxtor is pretty quiet so you almost have to put your ear pretty close to the drive to hear it, and the fans in the PC drown it out.  (This especially happens on the occasions when the GPU fan starts up at crazy high speeds on power-on then slowly ramps down to more normal speed.)

The IBM drive, on the other hand, can be heard slamming its heads across the drive from clear across the room!  Also I hear a scraping sound in between clicks, which sounds like the mangled heads might be scraping the platters themselves.  (If I didn't say it earlier, I don't care about trying to recover any data on those two drives.)

I used to have a third clicking drive a few years ago - the 80GB WD800BB.  Its clicking was moderately loud, but didn't have the scraping sound between clicks.  Somehow, though, that drive spontaneously resurrected itself one day.  All it has to show for its issues is a single reallocated sector, and often its sequential write speeds are limited to like 6 MB/s while it still reads at around 40 or 50 MB/s, IIRC.

 

 

I don't think I'd really use ALL the drives (that I no longer have data use for) as crafts, probably just a few of them.  For the rest, I'm trying to figure out something to do with them, once I make sure all data is cleared / DBANned off them.  (I've done that with the working IDE drives, but not the SATA drives yet.  Also confession: I haven't figured out the logistics of shipping, like shipping containers for drives, etc, if I go that route.)

 

One idea that popped into my head was maybe some data recovery place might have use for some of the drives as parts?  Or for some of the newer / higher capacity ones that are still working, maybe some of those could be sold or donated?  Or some of the older still-working ones could go to someone who does things with semi-retro PCs?

 

 

As for the new drives... I've heard the manufacturers have for the most part published which models are SMR in their current lineups.  AFAIK, all the drives I'm considering are not SMR.

 

I personally would need larger drives to hold all the stuff (like 4K video footage from my Panasonic FZ1000 camera, as well as transcoded files for editing, for example) that I would be putting on them.

 

One scenario in my mind is keeping the three 8TB drives and the two 10TB drives, plus getting a fourth 8TB drive.  Then I'd basically have one of the 10TB drives be a backup of the other, and similar for the 8TB drives - two for data, two for backup.  That's 6 drives so far, plus getting two 12TB or 14TB drives, would bring it to 8, which already maxes out the bays in my Define R5.  That's only (8*2+10+14) 40 TB of storage plus 40TB of backup, though.

Another thing I was just realizing too, was maybe I should save the third 8TB drive for backing up my SSDs (including the ones I have yet to purchase hopefully soon), and not get the fourth 8TB drive (save the $ for my SSDs, or for future larger drives for example).

 

As for 14TB drives which is the size I'm currently leaning toward -- the ones I'm considering are, afaik, enterprise-grade drives.  (Not sure if they're specifically NAS drives, but I've heard most enterprise drives as long as they're not SMR should be good enough for pretty much any use case, if I got that right.)

 

As for the backup drives... I'd also maybe like to build a NAS, but that would be strictly for backups, NOT for offloading storage from my main box.  (When I offload storage, it would be cold storage, meaning unplugged and in a box on a shelf somewhere.)  I have an i3-6100 sitting orphaned in its retail box right now so LGA1151 is a possibility; I've also considered dual LGA771/1366/2011 as well.  I also have a Rosewill Thor V2 case sitting empty in a corner (the Define R5 replaced it for my main rig).  However, its drive trays are NOT compatible with the larger-capacity hard drives that lack the screw holes in the middle (and only have the far-spaced screw holes), and I don't only screw in 2 screws to a HDD / tray unless I go diagonal.  Also if I do a NAS for backups, it would be on a pretty limited budget - for example all the parts for it would be less than the cost of a single hard drive.  (Also I'd like to be able to use some backup media that's a lot cheaper per TB than hard drives, and holds more per device, even if it's slower, for example seek times rated in minutes.)  At some point I should try to make a NAS topic, although I'm wondering if it might be better for that if I register at Level1Techs forum and ask there?

 

As for the SSDs I'm planning to get ... anyone got ideas on how to decide which few to get?  I'm even willing to wait a little bit for better drives to go on sale, like a week or maybe two (or longer if I can't decide that fast which is typical me), but nothing crazy like waiting for Black Friday (if it even happens this year) or 2021.  Basically I'd like a 2TB (or could settle for 1TB maybe) decent M.2 NVMe SSD, plus about 3 or 4 or so 500GB to 1TB 2.5" SATA SSDs.

 

Also I'm wanting to figure out a way to do backups of OS installs that I can store on a platter hard drive (in such a way so that I can still access the files on them from my OS's file manager), then when I want to boot from one, somehow copy it to an SSD then boot from it.  I used to have some older backup boot partitions saved and squished on a 5TB and 8TB drive, but that was getting to where there were a ton of partitions on one drive to where WIndows was running out of drive letters to assign.  Also I recently tested "restoring" - copying to another drive (blank hard drive cause i don't have a spare SSD), but they wouldn't boot.  Also a few of them were pretty old - there was Windows XP, even Windows 2000 and some files / stuff from Windows 95 or 98.  Also somewhere I have some files we created dating back to 1989 and DOS 3.3!

Maybe I should ask about a good way to back up OS's in one of the OS subforums?  Not sure whether I should ask in Windows or Linux though, or maybe its parent forum cause what I want to do applies to both.

 

 

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1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

Ahh @Kisai.

 

The two drives that are clicking (an IBM 8.4GB and a Maxtor 40GB) sound quite different from each other.  The Maxtor is pretty quiet so you almost have to put your ear pretty close to the drive to hear it, and the fans in the PC drown it out.  (This especially happens on the occasions when the GPU fan starts up at crazy high speeds on power-on then slowly ramps down to more normal speed.)

Some noises are just normal for the drive, but dead drives do make very distinct noises when they're toast. They will sound like they are "power cycling" in a manner.

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

The IBM drive, on the other hand, can be heard slamming its heads across the drive from clear across the room!  Also I hear a scraping sound in between clicks, which sounds like the mangled heads might be scraping the platters themselves.  (If I didn't say it earlier, I don't care about trying to recover any data on those two drives.)

Yep, that's toast.

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

I used to have a third clicking drive a few years ago - the 80GB WD800BB.  Its clicking was moderately loud, but didn't have the scraping sound between clicks.  Somehow, though, that drive spontaneously resurrected itself one day.  All it has to show for its issues is a single reallocated sector, and often its sequential write speeds are limited to like 6 MB/s while it still reads at around 40 or 50 MB/s, IIRC.

Sometimes they will "fix" themselves but it's usually short lived. Like whatever is stored on the reallocated sector will still trash the access times on the drive. Sucks when it's in the FAT on FAT16/32 drives because that usually renders the drive unusable quickly. 

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

 

I don't think I'd really use ALL the drives (that I no longer have data use for) as crafts, probably just a few of them.  For the rest, I'm trying to figure out something to do with them, once I make sure all data is cleared / DBANned off them.  (I've done that with the working IDE drives, but not the SATA drives yet.  Also confession: I haven't figured out the logistics of shipping, like shipping containers for drives, etc, if I go that route.)

If they're being used for crafts, I probably wouldn't worry about protecting them that much, just roll them once in bubble wrap and tape it and make sure whatever box you use doesn't have any space for it to bounce.

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

One idea that popped into my head was maybe some data recovery place might have use for some of the drives as parts?  Or for some of the newer / higher capacity ones that are still working, maybe some of those could be sold or donated?  Or some of the older still-working ones could go to someone who does things with semi-retro PCs?

Possibly. The PCB's can usually be used (well hybrid drives likely can't.) You can rescue some drives that have controller failures by swapping the PCB, but that's a bit of a crapshoot if they're different versions/production series. Likewise, this is typically why when hard drives fail, usually a lot of the same model fail at the same time.

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

 

As for the new drives... I've heard the manufacturers have for the most part published which models are SMR in their current lineups.  AFAIK, all the drives I'm considering are not SMR.

 

I personally would need larger drives to hold all the stuff (like 4K video footage from my Panasonic FZ1000 camera, as well as transcoded files for editing, for example) that I would be putting on them.

Yep, mechanical drives aren't typically fast enough to actually work on 4K footage, but you can certainly store stuff on it.

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

One scenario in my mind is keeping the three 8TB drives and the two 10TB drives, plus getting a fourth 8TB drive.  Then I'd basically have one of the 10TB drives be a backup of the other, and similar for the 8TB drives - two for data, two for backup.  That's 6 drives so far, plus getting two 12TB or 14TB drives, would bring it to 8, which already maxes out the bays in my Define R5.  That's only (8*2+10+14) 40 TB of storage plus 40TB of backup, though.

Another thing I was just realizing too, was maybe I should save the third 8TB drive for backing up my SSDs (including the ones I have yet to purchase hopefully soon), and not get the fourth 8TB drive (save the $ for my SSDs, or for future larger drives for example).

The larger the drive, the more risky the data loss is. Like if you feel compelled, getting a system with multiple similar-capacity drives in a RAID array is a bit safer, but it has to be something you can swap the parts out of, so you want something that is closer to a desktop/server rather than those proprietary qnap/drobo type devices. 

 

Unless you're going to invest in all the other proprietary parts for those devices, if the device power supply or motherboard fails, you may as well throw the entire device out.

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

As for 14TB drives which is the size I'm currently leaning toward -- the ones I'm considering are, afaik, enterprise-grade drives.  (Not sure if they're specifically NAS drives, but I've heard most enterprise drives as long as they're not SMR should be good enough for pretty much any use case, if I got that right.)

Enterprise drives are SAS 10K and noisy as hell. You can use SATA drives in the same servers typically, but they kinda suck to do RAID with. RAID almost requires all the drives to be the same model, speed and capacity, though if you JBOD it you can use FreeNAS/ZFS instead. Not the most efficient use of drives, but if you want to just use a bunch of high capacity drives that's really the only option that allows using variable drives. The nice thing about FreeBSD is that you can upgrade it in place unlike typical Linux installations.

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

As for the backup drives... I'd also maybe like to build a NAS, but that would be strictly for backups, NOT for offloading storage from my main box.  (When I offload storage, it would be cold storage, meaning unplugged and in a box on a shelf somewhere.)  I have an i3-6100 sitting orphaned in its retail box right now so LGA1151 is a possibility; I've also considered dual LGA771/1366/2011 as well.  I also have a Rosewill Thor V2 case sitting empty in a corner (the Define R5 replaced it for my main rig).  However, its drive trays are NOT compatible with the larger-capacity hard drives that lack the screw holes in the middle (and only have the far-spaced screw holes), and I don't only screw in 2 screws to a HDD / tray unless I go diagonal.  Also if I do a NAS for backups, it would be on a pretty limited budget - for example all the parts for it would be less than the cost of a single hard drive.  (Also I'd like to be able to use some backup media that's a lot cheaper per TB than hard drives, and holds more per device, even if it's slower, for example seek times rated in minutes.)  At some point I should try to make a NAS topic, although I'm wondering if it might be better for that if I register at Level1Techs forum and ask there?

Hmm, you can typically build one out of any desktop-pc class parts, but the more drives you have the more RAM you need in it.

https://www.freenas.org/hardware-requirements/

 

Quote

Minimum Hardware Requirements:

These specifications are the bare minimum requirements to run a small FreeNAS system with baseline performance for 1-4 users.

  • 64-bit processor
  • One Operating System Drive (8GB minimum; USB Drive)
  • 8 GB RAM (ECC recommended but not required) will support up to 8 hard drives and an additional 1 GB of RAM is suggested for each additional drive
  • A SATA or SAS drive controller with any hardware RAID functionality disabled
  • At least one direct-attached disk
  • One physical network port

Note the word "baseline", if you have a chassis you can use 16 drives in, then you need 16GB of RAM

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

As for the SSDs I'm planning to get ... anyone got ideas on how to decide which few to get?  I'm even willing to wait a little bit for better drives to go on sale, like a week or maybe two (or longer if I can't decide that fast which is typical me), but nothing crazy like waiting for Black Friday (if it even happens this year) or 2021.  Basically I'd like a 2TB (or could settle for 1TB maybe) decent M.2 NVMe SSD, plus about 3 or 4 or so 500GB to 1TB 2.5" SATA SSDs.

The NVMe's are fairly expensive (my office paid nearly $1800 for a 1TB drive and It just had me going "what the hell, I could have bought 4 good/better ones from memory express instead.") However not all drives are considered equal. 

 

If you're going to build a NAS using whatever you have available, I'd probably suggest seeing if you can pickup/scrap some older skylake ix-6xxx/7xxxx desktop/laptops with them, as many business laptops have 256GB or 512GB SSD's in them, and these are out of warranty now so they'd be dumping them on secondary markets.

 

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

Also I'm wanting to figure out a way to do backups of OS installs that I can store on a platter hard drive (in such a way so that I can still access the files on them from my OS's file manager), then when I want to boot from one, somehow copy it to an SSD then boot from it. 

Kinda hard to do unless you use a NAS that can mount the drive image like an iSCSI drive, or mount the drive itself as an iSCSI device. Keeping it bootable however is probably not going to happen that way though, as Windows has to be installed the same way to read the drive, though it's a bit less aggrivating with stand-alone SATA drives that only have a choice between UEFI and non-EFI mode. NVMe drives also add in "RAID(native PCIe NVME) or AHCI(SATA)" mode which involve device drivers. Though I will point out that you can install Windows to/from an iSCSI drive or even run it off one using a PXE boot, though your network bandwidth will suffer for it.

1 hour ago, PianoPlayer88Key said:

I used to have some older backup boot partitions saved and squished on a 5TB and 8TB drive, but that was getting to where there were a ton of partitions on one drive to where WIndows was running out of drive letters to assign.  Also I recently tested "restoring" - copying to another drive (blank hard drive cause i don't have a spare SSD), but they wouldn't boot.  Also a few of them were pretty old - there was Windows XP, even Windows 2000 and some files / stuff from Windows 95 or 98.  Also somewhere I have some files we created dating back to 1989 and DOS 3.3!

Maybe I should ask about a good way to back up OS's in one of the OS subforums?  Not sure whether I should ask in Windows or Linux though, or maybe its parent forum cause what I want to do applies to both.

 

 

Windows is a bit pickier, but Linux and FreeBSD are pretty easy to both PXE boot and operate with iSCSI, once you get it setup. For the most part the windows "backup" (win7) tool is the only tool that will save and restore a copy of windows (even to different drives and computers) but you can't read the backup without restoring it. Hence if you need a "living" backup, it would be a bit involved, either in the form of

a) clone the OS to the iSCSI drive on the NAS, then cold-storage the physical drive

b) for OS's without iSCSI support, run those OS's inside a virtual machine that does.

 

My preference in such a situation is that I would not trust the NAS to not obliterate everything in an accident (eg an earthquake) so if you're going that route, I'd also suggest maybe some cloud/remote storage option, since a local NAS is a bit more of "all eggs in one basket" than multiple separate drives that can be individually stored apart.

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Edit #2:  Okay, done editing (I think).  Shuffled stuff around with spoilers - moved main content out of spoiler, put my edit notes in another spoiler.  (There are some spoilers in the main content, those are left intact.  I do wish there was an easier way to move things out of spoilers than highlighting / cutting / pasting.)  Also thanks mods for deleting my other accidental double post. :)

 

 

Spoiler

 

**EDIT #1** Accidentally posted due to keyboard error on my part involving the enter key and either ctrl / shift or something like that.  Still have quite a bit of work to do, may finish tomorrow as I'm not planning to stay up late.  Will put the entire thing in a spoiler for now.


WOW, mods, I'm seeing FOUR "duplicate" replies from me.  Maybe something glitched on my end?   (I was trying to create a few new lines.  I suggest leaving this one intact and deleting the other three.)  Also interesting -- when I edit this one, the other "duplicate" of this post is also edited.
Sorry for the tiny font, couldn't fit it all in one window on my 1080p screen so I had to zoom way out in Chrome, but this is what it looks like on my end.

1509610879_Screenshot(360).thumb.png.11e374de30cd1fe51a35b63cc8471d9c.png

And after a refresh, I now only see this one and the duplicate one below.  Maybe that's why it looked like I was editing two posts at once.

 

 

 


Main post begins below this line.

 

Another edit:  I forgot to link a Google Sheets spreadsheet I've made of some of the HDDs and SSDs I'm considering.  (The spreadsheet includes models, prices, links to pcpartpicker, amazon & newegg, a few stats, etc.)  Wasn't sure where else to put it in the post so I put it here.

 

There's quite a few in each category and size, but I"m only looking at getting a few, basically like

  • 2x large HDDs (12, 14 or 16TB), preferably different brands (ESPECIALLY if one of them is a Seagate, I'd like to see if Exos / IronWolf is more reliable than past bad experiences I & my brother have had with them, but I want to be cautious and have a NON-Seagate drive as a backup.)
  • maybe 1x 8TB HDD (so I'd have 4 - I already have 3 HGST Deskstar NAS 8TB drives.)  OR, I might use the 3rd 8TB drive I already have as a backup for my SSDs, and not get a 4th.
  • 2 or 3 (or 4?) "smaller" (250GB or 500GB) 2.5" SATA SSDs - for booting different OS's so I can keep them on separate drives - I'm thinking having separate MBR and GPT Windows drives, plus a Linux drive or two.
  • 1x 2TB NVMe M.2 SSD.  This would go in my laptop, and the 1TB 970 Evo that's in there now would be moved to my desktop, and get Windows installed on it.  Then the 256GB Crucial M550 2.5" SATA SSD that's currently dual-boot would become Linux only, as a main Linux OS.  (The other SATA SSDs mentioned above would be extra installs....although if I could find a way to keep dormant-but-still-file-explorable OS's on a large hard drive in one large partition (instead of the 20+ I've had before), then copy to an SSD if I want to boot that OS that day, I'd MUCH rather do that.

Pics in spoiler of how much clearance I have for M.2 SSDs - this might determine whether I can get ones with heatsinks or not - I'm thinking either not, or very thin heatsinks.

Spoiler

IMG_20200814_063019.thumb.jpg.2c20875f805f9f5a935f136df0efeabf.jpg IMG_20200814_063317.thumb.jpg.62ace1d50515714b426394966bd9ba95.jpg IMG_20200814_064536.thumb.jpg.647b8b29df7b141914a63bb772797ea9.jpg

 

 

 

On 8/12/2020 at 7:31 PM, Kisai said:

Some noises are just normal for the drive, but dead drives do make very distinct noises when they're toast. They will sound like they are "power cycling" in a manner.

Yep, that's toast.

 

Ahh.  Yeah, this is a video clip of the sounds two drives (40GB Maxtor and 8.4GB IBM, both PATA) are making.
The IBM drive is loud enough so that it even was heard over my GPU fan when I had the drive plugged in, and the GPU did the thing it occasionally does where upon powering on the system, the drive spins up to top speed.  (It eventually slows down over the course of a few minutes.)

 

Quote

Sometimes they will "fix" themselves but it's usually short lived. Like whatever is stored on the reallocated sector will still trash the access times on the drive. Sucks when it's in the FAT on FAT16/32 drives because that usually renders the drive unusable quickly. 

Ahh, interesting.
This is the WD800BB clicking in January 2017, then powering on normally and being recognized in April 2018.
In between there, I had plugged it in one day in mid / late 2017 or so, maybe using a different cable or running it upside down or something, I forget now ... it clicked several times, then somehow seemed to "catch into gear" and came to life.  I booted into Linux on my SSD, and immediately pulled up GParted and set to copy some partitions off it.
It was partway through the Linux partition (the last small one) when it dropped off again.  (I was able to get the Windows partition copied though.)
Reboot.....click...click...click.
But somehow .... over the course of a few more attempts, the drive seems to be back up and running.  Of course I don't use it as a daily drive or for anything critical, it's just for fun experiments.

All it has to show for in SMART is one reallocated sector.  Interestingly, there was one time I was doing a benchmark in CrystalDiskMark, and it had about 48-50 MB/s reads AND writes.  BUT, the last few times I've benchmarked it, reads were about the same, but writes were around 6-7 MB/s.

This folder in Google Drive has a few screenshots - SMART stats, and two different CrystalDiskMark runs.

A few of my working-normally drives can be a bit noisy on startup or when doing random I/O seeks, but they work fine.  (I think the ones making the loud noise shortly after I power the system on are 8TB or 10TB HGST NAS drives - HDN728080ALE604 or HDN721010ALE604.)

 

Quote

If they're being used for crafts, I probably wouldn't worry about protecting them that much, just roll them once in bubble wrap and tape it and make sure whatever box you use doesn't have any space for it to bounce.

Ah.  I was mostly thinking I'd be using crafts myself on a couple drives.  As for the ones I'd be getting rid of, I'd be either sending them to a recycler, or for the ones that still might have some life left, sending them to someone who could put them to use for their originally manufactured purpose.  (I'm thinking there'd be a wider "demand" for the 2TB and larger drives, whereas the smaller IDE drives might be a more niche "market", for example people like some of the retro tech youtubers.)

One issue I'm having (in my mind) right now is HOW would I ship the drives if I want to protect them.  I don't have HDD bulk shipping boxes laying around, and the prices were pretty high (like $50 or $100 or something like that I think) when I looked them up a while ago.  I still have retail boxes for the 4TB and 5TB HGST drives, and one or two of the WD drives, but other than that it's mostly just bare drives.
Some of the HGST drive retail boxes would fit nicely in a cardboard file box.

Spoiler

IMG_20170620_185948425.thumb.jpg.4b001a396c9544cc3aa4c3456630315a.jpg

 

 

Quote

 

Possibly. The PCB's can usually be used (well hybrid drives likely can't.) You can rescue some drives that have controller failures by swapping the PCB, but that's a bit of a crapshoot if they're different versions/production series. Likewise, this is typically why when hard drives fail, usually a lot of the same model fail at the same time.

 

Yep, mechanical drives aren't typically fast enough to actually work on 4K footage, but you can certainly store stuff on it.

Yeah, well it depends.  I was running an encoding test a while back, encoding a 4-minute 4K video to H.265 at max quality settings in handbrake (q / rf = 0, keyint = 1, placebo, etc) on my i7-4790K .... thing took FOUR DAYS!!! to transcode!  Also more recently I was doing a similar transcoding test, but with different footage.  It stopped after about 6 or 8 hours or so of transcoding (and about a minute or so of footage), cause the SATA SSD I was writing to ran out of space (started with about 100 - 120 GB free.)  (Source footage was 4K H.264 100mbps video shot with my Panasonic FZ1000.)

 

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The larger the drive, the more risky the data loss is. Like if you feel compelled, getting a system with multiple similar-capacity drives in a RAID array is a bit safer, but it has to be something you can swap the parts out of, so you want something that is closer to a desktop/server rather than those proprietary qnap/drobo type devices. 

 

Unless you're going to invest in all the other proprietary parts for those devices, if the device power supply or motherboard fails, you may as well throw the entire device out.

(*THOU ART WELCOME TO GO AND EFF THYSELF, CTRL+ENTER KEYBOARD SHORTCUT FOR SUBMIT POST!  It's too confusing when the same shortcut is used for two different things - ctrl+enter in steam, discord, google sheets, etc makes a new line in a cell / message, but not here.)

 

Hmm.... yeah I've pretty much shot down the idea of getting something like a drobo, synology, etc.  I'd rather build my own, I just can't decide what platform (I like some things about FreeNAS, AND I like some things about UnRAID.  Based on my research so far, my requirements are for some attributes that both support some of them each and both between them, but neither one supports all of them afaik.  I have a gut feeling that UnRAID would be closer to what I'd be looking for though.)

 

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Enterprise drives are SAS 10K and noisy as hell. You can use SATA drives in the same servers typically, but they kinda suck to do RAID with. RAID almost requires all the drives to be the same model, speed and capacity, though if you JBOD it you can use FreeNAS/ZFS instead. Not the most efficient use of drives, but if you want to just use a bunch of high capacity drives that's really the only option that allows using variable drives. The nice thing about FreeBSD is that you can upgrade it in place unlike typical Linux installations.

Ahh, I thought some SATA drives like some Seagate Exos, Toshiba MG06/07/08, WD Gold, HGST Ultrastar / DC530 / whatever were considered enterprise drives?  Or what's the step above pro-grade NAS drives (like WD Red Pro, Seagate IronWolf Pro, etc) that's not SAS drives?

 

Quote

 

Hmm, you can typically build one out of any desktop-pc class parts, but the more drives you have the more RAM you need in it.

https://www.freenas.org/hardware-requirements/

 

Note the word "baseline", if you have a chassis you can use 16 drives in, then you need 16GB of RAM

Yeah .. that RAM requirement is one of the things that is kinda turning me off of FreeNAS for now.  (I had spent a fair bit of time over the last year or two off and on researching parts for a possible FreeNAS build, though.  Some boards that were on my shortlist included

  • MSI C236A Workstation (ATX, LGA1151a, 64GB DDR4 Unbuffered ECC Max RAM, 6 SATA, 3x PCIe x16, I already have a Core i3-6100 laying around),
  • Supermicro X7DWE (ATX, 2x LGA771, 32GB DDR2 Registered ECC / FB-DIMM (DDR2 was pretty cheap last I looked, something like 70-80¢/GB), 4x PCIe x8/x16 (for LSI 9211-8i cards for example)
  • Supermicro X8DTH-6F (SSI EEB, 2x LGA1366, 192GB DDR3 Registered ECC, 8x SATA (via 2x SAS), 7x PCIe x16
  • Supermicro X9DRH-7F (SSI EEB, 2x LGA2011, 1TB DDR3 Registered ECC, 10x SATA (incl 2x SAS), 7x PCIe x16

But another issue I was having with the server boards idea was video output, especially on first boot.  I don't have, nor do I ever plan to get, a monitor that has VGA inputs.  Also I would want to leave ALL the PCIe slots for HBAs, so I'd have to use integrated graphics with HDMI or DisplayPort output.  The C236A was the only one on the above list that has that, and it doesn't support nearly enough RAM.  (For example, imagine 3x HighPoint Rocket 750's(had seen those on sale a while back) in the PCIe slots, all 40 ports having drives at least 16TB or larger (would buy like 1 or 2 at a time as needed for space, not all at once).  That's 16TB * 40 * 3 = 1.92 PB... then somewhere I had seen a 5GB RAM per 1TB storage suggestion for deduplication, so that would be a "requirement" of 9.6 TB RAM.  
Also I've been thinking that deduplication would not do what I really want - I'm thinking the data would still logically be there, just replaced with something like symlinks, instead of the duplicates actually logically being GONE which is what I want.


Of course that's QUITE a worst-case scenario (would be even more so if I calculated based on a board with 7x PCIe x16 slots and using splitters to split them into 14 PCIe x8) - I don't think I'd be doing things quite THAT crazy lol. :D 

 

Anyway if I did a backup server / device, I'm trying to figure out one that supports a ton of hard drives (I was using the math of how many drives could connect to each PCIe slot, using the LSI-9211-8i on the low end or the Rocket 750 on the high end), and the cost for the whole system NOT including the drives is less than the cost of a single typical mid-range NAS drive (like 8 or 10 or maybe 12 TB IronWolf / Red / N300.)
Then I remembered how much cheaper tape used to be vs hard drives (like in January 1994 for example - see highlights in pic of magazine ad in spoiler) - THAT's actually the price ratio of main storage vs backup I'm looking for.

Spoiler

1667726345_ECmoCKzVAAElnk--SGComputersJan1994highlighthddvstape.thumb.jpg.df2a9664ce43f5d109e9fced5a0ab38f.jpg

 

Also another issue with server hardware is noise.  I'd want to be able to record and stream music on my acoustic upright piano with the computer right there, and not have the mike pick it up.  Wanting to stream / record piano music is one of the big reasons why I want to get rid of a bunch of my smaller HDDs, and consolidate to a few larger ones (and SSDs).  Having the clutter is getting in the way.  I know hard drives aren't silent, but I'd like to be able to have my system be quiet enough so that ONE hard drive (not counting the noisy outliers I mentioned farther up) is louder than everything else that's not a mechanical hard drive, including all the fans at 100% (which means I'd probably have to not use the graphics card if it gets as noisy as the clip I linked elsewhere in this post), combined. :)  I've put a few pics in a spoiler.

Spoiler

 

Pics of PC under piano:

5a3b22f19f0f9_2017-12-201834-FDDefineR5needmoreHDDcagestrays.thumb.JPG.a4e750567d6d14e84dd4f391a1722df3.JPG 5ad49074cdee6_IMG_20180416_045830425_HDR-2018-04-16desktopsetupHDDs.thumb.jpg.3347f6268415aaa0c9f1f850bc16fbc9.jpg IMG_20180216_140838979_HDR.thumb.jpg.aac20a760d602975a6ace5f3e3e61d37.jpg

 

 

 

Pics of microphone (Zoom H2n) in piano:

IMG_20200323_051854.thumb.jpg.6d474812f5643b64461ee880b20c4497.jpg 1580680545_H2ninpianobacktostrings1(picA-2160x3840).thumb.jpg.b8b5be17972e6dca5b7805ad7d4d6685.jpg 216959525_H2ninpianonearfrontboard(picA-3024x4032).thumb.jpg.d9a209c3af58b0e45d52ea0bb561f96e.jpg

I did a couple recording tests a while ago using that mike placement.  After setting it so that if I pound on the keys I was still just below the point where it started clipping, I listened during some quiet portions.  That mike picked up things like the refrigerator in the kitchen (next room over), a ticking clock about 2 rooms away, and has even picked up a ceiling-mounted exhaust fan (albeit barely, but I could tell when it was turned off) in the master bathroom at the OPPOSITE corner of the 2100 sq ft house, with the bathroom AND bedroom door shut!  (It's open somewhat though - sound was coming down the hall around a couple corners, through an indoor entry hall then into the living room.  Door from the living room to the kitchen was closed, but there's 2 entrances into the living room.)

 

 

Some pics of general stream setup area.

PANO_20200406_211443.thumb.jpg.1f44fe330bcb57984e0d173c8265a38c.jpg IMG_20200323_060705.thumb.jpg.97833e80a792725cb01da775c72f2a5c.jpg

 

me posing at the piano,

64412638_2020-03-23_0556_-_screenshot_obs_-_snip_5-sec_delay.thumb.PNG.1c7f1f1b984fdd1c381eeca2285c9fda.PNG P2080081_resized_3840x2160.thumb.JPG.21b23ac7bfc9e9069cc95edde1c2caff.JPG

 

 

And some annotated pics of where I might put some equipment.

1418792848_StreamSetupoverlaypartscablerunsetc-2020-04-062213.thumb.jpg.6ea0860d9457a6588cc68c34d5ee646d.jpg 1199782065_streamsetupsketch2020-04-10-Option1.thumb.png.2e648f60a4c0034302a8f16cb0218850.png 838791863_streamsetupsketch2020-04-10-Option3.thumb.png.eba31d3ebd806bd7df3fa00dc7e0b1dd.png

 

I'd also like to be able to have a 2nd overhead camera angle that includes my hands on the keyboard.

 671099286_2020-03-23_0602_-_screenshot_obs_-_snip_5-sec_delay.thumb.PNG.d2a0e00ac56089025a262ca6096f3ece.PNG 662697575_PianoKeyboardOverheadlidopen(picA-3840x2160).thumb.jpg.b1e5c08ab23e25fe9b809be8bc39098a.jpg 

 

 

 

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The NVMe's are fairly expensive (my office paid nearly $1800 for a 1TB drive and It just had me going "what the hell, I could have bought 4 good/better ones from memory express instead.") However not all drives are considered equal. 

Yeah, sounds like you bought your NVMe's quite a while ago, or you're using ones like Intel DC Pxxxx series.  The ones I'm looking at are generally $100-150 for 1 TB, or $250-350 for 2 TB.

 

Quote

 

If you're going to build a NAS using whatever you have available, I'd probably suggest seeing if you can pickup/scrap some older skylake ix-6xxx/7xxxx desktop/laptops with them, as many business laptops have 256GB or 512GB SSD's in them, and these are out of warranty now so they'd be dumping them on secondary markets.

Ahh, as I mentioned earlier, I have an i3-6100 sitting in its box with the cooler.  I had used it in my laptop for about 10 or 11 months until I saw a good Black Friday deal on an i7-6700K so I popped that in. ..... LAPTOP, you say?  Yes, an LGA 1151 socket in a laptop.  Mine's the Clevo P750DM-G.  They've made other laptops with desktop CPUs - they have laptops that support the 9900K, I'm sure they have one that supports the 10900K as well.  Also when I was shopping for laptops (and ended up with this one) I learned that Clevo also made a laptop with an LGA 2011 socket - could take up to an i7-4960X or Xeon E5-2697 v2.  It was the Clevo P570WM / Sager NP9570 / Eurocom Panther 5SE.  I wanted that one cause of the 4x 2.5" drive bays, but it was like 2x or 3x my budget.

Anyway though, that i3 .. I'd just need a motherboard and a PSU for it, and probably a case as well.  (I have a Rosewill Thor V2 sitting unused - my 4790K + Z97 Extreme6 had been in it, but I moved the system into a Fractal Design Define R5 cause the Thor V2's drive trays didn't support drives with the wide-spaced screw holes.)

Hey I was thinking ... Maybe I could get rid of the Thor V2 *AND* some of those drives at the same time, by stuffing the case with the drives and some packing foam / whatever, and shipping the whole package somewhere?  (Problem would be shipping costs though, and where would I send it.  I don't want to send the drives individually to different places, I'd much rather send them all to just one or two places.)

 

 

Quote

Kinda hard to do unless you use a NAS that can mount the drive image like an iSCSI drive, or mount the drive itself as an iSCSI device. Keeping it bootable however is probably not going to happen that way though, as Windows has to be installed the same way to read the drive, though it's a bit less aggrivating with stand-alone SATA drives that only have a choice between UEFI and non-EFI mode. NVMe drives also add in "RAID(native PCIe NVME) or AHCI(SATA)" mode which involve device drivers. Though I will point out that you can install Windows to/from an iSCSI drive or even run it off one using a PXE boot, though your network bandwidth will suffer for it.

Ahh hmm... yeah, I don't think I have anything capable of SCSI anything.  (Closest thing I come to it, and I'm sure it's in "name" only, is when I plug my Samsung T5 500GB external SSD in via USB, Windows says something about a USB attached SCSI device, I think.)

 

Quote

Windows is a bit pickier, but Linux and FreeBSD are pretty easy to both PXE boot and operate with iSCSI, once you get it setup. For the most part the windows "backup" (win7) tool is the only tool that will save and restore a copy of windows (even to different drives and computers) but you can't read the backup without restoring it. Hence if you need a "living" backup, it would be a bit involved, either in the form of

a) clone the OS to the iSCSI drive on the NAS, then cold-storage the physical drive

b) for OS's without iSCSI support, run those OS's inside a virtual machine that does.

 

My preference in such a situation is that I would not trust the NAS to not obliterate everything in an accident (eg an earthquake) so if you're going that route, I'd also suggest maybe some cloud/remote storage option, since a local NAS is a bit more of "all eggs in one basket" than multiple separate drives that can be individually stored apart.

 

Yeah ...hmm... I'm thinking I should probably split the part of my question about backing up OS's into its own post in the OS subforum, and give a bit more detail on what I want to accomplish with it.

 

I'd LOVE to do cloud backup ... but my upload bandwidth isn't exactly the fastest around.

 

Spoiler

1720159774_Screenshot(2).thumb.png.9445cdb94b3eea167dffa19a81e094fa.png

 

That, combined with a 1TB/month cap, and cloud backup just wouldn't work at all for me.

To me, backing up isn't just grabbing text files and pictures in My Documents or My Pictures.  Backing up, as I understand it, is a full image of EVERYTHING.  For example, a linux command for backing up might include "dd if=//" ... but then where would of= be?  That could be a problem if I'm doing a bit-for-bit backup not only the root of my own system, but the root of the ENTIRE network... 

Also would "dd" or something similar include the normally inaccessible parts of drives, like the partition tables, firmware, etc?  The dd command is so far the only way I've been able to clone a Windows drive and have the clone boot.

Also I seem to remember, at least maybe back in the early 2000s and mid 1990s or so, that some IT departments' backup strategies were something like doing a FULL image backup once or twice a day, and incremental / differential backups maybe every 15 to 30 or 60 minutes.  Or am I misremembering things?  (I was fairly young then - graduated high school in 1999 so was probably not even BORN (1981) until you'd ALREADY had as many years of work in IT as I've now been alive :P (jk), I think I had read about things like that somewhere.)

 

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Sooo... one of the REALLY important things I NEED to do ASAP is get rid of a bunch of the old drives.  I'm wondering if I should split that into its own topic?

 

I'm not really sure how best to go about doing that.  I'd like to keep it relatively simple, and do it ASAP.

 

Some of the drives I might be able to get $ for them selling on, for example, eBay, like a few 4TB and 5TB HGST NAS drives if I get rid of those, as well as some not-so-old smaller SATA drives.  Maybe some people who are into retro computing could even put some older still-semi-working IDE drives to use as well?  (I wouldn't expect to get much if anything for them.)


Maybe I should send some of the older / smaller drives to a recycler?

 

I am tentatively planning to open up a couple of the old drives (two of them are dead, and several others have quite a few bad sectors) - what kinds of crafts can be made from them, or what other projects can the parts be used for?  (I've heard the magnets are pretty strong.)

 

 

If I send the drives out somewhere (like selling them, etc) ... where can I get some not-too-expensive shipping boxes and anti-static bags for hard drives?  Except for the 4TB and 5TB HGST drives (and maybe a couple WD SATA drives), I don't have the original retail boxes anymore.

 

I think it would be easiest for me if I could get one of those bulk HDD boxes that holds like 30 or 40 or so hard drives, and send the whole package to wherever it should go, so I can be rid of them.  (Most of them are 3.5" drives, a few are 2.5".)  Or would it be cheaper (assuming I'd have to pay for shipping) to box the drives individually or maybe 3 or 4 at a time?

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Posted · Original PosterOP

So, I ended up ordering a few drives. :)

  • 2TB Silicon Power P34A80 M.2 NVMe SSD
  • 2x 500GB Team Vulcan 2.5" SATA SSD
  • 2x 1TB WD Blue 3D 2.5" SATA SSD
  • 2x 14TB Toshiba MG07ACA14TE 3.5" SATA HDD
  • 8TB Toshiba N300 3.5" SATA HDD

531173961_Amazon2TBNVMeSSD2020-08-25.thumb.png.1785bb931283356202d0455fc8848af5.png 164635573_NeweggDrives2020-08-25.thumb.png.0a4163a08c50086153c809db25e36cf9.png

 

 

Hopefully they'll get here by the time these drives are wiped clean of data.  (I've already moved what I want to save, just want to scrub the drives clean.)

IMG_20200825_121656.thumb.jpg.6d48122a82ffb6a1be1c14048a66d8ad.jpg IMG_20200825_121610.thumb.jpg.c8e1760d9e694f84bccaaf1d5ba5bb53.jpg

 

Then, I got a few HDDs to clone to a couple of the SSDs, then scrub those and a few more HDDs.

Basically I'd be cloning a 750GB WD and 1TB WD (both 3.5" SATA) to the 500GB Team SSDs.  Those HDDs were clones from my 256GB SSD boot drive in my dekstop, I never expanded the partitions to fill the extra space so it really only needs to clone 256GB.  (I plan on using the Linux "dd" command for this, it's the only one I remember using that lets me boot the clone after the procedure.)
Also will be copying some Linux VM files from a 2TB HDD to one of the 1TB WD Blues.  The other 1TB Blue for now is a spare, maybe for another OS install or more VMs, I haven't quite decided yet.
I'll be copying files from my 1TB Samsung 970 Evo that's in my laptop onto the 2TB P34A80 SSD.  (I'll probably do this in my desktop, as I only have two M.2 slots in my laptop and one of them is used by my 250GB Crucial MX200 boot drive.)  Then I'll put the 2TB NVMe in my laptop (replacing the 970 Evo), and the 970 Evo 1TB will go in the desktop.

Then, a fresh install of WIndows 10 Pro would go on the 970 Evo now in the desktop, and I'd clean (but not crazy like DBAN) the 256GB Crucial M550 and make that a dedicated Linux boot SSD.

 

The 8TB Toshiba N300 HDD will be my fourth 8TB drive (the other 3 are HGST NAS) - 2 will be for data, 2 for backup of the same.

As for the two 14TB Toshiba drives, one will be for data storage / use, the other for backup.  (I also have two 10TB HGST NAS drives, which will be used the same way going forward.)

 

 

I'm still trying to figure out just HOW I'd set up the software side of the backup though.  On one hand I'd like something similar to RAID 1 (basically stuff copies to 2 drives at the same time), but on the other hand I don't want to be restricted on how the drives are connected / booted up.  (I'll be using Windows and Linux so Storage Spaces or the Linux equivalent won't work for me; also I anticipate replacing building a new PC in about 2 years or so, so tying a RAID to my existing ASRock Z97 Extreme6 motherboard wouldn't work well either.  Also I've heard on-board RAID isn't exactly the best, to put it kindly.)
If there was something similar to RAID that was platform (software and hardware) agnostic, I'd like to know.
One way I was thinking was basically most of the time leave the backup drives unplugged on a shelf, but periodically plug them in and copy stuff to them off the main drives.  (But knowing me they might sit for a year or 2 or 3 without ever being plugged in. :o )

 

 

 

As for getting rid of the old drives ... I'm generally leaning toward contacting someone I know locally and seeing if they know of a good recycler or charity I could take them to.  (Although, I'm thinking of selling the 4TB and 5TB HGST drives.)  I'd prefer to get rid of all of them at once, or something like that.

 

 

 

I'd still like to know where I can get one or more of those bulk HDD shipping / storage boxes though, like one that holds at least 30 or 40 or more 3.5" hard drives and has the protective foam / whatever.

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