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mark_jetzer
07-14-2008, 12:13 PM
After 4+ years of trusted service our Xserve and 2TB Xraid are in need or replacement.

I could get another Xserve 3TB and PromiseRaid from Apple. Or do I go with a Windows based machine? Add a Raid to my Prinergy System?

I am wondering, what are the options?

We need 3TB on the low end, around 10TB as the ideal for future expansion.

mjohnson
07-14-2008, 04:58 PM
Windows has a limitation of 2tb per drive, so why get rid of it? If you get your 10tb it will be with multiple drives anyway so just add to more if there are no problems with your current raid; is my opinion. I have 2 7tb apple raids running on 2 windows 2003 servers and it works great.

rugby148
07-14-2008, 05:21 PM
Greetings Mark,

Approximately 2 years ago (maybe 3 by now) we migrated off of our xserve and xraid and went to windows 2003. It has worked out well for us and matches the rest of our enviroment.

For other reasons we keep our logical volumes under 2TB so the windows limitation has not been an issue; however, there are multiple ways around that. Additionally I think that Windows 2008 server may have eliminated that limitation.

We dedicated a file server to prepress and run multiple serial attached scsi (SAS) direct attached inclosures attached to it. We store all of the archived jobs on similar storage attached to another (older) server in our enviroment. The performance has been pheonominal and the cost has been very reasonable. One thing we do, which may or may not work for you is we use a smaller amount of space 1 or 2 TB for prep's working space. That is really fast, expensive high performance disk. Then we use more modest disks for archive and less i/o intensive things.

robert.hammen
07-14-2008, 07:32 PM
Windows Server 2008 doesn't support AFP at all. You'll have to use SMB or a product like ExtremeZ/IP if you need AFP support.

Depends if you're using other functions like NetBoot/NetInstall/Software Update server. I typically recommend anyone with at least 10 Macs have a copy of OS X Server running somewhere, just for these functions, along with Apple Remote Desktop (doesn't have to be a super-beefy machine, can be just the 10-user $499 OS X server if it's not doing file sharing).

We like our Xserve/Xserve RAID very much. The cost-of-entry/complexity of the Promise product is a little steep and I don't know what we'll do in a couple of years when our lease expires, if things don't change (but this is technology, you know it will)...

tclifford
07-14-2008, 07:43 PM
We have a windows 2003 server running and a 6 TB partition all in one fileshare...

rugby148
07-14-2008, 08:42 PM
Windows Server 2008 doesn't support AFP at all. You'll have to use SMB or a product like ExtremeZ/IP if you need AFP support.

Depends if you're using other functions like NetBoot/NetInstall/Software Update server. I typically recommend anyone with at least 10 Macs have a copy of OS X Server running somewhere, just for these functions, along with Apple Remote Desktop (doesn't have to be a super-beefy machine, can be just the 10-user $499 OS X server if it's not doing file sharing).

We like our Xserve/Xserve RAID very much. The cost-of-entry/complexity of the Promise product is a little steep and I don't know what we'll do in a couple of years when our lease expires, if things don't change (but this is technology, you know it will)...

I personally would recommend SMB only if possible with your environment. It has definately improved our network efficiency taking out all the other protocols!

mark_jetzer
07-15-2008, 11:20 AM
I really don't want to give up the Xserve/Xraid. But after 4 years of 24/7 use it has started to develop a few issues. I trying to come up with a plan BEFORE I HAVE TO replace it.

Basically, the xserve/xraid has been a really big file server. Started as a replacement for 1 of our Ripro servers. The system is setup as 1TB Prinergy Job Volume on 1 side of the Raid. The other is 1TB split up into "Working Volumes" for live artwork, image libraries, on-site job submissions (inplant printer). Then I have another 320GB of misc volumes for archives, backups, Xserve OS.

Right now I leaning to a 3TB Xserve as a stop gap. Just mirror what I got in terms of space. Then add a full Raid in a few months.

Or If the Boss can find some cash we might just add a 6 to 10TB Raid to our Prinergy Secondary.

I not sure yet, this is turning out to be a lot tougher than the last time. Ah, the beauty of Brisque, I miss it so.

rugby148
07-15-2008, 02:19 PM
Do you store jobs on your prinergy servers (primary or secondaries)?

We have elected not to store anything on those boxes.

mark_jetzer
07-15-2008, 02:25 PM
No, all the Prinergy Jobs are stored on the Xserve/Xraid. I really like that with EPM+.

I just configured a MacPro with 4TB of space, OS X Server and some other goodies and I really like the price. To bad the rack mount xserve is limited to 3TB right now. I could get by with 4TB and add more RAID in the future.

I haven't decided just yet, but that's my leading option right now.

robert.hammen
07-15-2008, 05:40 PM
You could either look at used/refurbished Xserve RAIDs, or aftermarket external RAIDs. There is a ton of overhead with the Promise, Apple is really pushing Xsan with it but if you're not connecting to multiple machines it's expen$ive/probably more appropriate for video work...

mark_jetzer
07-16-2008, 01:13 PM
So, any of the brains out there think this would work as a replacement for my Xserve/Xraid. It's a LaCie Network Raid. Our real need if for file sharing and Data storage. It seems a full server is over kill.

http://www.lacie.com/us/products/product.htm?pid=11017

From what I've read I could just add this to my network. What you guys think?

pstuart
07-16-2008, 01:57 PM
I don't think it would be an equal to your xserve / xraid. But if looking for just disk storage it might work.

Can't tell much about it, but it doesn't look like it supports hot swapping drives.

If you are looking for something simple, virtually idiot proof, look at www.drobo.com

It isn't fast, but it is stupid simple to setup, just throw in 2-4 sata drives and go.

We just picked up 2 for misc projects and I can let you know how they work.

By no means would I recommend this for primary server storage, but for prepress, it might not be a bad external storage solution.

jamie.stotz
07-16-2008, 02:13 PM
The LaCie RAID is running Windows XP embedded so it probably doesn't support AFP 3.1, but I'm not sure.

robert.hammen
07-16-2008, 03:35 PM
There's less flexibility with NAS-type solutions. You have to hope the vendor fixes bugs... or else the box you've bought is pretty much a boat anchor.

Also I'm not the world's biggest La Cie fan, though I should be, as I've had to "fix" ($$ for me) many dead LaCie external drives (electronics fail in the case with staggering frequency). Obviously the rack-mount NAS product should be different, but I would have difficulty trusting it...

I'd consider something like this (Ultra320 SCSI or iSCSI):

http://www.wiebetech.com/products/RTX800.php

Here's a chart of their systems:

http://www.wiebetech.com/compare_rtx.php

No vested interest in the company, just tossing out an option.

mjohnson
07-16-2008, 04:03 PM
I donít see any ware that it says the LaCie is a RAID setup. To me it looks like a few drives striped together so if one fails you are screwed. I agree with Robert about the NAS devices, we have had terrible luck with the one we had; it was a SnapServer NAS that was JUNK!!!!

A server with a RAID is expensive but well worth it if you donít want to worry about your files.