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The Thumb Drive RAID Experiment
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Doctor Feelgood
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Joined: 07 Apr 2003
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Location: New Jersey

PostPosted: Thu, 29 Dec 2005 23:04:44    Post Subject: The Thumb Drive RAID Experiment Reply with quote View Single Post

The idea of a thumb drive RAID array might not be practical for every day needs, but it is a novel idea that could be of benefit to some people. For one, owners of mini-ITX systems that boot from a flash drive might be interested in the sizable speed burst a RAID 0 array could provide. In the end, results were achieved that showed great promise for thumb drive RAID arrays. - The Article


Last edited by Doctor Feelgood on Sat, 20 May 2006 12:13:51; edited 2 times in total
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Little Bruin
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swank1
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Joined: 25 Oct 2005
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PostPosted: Fri, 30 Dec 2005 02:06:35    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

fun article

too bad geeks sent you such crappy drives, it might have worked out a lot better... they tend to have older or less popular items though so its not really a surprise...

Did you try setting up the array on directly on your motherboard? This might have been more stable b/c it would have taken the USB hub out of the equation,, the power directly from the rear of the mobo is generally more stable than to the peripherals (especially once you start chaining them)...
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Doctor Feelgood
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PostPosted: Fri, 30 Dec 2005 07:42:07    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

Hey swank1... the drives were unreliable no matter where they were connected. In either Linux or Windows XP I had only 2 USB ports to work with, and I did try using 2 drives that way (striaght to the board, no hub).

I was hoping the drives would work better and that I could blame it all on the hub, but no dice. The same issues occurred with intermittent connectivity and drives just dropping out while in use.
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Doctor Feelgood
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PostPosted: Sat, 31 Dec 2005 01:54:16    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

And for those who have always wondered what was inside a thumb drive... Or in case you were curious about the dab of glue holding these together... Check out the attached image. Rolling Eyes
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kabammi
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Joined: 02 Mar 2006
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PostPosted: Thu, 02 Mar 2006 00:23:41    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

have you thought about the possibility that the USB2 hub might be crappy, or that it might be underpowered when doing a raid transfer to drives attached to it?
When you said you tried the drives on WinXP that you had the same problems - were the USB drives still running off the USB2 hub?

just wondering..
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Doctor Feelgood
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PostPosted: Thu, 02 Mar 2006 07:44:53    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

Hi kabammi, welcome.

The hub didn't seem to be a major factor, although I'd agree it might be almost as crappy as the drives. In single drive and two drive usage in Windows XP and Linux, I plugged straight into the the motherboard USB ports out back. Same problems and unreliable performance.

Had been hoping to repeat this with better drives and a powered hub, but obvioulsy haven't gotten to it!
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redders
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PostPosted: Sat, 27 Jan 2007 08:09:09    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

This experement really interested me! Just a real shame it doesn't seem to work under windows, I'd really like to build a USB HDD RAID array using a few 500GB WD MyBooks, I suppose it could be done using a few of these IDE to USB convertors: http://www.neutronexpress.com/prod.cfm/499470/ADDONICS/ADIDEU2/IDE_TO_USB_2.0_CONVERTER

but that would miss the point, Google doesn't seem to show any solutions allow USB RAID Arrays... Has anyone had any more luck with this?

P.S.

I've seen those damn USB drives before! My college supplies them to students for 5 ($10ish) claiming their value to be around 12 ($24) and the damn things are only 128MB! Can get a higher capacity MP3 Player for 5, oh, and they also have the same problem with coming loose and failing a lot.
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Little Bruin
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Enigmachine
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PostPosted: Sat, 27 Jan 2007 12:18:10    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

Hey good timing!

I was just going to try to do this thing using SD cards & thumb drives under FreeNAS. Looks like it would probably work, but it's no more stable than the weakest part... Thanks for trying it out!

I wonder where I could find a source of free 128 meg drives, I bet some people are throwing them out these days... Plug in 127 of them and you get a 16 gig array! Smile As a nice side effect, you might also get pretty x-mas lights that blink as you access your striped files. Smile

redders, I just plugged in a OCZ Rally thumb drive in my FreeNAS and it detected it right away, all I would need to do now is to reformat the drive in raid format and I could add it to a RAID array. Looks like FreeNAS supports all kinds of USB drives (Flash drives, HDDs, CF cards) without any problems as part of RAID arrays, probably many others systems do too. You can boot FreeNAS off thumb drives and others so you might not even need to create a new partition on your current machine to try it out.
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x.gardner
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Joined: 13 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Wed, 13 Aug 2008 18:44:37    Post Subject: What else would work? Reply with quote View Single Post

Would this work with 0+1?

I know you said it grayed out your option with windows logical drive manager but what if you used external hardrives. I have 6 Hitatchi 1TB externals that I have been trying to find a way to raid. With a real drive as oppossed to flash memory do you think the logical drive manager would work? I want to use this for my media center without buying some over priced raid hot swap array.

Thanks in advance!
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Doctor Feelgood
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PostPosted: Wed, 13 Aug 2008 20:49:08    Post Subject: Reply with quote View Single Post

I am not sure... I am looking at the one traditional hard drive I have connected via USB and it has more options than the one flash drive I have connected. Can't try RAID or anything since it is just one, but the flash drive has everything grayed out now, and the hard drive just has "extend" grayed out. This is now Vista, and not XP like in the test I did, too.

Was looking around recently to try doing this experiment again... Not sure I could do it any better, even though I do have better flash drives.

Would be cool to make these 16GB of chicklets work together in RAID:

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