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  • apriest - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    4 of those 2.5" drives in a Drobo Mini would be a photographer's dream in the field. Reply
  • spazoid - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Can we expect a review of the 2.5" versions? Reply
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Now if only we could get a reasonable mITX NAS enclosure to put them in. IF you only need 1 or 2 drives there're plenty of enclosures just big enough to hold the mobo available; but if you want more drives than that you're stuck with something with enough internal volume to hold a tower style CPU cooler and full size GPU that's only marginally smaller than a compact mATX box. Reply
  • Dentons - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    If you want a tiny box for the sole purpose of hosting a NAS, just buy an HP N40L or N54L and install FreeNAS.

    No, you can't install your own CPU and motherboard, but this will actually save you money. The HP boxes are often discounted to the $200 range, they include CPU, ECC RAM, PSU and a boot drive. They're far better value for money than building from your own parts. They're more than fast enough to run FreeNAS and easily hold five, 3.5" drives, more in certain configurations.

    With RAID Z2 using 4TB drives, these very tiny boxes can hold 12TB of usable storage. All while being far more reliable and recoverable than products like Synology or Drobo.
  • Guspaz - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    It looks like both of those boxes support only four hard disks on top of their system drive, so a RAIDZ2 array is going to get you only 8TB of usable space. Besides that, you really shouldn't be running RAIDZ2 without at least six drives. (4+2). Reply
  • Dentons - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    The N40L and N54L do have just 4 lower bays, but the unpopulated optical bay easily holds a 5th drive. Installing a 5th drive is so straightforward it doesn't even qualify as a hack.

    Some have even installed as many as four additional 2.5" drives in the optical bay.
  • Guspaz - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    You can do 6x 2.5" drives in a 5.25" slot if you're willing to accept a 9.5mm height limit per drive, but my point was more that you really need a certain number of drives before raidz2 becomes practical, and that figure is 6ish. There's also the "before-redundancy drive count should be a power of two" thing, although I'm violating that rule myself without issue.

    There would seem to be much better options for compact storage machines. The BitFenix Prodigy comes to mind. It can mount six 3.5" drives (including using the optical bay) and still has room for five 2.5" drives elsewhere in the case, which can be used for a mirrored boot plus SSDs for L2ARC/SLOG/etc acceleration. You'd likely need a SATA controller in the graphics slot, though, since few mITX boards would have the eleven SATA ports required to fully populate the thing.
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    The HP is what I had in mind when I was talking about boxes way bigger than they need to be. It's 21x26x27cm = 14700cc. The chenbro case I used to build my nas is 31 x 20 x 27 = 16700 cc. For comparison, my old mediasmart server was 25 x 25 x14 = 8750 cc.

    Other than the full size 5.25 bay, I'm not sure what the HP is doing to use all its space due to a lack of internal pictures; but between using an ATX PSU, having enough vertical room for a tower cooler and installing the drive bays with the long axis front to back and stopping short of the mobo, the case is about 30-40% open space and could be made a few inches smaller front to back and top to bottom. Side to side is constrained by the mobo size; but the other dimensions could have been cut significantly. I know mITX is too large to match my MediaSmart or any of the current generation of dedicated nas boxes; but it could be a lot closer.
  • bobbozzo - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    The HP Microservers use a lot of room for the hotswap setup; also there is space for a full-size card (PCIe x16 on my Gen8 server) for RAID5 or NICs or whatever.

    I agree that they are quite large, but I'm not sure they could be much smaller.
    Mine could be quieter though.
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    The case I linked to is also hotswap; but barely takes any more room than the standard drive caddies. The only things that the HP appears to have that it doesn't are the 5.25" bay and support for a full height card instead of half and it has loads of room inside.

    The NSC-400 mentioned by xkiller213 is a basic 4bay nas case that's only half the size of the HP. As long as you don't need a full size raid card it looks like it's able to do everything of the bigger cases; so there's definitely room to make them smaller. Adding support for a full size expansion card looks like it could be done just by making the case an inch taller so the card could fit in the space above the PSU.
  • kelly.hendrix - Wednesday, September 04, 2013 - link

    I agree with you Dentons Reply
  • xkiller213 - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    I would use either a Fractal Design Node 304 or a U-NAS NSC-400 or NSC-800 case... The U-NAS cases are quite interesting though, 4 or 8 bay hot swap and it fits a mini ITX mobo... Reply
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    I wish I'd've heard of them a year ago; the NSC-400 appears to be exactly what I was looking for unsuccessfully at the time. Reply
  • kepstin - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    I managed to pick up a Chenbro ES34169 a while back for my NAS:
    Nice little case, with 4 hot-plug SATA bays on a backplane in pretty much the smallest possible space. Main issues are that it's a bit noisy unless you undervolt the fans, and the internal 120W PSU is custom, not a standard form factor.
    Unfortunately, it's gotten very hard to find now (I think it may have been discontinued?)
  • Guspaz - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Too little, too late. I waited for ages for these things to come out, to upgrade my file server. I eventually gave up, and grabbed seven 4TB Hitachi CoolSpin drives when they were on sale ofr $150. I'd rather have had the Red drives, but 4TB drives hit the market a full two years ago, in 2011. Two years late to market is just silly. Reply
  • Assimilator87 - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Are these 1TB/platter and does anyone know the RPM range on the 2.5" Reds? Reply
  • lurker22 - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Platter size on the 4TB? Reply
  • ganeshts - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    It is definitely NOT 1 TB platters. I am waiting on info from WD on this. Reply
  • ganeshts - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Should be five 800 GB platters.. still awaiting confirmation, though. Reply
  • glugglug - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Seriously? The 1-3TB drives use 1TB platters. Why would 4TB use *smaller*?

    The weight progression in the specs for the different capacities suggests to me 4 platters. I was hoping the long wait would have brought us a 3x1.33 platter 4TB.
  • glugglug - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    I think it actually is 3 platters, 1.3TB per platter.

    2 things pointing to this:

    1. Slight sequential speed boost over 2 and 3TB versions. Speed increases with platter size (assuming rotational speed is kept constant)

    2. The specs here: show 7,814,037,168 formatted sectors formatted capacity. Which is divisible by 3 and 4, but not 5.
  • ruzveh - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    While 4TB HDD is definitely good to have why dont these companies now directly come out with internal HDD with USB 3.0 or 3.1 ports? We really want to have such HDD in the market where we can have those cheap internal HDD and compatibility and portability of having one cable connection instead of 2 different ones. Really at-least one manufacturer should think on this Reply
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    Ummmm what? For internal use you don't want the extra cost or performance overhead of USB3 slowing everything down; and for external use it's called a USB enclosure. Reply
  • bernstein - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    um, yeah and on top of that most 2.5" wd external drives are just that. a drive with a usb plug instead of a sata + power one (probably there is a sata-usb chip directly on the drive, but that matters not.... the most annoying thing about this is that you can no longer repurpose external drives for internal use) Reply
  • glugglug - Tuesday, September 03, 2013 - link

    By most you mean none? I'm glad noone actually makes a USB drive.... sometimes a drive in a USB enclosure is cheaper than the internal version, and the enclosure packaging holds up better to shipping then how some places ship OEM drives... Reply
  • glugglug - Wednesday, September 04, 2013 - link

    Actually I just searched for this and you are right - the 2.5" passport line is including a SATA-USB conversion on the board, instead of a SATA connector. WOW, that sucks. Glad I never bought one of those. Reply
  • jmorey - Wednesday, September 04, 2013 - link

    The article mentions that it is possible to update older Red drives with the new NASware 2.0 firmware. I've not been able to find the new firmware on the WD site.Has anyone else found it? Reply
  • taltamir - Wednesday, September 04, 2013 - link

    "Fortunately, the firmware on older Red drives can also be upgraded."
    Where do I download this updated firmware for me v1 red drives?
  • ruthan - Friday, September 06, 2013 - link

    I would like to see 2,5" HDD bigger than 2 TB. Reply

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