Feature Friday: 24 Terabytes of awesome

Posted By: Team XBMC on Aug 06, 2011 in Site News

This is Micah’s gaming PC.

Gaming PC

Gaming PC says hi

Often, Micah will play a few quick hours of Star Trek Online with his gaming PC. Naturally, this means he needs some serious processor power, which is why the PC is equipped with a Core i7 3.06GHz quad-core processor and a GTX 470 video card, along with 12 gigs (soon to be 24 gigs) of RAM. It’s also got some extensive fans and a serious gamer case.

None of that is particularly interesting to an XBMC head. What might be slightly more interesting are these:

12 HDDs

12 HDDs

Yup, Micah is sporting 12 2-terabyte hard drives in his gaming computer for a grand total of 24 terabytes of solid media storage. At the moment, these hard drives are storing 1500 HD movies (the vast majority being 1080p). They are warehousing approximately 7,500 episodes of various 720p television shows. And they are serving them all up to this:

73 Inch Television

73 Inch Television

Yes, many people are willing to sacrifice screen brightness for the larger picture a projector can throw. Not Micah. His 73 inch DLP Mitsubishi is longer diagonally than I am tall and as bright as every DLP screen is known to be.  Hooked up to this behemoth is a Denon AVR-1910:

The back side of Micah's Denon

The back side of Micah's Denon

Along with a PS3, an Xbox 360, a Wii, an SNES, the PlayStations 1 and 2, the Sega Dreamcast, a Gamecube, and an original Xbox.

The Dreamcast, SNES, N64, and PS2 say hello

The Dreamcast, SNES, N64, and PS2 are only some of Micah's current and retro gaming systems.

Micah has all the appropriate controllers for his various systems, along with a Logitech Harmony One remote to rule them all and in the darkness bind them.

For his  htpc Micah has thrown together a Core 2 Duo E8400 CPU and an ATI Radeon 4670, along with the necessary PC trappings. It’s an unremarkable machine when compared to the rest of his setup, but it’ll play pretty well anything Micah throws at it, which is just about everything a person needs an htpc to do.

An unremarkable PC to complement a truly remarkable setup

An unremarkable PC to complement a truly remarkable setup

Micah has future plans to build an entirely new htpc with a built-in ir sensor to better make use of his Harmony One remote. For now, though, feel free to pull up a chair or leap on the couch…

Take a seat on the couch!

I promise it's comfortable!

And prepare to pick out and enjoy one of the 1500 movies in the middle of the day on Micah’s super bright and super giant DLP screen. And while you’re at it, why not send your setup to natethomas AT xbmc DOT org or post about it on our Facebook fanpage to see if you don’t get featured yourself next Friday!

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Discussion - 85 Comments

  • Hund Aug 06, 2011 

    No hallway? Must be in the USA then. :D

  • Anon-kun Aug 06, 2011 

    I stopped reading at i7.

  • tzevel Aug 06, 2011 

    Well, cool setup and everything but maybe Micah should spend more than 50 cents for furniture

  • Matty Aug 06, 2011 

    Impressive setup, however having a PC that powerful housing 12 hard drives must waste so much power when streaming media, same with the PC playing it.. I would say he needs to look at building a dedicated low powered PC to both share and stream all that media.

    Power issues aside I would say that’s a very impressive setup, and collection of media Micah has there!

  • Sven Aug 06, 2011 

    I hope that the “12 gigs (soon to be 24 gigs) of RAM” are not being used for Star Trek online only..

  • Daniel Morales Aug 06, 2011 

    I am jelous! Are you rich? anyways loved the gaming console collection! kool!

  • asdf Aug 06, 2011 

    Not rick I’m sure, but probably rents or lives in a condo.

  • Premoistened Aug 06, 2011 

    Seriously, who needs 24gbs ram for any gaming machine. Even less needed if the game your playing on it is the yawnfest that is Star Trek Online. “Hey look everybody, I can spend money!” Maybe Micah should pass on the extra 12gigs of ram and buy a proper curtain rod or a ceiling fan that isn’t from the 1970′s.

  • Matt Aug 06, 2011 

    what is up with that chair in the first picture is it holding up that table or????

    also are all those hard drives in some sort of raid as i am slowly building my storage server capacity currently the max will be 10tb but hope to add another 3 x 2tb western digital green drives to it just have to find a card to add extra ports to my system as all my ports are taken up by 5 x 2tb drives and 1 x 60gb 2.5″ laptop drive i am using as a boot drive

    i am running windows 7 x64 i am using what would be similar to a raid 0 in the fact i am using mirror backups of each drive which i store offline once they are full i don’t trust a raid array personally would have for a card to fail or software issue make me lose over 10tb of files

  • John Holmes Aug 06, 2011 

    Why is there a chair BEHIND your computer? Did you like forget to move it before you put the computer desk there?

  • y0 Aug 06, 2011 

    Love the set up.

    What kind of case is holding all those harddrives? What kind of controllers are you using for them?

    I’m out of sata ports and room for harddrives so looking for suggestions on expanding.

  • Zeke Aug 06, 2011 

    All that money to make a formidable gaming/HTPC rig and nothing left over in the budget for a better digital camera to document it all? :P

    In all seriousness though, it’s a quality rig. The problem would be finding the time to watch 1500 HD movies, and that whenever you went to someone else’s house 99% of the time you’d be pining for your own far superior setup.

  • Blacksar Aug 06, 2011 

    Only 3GHz? Awe, come on. You can easily over-clock that puppy. 4.0GHz at least, easy! ;) Heck, my i7 920 can do rock solid 3.8Ghz no problem. :D

  • rcrh Aug 06, 2011 

    24 TB and no mention of a backup, or the OS. Is this thing run RAID or anything else to provide duplication? I’d hate to have to replace 2tb of content when one of these drives tanks. Please give us more details on the drive array.
    thanks.

  • Initialo Aug 06, 2011 

    Where did the two cabinets beside the tv come from? I’ve been looking for something like that for my current setup but haven’t been able to find anything that isn’t majorly overpriced.

  • J Aug 06, 2011 

    I hope he has all of that media backed up.

  • Ronner Aug 06, 2011 

    Why would he need a backup for the media? Or even put it in a raid. For movies and tv shows it’s pretty useless imho. It’s not like you can not retrieve the lost media anymore. Even worse, I bet those twelve 2TB hdd’s are consumer drives and thus not meant to be put into a raid. If you do and mess that up (which with consumer drives is quite easy) you don’t just loose the contents on the actually failed drives, but on all of them. He’d be way better of by just using someting like mhddfs. Loose a drive, fine, you just loose that drives content, nothing more nothing less.

    But yah I agree with most comments here. It’s dumb to spend money on something as useless as 24 gigs of ram in a consumer gaming pc. At least in this current age it is. And imho it’s also stupid to put the 12 drives into the gaming pc that has power-hungry hardware. A low powered cheap pc with a simple linux distro on it to just serve those files would be a lot smarter.

    Oh well, just my two cents.

  • Anonymous Aug 06, 2011 

    Premoistened :
    Seriously, who needs 24gbs ram for any gaming machine. Even less needed if the game your playing on it is the yawnfest that is Star Trek Online. “Hey look everybody, I can spend money!” Maybe Micah should pass on the extra 12gigs of ram and buy a proper curtain rod or a ceiling fan that isn’t from the 1970’s.

    my thoughts exactly. throwing money away isnt going to impress too many people here.

  • n2burns Aug 06, 2011 

    @Ronner I don’t know if you’ve ever lost a significant amount of media but it is a pain to rebuild that content whether it was obtained through CD/DVD/BluRay rips or “other” means. I had this experience when my roommates and I lost close to a TB due to a bad SATA controller. It took us nearly 6 months to fully recover. Since then I’ve always used RAID in my setups (currently I’m using hardware RAID1 due to it’s ease of use with Windows but I’m soon migrating to software RAID6 exclusively on Linux). I’m a bit confused about your hesitancy to put consumer drives in RAID. Someone correct me if I’m wrong but, as the original name, Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks, suggests, RAID is meant to be used with cheap, consumer drives (backblaze has a whole blog where they discuss their datacenter setup which is built with consumer drives http://blog.backblaze.com/2009/09/01/petabytes-on-a-budget-how-to-build-cheap-cloud-storage/). IMHO, RAID isn’t too hard to setup although it is important to educate yourself before diving in. So, why go through the hassle of losing a whole drive when, by adding a few extra drives, you can just hotswap in a new disk when one dies?

  • Anonymous Aug 06, 2011 

    When I decided to submit my set up to this site, I completely forgot people could leave comments, haha!! I appreciate everyones input, some are good and some are not so nice. I just like XBMC a lot and wanted to share what I have. There are things I could learn about building my own PC/entertainment system, especially considering I taught myself how to build and wire everything. I will try to comment on some questions and maybe some statements I have read.

  • George Aug 07, 2011 

    Why on earth would you want to store 1500 movies and 7500 tv episodes? I can’t even think of fifty good movies I’d like to store on my HTPC.

  • Anonymous Aug 07, 2011 

    1500 movies, damn that’s a lot of money to drop on blurays.

  • Dush Aug 07, 2011 

    @rcrh I don’t know why people have expensive RAID setups for their media server. With hard-drive prices going down every month it’s far cheaper to just fill up the largest drive with chapest £ per GB, wait till you fill that and buy another since it’ll be cheaper. If you buy, say, all 10tb of storage up front it’ll cost more.

    I guess it’s about bandwidth. I have a 50mbit connection that’s truly unlimited so if I loose a 2tb I can just redownload. The last 3-4 years of usenet is my redundancy. That’s why I also delete stuff. If I want to rewatch I can redownload most things within 20 minutes.

  • Anonymous Aug 07, 2011 

    @George
    Wow, you need to watch more movies

  • Me Aug 07, 2011 

    The storage but not have any RAID protection (24tb from 12 x 2tb hard drives) – seems a little dicey if something went wrong.

  • Romulus Aug 07, 2011 

    Nice set up. Can you tell us a bit more on how you are connected in your home network? Are you running cables through the walls, or EoP? Also, how are you sharing the media? SMB share or are you running a distro? Much appreciated.

  • Jackaroo Aug 07, 2011 

    Anonymous :1500 movies, damn that’s a lot of money to drop on blurays.

    Yes, my thought exactly. He obviously rich enough to (legally) buy the 1500 movies & 7500 TV episodes.

  • JustinAiken Aug 07, 2011 

    You need unRaid! BADLY!

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    @tzevel
    Lol! Yeah, that was a Craigslist couch for a couple hundred bucks! Same with the entertainment center…. I will definitely upgrade later.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Matty :
    Impressive setup, however having a PC that powerful housing 12 hard drives must waste so much power when streaming media, same with the PC playing it.. I would say he needs to look at building a dedicated low powered PC to both share and stream all that media.
    Power issues aside I would say that’s a very impressive setup, and collection of media Micah has there!

    Thank you for the advice, I use that PC for everything (except the HTPC) because it’s just easier. In the future I may have a separate media server pc. On my gaming pc my operating system will go on one drive, program files on another, and page file system on another (all velociraptor drives), or run 2 solid state drives mirrored. This will allow my computer to run fast and have major storage space with the other 2TB drives. The 2 solid states will be way more expensive than 3 velociraptors, but either way it will not be cheap.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Sven :
    I hope that the “12 gigs (soon to be 24 gigs) of RAM” are not being used for Star Trek online only..

    LOL :) Nope, not Star Trek only…. haha

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Daniel Morales :
    I am jelous! Are you rich? anyways loved the gaming console collection! kool!

    Nope, definitely not rich….. Yet. I’ll have better furniture and ceiling fan when I am!! Lol

    asdf :
    Not rick I’m sure, but probably rents or lives in a condo.

    I am not Rick, no lol… Not a condo, I actually own 3 houses as of now! Just jokin with the Rick thing…. ;)

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Premoistened :
    Seriously, who needs 24gbs ram for any gaming machine. Even less needed if the game your playing on it is the yawnfest that is Star Trek Online. “Hey look everybody, I can spend money!” Maybe Micah should pass on the extra 12gigs of ram and buy a proper curtain rod or a ceiling fan that isn’t from the 1970’s.

    I’ll work on that, thanks for the ideas. Never would have thought about getting a new ceiling fan that I could control with my Logitech Harmony One. You know, the kind that you probably don’t have! If I want 24GB of ram, that’s what I’ll do.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Matt :
    what is up with that chair in the first picture is it holding up that table or????
    also are all those hard drives in some sort of raid as i am slowly building my storage server capacity currently the max will be 10tb but hope to add another 3 x 2tb western digital green drives to it just have to find a card to add extra ports to my system as all my ports are taken up by 5 x 2tb drives and 1 x 60gb 2.5″ laptop drive i am using as a boot drive
    i am running windows 7 x64 i am using what would be similar to a raid 0 in the fact i am using mirror backups of each drive which i store offline once they are full i don’t trust a raid array personally would have for a card to fail or software issue make me lose over 10tb of files

    Didn’t have nowhere to put the chair for now, comes useful as a step stool sometimes and occasionally a footrest :) No, the drives are not in any kind of RAID set up, I simply have too much data to worry about backing up all of it. If I lost a drive I could replace all of it, just will take a few weeks or so. My personal documents, music, pics, and app data on the other hand, I definitely back that stuff up.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    y0 :
    Love the set up.
    What kind of case is holding all those harddrives? What kind of controllers are you using for them?
    I’m out of sata ports and room for harddrives so looking for suggestions on expanding.

    Thank you :) The case is this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811103028 For now I am just running a few cheaper controller cards with 4 internal sata’s each. In the future, there are much different ways I will do this, but it’s gonna be way more expensive. For example the controller card alone is gonna be about $950ish.

  • Skinlessman Aug 07, 2011 

    RAM is cheap, and if you have the slots why not fill it up. I am curious if you have a RAID setup? And what case is that? its exactly what im looking for. Very nice setup indeed!

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Zeke :
    All that money to make a formidable gaming/HTPC rig and nothing left over in the budget for a better digital camera to document it all? :P
    In all seriousness though, it’s a quality rig. The problem would be finding the time to watch 1500 HD movies, and that whenever you went to someone else’s house 99% of the time you’d be pining for your own far superior setup.

    Lol, yep… Just a cheap $89 camera that is about 3 years old now haha! Thanks! Very true The movie collection includes all kinds, my GF has 16 nieces and nephews and I have a 10 year old, so about 150-200 movies are cartoon/computer animated for them. And the rest are just good movies from all genres and many different years. Oh, and about 20 of the TV shows are kids shows. Usually in the summer they swim in the pool and play outside then at night we end up watching a movie or two.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Blacksar :
    Only 3GHz? Awe, come on. You can easily over-clock that puppy. 4.0GHz at least, easy! ;) Heck, my i7 920 can do rock solid 3.8Ghz no problem. :D

    Overclocking is something I haven’t taught myself how to do yet. Or I probably would, but I heard it’s bad for your hardware to do that? I would like to learn how though….

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    rcrh :
    24 TB and no mention of a backup, or the OS. Is this thing run RAID or anything else to provide duplication? I’d hate to have to replace 2tb of content when one of these drives tanks. Please give us more details on the drive array.
    thanks.

    I described the drive set up for the operating system, hope that helps. :) Windows 7 Ultimate x64 is what is it running. And I believe I posted my reasons for no RAID is also above somewhere up there in this biography… Lol

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Initialo :
    Where did the two cabinets beside the tv come from? I’ve been looking for something like that for my current setup but haven’t been able to find anything that isn’t majorly overpriced.

    It was actually my entertainment center, had to take the middle shelves out because the tv was about 2 feet too wide to fit in it. Honestly, if you count all of the components (including the furniture) I am only into this whole set up less than $5000. The TV, couch, & entertainment center cost me less than the PC. Craigslist deals are to be found in great abundance! :)

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Ronner :
    Why would he need a backup for the media? Or even put it in a raid. For movies and tv shows it’s pretty useless imho. It’s not like you can not retrieve the lost media anymore. Even worse, I bet those twelve 2TB hdd’s are consumer drives and thus not meant to be put into a raid. If you do and mess that up (which with consumer drives is quite easy) you don’t just loose the contents on the actually failed drives, but on all of them. He’d be way better of by just using someting like mhddfs. Loose a drive, fine, you just loose that drives content, nothing more nothing less.
    But yah I agree with most comments here. It’s dumb to spend money on something as useless as 24 gigs of ram in a consumer gaming pc. At least in this current age it is. And imho it’s also stupid to put the 12 drives into the gaming pc that has power-hungry hardware. A low powered cheap pc with a simple linux distro on it to just serve those files would be a lot smarter.
    Oh well, just my two cents.

    You are correct about the hard drive issue as to the reasons why I don’t bother backing them up. I do have a very big power supply for this thing, so I don’t see what the big deal is. I am open to suggestions on why the power is a big issue, and I don’t mean that sarcastically. As far as the Ram goes, I like overkill…. :) This is the power supply I have: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817371012
    Is that not enough power?

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Anonymous :

    Premoistened :
    Seriously, who needs 24gbs ram for any gaming machine. Even less needed if the game your playing on it is the yawnfest that is Star Trek Online. “Hey look everybody, I can spend money!” Maybe Micah should pass on the extra 12gigs of ram and buy a proper curtain rod or a ceiling fan that isn’t from the 1970’s.

    my thoughts exactly. throwing money away isnt going to impress too many people here.

    To put it simply, I didn’t build this system to “impress” anyone. I built it because I wanted to for my own enjoyment, and because I can.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Anonymous :
    1500 movies, damn that’s a lot of money to drop on blurays.

    Uh huh ;)

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Dush :
    @rcrh I don’t know why people have expensive RAID setups for their media server. With hard-drive prices going down every month it’s far cheaper to just fill up the largest drive with chapest £ per GB, wait till you fill that and buy another since it’ll be cheaper. If you buy, say, all 10tb of storage up front it’ll cost more.
    I guess it’s about bandwidth. I have a 50mbit connection that’s truly unlimited so if I loose a 2tb I can just redownload. The last 3-4 years of usenet is my redundancy. That’s why I also delete stuff. If I want to rewatch I can redownload most things within 20 minutes.

    Download media? Who does that? But say hypothetically one had unlimited bandwidth through their cable modem and the Astraweb unlimited speed/bandwidth package for $11 per month. I would say that is a very efficient and cost effective way of filling up huge drives :) Hypothetically of course….

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Romulus :
    Nice set up. Can you tell us a bit more on how you are connected in your home network? Are you running cables through the walls, or EoP? Also, how are you sharing the media? SMB share or are you running a distro? Much appreciated.

    Simple, gigabit router, network hub (because of the game systems) and simple file sharing via Windows 7. I set up a guest user on the htpc and set up the same exact guest account on both computers with a password also the same on both. Then, to simplify logging into the HTPC you can set it to auto log in to the guest account. Just go to run, then type in: control userpasswords2 (make sure you type the space between control and user) Select the guest user, then un-check the box at the top that says “user must enter a user name and password to use this computer” Then you will have to type in the password twice I believe. Next time you turn the HTPC on you won’t have to type the password in and whoever is using it can’t mess with your settings and stuff because they are logged on as a guest. And the ethernet wires are routed under the floor and through the attic, I don’t like to use the wireless for this because wired is faster and more dependable.

  • Micah Aug 07, 2011 

    Wow, that was a lot of typing…. Believe it or not, this is my first time posting online on any kind of blog/forum or whatever you would classify this as. I appreciate advice and I hope I answered everyones questions clearly enough. I will be happy to answer more if anybody has any more! :)

  • Anonymous Aug 07, 2011 

    Most of the comments are way too hard on the guy. I’m sure we are all glad he posted photos, trashing him doesn’t make our set ups more impressive. He probably could have spent the money different, but it’s his money he can spend it how he wants.

  • me Aug 07, 2011 

    or he lives in holland, since downloading for personal use, no matter what the source is, is legal here.

  • Mr_Roberto Aug 07, 2011 

    Micah, it might help if you just read all the hating as, “My penis is threatened by your RAM!”

    I am curious about your electric bill though. Also, what sort of controller do you have running all those drives?

  • ZERO Aug 08, 2011 

    Matty :
    Impressive setup, however having a PC that powerful housing 12 hard drives must waste so much power when streaming media, same with the PC playing it.. I would say he needs to look at building a dedicated low powered PC to both share and stream all that media.
    Power issues aside I would say that’s a very impressive setup, and collection of media Micah has there!

    I am actually in the same boat, using an i7 965 rig with 10 drives and a 480 along with 2x quad 120mm rads in a twin loop config for my gaming rig to stream to an i7 920 tv computer. Both rigs use ssd’s for the C:/ and are connected via gigabit lan.

    It is interesting seeing how large this array is vs my RAID 6 despite the fact that I hold more tv shows, although I do not store any movies other than a few dvds.

    As far as electric goes it is not that bad running the equipment as the computers scale down power when not doing work but the cost of AC in the summer is what kills you.

  • James B Aug 08, 2011 

    Awesome setup. I have a concern though, are any of those hard drives mirrored or are you doing tape backups or something?….Would hate to see you lose some of that media in a disk crash…how much of a risk that is all depends on how hard you’re pushing those disks I suppose though.

  • koop Aug 08, 2011 

    hmm i think this is way too nerdy and doesn’t even look good =)

  • Beerme Aug 08, 2011 

    Taking shots at someone’s setup makes you look small.

    Just letting you know kinda like a friend telling you that’s there’s a bit of broccoli stuck in your teeth so you don’t embarrass yourself.

  • thebusiness Aug 08, 2011 

    Micah needs to learn how to dust.

  • Joe Aug 08, 2011 

    Nice setup but clean the dust before you take pictures man!!

    Now i just gotta get mine submitted =)

  • Anonymous Aug 08, 2011 

    me :
    or he lives in holland, since downloading for personal use, no matter what the source is, is legal here.

    Uhmm.. I’m pretty sure it is NOT legal.

    But seriously, I would not “advertise” having 1500 movies without being prepared to show proof of license purchase (blue ray, etc..). By having this guy’s setup on its front page, does XBMC.org endorse his “setup” including his acquisition of 1500 movies? … Oh wait.. I get it. It’s “the don’t ask, don’t tell” rule. Then it must be ok :( .

  • Jackaroo Aug 08, 2011 

    me :
    or he lives in holland, since downloading for personal use, no matter what the source is, is legal here.

    Uhmm.. I’m pretty sure it is NOT legal.

    But seriously, I would not “advertise” having 1500 movies without being prepared to show proof of license purchase (blue ray, etc..). By having this guy’s setup on its front page, does XBMC.org endorse his “setup” including his acquisition of 1500 movies? … Oh wait.. I get it. It’s “the don’t ask, don’t tell” rule. Then it must be ok :( .

  • Anonymous Aug 08, 2011 

    @Jackaroo
    Haters gonna hate eh?

  • NotSoAnonymous Aug 08, 2011 

    Jackaroo :

    me :
    or he lives in holland, since downloading for personal use, no matter what the source is, is legal here.

    Uhmm.. I’m pretty sure it is NOT legal.

    Also coming from the Netherlands I’m more than pretty sure downloading of copyrighted music and movies (not software) is legal even if the source is illegal, though only (as already mentioned) if it’s for personal use. Uploading of that same material is not legal. As a compensation for the industry a fee is paid on each purchased data carrier (e.g. CD-R/DVD-R, but so far not on HDDs and mp3 players AFAIK). Whether those fees are properly paid out is a different matter.
    On-topic: Nice setup, I especially envy the consoles :) .

  • Marc Aug 08, 2011 

    Do you have any other TVs in your house? I have 2 TVs with different XBMC computer’s attached, both connecting via Samba to the server in the office. I’d love to have the XBMC metadata on the server too, so that when I watch an episode upstairs, I’ll see that it’s been watched downstairs. Or if I go through the trouble to identify my media on one, I’d like to be able to see the fan-art on the other.

    Any way to set things up that way? Sort of with a database or something?

  • Nathan Aug 08, 2011 

    Dush :
    @rcrh I don’t know why people have expensive RAID setups for their media server. With hard-drive prices going down every month it’s far cheaper to just fill up the largest drive with chapest £ per GB, wait till you fill that and buy another since it’ll be cheaper. If you buy, say, all 10tb of storage up front it’ll cost more.
    I guess it’s about bandwidth. I have a 50mbit connection that’s truly unlimited so if I loose a 2tb I can just redownload. The last 3-4 years of usenet is my redundancy. That’s why I also delete stuff. If I want to rewatch I can redownload most things within 20 minutes.

    there is no such thing as truly unlimited, especially with virgin!!

  • Anonymous Aug 08, 2011 

    Why would XBMC leave this feature up when the person profiled is openly admitting in the comments that he pirated his entire media collection … No shortage of stupidity on either end it seems.

    Micah :
    Download media? Who does that? But say hypothetically one had unlimited bandwidth through their cable modem and the Astraweb unlimited speed/bandwidth package for $11 per month. I would say that is a very efficient and cost effective way of filling up huge drives :) Hypothetically of course….

  • Mariano Aug 08, 2011 

    Very nice setup! Thanks for sharing it!

  • James B Aug 09, 2011 

    @Marc
    You could mount your userdata folder as a symbolic link (if you’re using a unix/live installation) to a shared directory, and if you stick this on your samba server, then you should be able to share the configs…however, not sure how well it would play if two machines updated the config/library at once, perhaps have only one master xbmc with write enabled that updates the config and the rest are only allowed read access? HTH

  • James B Aug 09, 2011 

    Marc :
    Do you have any other TVs in your house? I have 2 TVs with different XBMC computer’s attached, both connecting via Samba to the server in the office. I’d love to have the XBMC metadata on the server too, so that when I watch an episode upstairs, I’ll see that it’s been watched downstairs. Or if I go through the trouble to identify my media on one, I’d like to be able to see the fan-art on the other.
    Any way to set things up that way? Sort of with a database or something?

    @Marc
    You could mount your userdata folder as a symbolic link (if you’re using a unix/live installation) to a shared directory, and if you stick this on your samba server, then you should be able to share the configs…however, not sure how well it would play if two machines updated the config/library at once, perhaps have only one master xbmc with write enabled that updates the config and the rest are only allowed read access? HTH

  • Mjeur Aug 09, 2011 

    If you have UPC in the Netherlands there is:) I have a 120mbit connection which gives me a download speed of around 10mb p/s.. Which i used to fill my Xtreamer Pro (yes they are asswipes, but for me everything works) with 4TB, my Xtreamer Ultra 1TB, my 5 WD books of aproximately 6TB:) The WD’s are filled with (90%) dvdrips and 10% Tv Rips for rare shows (Series from when I was young and new).

    The Xtreamer’s are filled with 550+ full HD films and growing almost daily.. And this is just my downloaded crap:) Which was all downloaded legally. And besides this collection I also buy dvd’s and blurays legally:)

    And i’m not showing off, just never shared nu crap setup:)

    Nathan :

    Dush :
    @rcrh I don’t know why people have expensive RAID setups for their media server. With hard-drive prices going down every month it’s far cheaper to just fill up the largest drive with chapest £ per GB, wait till you fill that and buy another since it’ll be cheaper. If you buy, say, all 10tb of storage up front it’ll cost more.
    I guess it’s about bandwidth. I have a 50mbit connection that’s truly unlimited so if I loose a 2tb I can just redownload. The last 3-4 years of usenet is my redundancy. That’s why I also delete stuff. If I want to rewatch I can redownload most things within 20 minutes.

    there is no such thing as truly unlimited, especially with virgin!!

  • Ronner Aug 09, 2011 

    @n2burns
    In my job I’ve seen all kinds of data-losses and I’m well educated when it comes to RAID systems. First of all, RAID is an acronym for Redundant Array of Independent Disks. Originally it was Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks, however you should not take the word inexpensive in the literal sense that you can simply cram in consumer grade drives and expect things to be all fine. Most hardware raid controllers have a time-limit on when a drive should respond to reads or writes. If the drive does not respond within that timeframe (usually around 7 to 8 seconds) then the raid controller removes the drive from the array because it deems it to be toast. Consumer drives will do their upmost best to still read or write a possibly bad sector and will take longer than 7 to 8 seconds to do so. Have this happen to two drives in your setup and gone is your raid5 set. Have this happen to three drives in your setup and gone is even your raid6. With 12 drives, such a scenario is not unthinkable. I’ve seen quite a few consumer drive setups being completely lost because of this. And personally I’d rather loose 1 drive of movies/serie than all data in an entire array. Especially things like movies/series, which I think is data that can be restored quite easily. Would this be photo’s or important documents, then of course, I’d use a raid 1 setup, and yes you can safely use consumer drives on a raid 1 as nothing is striped anyway and thus you will always have the data. I’d even go a step further and use offsite backups. My home-setup for important data is RAID1′s that I rsync on a nightly basis to my server in a datacenter in amsterdam. I’m very keen on keeping my valuable data as protected as possible but I just don’t think that media such as movies and tv series is data that is THAT important. It’s data you can restore when you lose it.

  • Ronner Aug 09, 2011 

    @Jackaroo
    I wouldn’t be so pretty sure and quick with your statement that illegal in Holland. It IS legal in Holland to download copyrighted material for personal use with the exception of software. Uploading copyrighted material is illegal.

  • Ronner Aug 09, 2011 

    @Mr_Roberto
    My penis is not threatened by his ram in any way. In fact, if his setup was given to me for free I’d hand out the ram in parts of 4gigs to friends and family or whoever could use it. I simply think it’s unnecessary overkill to have that much RAM in a gamers pc. Unless it’s a very heavy duty database server, it’s useless to put more than 4 to 6 gigs of ram in a consumers pc.

  • Piracy? Is it cool? Aug 09, 2011 

    In Europe private copies are allowed in many countries, even if they are from an illegal source. So NO: These copies ARE NOT illegal. Now what?

  • Stevie Aug 10, 2011 

    @Anonymous

    Last time I checked it was innocent until proven guilty. It’s not a matter of “dont ask, don’t tell”. It’s just a case of not assuming someone is breaking the law. Based on how much money this guy has spent on his setup, it is that hard to believe that he’s spent that much on Blu-rays and such like? My friend has a 21″ LCD and spends nearly $800 a month on buying movies so what more someone like this?

  • scokem Aug 10, 2011 

    Marc :
    Do you have any other TVs in your house? I have 2 TVs with different XBMC computer’s attached, both connecting via Samba to the server in the office. I’d love to have the XBMC metadata on the server too, so that when I watch an episode upstairs, I’ll see that it’s been watched downstairs. Or if I go through the trouble to identify my media on one, I’d like to be able to see the fan-art on the other.
    Any way to set things up that way? Sort of with a database or something?

    You can always try Lifehacker’s suggestion to this http://tinyurl.com/2vp2myr – I can’t say how well it works as I’ve not got around to doing it myself yet so good luck to you if you try it.

  • Investing in Cuba Aug 10, 2011 

    @tzevel
    Fully agreed!!!!!

  • n2burns Aug 10, 2011 

    @Ronner
    Would you be able to give me some more information/references? I can’t find any verification of that on my own and if I’m going to proven wrong, I want to learn from it. ;)
    I’m also curious, does this problem plague software RAIDs as well? I ask because I doubt a consumer sees much benefit in using a hardware RAID, especially with media files.
    I think our opinion on reacquiring media probably differs because of where we live. I’m in Canada where a 15Mbps/1Mbps Cable connection is about the fastest residential connection you can get. I was not joking when I said it took nearly 6 months to reobtain less than a TB.

  • Ronner Aug 11, 2011 

    @n2burns

    Google on terms such as TLER or ERC or CCTL. HDD vendors have given different names to pretty much the same technology.

    I’m not sure if the same problem applies to software raid or perhaps certain software raids. I can imagine that a linux software raid would not have this problem with consumer drives, but for instance a cheap Sata RAID controller (which is also software raid through it’s drivers) could possibly still suffer from the same problem. It would all depend on the software that handles the raid.

    I’m on 120mbit so reacquiring lost media such as movies and tvseries isn’t an issue for me.

  • Sean Aug 11, 2011 

    @scokem

    scokem :

    Marc :
    Do you have any other TVs in your house? I have 2 TVs with different XBMC computer’s attached, both connecting via Samba to the server in the office. I’d love to have the XBMC metadata on the server too, so that when I watch an episode upstairs, I’ll see that it’s been watched downstairs. Or if I go through the trouble to identify my media on one, I’d like to be able to see the fan-art on the other.
    Any way to set things up that way? Sort of with a database or something?

    You can always try Lifehacker’s suggestion to this http://tinyurl.com/2vp2myr – I can’t say how well it works as I’ve not got around to doing it myself yet so good luck to you if you try it.

    Marc,

    Once I get my library metadata all squared away (correct titles, etc), I export my database to the samba source (my FreeNAS server). It’ll dump all the metadata into each tv show, movie, and album folder. Once that’s done, I re-scrape everything on the other machines. It doesn’t tell me if Ive seen an episode already, but it standardizes the libraries on the different machines.

  • Ronner Aug 11, 2011 

    @Marc
    I use Ember Media Manager to collect metadata, fanart etc so it gets stored within the same dir as the movie itself and I have two xbmc installs, one upstairs and one downstairs. The one upstairs is the one with all the media storage (server on the attic connected to the tv one floor down) and I have a symlink from the xbmc downstairs to the xbmc database, thumbnail folder etc to the server upstairs so it looks at the same data and database. Whenever I have watched something upstairs it will also show that it’s watched downstairs and vice versa. It’s not that hard to set up and there are numerous tutorials on how to do that on the xbmc forums

  • frank (NL) Aug 14, 2011 

    ** SIGH **

    boring…

  • Nicolas Aug 16, 2011 

    @Marc, the best way is to have a mysql backend to handle the database and to share the thumbs directory between machines.
    I have a win 7 server with 12TB (raid 5) where my media is, on it, i also have a share containing the thumbs.
    Then, on each install of xbmc (I’m using live on ion based micropcs), i just mapped the /home/xbmc/.xbmc/userdata/Thumbnails/ directory to a remote cifs share. every xbmc have rw rights, so i can update from anywhere, and my datas are always 100% synched.

  • Sparhawk1995 Aug 16, 2011 

    Marc :
    Do you have any other TVs in your house? I have 2 TVs with different XBMC computer’s attached, both connecting via Samba to the server in the office. I’d love to have the XBMC metadata on the server too, so that when I watch an episode upstairs, I’ll see that it’s been watched downstairs. Or if I go through the trouble to identify my media on one, I’d like to be able to see the fan-art on the other.
    Any way to set things up that way? Sort of with a database or something?

    Marc,
    Not sure which versions of XBMC (live, windows,etc) but just check out the forums… use a mysql backend for your database and set up a share on your network for the Thumbnails folder out of your userdata folder with symbolic links on each of your xbmc machines.. Single machine updater and multiples, doesn’t really matter.. mysql handles everything on the backend.. keeps your library consistent across the network (metadata, thumbs, etc..) and yes, you can stop a show in one room and resume it in the other right where you left off..

  • Steth Aug 16, 2011 

    Does anyone know how long he has this system running?
    The reason i am asking is because his drives are rated at 10^^14 bits ure.
    That means in theory that if he has 10^^14 bits of data that he will have a corrupted bit.
    That in a raid will cause the hd with the corrupted bit to be marked as failed.By the way
    10^14 is ~12TiB :|

  • RyanLegolas Aug 17, 2011 

    Cool!!
    Natethomas The KING!!

    I have 16 Tera (1400 approx) of high-definition’s movies (720p/1080p) in a centralized media server (8 x 2TB WD Green Power)
    In the living room and bedroom I put a Mini HTPC (ASROCK) with XBMC Live. Both read the 1080p films from the media server without any slowdown.

    As soon as possible to publish some photos on the layout.

    I love XBMC ….
    XBMC 4 Ever!

  • Beezip Aug 17, 2011 

    Dude, what’s that that chair u using? seriously? :D

  • Matt Aug 18, 2011 

    I have to say that this looks a pretty awesome setup.
    I am a bit confused why he is running the storage on his gaming rig, seems very much overkill when it comes to processing power. I personally run (which is soon to be updated to the latest board) an original atom 230 mini-itx motherboard with a 4 port raid card. This runs win 2k8 server for remote desktops to keep the mrs happy (she even gets how to use uTorrent).
    Soon to change to the latest atom with an 8 port raid card running freenas and a VM of 2k8 server. Even with 8x2tb drives at 14TB raid5 it will only consume about 60-80watts.
    That tagged along with my soon to be 2 apple tv2′s and an asrock ion 330 will consume less power than just his htpc, which is able to serve out 2x720p screens and a 1080p screen with a theoretical 36TB based on maximum drives available now. no need to ever touch it for a good 4-5 years :)

  • Morty Aug 18, 2011 

    Sorry but your setup isn’t anything that special you have tried flashing around amounts making out it’s good because it has high numbers.

    Any person that knows there stuff would not be storring all them hard drives in a gaming PC they would have like myself a server.

    Next your so called gaming pc spec doesn’t look that great anyway i7 950 old get sandbridge and gtx 470 is that suppose to be something special well it’s not also your ram amount is plain up stupid it has been proven that gamers don’t use much more then 4gb so if you had 8gb in your system running win7 that would be perfect another note no mention of ram or hard drive speeds so they could be slow as hell.

    Last thing I looked at your pics and I see a silly so called htpc come on atleast put it in a proper case I bet that was your old rig right? Your desk setup is funny only 1 small monitor come on.

About XBMC

XBMC is a free and open source media player application developed by the XBMC Foundation, a non-profit technology consortium. XBMC is available for multiple operating-systems and hardware platforms, featuring a 10-foot user interface for use with televisions and remote controls. It allows users to play and view most videos, music, podcasts, and other digital media files from local and network storage media and the internet.