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Suggestions on an external hard drive to use with file server.

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by Estes, Jan 13, 2013.

  1. macrumors member

    I recently purchased an iMac G4 to use in a guest bedroom (and basically just to mess around with). I decided that another good use for it when guests aren't around is as a file server. One of the drawbacks of this idea is it's 60 GB hard drive. I figured I could also hook an external hard drive up to it to increase the space of the server.

    Now, after the backstory, here's my question: Could some of you link me some recommendations to use with this server? It runs OS 10.4 (Tiger) so it would need to be compatible with it. On top of that I want to make sure I buy one that is made to be running 24/7. I know some (most?) externals aren't really made for that purpose so I don't want to burn one out quickly. I tried googling and it lead me to OWC but I couldn't find anywhere on their website that assures their externals are fine for server use.

    It could be that I'm over-thinking this entire thing and anything will be fine, but I'd rather be safe than sorry so I figured I'd ask here first.
  2. macrumors member

    So nobody knows? That's disappointing. :(
  3. macrumors 65816

    I have 3 externals drives running 24/7. I never experienced a drive burning out more that say one inside a computer. @ of the drives I have on my server a segates in macally cases, the other is a Western digital my book. I have had good luck with the WD my books in the past. We also have a few of them running 24/7 at work.
  4. macrumors member

    Ok great, thanks.
  5. macrumors 6502a

    At current costs of hard drives, consider buying 2 and setting up RAID mirroring.
  6. macrumors member

    Alright, I don't know a lot about that but I'll be sure to look into it.
  7. macrumors 65816

    If you want RAID mirroring check OWC site, they have some nice (little pricely) stuff. I personally keep 2 dirves one on 24/7 as the data drive for the house. The second I turn on once a week and do a super duper backup od the one that is always on.
  8. macrumors member

    I am not sure why you are not going with an cheap nas. Something like a synology. They will have more functionality and use less power.
    Another thing to consider is that you will need an firewire drive to get anything usefull in transfer speeds. In my opinion the best option for that would be a firewire powered drive. you can even have the imac to go to sleep so it will use very little power an send it a wake packet if you need it to be there.
  9. macrumors member

    I don't really care about using less power; I'm just getting the iMac and figured I might as well give it another use too instead of it just sitting collecting dust when nobody is using it.

    Yeah, I was thinking Firewire over USB as well. Do you have any recommendations?
  10. macrumors 68000


    I would recommend the Mediasonic 4-bay drives. I picked mine up from this store: http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=14_207&item_id=021484

    Mine only has USB 2 (and eSata) but I bought it a few years ago. They have other versions (including USB 3). It is generally running 24/7. I'll turn it off if we're going away for extended periods of time or if there's a big storm, etc but it's generally on.

    In terms of use, I have it setup with four 3TB drives. I used Disk Utility in OS X to create virtual drives (I don't know what it's actually called). Basically, through Disk Utility I combined disks 1 and 2 to create a 6 TB drive, then combined disks 3 and 4 to create another 6 TB drive. From there, you can get a bunch of different software options to mirror them/keep them in sync.

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