Sometime in the near future I was planning on building a HTPC along side a file server to dump all my recorded HDTV shows and archive my dvd movie collection. I hate to say it but I can see myself going well over 2TB considering that I would like to record for the maximum quality at HD expense.
Now I wouldn't want to boot from this large partition. Just use it for storage. Does Windows Vista support partitions larger than 2TB? Or is it the same as Windows XP? I read in order to get partitions larger than 2TB, you would have to set your RAID in 2TB chunks then within windows merge them into one drive. Is this the only way to go about doing this? What kind of performance hit if any would there be in doing this? Or would I just be better off using two or three 2TB partitions?
If I merge them into one drive that's >2TB would the other computers on my network be able to read the full capacity of the drive? (they would be using Windows XP)
If you had such a project in mind how would you go about doing it?
Before beginning, ask yourself one thing - do you have the time to look at that many video files? Very, very few people do and today's storage solutions will really be taxed without heavy network/hardware support for that level of storage. As far as other XP PCs, the volume would not be visible (it would look blank on the network) unless if you can keep it on small enough partitions for XP to see it. How your network sees the partitions and its performance has a lot to do on what you are hosting it on - right now you need some real network/server hardware for really big disks (700MB+) to perform well. Personally, from the personal network storage issues I have experienced, I would suggest to wait for personal hard disks to improve and become cost effective for that size of data. In the meantime, partioning multiple smaller disks will give you much better performance (for right now).
Yeah it may sound like a lot of disk storage (and it is) but with 5 computers on my network, they would all be using it for a central file dump along with system back ups. Anything you can think of really, music, movies, game updates, large photoshop psd files, HDTV content ect ect the list goes on. It would fill up quite quickly. Esp with all the video editing.
As a response to pkellmey, I was planning on archiving my dvd and music collection. (some 120 dvds and 200+ music cds plus anything that I would record from the HTPC) Basically it would be my movie and music juke box. Of course I wont have time to flip through and watch everything but it would be nice to have all my content in a central place so I can watch/listen to any music cd or dvd I own from any computer in my house. Based on what you said my best bet would be to limit the partitions to just under 2TB so windows xp can recognize them.
But you did come up with a good point. I may just wait a bit to see what new hardware comes out. This isn't something that I have to have right away. I was just planning ahead. If I remember reading somewhere correctly SATA3 is coming out sometime by the end of this year along with Intel's new quad core cpus. Hell who knows maybe even 1 TB hard drives will be available in the not too distant future.
I have looked into this type of thing myself and found it very costly, both for hardware and actual network usage. However, now that the hardware is becoming so cheap the only limiting factor for me is disk and network access speed/performance. I expect that you may see a huge change in both by the end of this year that may make it much more likely.
As a response to pkellmey, I was planning on archiving my dvd and music collection. (some 120 dvds and 200+ music cds plus anything that I would record from the HTPC) Basically it would be my movie and music juke box. Of course I wont have time to flip through and watch everything but it would be nice to have all my content in a central place so I can watch/listen to any music cd or dvd I own from any computer in my house.
MSRP is under $400 and holds 200 x 4.3 gigs = 0.86TB and you can daisy-chain them. So 3 would get you over 2 TB for $1200. I suspect Sony will release a Blu-Ray changer before too long, for HD content, but don't quote me on that .
NTFS supports mucho space so XP will be great and Vista will work but DRM will piss you off after a while. Not to mention lack of SAMBA support and the fact that WMP11 will not stream files from NAS devices correctly. XP allready does it all!