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A terabyte a day

I bought 1.75 terabytes of potential disk capacity today.   That storage comes in the form of three 3.5″ Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 model hard drives.  For a few moments I was holding all of that storage in one hand.

The first time I saw a terabyte of storage, it consisted of six 42U racks (about 6 feet tall) in a data centre.  In addition to being too large to hold in one hand (maybe in the back of a full-size pickup truck…), that storage weighed about a ton, and drew several kilowatts of of power.  That was less than 20 years ago- times sure do change. 

So, you might ask why I bought all this new disk capacity.  My thinking is as follows: firstly, I need a new drive to use for storing backups- that is the 750 GB drive, which I installed in a nice little Antec drive enclosure and connected via eSATA.  The other two 500 GB drives are to form a single 500 GB RAID 1 (redundant) drive array to replace my current 300 GB RAID 0 (non-redundant/performance) array. 

I’m doing this for two reasons.  Firstly, I want to have a more reliable/safe drive configuration for my primary computer.  Secondly, I am suspicious that my problems with putting Vista into standby mode relate to my RAID array.  I have particular suspicions about my Western Digital Raptor hard drives.  The Raptors are fantastic high performance drives.  However, I found a review of the model I have on a website some weeks ago (I can’t find it now of course…) that described drive corruption problems with Vista and standby. 

I will have an arguably “safer” RAID 1 array, if nothing else, once my drive format and restoration from backup are complete.  I suppose I may be trading some performance, although the Barracuda drives have higher data transfer rates than the Raptors.  More importantly for the “never say die” tech that I am, I’ll have eliminated at least one possible cause for the standby failures.  This last point is true whether the problem is corrected or not- either way, I’ll know whether the Raptor drives can be blamed.

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