Friday, April 5, 2019

Hardware RAID Vs. Software RAID

 How to Protect Your Data Using ZFS

A question often asked in the server industry is, ‘what’s better - software RAID or hardware RAID?’ If you research this topic, a lot of the information about RAID suggests that a hardware RAID card is preferable to using a Software RAID.  But I don’t agree. In my opinion is that, for most applications, Software RAID is far better than hardware RAID.  Hardware RAID does have a place under certain OS’s, but I’m going to tell you why Software is generally far superior.  

Thursday, January 31, 2019

What is Ceph & Why Our Customers Love It

In this blog and the series of blogs to follow I will focus solely on Ceph Clustering. Many people are intimidated by Ceph because they find it complex – but when you understand it, that’s not the case. I want you to leave this blog with a better understanding of what Ceph is and why you should use it – then I want to dive into how it works and eventually get into some testing and results performed here in our 45Drives lab.  But first let’s start with the what, and the why.

The majority of our customers are interested in storing files - so we will focus on that capability (CephFS) in this blog. 

Ceph Cluster using 5 XL60 Storinators and 3 Ceph Monitors

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

The Storinator Storage Workstation ft unRAID

Why is 45 Drives talking about Workstations?

We build some pretty awesome storage servers or at least that’s what our customers and fans say about us! We like to think it’s because our Storinators solve their storage issues by holding huge amounts of data, they’re incredibly fast and …wait for it… they are affordable! So, after hearing some feedback from our fans it was only a matter of time before we teamed up with the storage operating system unRAID to create something unique--- the Storage Workstation.  

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

 How To Set Up Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI)

All of our Storinator Massive Storage Servers, as well as many other computers, have a remote management interface called Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI). In this blog, I’m going to explain how to set up IPMI so that you can do certain things remotely, such as turning your server on and off, monitoring your Power Supply Unit statistics, as well as troubleshooting and repairing your server at BIOS (hardware settings) level.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

An Introduction to Clustering

How to build a Petabyte cluster using GlusterFS

with ZFS running on Storinator massive storage servers 


If you checked out our recent video on clustering, you may have seen me keep a high-speed file transfer going, while I did just about everything I could think of that would give a system administrator nightmares. I was pulling out drives, yanking out network cables and hitting the power switch (virtually) on a server. This robustness is one of the key features of a storage cluster.

In this blog, I'm going to give you an overview of how we built that cluster, along with tons of detail on how I configured it. I'm hoping that when you see what I did, you'll see that clustering technology has improved and simplified to the point where even very small organizations can build affordable storage solutions that are incredibly robust and massively scalable.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Everything you Need to Know about Hard Drive Vibration

Hard Disk Drives (HDD's) are one of the most impressive and important electromechanical devices ever created. When I think about it, it is really amazing that these things actually work, let alone work so well!  These disks must quickly and precisely position heads slightly above very narrow tracks on rapidly spinning platters. If there is an error in the angular position of the head, it will not be positioned above the correct sector and therefore cannot correctly read or write data. 

Monday, May 9, 2016

How to Tune a NAS for Direct-from-Server Editing of 5K Video

At 45 Drives, we make really large capacity storage servers. When we first started out, our machines were relatively slow, and focused on cold-to-lukewarm storage applications; but our users pushed us to achieve more performance and reliability. This drove the evolution of our direct-wired architecture, which delivers enterprise level speed (read/write in excess of 3 Gigabytes/second) and reliability, without losing the simplicity and price point. 

All this extra speed made our Storinator servers highly suitable for a number of new applications, one of which is video editing. This field has seen its storage needs explode in recent years, and hugely benefit from our incredible capacity and density. Organizations have used them to centralize their storage, but the speed has opened up a whole new opportunity, namely to edit directly from the central server, rather than download and work off of internal hard drives. This saves time formerly required for transferring files to and from the workstation, but also can take place at a performance level higher than can be achieved from a single local drive (mechanical or SSD).