So, I am quickly coming to the conclusion that it would be a much better value to buy a 6 channel RAID 5 ata card and throw it in a PC case with gigabit ethernet, than it would be to build a Firewire raid. I can get a 6 channel card for around $200 and by anyone’s account, build a linux box with 6 bays for around $300 or so.
I don’t want to build a PC to do this job, but holy christ people charge a fucking arm and a leg for firewire RAID boxes, which even at firewire 800 aren’t much faster than gigabit ethernet. I would rather have a tight little case with 6 3.5″ bays and a firewire 6 channel ata raid 5 controller, but I can’t find anything like this anywhere.
Now I understand that with 6 drives and RAID 5, neither gigabit or FW 800 can keep up with the speed of the RAID. Which is why many companies are going with fiberchannel for these solutions, but I don’t care about the speed personally. I care about RAID 5 data protection with large drives. Hell, even 4 device RAID 5 bridge boards are impossible to find, which FW 800 should pretty much be able to keep up with.
What I would really love to see is something like a half Xserve RAID, which uses SATA and firewire 800 and gigabit. The unit would have a built in DHCP client and a little java config application. It would support drives up to 500gb, and offer RAID 5.
This is going to become more and more necessary in the near future, and I’m sure that as they become more popular, they will go down in price, but for the moment, I think I might start looking at small PC cases for building this little project.
Listening to: “Kish Kash” by Basement Jaxx