Thunderbolt mass storage for nMP - portable, fast, redundant

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by mustgroove, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. mustgroove macrumors regular

    Aug 14, 2006
    Putting together my hypothetical nMP setup and what I'd ideally like is a Thunderbolt drive array of some kind which is portable, fast and redundant...

    Feels like the only thing that fits that description right now is the Drobo mini fitted out with SSDs... does anyone know of any benchmarks for an all-SSD configuration on a Drobo mini?

    Or does anyone else have any options for Thunderbolt mass storage that also fits that description? The Promise Pegasus J4 looks interesting too but it only supports RAID 0, 1 and JBOD, and with an all-SSD configuration that really limits capacity when redundency is also a priority
  2. hfg macrumors 68040


    Dec 1, 2006
    Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
    Just a note on the Pegasus J4 ... it also supports RAID-10.

    The J4 doesn't have a hardware RAID controller, it presents the 4 disks separately to OS X. You then use Disk Utility to create any software RAID that is OS X supported, which is RAID 0, 1, 10, Concatenate ... or just leave it as JBOD.
  3. mustgroove thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 14, 2006
    Are you sure? The product page would suggest otherwise:

    I guess it does in the sense you mentioned (i.e. software RAID) but the idea would be to let the RAID aspect be hardware so the array is also maximally portable (i.e. usable on other systems without any setup or anything)... that's the most appealing thing about the Drobo - it's all handled in firmware.
  4. k-hawinkler macrumors member


    Sep 14, 2011

    A software RAID is your ticket - portable, fast, redundant.
    The Drobo is fine until something goes wrong and you have to repair it.
  5. mustgroove thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 14, 2006
    So if I plug a software RAID array into another machine it'll work OK (without having to pre-install drivers on the new machine or anything)?
  6. analog guy macrumors 6502

    Mar 6, 2009
    yes...for data at least. boot drives could be another story (e.g., one can't boot an nMP with <10.9.1).

    j4 doesn't seem to handle SSDs >1TB.

    you could get a sonnet echo express III-D with up to 3 tempo pro cards and 1 or 2 SSDs per card, for up to a 6-SSD RAID0, or RAID10.

    TB2 and fast, fast, fast.
  7. rasputin666 macrumors member


    Mar 1, 2009
    storage strategy for nMP

    I upgrading from a 3,1 to nMP and faced some challenges re: storage, like other potential nMP owners. Besides boot up SSD, I currently have 4TB internal in the 3,1 with a Qx2 from OWC with 4 1TB drives Concatenated as a mirror for the 4TB internal connected via eSata. In order to reuse as much of what I have, I purchased a Lacie eSata hub that I can at least Thunderbolt to the nMP and reuse the Qx2. In all, here is my storage strategy:

    -4 TB live data in the Qx2 via eSata hub to thunderbolt [hopefully still recognizes the Concatenated setup so i don't have to reconfigure] [i know, not thunderbolt speed but full eSata level for now]
    -4 TB external drive via USB 3.0 to backup the Qx2
    -3 TB live data via thunderbolt external drive
    -3 TB external drive via USB 3.0 backup thunderbolt 3TB drive

    right now all this is on the 3,1 via internal [4TB], eSata [backup] and the 2 3TB drives are FW800 [way to slow] $$$ goes to thunderbolt the 4TB live drive and the 2 backup solutions maybe at some point move from USB 3.0, although I am less concerned about middle of the night backup speeds. Not 100% ideal but i was trying to reuse as much as possible.
  8. rasputin666 macrumors member


    Mar 1, 2009
    Just following up---got my nMP friday AM. so far, as planned. the Qx2 concatenated setup was recognized with no issues, and the Lacie eSata hub also has no issues. trying to test speeds as i transfer files around and re-clone backups. Only issue is all USB ports used on nMP! 2 for the external drives, one for the 30"ACD and one for my EYE TVHD, which i love. bought a USB hub today. with the daisy chain and open ports, might make my move to thunderbolt for the 2 backup drives faster :cool:

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