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Toaster RAID Returns, Better Than Ever

Hard Drives And Linux Distros

A range of hard drive options were available for my project, such as 2.5" single-platter 500 GB drives as well as 3.5" devices with capacites of up to 1.5 TB. In comparison, I was in awe of Maxtor’s 160 GB parallel ATA-133 3.5" drive and Promise was getting ready to bring PCI SATA controllers to market back in 2001.

Today, four SATA 2.5" drives now have about the same footprint as a single 3.5" hard drive. Remember, full-height 5.25" 20 MB hard drives?

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A lot has been written about computer-in-a-toaster projects. Desktop systems have been built in large toasters. Mini-ITX systems have been built in waffle irons, toaster ovens, and just about any and every other enclosure conceivable (including basic toasters, of course). The availability of reasonably priced mini-ITX boards, low-power processors, and fan-less systems make compact case-modding projects easier.

File Server Linux Distributions

In 2001, ApplianceWare seemed to be the only generally-available distribution that made a computer into a file server. There are now a number of turn-key file-server Linux distros available. When installed, these distros morph a computer into a network file server.

Open Filer and Free NAS are available for download and use without charge. NAS Lite 2 is available for a very modest price that is under $30.00. ApplianceWare and Nexenta are also licensed.

If a file server supported SMB and NFS in 2001, had a Web UI, and did RAID 0, 1, and 5, then it was a good product. If it had a DHCP server, then that was an extra. Today, NAS servers support all the file protocols and include some cool features:

  • run DHCP
  • SMB and NFS
  • DHCP server
  • FTP server
  • Web server
  • Firewall
  • Bonjour and iTunes
  • Redundant power supplies
  • PDC authentication
  • Controls over power consumption
  • BitTorrent

… and more

  • I thought the idea in fitting a NAS into a toaster is that you plugged the disks through the bread slots!
    Reply
  • NateDawg80126
    "Is that Patrick Swayze!?" -Moses as he looked across the Red Sea.
    Reply
  • boostercorp
    ytoledano3I thought the idea in fitting a NAS into a toaster is that you plugged the disks through the bread slots!yeah it would ve been nice if you could just shove in two hot plug & play drives in there.
    Reply
  • gives a whole new meaning to "hot swappable" ;)
    Reply
  • Astara
    boostercorpyeah it would ve been nice if you could just shove in two hot plug & play drives in there.Imagine a backup-product like the various 'one-touch' backup offerings -- but in this case, you just push a drive into the toaster slot -- it begins the backup process, when done, it can eject** the drive. That sounds very sweet.

    **-raise drive, not physically throw it out of the toaster! :-)
    Reply
  • Shadow703793
    Using the small 2.5" drives, there is easily room for eight to 12 drives.
    Then why not use some of the 640/750GB or 1.5/2TB drives?

    Any ways cool mod.
    Reply
  • ph3412b07
    ghetto-fab :D
    Reply
  • Here's a better one:
    http://www.embeddedarm.com/software/arm-netbsd-toaster.php
    Reply
  • arkadi
    Grate job, looks perfect mate.
    Reply
  • bustapr
    wouldve been cooler to put in a dvd drive in the bread slots.
    Reply