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  • Question

  • If I have let say 5 hard drives in my drive pool and all my shared folders are set for duplication except for one, which is my movies folder. This folder I elected not to duplicate due to the size of all the movies that I've been putting on my hard drive for my Media Center. If I should loose a hard drive due to failure, everything in the folders that have been duplicated are recoverable, I understand that, but what about the files that were in the Movie folder? I know the files in that folder that were on the failed drive are gone, but the Movie folder is big enough to spand across several drives. Does this make the entire Movie folder unreadable or will everything be there less the files that were on the failed drive. Is there a way to find out how File Extender stores files. Does it write to a hard drive until all the free space is gone or does it spead the information over multiple hard drives (even if the shared folder is not set to duplicate)? How ever it's done, it would be nice to understand at a med to high level how and where files are being stored. I like the simplicity of WHS, but for my own piece of mind I need to have a little better understanding on how File Extender stores my information.

    Thanks for your help...

    Jay

    Friday, March 9, 2007 11:43 PM

Answers

  • You should lose only the files that were physically stored on the drive that failed. If you've got 5 drives, Drive Extender will prioritize files off of the primary data partition and onto the other 4 drives. The exact files stored on each drive can't be determined from the WHS console, but WHS Drive Extender does load balancing across the drives in the WHS. If one of the 4 drives containing data fails, you'll lose all the unduplicated files that were on that drive, which should be somewhere around 1/4 of all your Movies folder. Though it could be all of them, if WHS thinks that's the best way to balance load across the pool.
    Friday, March 9, 2007 11:57 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • You should lose only the files that were physically stored on the drive that failed. If you've got 5 drives, Drive Extender will prioritize files off of the primary data partition and onto the other 4 drives. The exact files stored on each drive can't be determined from the WHS console, but WHS Drive Extender does load balancing across the drives in the WHS. If one of the 4 drives containing data fails, you'll lose all the unduplicated files that were on that drive, which should be somewhere around 1/4 of all your Movies folder. Though it could be all of them, if WHS thinks that's the best way to balance load across the pool.
    Friday, March 9, 2007 11:57 PM
    Moderator
  • Ken,

    Thanks for your response.

    When it comes to media like movies that I put on my hard drive, I can afford to lose one drives worth of files. It may be a big inconvenience, but it's data that is recoverable. It would be nice to have a few options on exactly how Drive Extender manages it's load balancing. I know Microsoft is trying to keep this system as simple as possible, but they’re building a system that stores media which just by its nature takes a lot of hard drive space and may make it impractical to duplicate everything. So a little better understanding and a few more options to tailor the system to an individual needs make more since that just simplicity.

    Jay

    Saturday, March 10, 2007 12:16 AM
  • Hey all,

     

    I got WHS installed today (finally) and here is what I did...

     

    I set up hardware level Raid on my PowerEdge 2900.  The first array was Raid-1 with two 80 gig drives.  The second was Raid-5 with three 150 gig drives. 

     

    Of course WHS split the first array up as described ... 20gig for OS and two other pieces.  The second array was set up as one drive.

     

    The part that is confusing me is how they are labeled and what appears to be how the space is going to be used.  Specifically the entire 300+ of the second array is listed as Installed Programs Storage (or something like that).  I look in the folder and it really does have the connector software and a couple other items there.  Nothing else.

     

    When I started adding shared folders, I put them in the main list and if I read it correctly, it will be addressed to the first (smaller) array.  The larger array is not be added to at this point.

     

    I'm thinking about reinstalling the WHS and swapping the array order.  Putting the Raid-5 first so WHS will use it for the primary spaces in the system. It will see the 300+ as one drive and split it up.  Then add in the second Raid-1 and assume it is going to be just storage.

     

    I still don't understand how data and folders are put down on the drives and there are so many posts now that it is very confusing to try to wade through them all sometimes.

     

    I guess my question here is ---- should I leave it as is or should I reinstall and reverse the arrays so WHS sees 300+ as primary instead of the 80 it sees now?

     

    Thanks,


    Tony

    Monday, June 25, 2007 1:58 AM
  •  jlhinrichs wrote:

    Ken,

    Thanks for your response.

    When it comes to media like movies that I put on my hard drive, I can afford to lose one drives worth of files. It may be a big inconvenience, but it's data that is recoverable. It would be nice to have a few options on exactly how Drive Extender manages it's load balancing. I know Microsoft is trying to keep this system as simple as possible, but they’re building a system that stores media which just by its nature takes a lot of hard drive space and may make it impractical to duplicate everything. So a little better understanding and a few more options to tailor the system to an individual needs make more since that just simplicity.

    Jay

     

    I'm in the Exact same boat as you Jay (And my name is Jay too, freaking wierd!), and have the same concern about file/folder storage.

     

    Currently, my ripped move folders (each with multiple files) are spread all over the different drives, with MOST folders having some files on one drive, some on a second, and even some on a third for a few.  The problem is that losing even 1 file from that folder renders the entire rip useless.  If it stored an entire folder together, I'd lose potentially 100-150 folders with a drive failure.  But, by splitting things up, I'm in the situation where a drive failure would render inoperable 150-350 folders!

     

    Now, one way to get around this is to rip the movie as a single .VOB file.  The extra support files would still be created, but technically they can be replaced with a utiltiy without needing to rerip the entire DVD.  The problem with this is that the single file now is anywhere from 3gb to 7gb in size, and this doesn't always play well across a network.

     

    Ideally, WHS could be configured or have an option to maintain folders, and not split them across drives.  Not sure what would be required to achieve this though.

    Monday, June 25, 2007 3:02 PM
  • I'm of the same mind - I don't plan on storing movies in the pool - because of the possibility of a massive data loss due to the failure of a single drive when data balancing is on (and duplication is off).

     

    If a stand alone drive can hold 10 movies and fails - I have to restore 10 movies. If a pool drive can hold portions of 100 movies and fails - I have to restore 100 movies. Not worth the extra effort to keep that drive in the storage pool (as much as I would like to).

     

    Instead - I'll keep  movies on non-pool drives, where I can manage where data is placed and can know what data needs to be restored when a drive fails.

     

    IF it were possible to specify that folder contents NOT be spread across multiple drives - then I would change my mind and would happily use pool storage for all my data.  That way - the theoretical number of movies on a hard drive is reduced to a mananagable number, because folder contents are not spread across as many hard drives.

     

    I'm not a programmer - but I wonder how you could specify that feature in future builds - expecially when nested folders are used. I'd only be interested in the last folder being maintained complete - folders further up the stream could be split (in my mind).

     

     

    d:\shared movies\Group A\ Sub-Group B\Movie Name\VIDEO_TS

     

    Only the Video_TS folder should be kept complete on the same drive - Group A, Sub-Group B, and Movie Name could be system balanced.

     

    Just a thought -

    Tuesday, June 26, 2007 11:09 PM
  • I know this thread is WAY old... but ripping the DVDs as an ISO image and then mounting the ISO when you want to watch the movie is the way to go.  1 file per movie.  DVD Shrink will even rip directly as an ISO Image. 
    Saturday, April 12, 2008 11:18 PM