Petabox - 100TB in a rack
I’ve gotten quite some response on my Netgear SC101 post (in short: they don’t always work). There’s some catharsis in bashing inferior products, but at the end of the day, how DOES on store lots of data securely? Let’s make this more specific: how would you store 1 terabyte (1000 GB) of data on your desktop?
Let take these as requirements:

  • raw storage: 1TB or more (if used with RAID-0 striping or JBOD config)
  • redundant storage: RAID-1: leaves 500GB, RAID-5: leaves 660GB to 800GB
  • affordable: anything higher that €2000 (2$/GB) is not an option
  • accessible via either Firewire/USB or Ethernet (Gigabit)
  • accessible by Mac, PC and Linux
  • preferably not rack-mounted (who has a 19″ rack at home)
  • hot-swappable disks are a big advantage

What have you tried and what are you happy with?

Some possible theoretical options:

Direct attached drive
e.g. Lacie Biggest F800 1GB, 4-disk S-ATA: €1299
meets requirements? YES. Only Firewire + USB
Network attached storage
e.g. Maxtor Shared Storage II 1GB, 2-disk: €899
meets requirements? YES. Only Ethernet
Lacie Ethernet disk would not work: it’s rackmounted and has no RAID
Build your own server
e.g. Dell PowerEdge SC430 with 2 x SATA 500GB drives and Linux: around €1000
meets requirements? YES. Only Ethernet

For me, the only solution I have experienced to be 100% reliable is building a dedicated PC with a hardware RAID card. What is your experience?