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Which hard drives should I buy for my home media server?

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August 28, 2011 8:04:00 AM

Hey, so I've finally decided to turn my amass of external hard drives and scattered storage into a centralized media home PC. I have roughly 5TB of media consisting of family photos & videos, movies and music that are stored on various devices.

I have been looking specifically at the Samsung SpinPoint F3 1TB (HD103SJ) and the Samsung EcoGreen F4 2TB (HD204UI) to set up in a Raid 5 configuration. I wish to steer clear of the Western Digital Green drives as I own a WD20EARS drive and it is probably the worst hard drive I have ever had experience with.

Keeping the nightmares of my WD20EARS drive in mind, would there be any complications in using the Samsung F4 2TB in raid 5? As it is a green drive, I assume it has it will naturally want to spin at a lower RPM in order to save power which may cause problems when in raid.

To finalize what I am really trying to achieve is a home media server that is capable of storing all my media and being capable of streaming multiple (2-3) blu-ray rips throughout my home simultaneously. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Edit: I am open to a wider selection of hard drives however my current research has suggest those two drives so far.
a b G Storage
August 28, 2011 10:15:16 AM

That is quite the amount of local bandwidth you will require to stream that amount of HD video. You may want to do a feasibility study into that before throwing money into that project. I'm not sure 1 GB LAN would be enough in fact I have serious doubts.

As far as your drives go you may want to consider RAID 1 for redundancy instead of RAID 5.
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August 28, 2011 11:32:53 AM

Wamphryi said:
That is quite the amount of local bandwidth you will require to stream that amount of HD video. You may want to do a feasibility study into that before throwing money into that project. I'm not sure 1 GB LAN would be enough in fact I have serious doubts.

As far as your drives go you may want to consider RAID 1 for redundancy instead of RAID 5.


I currently have a 1GB LAN and it is capable of streaming 2-3 blu-ray movies simultaneously.
I would use a RAID 1 setup for redundancy however my project is only for a home media server and a RAID 5 setup offers some safety against redundancy. I want to keep a budget in mind as this server is purely for personal use thus why RAID 5 is pretty much my desired option as I don't want to spend excessively.
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August 28, 2011 5:43:17 PM

I have 4 of the HD204UI drives and love them. Data transfer is a LOT faster than I thought it would be for a 5400rpm drive with peaks of up to 150mbp/s and averages when transferring mkv files of around 110 or so from drive to drive. Tiger has the best price on them right now at $69.99ea which is a STEAL.

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a c 812 G Storage
February 7, 2013 12:19:23 AM

I have 2 f4's in raid0 for over 2 years now in my editing rig and two more in my home server as well. They are all doing well. I also had 2 ears drives in my home server and both failed requiring warranty replacement which went very smooth (as usual for WD) and the replacement drives were not ears drives. I dont recall what they were but they were still the green drives (maybe a earw?) and have not had a single issue in about a year.

I really like the f3's and f4's now that I have some experience with them. I've yet to have to deal with Seagate's warranty replacement process ; one can only hope its as smooth as WD's.
(in case you didnt know it, seagate bought samsungs hdd division)
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