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PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 11:52 am 
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A friend offered to give me an older 500GB HP Windows Media Server and I'm contemplating what to do with it. I'm not a windows guy so it will get a fresh copy of ubuntu server on it either way. Otherwise, I'm in need of a pooled NAS to be used strictly for holding live backups (full/diff from bacula) so I'm thinking of installing four 2TB disks. Does anyone here have any experience with using either greyhole [1] or flexRAID [2]? The latter has considerable more heritage so it seems like the more likely candidate.

[1] h**p://code.google.com/p/greyhole/
[2] h**p://www.openegg.org/FlexRAID.curi


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 11:57 am 
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Replying to my own thread... it seems I'm not the only one with interest in flexRAID (admittedly, their approach uses WMS).

h**p://www.openegg.org/forums/posts/list/28.page


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 12:04 pm 
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There's some other discussions on this in various forums here on the site, a search should turn up specifics including how successful people are with installing various flavors of Linux on the MSS hardware. There were some issues with the original EX47x hardware I think around the SiS networking controller but IIRC things have improved in newer distros.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 12:31 pm 
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yakuza wrote:
There were some issues with the original EX47x hardware I think around the SiS networking controller but IIRC things have improved in newer distros.


Indeed, I believe that issue has been resolved for the initial install. Worst case seems to be including the correct driver in the kernel. I will still need to build myself a VGA cable though...


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 31, 2010 1:55 pm 
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Maybe my opinion on Greyhole vs FlexRaid isn't that useful, being Greyhole developer, but I wanted to point that you might get more info on Greyhole on the official website [http://greyhole.net], versus the Google Code page.

Some differences between Greyhole & FlexRaid (from my limited knowledge of FlexRaid):
- Greyhole only works through shares. If you want to access the Greyhole pool locally (on the same server where Greyhole runs), you should mount the shares locally, and access the data through that. The only exception is if you want to create new files. In that case, manually launching a 'greyhole --fsck' will correctly handle those files. I don't know if this limitation exists in FlexRaid or not.
- Greyhole doesn't do parity. It copies, using rsync, your files that you want protected into other drives. The downside is that it takes twice the space to protect a file with 1 extra copy, three times the space for 2 extra copies, etc. The upside is that you can pull out any drive, and all your files (stored on that drive) are where you'd expect them to be. You can plug that drive anywhere else, and read the files from it, no need to have Greyhole installed. I don't know if such a thing is possible with FlexRaid.
- FlexRaid is snapshot RAID, i.e. it refreshes redundant / parity information on a schedule, not 'live'. Greyhole can do that too, using what I called 'frozen directories', which you can 'thaw' using whatever schedule you'd like (crontab), but by default, it works on creating redundant copies ASAP after the new files are added on shares. Even if that means working while other files operations are still ongoing on your shares.

There are probably other differences, but I think those are the main ones.

There's a couple links on the Greyhole website to ask further questions, if needed (GetSatisfaction, Live Chat/IRC).

Good luck on your project.


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