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Need advice for external hard drive enclosures

by mwells_tx / December 31, 2009 11:22 PM PST

I currently have 4 SATA drives and 2 IDE drives that I would like to attach to either my router or an extra PC via USB and run them as NAS.
I current have them spread out in two cases both running Server 2003.
Reason I want to abandon the existing setup is
A. I don't like running both servers all the time due to power consumption (want to be able to power on and off as I need them)
B. one of the servers is beginning to show signs of main board failure.
Here are two products I found for the SATA:

http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=SIL-CA-06-20336-PB or
http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=MAP-AI32US-PB&cat=CSE .

Both of these contain two SATA drive enclosures so either will suit my needs.

I cannot seem to find an external drive enclosure for 2 IDE drives.
I have found plenty of single drives such as the following:


But I am not too keen on this one due to it only supports 1 drive and has no cooling fan.

Please let me know if anyone has had any success or failure with either of these or could recommend a different device. Any and all help will be greatly appreciated.

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Comment about that fan.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / December 31, 2009 11:35 PM PST

I know this issue and to fix it I took the case down to the shop and drilled a big hole in the case then glued screen material to the big hole. I could have added a fan to that but this was more than enough added cooling.

I haven't seen a dual IDE to USB drive case in about 3 years.

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Comment on the Freegene unit.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / December 31, 2009 11:43 PM PST

I bought the black version of that. Yes it has a fan but is noisier than my laptop.

The documentation is almost worthless but there is not much to document. They failed at explaining how the lone jumper worked in the little board but I'll go over it.

In its stock setting you put in two SATA drives and you get two drive letters. In the other setting you put in two drives and it joins the drives into one drive with some JBOD RAID system (undocumented!)

I wanted to create a 1.5TB drive with a pair of 750s I had so I put the jumper to JBOD and then deleted all the partitions on that new drive. When I created the new partition I got the full space of the joined drives (over 1TB).

I then had a backup to the other server 1.5TB drive so I'm now able to simply run SYNCBACK to keep a backup copy of the big network server drive.

The FREEGENE unit is a bargain but let's not call it a quality unit. But for quality we should be looking at the DROBO.

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by mwells_tx / January 1, 2010 12:03 AM PST

checked out the various dromo models those would be great but out of my price range Sad

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Seems wrong direction
by samkh / December 31, 2009 11:59 PM PST

You won't save watts with enclosures and a PC.

Why not one nice big ATX, PFC/80+ PSU and mobo with SATA/RAID/IDE for all your drives? A high efficiency low end CPU and min RAM suffices and saves energy. And the performance will beat your proposal.

Your 2003 should be portable.

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new pc?
by mwells_tx / January 1, 2010 12:05 AM PST
In reply to: Seems wrong direction

What I am really going for is the ability to only have the drives I need at the time powered on rather than all of them at once.

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Too bad
by samkh / January 1, 2010 1:36 AM PST
In reply to: new pc?

Replace the IDEs with SATAs and sell/donate them. There is IDE/SATA adapter but probably won't fit in enclosure.

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Good idea to move away from IDE?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 1, 2010 1:48 AM PST

I see 750GB drives at that site for 49.99 so if DROBO is too much, maybe it would be interesting to see how big or small those IDE drives are.

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