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Fresh Setup of N54L, Few questions


Phear46
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Hi guys, first post! I was lucky enough to grab an N54L over here in the UK on a deal with £100 Cashback! Picked it up with a few WD Red drives and now its all here and im trying to get it set up. If I Explain what im trying to do then Ill explain where I need some pointers.
 
Im going to run the OS (unbuntu server 12.04) from a 4gb USB stick I have laying around. Ive already installed it and its running just fine.
 
I currently have 2 x 2TB WD Red drives in bay 1 + 2 and the stock 250GB drive is in the 3rd bay. Will proably add more drives later but not for some time so this is how Im going to set up for now:
 
250gb drive - 4 partitions: (40gb apt cache) (10gb www) (12gb usb backup's) (180ishGB Home folders)
         apt-cache is a program to help me save a bit of bandwidth regarding updating all the laptops/PC's

         www will be used as a partition to host all my web sites, just to play about with

         usb backups will be used to do nightly images of the usb stick so ill have the previous 3 days incase something goes wrong.

         home folders is exactly what is says, ill break these down so each user has thire own folder and the pc's auto mount the correct directorys


2TB drive - 2 partitions:(250gb copy of seagate drive) (1.75TB Music/Video)
2TB drive - exact copy of above drive

 

I havent yet partioned/formtted the drives, was hoping for a few pointers as to what would be best in the way of file systems and raid/lvm setups, all my devices run ubuntu/android, one (currently) runs windows xp maybe once every 5-6 months but this is only on the rare occasion linux lets me down.

 

The main thing i want to get sorted right now is the OS running from USB. I will probably switch to an ssd and start playing with VM's eventually but for now money is tight and I have a few USB sticks laying around. USB sticks were never designed to run an OS, and the writes are somewhat limited. I need to protect the flash as best i can by making a few adjustments to the way ubuntu runs and this is where i could use a hand. Ive been googling around and just cant see which way is 'best'. I think using the aufs file system is proably the way to go but not sure. What do you guys think? The main resources ive found are listed below.

 

I currently have Ubuntu installed using LVM, I can always reinstall as this isnt a problem but i Think keeping LVM allows me to easyly backup the usb image.

 

Links:

http://askubuntu.com/questions/97153/install-ubuntu-server-to-a-flash-drive-permanently

http://bernaerts.dyndns.org/linux/53-debian-server-compact-flash

http://www.chrisnewland.com/using-linux-tmpfs-to-reduce-disk-writes-for-power-saving-and-longer-cf-lifespan-186

http://www.debian-administration.org/articles/179

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/aufsRootFileSystemOnUsbFlash

 

 

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