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I am replacing the C drive on WHS 2011 with an SSD.  I am in the process of installing everything from scratch due to stupidity.  When I went to the SableBit website to reinstall Scanner and Drivepool, I was surprised to see the DrivePool plug-ins.  I would like to know how the experts feel about these additions.  

 

SSD Optimizer:  I have read that the flash portion of an SSD drive has a limited number of transactions after which it will begin to fail.  While the number of transactions before failure is admittedly quite large, would the ssd optimizer speed up the SSD disk's failure?  Or, is the transaction rate before failure so high that it really does not matter?

 

Order File Placement:  Is order file placement where one disk is filled at a time, the best way to go?  Or, is the default where all of the disks are filled equally the best?  Or rather than spinning all of the disks all of the time, is it better to start with a couple of disks in the default mode and add a disk when you need it.  Thus, saving wear and energy?

 

Disk Space Equalizer:  I must confess that I do not really see much of a difference between equalizing by free space remaining, equalizing by percent used space and the default method of equalizing by placing new files onto the disk with the most free space.  And, I am open to being shown why one method should be preferred over the other.

 

Perhaps it would be good to add that I am interested in adding the Office Maven add-ins for Quicken and Office, and utilizing them to minimize memory usage on a couple of Surface Pro 4's.  Also due to starting over, I was able to expand the C:\ partition from 60 to 210 with the use of the free version of Partition Magic Server Software.  So, I am in a unique position with regard to room on the OS partition if that matters.    

 

 

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(puts on Covecube work hat)

 

 

 

SSD Optimizer:  I have read that the flash portion of an SSD drive has a limited number of transactions after which it will begin to fail.  While the number of transactions before failure is admittedly quite large, would the ssd optimizer speed up the SSD disk's failure?  Or, is the transaction rate before failure so high that it really does not matter?

 

Yes, this would significantly reduce the lifespan of your SSDs. 

 

However, check out some of the stress tests. The lifetime is pretty significant, and you may end up wanting to replace them for larger capacity before they come close to dying. Also, Seriously, $80 for a 240-256GB SSD. 

 

Also, the balancer is only for new files. Modifies are done to the underlying disk, unless you use file placement rules. 

 

I have 2x 128GB OCZ's and both are about a year old, have only been used for the SSD Optimizer, and the media wearout indicator is at 84 (so, it's life is 84%, plenty of life left). And I download a LOT of data... so these drives get absolutely thrashed. 

 

 

Order File Placement:  Is order file placement where one disk is filled at a time, the best way to go?  Or, is the default where all of the disks are filled equally the best?  Or rather than spinning all of the disks all of the time, is it better to start with a couple of disks in the default mode and add a disk when you need it.  Thus, saving wear and energy?

 

Yes. This fills up one (or more, if duplication is enabled) at a time.  

 

There are a number of reasons to do this, but power saving (or smooth playback) is the main reason.  Since one disk at a time is filled up, if you're accessing multiple files in the same disk (such as for music, raw DVD/BluRAY content, etc), the contents of the folder are most likely on the same disk, and should only spin up that disk. That will definitely save on energy, potentially.  

Also, there can be a slight delay to spin up a disk, if the files were on different disks, which could cause performance issues.   This would bypass the issue.

 

 

The other thing that people use it for, is in conjunction with products like SnapRAID (to get snapshot parity, aka, not real time). 

 

 

Also, if you want to use this and the SSD optimizer, just use the SSD Optimizer. There is an issue with using both (infinite loop, stuck moving files around constantly). So the SSD Optimizer balancer has a "ordered file placement" option, as well.  

This is what I use, and my archive disks are completely full (less than 50GBs free)

 

Disk Space Equalizer:  I must confess that I do not really see much of a difference between equalizing by free space remaining, equalizing by percent used space and the default method of equalizing by placing new files onto the disk with the most free space.  And, I am open to being shown why one method should be preferred over the other.

 

The balancing system doesn't aggressively move files around.  So when you add a new disk, the software will use the disk over time, but it won't immediately move files around to fill this disk up. 

Instead, new files are placed on the disk with the most available free space (measured in absolute, not percentage).  Over time, it will fill up all of the disks equally, mostly. 

 

This is for mostly used by people that have added a new disk, and want the pool to equally utilize all disks immediately.  Or want the same percent filled on each disk (as a 1TB may not be used until the 3TB has 2TB of data on it, for instance)

 

It's much more of an edge case than the other two balancers. 

 

 

Perhaps it would be good to add that I am interested in adding the Office Maven add-ins for Quicken and Office, and utilizing them to minimize memory usage on a couple of Surface Pro 4's.  Also due to starting over, I was able to expand the C:\ partition from 60 to 210 with the use of the free version of Partition Magic Server Software.  So, I am in a unique position with regard to room on the OS partition if that matters.    

 

 

Is this for work/professionally?  If so, be careful with those add-ins.  Because it's leveraging RemoteApp (Terminal Services, aka Remote Desktop), it may be legally dubious. For home use, it shouldn't be an issue.  

 

As for the OS partition, that's always a good move. Though, if you delete the data partition, you can use Disk Management to extend it. That's what I usually do.

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Drashna, 

 

No, worries about professional stuff.  It is all home use.  You could say it is all amateur play.  In fact, it would be way cheaper to just purchase a WD or Seagate backup system, and forget about the server.  My wife will use the Quicken and Office for our home budgeting etc.  I work in an elementary school and do teach some information systems, but mostly use Google drive and applications while there.  Except when we are traveling, we almost never use remote access.  In fact, I have a hard time keeping it connected.   

 

If I am understanding correctly, you are suggesting that I use the SSD optimizer and for compatibility and ease of use reasons, forget about the other two plug-ins.  Is that correct?

 

Thanks, I appreciate your time and value your response.

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About the Office Maven stuff, I just wanted to make sure.  Better safe than sorry....

 

 

As for the DrivePool stuff, no. 

 

If you want to use the SSD Optimizer, then do so.  If you want to use the Ordered File Placement, then do so. But if you want to do both... then *just* do the SSD Optimizer.  This is because these two balancers DO NOT play well together, and cause an "infinite file movement loop".  

 

Otherwise, you can use whichever you want. 

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WoW! I can do whatever I want?  Please let my wife know.  

 

Seriously, thank you for your response.  I think I will use the SSD optimizer and stay with the default on the drive fill.  

 

I also appreciated your mentioning, "if you delete the data partition, you can use Disk Management to extend it. That's what I usually do."  After reading your comment, I did just that.  It should make my life much easier when it comes time to replace the C drive in the future.  Thank you.

 

You mentioned using two SSD drives.  Do you include them in the pool or, are they just there to speed up data transfer?

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WoW! I can do whatever I want?  Please let my wife know.  

 

Seriously, thank you for your response.  I think I will use the SSD optimizer and stay with the default on the drive fill.  

 

I also appreciated your mentioning, "if you delete the data partition, you can use Disk Management to extend it. That's what I usually do."  After reading your comment, I did just that.  It should make my life much easier when it comes time to replace the C drive in the future.  Thank you.

 

You mentioned using two SSD drives.  Do you include them in the pool or, are they just there to speed up data transfer?

 

 

I have one for the system disk and two for the pool. 

 

And they are there mostly to speed up transfers to the pool.  Nothing stays on them for long.  

 

But part of the reason for that is that I have Seagate Archive drives and the SMR feature has some pretty atrocious write performance (in certain cases). 

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