[mythtv-users] USB Harddrives

Peter VanDerWal peter at vanderwal.us
Mon Jul 21 13:11:49 UTC 2008

> On Mon, Jul 21, 2008 at 4:31 AM, Peter VanDerWal <peter at vanderwal.us>
> wrote:
>> I do hope you are backing up that data.
>> USB drives are really not intended to be used this way, and keeping a
>> drive running continuously tends to lead to short lifespans.
>> I'd think if you want to use external drives that you'd be better off
>> using SATA.  Any particular reason you folks aren't doing this?  I mean
>> besides the fact that USB is a little bit cheaper (I'm pretty sure there
>> is some correlation between "cheap" and "longevity")
> What makes you think the hard drives inside external enclosures are
> any more prone to failure than an internal drive? If you crack open
> the case you'll see they are the exact same drives they sell for
> internal use. Most that I've seen are just be IDE drives with a
> conversion to USB.

I didn't say anything about the external enclosure causing the problem.
You can run external SATA drives.  If I was going to use an external SATA
drive, I would definitely have it in an external enclosure.

What I said USB drives.

It seems to me (and I could be wrong) that USB drives have two basic options.
A)  the drive runs continuously (which can lead to early failure) or
B)  the USB interface/drive-controller will shut down the drive after a
period of inactivity which will lead to a failure on the Linux side when
it tries to access the drive (pretty much what the original post was
complaining about).

If you pull some trick to get around problem B then you end up with A.

As I said, USB drives aren't really intended to be used this way.  I
discovered this the hard way when trying to use USB drives for a NAS.

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