WHS with DrivePool or WHS2011 with StableBit for next HTPC?

Next HTPC should be...

  • WHS with DrivePool

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • WHS2011 with StableBit

    Votes: 7 63.6%
  • Other (please state)

    Votes: 4 36.4%

  • Total voters
    11

RavinDJ

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Apr 9, 2002
Messages
4,239
Which way would you recommend of going for the next HTPC? I have three 2TB WD Green drives. Or, is there something else that's newer and better? I've been out of the HTPC technology for a while :(
 

valve1138

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Apr 14, 2003
Messages
11,264
I used to use WHS 2011 with Drivepool as my main NAS, it worked well enough. I've since switched to a Synology with the old WHS/Drivepool combo as my backup dump server.
 

drescherjm

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Nov 19, 2008
Messages
14,926
I recommend the HTPC being on linux using mythtv and the storage being on individual drives. No need to pool then since Mythtv supports any amount of storage devices you give it and it will automatically balance amongst your storage.
 

RavinDJ

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Apr 9, 2002
Messages
4,239
The actual HTPC will be either Win 7 or Win 8.1 or Linux w/ MythTV. Actually leaning towards MythTV, since I've never really played around with it. I was thinking of the actual back-end NAS that will hold all my drives. I'm looking to expand to 12TB or even 16TB.

Hmmmm... if the DrivePool is not necessary for MythTV, then separate drives wouldn't matter.
 

RavinDJ

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Apr 9, 2002
Messages
4,239
I don't need to watch/record TV on my HTPC, just be able to access my movies/tv shows/photos. What's the best OS and software for those requirements? Thanks, guys!! I do appreciate it.
 

drescherjm

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Nov 19, 2008
Messages
14,926
if the DrivePool is not necessary for MythTV, then separate drives wouldn't matter.

I use a combination of 2TB drives and 4TB drives with the 4TBs for backups.

Note: The storage is out of balance now because I have manually moved data and added drives. You can move any recording to any device in your storage and mythtv will automatically find it. You can also have multiple backends with tuners and storage. For now I have 1 backend. In the past I had 2. The reason for reducing the number of backends was power savings and I made my 6 core / 12 threaded machine to be a windows box instead of windows on top of linux for better performance for my medical imaging research work.

Code:
Disk Usage Summary:

    Total Disk Space:
        Total Space: 7,714,199 MB
        Space Used: 4,934,035 MB
        Space Free: 2,780,164 MB
        Space Available After Auto-expire: 2,792,900 MB
            Space Used by LiveTV: 1,124 MB
            Space Used by Deleted Recordings: 11,612 MB
            Space Used by Auto-expirable Recordings: 0 MB

Disk Usage Details:

    MythTV Drive #1:
        Directory: jmd0:/mnt/mythtv/hitachi_2t_3_0/recordings
        Total Space: 1,870,843 MB
        Space Used: 456,439 MB
        Space Free: 1,414,404 MB
    MythTV Drive #2:
        Directory: jmd0:/mnt/mythtv/jmd0_vg_2t0_0/videos
        Total Space: 1,511,771 MB
        Space Used: 1,030,614 MB
        Space Free: 481,156 MB
    MythTV Drive #3:
        Directory: jmd0:/mnt/mythtv/jmd0_vg_2t2_0/videos
        Total Space: 503,838 MB
        Space Used: 44,975 MB
        Space Free: 458,862 MB
    MythTV Drive #4:
        Directory: jmd0:/mnt/mythtv/jmd0_vg_2t3_0/recordings
        Total Space: 1,907,729 MB
        Space Used: 1,569,150 MB
        Space Free: 338,578 MB
    MythTV Drive #5:
        Directory: jmd0:/mnt/mythtv/jmd0_vg_2t4_0/recordings
        Total Space: 1,907,728 MB
        Space Used: 1,832,828 MB
        Space Free: 74,900 MB
    MythTV Drive #6:
        Directory: jmd0:/tmp/mythtv
        Total Space: 12,288 MB
        Space Used: 26 MB
        Space Free: 12,261 MB

Here are my recording stats.. In a few months it will be 10 years of Mythtv in production for me..

Code:
Number of shows:    299
Number of episodes:     7734
First recording:    Sunday May 30th, 2004
Last recording:    Friday March 14th, 2014
Total Running Time:     9 years 9 months 14 days 15 mins
Total Recorded:    11 months 14 hrs 2 mins
Percent of time spent recording: 9%
 
Last edited:

rhouck

2[H]4U
Joined
Apr 15, 2002
Messages
3,597
I was a WHS user for a long time, but the long-term headaches of losing drives wasn't worth it. At least with the old WHS you could pull the drives and access them easily individually, but the way it split folders across multiple drives was asinine (e.g., one music album could span 3-4 hard drives...).

I gave up and went to just using standard drive sharing in Server2008, and most recently am just trying Win7. If you're using a frontend (e.g., XMBC), it's irrelevant how many drives you have. And then for duplication, just set up matched drives (i.e., 2TB to 2TB) manually using SyncToy (or similar).

Having automated drive pooling was certainly easier, but was a headache when things went wrong. I admit I have not used Stablebit, so perhaps the way it divides files is more logical than WHS.
 

nessus

2[H]4U
Joined
Jan 30, 2001
Messages
2,221
WHS2011 makes a lousy HTPC, but can be a great server for all your other HTPCs.

Stablebit 2.0 is out and works on platforms other than WHS2011. You do want to stick with the latest 1.x version if you use WHS2011.

Stablebit 2.0 is supported on Vista and later MS OS. 32 and 64 bit. (Non Windows RT versions of course)

Unless you are using the de-duplicating backup of WHS/WHS2011 and its backup software like I am, I'd use another MS OS of your choice unless you don't have an available licensed copy. If you are going to actually put a drive pool on your HTPC, that's the way I would go.

You can go Windows 8.1 and storage pools, but Stablebit is more flexible about adding/removing disks of different sizes from its pools. You can't use REFS on a Stablebit pool though, only NTFS.

Pooled stuff on it is stored in a hidden directory on each drive in the pool. That drive and folder can be opened and read on any machine capable of reading NTFS. Files that are replicated (or not) on multiple drives only exist in that hidden directory on the drives where the file is replicated.

It doesn't have symlinks on every drive pointing to the real file location like the original version of WHS that made finding the actual files on another machine a pain if you moved the drives over to another machine running a different OS to recover data due to a WHS OS drive failure, etc.
 
Last edited:

Azhar

Fixing stupid since 1972
Joined
Jan 9, 2001
Messages
18,876
question about Storage Spaces: I have 8x2TB drives totaling about 16 TB, all independent of each other on an AMD A4 FM2 media server (currently running WHS 2011 on its own 500GB drive). I want to reinstall and put Windows 8.1 on it to use Storage Spaces. Will the drives be wiped out to create the Storage Spaces pool?
 

munkle

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jan 16, 2005
Messages
11,800
unless you wipe the drives storage spaces should remain, though I have run into some issues sometimes where the storage space will be read only when reformatting the os drive. I'm actually going from using storage spaces on my server essentials 2012 server to using either drive bender or drivepool just for ease of moving them around. Storage spaces doesn't allow you to remove a disk at least that I have seen.
 
Last edited:

kirbyrj

Fully [H]
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Messages
28,829
Stablebit 2.0 is out and works on platforms other than WHS2011. You do want to stick with the latest 1.x version if you use WHS2011.

Stablebit 2.0 is supported on Vista and later MS OS. 32 and 64 bit. (Non Windows RT versions of course)

I use Stablebit 2.0 on WHS2011 and I have no issues. It even imported my pool from 1.X

Right from Stablebit's website:
StableBit DrivePool 2.X can also run on the Windows Home Server 2011 and newer
 

Azhar

Fixing stupid since 1972
Joined
Jan 9, 2001
Messages
18,876
this article explains in the last paragraph, page 1, that drives added to Storage Space will be formatted.

http://www.pcpro.co.uk/features/379408/windows-8-storage-spaces-a-how-to-guide

Looks like I'll need to buy a new drive to begin creating a Storage Space pool, then moving the data to it, add the second drive, move data, add third, and so on.

If I'm reading it right, once a drive has joined Storage Spaces, it can be removed and re-added without loss of data.

I have a license to StableBits and tried it back in 2011 or 2012, but I didn't like how it threw your data all over the places. It made my movies skip when left in Video_TS or BDMV folder format when accessing the next chapter that was moved onto another drive. Since I've converted all 670 movies into MKV, that problem shouldn't exist anymore since it's one file now. But since Storage Space was released, I've stopped myself from re-installing StableBits so I can watch where Storage Space is going.
 
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