A case for 20+ HDD

dvl@

Aspiring Daemon
Developer

Reaction score: 69
Messages: 572

I was shown this case today: Lian Li PC-D8000

It has slots for 20 3.5" HDD, and 5 x 5.25" bays.

I may use this to combine two existing servers (one with 6 x HDD, the other with 10 x HDD), creating two zpools in the process. That leaves 4 empty drive slots.

This case would be sitting in my home and seems like a great alternative to, for example, a 4U case, and would be much quieter.

I could add these two drive cages, providing room for another 8 drives.

* http://www.icydock.com/goods.php?id=157
* http://www.icydock.com/goods.php?id=163

... yes, for a total of 28 HDD.

There are some ledges in the 5.25" drives bays which will causes issues with drive cages: http://www.overclockerstech.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/DSCF5168-1024x768.jpg

review: http://www.overclockerstech.com/lian-li-pcd8000-chassis-review/all/1/

video about case

This is my blog post which got me started on this quest.
 
Last edited:

wblock@

Beastie Himself
Developer

Reaction score: 3,677
Messages: 13,851

The drive cages appear to have slots to accommodate those ledges. But the ledges could be gently encouraged to bend back with a big enough hammer. And maybe a punch and a small cutout in some wood to support the area around them while applying... let's call it percussive force. Cheap cases have those cages riveted to the shell, but nothing that a drill can't fix. Still, it would be nice if a $500 case was better designed.
 
OP
dvl@

dvl@

Aspiring Daemon
Developer

Reaction score: 69
Messages: 572

Others have since commented about drive cages with slots. I am not as concerned as before. Thanks.

By 'cages riveted to the shell', do you mean those 10-HDD cages? I don't see the use-case for removing a stack of 10 HDD.

On a related note, this is the hardware (which I am using now) which would go into that case (from http://dan.langille.org/2013/01/09/creating-a-new-gateway-box-part-ii/):

* motherboard – SUPERMICRO MBD-X9SCL+-F Micro ATX Server Motherboard LGA 1155 Intel C202 DDR3 1333
* CPU – Intel Xeon E3-1230 V2 Ivy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 8MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 69W Quad-Core Server Processor
* Samsung DDR3-1600 8GB/1Gx72 ECC Samsung Chip Server Memory – M391B1G73BH0-CK0 (32GB total)
 

wblock@

Beastie Himself
Developer

Reaction score: 3,677
Messages: 13,851

By 'cages riveted to the shell', do you mean those 10-HDD cages?
To bend those ledges outward, it would be preferable to remove the whole assembly. A lot of times, they are riveted to the front shell of the case. (Computer case designers seem to come from the same mold as BIOS authors, intent on making humanity suffer.)
 
OP
dvl@

dvl@

Aspiring Daemon
Developer

Reaction score: 69
Messages: 572

To bend those ledges outward, it would be preferable to remove the whole assembly. A lot of times, they are riveted to the front shell of the case. (Computer case designers seem to come from the same mold as BIOS authors, intent on making humanity suffer.)
Ahh, yes, now I understand, but it seems that might be unnecessary.
 

phoenix

Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Moderator

Reaction score: 1,274
Messages: 4,099

Wow, that's a nice case. Thanks for the tip. I'll need to seriously consider this, as my current case maxes out at 4 drive bays, and that's really not enough storage for home anymore. 20 bays provides a lot of expansion. :)
 
OP
dvl@

dvl@

Aspiring Daemon
Developer

Reaction score: 69
Messages: 572

Wow, that's a nice case. Thanks for the tip. I'll need to seriously consider this, as my current case maxes out at 4 drive bays, and that's really not enough storage for home anymore. 20 bays provides a lot of expansion. :)
All credit to diizzy for pointing out this case to me.
 

alphaniner

Member

Reaction score: 5
Messages: 38

I bought two of these (seller accepted $25/each shipped) and jerry-rigged one of them as well as one 6-bay version (a lucky find, it was cheaper than the 4-bays) into an old chassis with a wooden 'frame':
 

Terry_Kennedy

Aspiring Daemon

Reaction score: 306
Messages: 936

I was shown this case today: Lian Li PC-D8000

It has slots for 20 3.5" HDD, and 5 x 5.25" bays.

This case would be sitting in my home and seems like a great alternative to, for example, a 4U case, and would be much quieter.

... yes, for a total of 28 HDD.
I'm not sure how well the cooling (and to a lesser extent, power) will work for you on something like that. It might be fine, it might be a disaster. It probably also depends on what kind of drives you put in there (5900 RPM green drives vs. 15K RPM SAS speed demons). A lot of "super heavy duty" power supplies have plenty of 12V capacity (for processors and video cards) but provide only "normal" capacity for 5V and 3.3V, the other 2 rails on the SATA connector. Most drives still pull most of their power from 12V (for spindle motors) but even 250mA of 5V starts to add up if you have 28 of them.

Manufacturers like Supermicro sell both bare chassis and systems with motherboards, and they likely have more experience with fully-loaded chassis and design them accordingly. Of course, they cost more, are usually rack-mount, and are louder.

A lower-cost solution might be to look on eBay for an inexpensive major-brand chassis (like a Dell PowerVault) that has been decommissioned and the drives removed. If you can get one that still has the drive caddys in it, you should be able to use it as an external storage chassis. The only issue is that these are normally SAS chassis w/ expanders in them, and SATA drives behind SAS expanders is generally a Bad Thing (you can easily find horror stories).

You also might want to re-think the drive layout. With many 6TB drive models available (if not inexpensively) and capacities up to 10TB announced, a smaller number of larger capacity drives might be the way to go. If I were building my RAIDzilla II's today, I'd go with drives larger than the 2TB ones that I started with. I'll probably switch them over at some point, probably to 6TB SAS drives.
 
OP
dvl@

dvl@

Aspiring Daemon
Developer

Reaction score: 69
Messages: 572

I am planning on a high quality PSU. My first step was determine the power usage of the TOSHIBA PH3500U-1I72 5TB but that information is not public from what I failed to find.

Thank you for the tips about 5V and 3.3V and I will make sure they enough capacity for that.

For cooling: there will be 3x120mm fans on each side of the case at the front. These will draw air in and over the HDD. At the rear of the case, there is room for 4x120mm fans. There will be lots of air being expelled from the case. Additionally, you can mount 4x120mm fans on the top of the case.
 
Top