[mythtv-users] Single WD GP disk fast enough for live 720p?

Mark Garland mythtvusers at markgarland.co.uk
Mon Nov 30 11:14:31 UTC 2009

> I was considering spinning down the drive when Idle, although turning off
> or redirecting enough logging is always a big job in Linux.
> That could be why people have had problems with spindown. I would expect
> that a drive that's constantly spinning up and down would suffer compared
> to one that stays spinning when idle, especially a low-consuption disk
> that should keep relatively cool when idle... on the other hand, with
> logging properly reconfigured, having the drive able to stay down for most
> of the day should be an advantage.

The spin down wasn't really the issue, it was more the head-parking.
After (a default) of 8 seconds, the drive would click as the heads park like
a laptop drive and the power usage would drop by 3-4watts.
As a media drive - this is great.  
As a Linux system drive, this just didn't work.  Something would touch the
drive every 10 seconds (I read somewhere that Linux buffers writes in this
way but I don't have the knowledge to back that up).  You'd then get in a
cycle - park, unpark, park, unpark, leading to a lot of people running an
unsupported tool to disable the parking.  

There's some very polarised opinions out there - some people claiming FUD,
some people adamant that it shortens drives' lifespan.

Check out http://www.silentpcreview.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=53110 for a
thread I started back in March when figuring this out.  SPCR contains many
other similar threads which should give you all the information you want.



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