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Initial isntall HDD questions RRS feed

  • Question

  • While I see the required primary is 80GB, I was wondering exactly what the limitations would be if I used a 40GB for my primary?

     

    On a related note, I have a total of 4 HDDs I want to install on this (3x250GB and 1x500GB) to use as the actual storage pool, but they contain data right now. I can shuffle around the data to free up 1 of the HDDs to install in the WHS. From there I planned on then copying over some of the data from the remaining HDDs to the WHS then isntalling the 2nd, now empty HDD and continuing that process until I had all 4 HDDs installed into the WHS pool. Would that process work?

     

    Friday, April 20, 2007 6:43 PM

Answers

  • Beta2 had a limitation where the largest chunk of data the server could handle was limited by the size of the primary disk.  Plan on 15G being taken up by the OS.  On an 80Gb drive, that means you'd have about 65Gb left for data, meaning none of your data files could exceed 65Gb.  A 40Gb drive would leave you with only 25Gb for data.  If you're just doing backups, etc., that probably isn't a big problem; if you're going to use the Media Center features to show movies, etc., then this would be a big problem.

     

    This was supposed to be fixed in the CTP release; if you want to test that particular limitation ...

     

    As for your plan for rotating storage to free up the hard disk space, I think that should work.  Just remember this is still beta -- make sure you have some other form of backup for your data before you trust it on your WHS server.

    Friday, April 20, 2007 8:27 PM
  • The limitation resulting from system drive size still exists, and (I suspect) will exist in the RTM version, because you will always have to be able to write the file to the system drive first, no matter where it eventually goes.

    I'm sure the data on your disks will still be there after 10/21, but WHS will no longer run to let you access it. You'll be able to get to it if you install licensed software, or if you remove the disk(s) from your system and copy the data off to another computer.

    I'm sure WHS won't destroy your data just because the evaluation period has expired.
    Friday, April 20, 2007 9:22 PM
    Moderator
  • I think you are missing something. Smile

    Assume you use the minimum recommended disk size, and you're copying huge files to WHS (say, ripped HD-DVD or BlueRay movies). Now, your minimum recommended disk has about 70 GB free (at first; I'll get to that later). So you can copy a single file of up to 70 GB. How big were those media files again? Not 70 GB, I think.

    Now for the "at first". WHS uses NTFS reparse points to track where files actually are. Think of them as 4kb "pointers" to files on other disks; the WHS team apparently calls them tombstones. All of those tombstones are stored on the primary data partition, the D: drive. Which is that ~70 GB drive above. So that drive will slowly fill up with tombstones. Which will reduce the size of the largest file you can copy in one shot.

    Does that help?
    Friday, April 20, 2007 10:12 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Beta2 had a limitation where the largest chunk of data the server could handle was limited by the size of the primary disk.  Plan on 15G being taken up by the OS.  On an 80Gb drive, that means you'd have about 65Gb left for data, meaning none of your data files could exceed 65Gb.  A 40Gb drive would leave you with only 25Gb for data.  If you're just doing backups, etc., that probably isn't a big problem; if you're going to use the Media Center features to show movies, etc., then this would be a big problem.

     

    This was supposed to be fixed in the CTP release; if you want to test that particular limitation ...

     

    As for your plan for rotating storage to free up the hard disk space, I think that should work.  Just remember this is still beta -- make sure you have some other form of backup for your data before you trust it on your WHS server.

    Friday, April 20, 2007 8:27 PM
  • thanks for the quick feedback and info.
    I'm still on the fence as to what to do with my data and WHS. I need a "central home server" to distribute all my multimedia content throughout the house and WHS was going to be installed on my (currently disassembled) server to serve that purpose. But the 10/21/2007 expiration has me a bit worried, and what would become of my data on 10/22.

    Friday, April 20, 2007 8:42 PM
  • The limitation resulting from system drive size still exists, and (I suspect) will exist in the RTM version, because you will always have to be able to write the file to the system drive first, no matter where it eventually goes.

    I'm sure the data on your disks will still be there after 10/21, but WHS will no longer run to let you access it. You'll be able to get to it if you install licensed software, or if you remove the disk(s) from your system and copy the data off to another computer.

    I'm sure WHS won't destroy your data just because the evaluation period has expired.
    Friday, April 20, 2007 9:22 PM
    Moderator
  • well yes, I didn't think WHS would write over my HDDs with all 0s and delete everything as the clock struck midnight or anything like that. And I figured/guessed the the storage HDDs would  be able to be moved to a different system and files used from there. Thanks for (relatively) confirming my assumptions.

    As for the system drive limitations... well that generally stinks. WHS wouldn't be any sort of solution then for a 1TB+ storage system as that system drive would always curtail your efforts. Maybe I'm still missing something, I don't know.

    Friday, April 20, 2007 9:39 PM
  • I think you are missing something. Smile

    Assume you use the minimum recommended disk size, and you're copying huge files to WHS (say, ripped HD-DVD or BlueRay movies). Now, your minimum recommended disk has about 70 GB free (at first; I'll get to that later). So you can copy a single file of up to 70 GB. How big were those media files again? Not 70 GB, I think.

    Now for the "at first". WHS uses NTFS reparse points to track where files actually are. Think of them as 4kb "pointers" to files on other disks; the WHS team apparently calls them tombstones. All of those tombstones are stored on the primary data partition, the D: drive. Which is that ~70 GB drive above. So that drive will slowly fill up with tombstones. Which will reduce the size of the largest file you can copy in one shot.

    Does that help?
    Friday, April 20, 2007 10:12 PM
    Moderator
  • Thank you that last post was helpful. Now I understand tombstones.
    Saturday, April 21, 2007 4:30 AM