3 TB Server in PowerMac or External FW Drives?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by esaleris, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. esaleris macrumors 6502

    Oct 18, 2005
    Which is the more effective media server in terms of single data stream (no concurrent use) on a 1 gigabit network?

    • PowerMac G4 466 Mhz + (2) Sonnet PCI SATA Cards + (3) 1 TB WD Hard drive
    • Mac mini 2.0 C2D + (3) FW 400 Enclosures daisy-chained + (3) 1 TB WD hard drive
    I'm afraid that running (2) PCI SATA Cards that feature 2 SATA each will cause some sort of bandwidth/compatibility issue. But I still love my old machine. The benefit of the enclosures is that I have enclosures that accept a rail-based swapping system, so that's kinda neat.
  2. netherfred macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2004
    Rotterdam, the Netherlands
    I'd go with the G4, since you would use 2 PCI buses at 33MHz 32 bits (this is limited by the Sonnet card, since the buses natively run at 64 bits) and the frontside bus of your G4 is 133MHz. So the bottleneck would be the harddrives (not the SATA interface) pumping through data at 60Mb/s, not the system IMHO. The Mini configuration would be limited to one 400Mbits/s bus for 3 harddrives. One harddrive would easily take up that bandwith, let alone 3... BTW, there's also a SeriTek card with 4 SATA connections, although here in the Netherlands 2 Sonnet cards are slightly cheaper than one SeriTek.
    You might also want to consider getting a second Gbit ethernet card.

    One more thing: I guess having 3 harddrives tucked away in a G4 is much more elegant than having to hook up all the cables and power bricks for 3 separate drives. Sounds to me that would also take much more power than using the power supply in your G4.
  3. plangly macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2008
    also less power with the g4, and as a server you would be better with a system with better cooling if you have 3 hdds in it than the mini with the externals.

    The minis are office computers really

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