1TB+ datastore recommendations

September 18, 2005

UPDATE: I received a lot of great recommendations, but none of them could pull me away from the Infrant ReadyNAS X6, which I've had in mind from the beginning. If interested, and judging by the volume of e-mail I got regarding this, a lot of you are, be sure to check out TomsNetworking's take on it. I'm not buying this tomorrow or anything, but barring any dispositive feedback from you guys, it will likely be the solution I run with.

I'm looking to purchase a rather large datastore fairly soon and was wondering what you, the readers, might recommend. I was initially hunting for an all-in-one solution, but prices haven't been dropping at the rate I anticipated and so I'm also thinking about just buying an enclosure and filling it myself.

Requirements / Desires

There are a few things that I'd like the datastore to have:

  • It must have an on-board RAID 5 controller (I want both striping and fault tolerance).
  • If you're going to point me to an enclosure-only setup (i.e., it doesn't include hard drives), the box must be less than $400.
  • If you're going to point me to an all-in-one setup (i.e., it includes hard drives) it must be at least a terabyte (truthfully, I want much more because I'm afraid I'll fill up a TB immediately, but cost is so prohibitive) and less than $1200.
  • I'd like SCSI, but I realize that SATA or IDE are probably the only interfaces that will allow me to stay within my cost constraints.
  • It must have at least four drive bays.
  • I'd like both USB2 and FireWire 800, but either will do.
  • Any kind of wireless connectivity would be great, but it's certainly not going to be a dealbreaker.

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