Here’s a great little product for anyone looking to expand their HP Microserver…
Icy Dock has announced the MB994IPO-3SB, a dual-bay SATA/SAS mobile rack backplane with a slim optical disk drive (ODD) slot, for use in a single 5.25″ device bay. Dual 4-pin power connectors support low-power SATA SSDs or more demanding 15000 RPM SAS hard drives.
via Storage Reviews.
Whilst upgrading my new 2011 Mac Mini from its standard slow hard disk to a brand spanking new SSD I spotted the second channel SATA port identified by the original iFixit teardown…
When we took apart the 2011 Mac Mini, we found the optical drive conspicuously absent. While few are bemoaning Apple’s efforts to hasten the death of physical media, we were saddened that Apple didn’t make better use of the extra space. Fear not, we’ve got a solution to bring your Mini back to the space-efficiency you’d expect in an Apple product.
In the past couple of month various supplier have come up with a solution to mounting a second hard disk in this tiny box, mainly based around the fact that the 2011 model is identical to the 2010 mac mini server, and can use the same cable supplied for that system.
My first find was iFixit’s own kit, which comes with all the tools and mounting points required to add a second disk, the downside is the cost, which at $69 is pretty pricy if you happen to have some of the tools already.
I did find some alternative suppliers for just the cable alone, MacPartsOnline has the cable alone for $39, Applemacparts.co.uk also supplies parts to the UK for £25 plus VAT. Availability seems to be an issue with all the suppliers due to the popularity and cost savings compared to the standard Apple upgrade prices.
If you’re considering this upgrade do follow iFixIt’s full upgrade guide, which is very detailed (there’s also this first hand guide to the process) it can be a bit scary the first time you take apart a Mac Mini, as it’s a very tight package, but if you take it slowly it does work out.
And it damn well should be at $11,500!
The LSI WarpDrive SLP-300 packs 300GB of solid state storage onto a PCI Express card and promises up to 240,000 sustained IOPS (Input / Output Operations Per Second), with 1,400MBps sustained throughput — about double the performance of OCZ’s substantially cheaper RevoDrive X2. According to LSI, you would need over 400 regular hard drives in 36U of rack space and 300 times the power to match the WarpDrive for sheer IOPS.
An interesting new report is stating that SSD prices could fall to below $1 per gigabyte by the end of the year…
While any price drop in SSDs will probably help sales, at $1 per gigabyte the technology is still much, much more expensive than conventional hard drives. Hard drive space costs less than $0.10 per gigabyte on average, making it just a tenth as expensive as SSD space. While the speed advantages of SSDs are tempting, so is the prospect of either paying less for the same amount of space, or paying more for ten times the amount of space.
Whilst I do love the speed of the SSD, it’s hard to justify the massive difference in cost when it’s limited to such small sized. Roll on the change I say!
Here’s an interesting little drive, a standard 500gb laptop hard disk with a 4gb SSD for cacheing the most often used elements on the disk…
Upon boot, we noticed a 1 – 2 second improvement in how long it took to show us a useable desktop; hardly Earth-shattering, but a decent start. From there, we fired up Firefox, Photoshop CS5, Skitch, TweetDeck and iTunes in succession. Again, a 1 – 2 second improvement in total load time. But after using the apps for a bit, we shut our machine down and rebooted, doing the same song and dance all over again. And again. And again.
We went through this process four total times, with each one getting a bit quicker when it came to load time. After we’d given it ample opportunity to grasp our preferred flow, we noticed a 6 – 8 second improvement in total load time. That may not sound like a lot, but percentage wise it’s hardly worth sneezing at.
Still it might be a struggle to justify the cost, as the Momentus XT costs about £75 currently, compared to £35 for the same capacity. Cheaper than an SSD, might be worth it if you need to space on the move.
Samsung have once again upped the ante on the hard disk stakes, by updating their 2tb disk to be fast, more reliable and cheaper.
Samsung latest 3.5-inch EcoGreen desktop hard disk does with three platters what its F3EG did with four: obtain a 2TB capacity. That’s 667GB per platter for what Samsung calls the world’s highest areal density, environmentally friendly hard disk drive on the market.
Specifically, this 3.0Gbps SATA disk with a 32MB buffer brings a 19 percent improved standby performance and requires 23 percent less power in standby mode than its EcoGreen F3EG. Better yet, it does all this for $60 less (just $119.95)
Now all you have to do it hold out until September