[mythtv-users] Backend hardware advice - Power usage - RESULTS

dave johnson DJ4904 at hotmail.com
Sat Aug 5 05:53:33 UTC 2006

Dave, yeah, I had most of the drive power usage stats in the RAID power consumption spreadsheet i sent out about a month or so ago when this discussion first made its rounds and these results only corroborate that sheet.

Unfortunately, a 330w drive will not cut it on spin up (I tried)...  the first few times it attempted to work, and the drives began making horrible noises, or simply would continue to spin up and down in various chaotic rates.  This was with an Enermax 350.  The reason for 2 power supplies ?  They were free, and it worked.  A friend has a Raidmax 650 that I am going to try sometime and see if it 1) has enough juice to run the whole wad, and 2) consumes any less power.

As for loading the system... I simply wanted to load the system to typical usage, not max... as that's not very useful except for curiousity only.  However, i did measure "full-load" mode and i can tell you just excersizing the cpu doesn't do much, but exersizing the drives does shoot the usage up a bit more.  On the host I ran a "tar cjf /storage/tmp.tar.gz /storage/media" and on the drives, performed a "find /" on the host, while also running 5 instances of CloneSpy (clonespy.com) in binary mode on the mounted storage share, or running a similar tar command on the mounted NFS "storage" share and without the "j" switch.

As for spin-down, while the controller I beleive supports spin-down, there really isn't any time this system is idle as it is used for pretty much everything in the house via NFS, CIFS, or iSCSI shares.   I will say it's nice to never have to worry about a drive in one of my systems blowing out since they're all in this thing, and redundant.  After losing some business-critical data last year, I never want to give $1200 of my $$$ to a drive recovery shop again !

Since I have to build a system at work for a drive duplicating station, I think I am going to pick up one of the $150 complete Goede systems from Fry's they keep advertizing and see how it fares in my "filer"... it may be worth the lower power consumption.  If it doesn't work well in the filer, or does reduce power consumption a whole lot... off to work it goes :)


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "David Rees" <drees76 at gmail.com>
To: "Discussion about mythtv" <mythtv-users at mythtv.org>
Sent: Thursday, August 03, 2006 1:01 PM
Subject: Re: [mythtv-users] Backend hardware advice - Power usage - RESULTS

On 8/3/06, dave johnson <DJ4904 at hotmail.com> wrote:
> Storage system:
> -1GHz PIII System
> -512MB Ram
> -Intel Desktop Board with integrated video
> -Intel Pro1000 Desktop Card ($15 craigslist)
> -3Ware 7508-12 PATA RAID controller ($219 ebay)

All this probably sucks about 40-60w.

> -11x200GB Seagate 7200.8 PATA HD ($43/ea total after rebate)

Each drive is about 8-10w each idle.

> -2x250W powersupplies (connect green leads from each ATX connector to have
> both support auto-on/off.

Why 2 PSUs? What PSU specifically? Most PSUs are horribly inefficient,
as in 50-60% efficient. A good PSU these days is over 80% efficient so
this will save you 25-50w. Something like the Seasonic S12-330 will
have plenty of power for your system and has high efficiency.

> Total at this max load hovered between 218W and 228W

The Mersenne Prime program and running it in torture mode to fully
exercise the CPU.

> Now I need to grab a Goede system and see what it comes in at but from the
> looks of it :)

That will reduce the 60w to about 15w which is pretty nice. I think
that combined with an efficient PSU will get your power utilization
down to 125w during idle if not lower.

Aside from that, if you can spin down the drives that drops the power
of the drives down to nearly negligible when they're not in use.

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