Multiple HDs as media server

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by wonderbutt, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. wonderbutt macrumors member

    Feb 13, 2006
    Good day! Or evening whichever fits.
    I have to ask, how does one utilize five HDs at 2TB and 5400 rpm in one enclosure, but not as RAID. I simply want to have each HD used for storing different files. Two for videos, 2 for audio, 1 for documents and photos. Yes, I have external enclosures, but too many (I have other s for various purposes, such as Time Machine, Super Duper backups, etc) and don't have much space. Only 3 USB 2 slots in iMac.
    Just want to de-clutter. Is what I want to do "striping"? If I can do this, the enclosure will have one USB 2.0 connection, of course, but maybe 2 of them so I can move data to 2 of the HDs at the same time, like I do worth these annoying external enclosures all over the place?
    Oh I really appreciate the advice!
  2. overanalyzer macrumors 6502a

    Sep 7, 2007
    Boston, MA USA
    Unless you find an enclosure that allows access to the drives individually somehow, you'd normally have to do some form of RAID to have multiple drives accessible through one enclosure. Striping is just another form of RAID - RAID 0 in that case. I don't think you'll find that to serve exactly the function you're describing, as all 5 drives would behave as if they were one, and the RAID controller in the enclosure would decide where to write data. If one drive ever died, or you wanted to remove a single drive from the array, you'd lose data (likely all of it, across all of the drives, barring extraordinary measures to recover some of it), as there's no mirroring in a RAID 0 configuration.
  3. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Aug 9, 2009
    Portland, OR
    Yes... you want to use JBOD... which just sets up each drive as an independent volume. Hence, each drive will show up as a different drive... even though they share the same enclosure. Most NAS units will support this.

    According to a similar post here on this a few days ago... Synology calls this "Basic Mode"... and their JBOD mode actually implements "Spans". So if you buy Synology... just use "basic mode" (rather than JBOD)

  4. FireWire2, Jan 24, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2013

    FireWire2 macrumors 6502


    Oct 12, 2008
    USB3.0 to eSATA JBOB mode

    Yes you can DIY or get premadte box like five bay eSATA/USB3.0 from manufacture like DATOptic, Sandigital, OWC...

    But beware most of those guys will call SPAN/BIG as JBoD...
    It beyond me why they mix up with JBoD - Just a bunch of drive and Concatenation (SPAN, BIG)

    DIY - Get a low cost box with 200W PSU
    Mount 5x HDD internal or fancy it up with tray-less mobile rack

    Install one of this eSATA Port Multiplier:

    Now you have five hot swap (if you use the mobile tray-less rack) JBOD eSATA

    To make it USB2.0 / USB3.0 JBOD you can get this USB3.0 to eSATA support Port Multiplier technology adapter

    Whola ! Now you have a box would work in either eSATA, USB3.0 or USB2.0

    Note: for eSATA you need to have a eSATA host support PM

    Or simple get ANY Port Multiplier Enclosure existing in the market and use it with the USB3.0 to eSATA adapter that I mention above...

    Now you have JBOD solution in USB3.0/2.0 without bother for the drivers or software installation.

    It is plug and play!

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