Black Friday deals bring about RAID expansions, hand me down drives lead to more expansions. The 4TBs i pulled out of service had almost 6 years on them. Still passed SMART!
This is actually my first go at using this little trick. I only noticed it a few years ago. i haven’t had a need to use it. Until now. i am so delighted that Synology continues to innovate. Every time i deploy a Synology, it has even more functionality. i am not getting paid for this, honest endorsement. I only wish they made direct attached storage or SANs. I do not mean to imply that i have a problem with NAS.
I am not only upgrading the capacity, but the throughput and seek times as well. With dual drive protection, it will be a few redundancy passes before i see any additional storage and probably even longer before i will see much more performance. it will be an interesting project. The process so far has been simple. i just deactivated the outgoing drive and replaced it with the new bigger faster drive. Once that is done, you repair the volume with the new disk and wait. And wait. Eventually do it all again. And again.
I have an aged storage array in a critical roll on my network. I have wanted to replace it for years, but the expense and the effort always kept it in the future. Apart from the speed being underwhelming, it has always been reliable and problem free. My recent backup problems have necessitated a new and much larger backup destination. This created the perfect storm allowing me to buy a huge new NAS to take over the rolls of my current slowpoke. Thus freeing my old, slow, but reliable array to act as solely a backup. This will breath new life and impressive capacity to my infrastructure and
finally for the foreseeable future put an end to my local backup capacity issues.
Some of the preparations involve typology changes. Changing the very roadways and turnpikes of my network. If you are doing a performance upgrade, might as well squeeze out all the juice (link aggregation, etc). This upgrade is so big it will probably take the entire weekend just to prepare and rest of the month to complete! what could possibly go wrong? I prefer to think of all the things that will go right when it’s done.
I have been experiencing an excess of failures with my own equipment this week. Mostly aged drives who’s working lifespan is winding down. Often the preverbal cobbler with no shoes, I rarely have time to maintain my own equipment. My usual quick fix is to throw more drives at the problem. Although that would certainly get me running again, it was more of a stop gap then a real solution. I have a number of aged drives and i wanted a solution not just for today, but something to make a difference moving forward. Enter the Drobo 5c. I have been a fan of Drobo for years. I have an 8 bay that holds my media library in it’s warm RAID-6 embrace. I had been eyeing the Drobo 5d for years waiting for the price to sink or my need to raise. Turns out the 5c is incredibly priced with only minor disadvantages over the 5d. One reason i love Drobo and the reason it was perfect for this project is the Drobo’s ability to expand in the future while operating at diminished capacity. I bought this enclosure with only 2 drives. Started up with mearly one 4TB drive and another 3TB. This got me started with about 2.7TB of usable space. Then i got to the task of offloading data from my healthy external drives. As each drive emptied into the Drobo’s volume, it was then fed into the Drobo enclosure to continue to expand the capacity. Now i have over 8TB of usable storage with both failover protection (a single drive can fail and I loose nothing) and expandability. It’s one big volume makes organizing and tidying a snap. That last bay will get a 4TB eventually and it’s doubtful the most recent 3TB i installed will be working this time next year.