Planning Storage Server

in Genius Bar edited January 2014
Hi guys,

I have a ton of amateur video projects that I am working on at the moment. My external firewire drives are filled up. I am wondering about buying an old g4 for about 150 bucks and throwing a ton of big drives in it. I would periodically dump my firewire externals to this array to clear them off.

I would like to also backup images of my laptop and desktop drives as well, so I would like the array run some sort of redundancy such as raid. Also, this is not active video storage, so it need not be fast and I would like to consider software raid to save on buying a controller card for several hundred dollars.

I would like to run raid5 with three drives to get 66% storage efficiency. However, probably to avoid complaints about poor performance, MacOSX does not allow software raid5. MacOS software raid is limited to striping (no redundancy at all) or mirroring (cuttign storage capacity in half.) Linux does allow raid5 in software, and I am considering running Debian ppc when I learned that they do now support firewire well.

I have three problems left, drive placement, ATA bus issues and filesystem.

Will the older g4s (400 mhz) take 4 X 3.5' size HDs? Do they have the brackets, cables that are needed? I don't mind tossing the zip drive if I need the space, but if I do that will they accomodate one boot drive and three in the array?

Will the ATA bus in the older macs (ATA66) support 200 or 250 GB drives? Some rumblings of a size limit, Anyone done this? First hand knowledge?

When dumping dv or macos disk images to a linux filesystem (ext2 or ext3) What am I going to lose? Are resource forks recoverable or unneeded? Can I wrap them in some type of compression to preserve stuff? Is there an HFS+ implementation for linux? Is there a ext3 implementation for Mac?

I am heading back to Google after posting this, so I will eventually answer my questions. I would love any helpful hints if you have them from personal experience though.

Thanks guys!



  • Reply 1 of 2
    gene cleangene clean Posts: 3,481member
    There is an HFS+ implementation in Debian; when you install it fire up Synaptic and search for HFS+. There's an app called "HFS+ Tools" that lets you view, read, and write HFS+ volumes.
  • Reply 2 of 2
    slugheadslughead Posts: 1,169member
    The amount of bays depends on the G4.

    The quicksilver and blue G4 (AGP graphics) have 4 drive sleds at the bottom, and room for 1 more if you *modify* the zip drive bay with a power drill.

    I have a Dual 800 G4 here with 4 drives.

    I also have a speed holes G4 (Mirror drive door), but sadly it only has room for 2 drives, 3 if you get one of these (I don't recommend any of them, as they're all pretty much the same aside from the indicators on the front).

    Of course, either G4 will hold 1 more if you take out the CD ROM drive

    In all cases, you MUST get a new controller for at least 2 hard drives. In the blue PM, you can't get more than 36GB without a real controller.

    Blue PM info

    Quicksilver info

    MDD (speed holes) info

    Here is some benchmark info for the quicksilver over the network using an ACard as explained there. BTW, for the record, that's my website.
Sign In or Register to comment.