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Always Keeping Each Movie on Single Drive?


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I'm considering setting up DrivePool but have a few questions before I try the product.

 

My NAS currently has about 8 drives full of BDMV Bluray disc backups.  Each drive has a Movies folder which contains individual folders for each movie using the movie title as folder name.  In each movie's folder there is a BDMV folder containing the movie's files and folders for menus, extras, and parts for branching titles.  As an example, it looks like Movies->Title->BDMV->Random_Movie_Files_and_Folders.

 

1) When you play a single movie, it may access several files over the course of the movie.  Is there a way to setup DrivePool so that it keeps all of the files inside each movie's "Title" folder on a single drive?  The reason I need this features, is because I don't want the movie player to pause in the middle of a movie while it's waiting for some drive to spin-up from suspend.  If all the files are on a single drive, it will spin-up once and stay running until I'm done watching the movie.  Most drive pooling software out there would spread the movie across all drives and would cause constant pauses while drives with specific files are powered up.

 

2) Assuming DrivePool can do what I want, how much micro-management will be required?  When I'm adding a new movie folder under Movies/, will it keep the files together automatically or do I have to go back later to tell it to keep that specific Title folder on a single drive?  Will I have to wait while it does maintenance to move the files to a single drive or can that be done the very first time I'm filling the pool drive with this new TItle folder?

 

3) When I'm accessing the pool drive main directory at Movies/, will DrivePool spin-up all of my 8 drives in order to display the top-level Titles in the folder?

 

4) Can I delete a movie title folder from the pool drive directly or do I have to find the specific drive the folder is on and delete it manually?

 

Thanks.

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Hi

 

1. File placement rules should be able to accommodate what you need - there are threads on this

2. See above - minimal management i suspect

3. probably as you are asking for all info

4. delete as you would on any drive

 

rather than speculating i would use the 30 trial and try out the options available :)

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Looking at the documentation, I thought that the placement rules only apply to a post-processing balancing operation?  Meaning that when I first copy the folder into the pool, the contents would be scattered across all drives and only consolidated later on to a single drive during some kind of optimization pass.  Also regarding the rules themselves, wouldn't I need to create a separate rule for every single movie title folder?  I have over 200 movies.  Or is there a way to create a rule that is smart enough to realize all files under a single BDMV folder need to be in a single drive regardless of what the parent folder structure looks like?

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  1. File Placement rules can accomplish this, but it's very micro-manage-y.

    The Ordered File Placement Balancer plugin does try to do this, by filling up one disk at a time. In this case, the contents of a folder should be kept together on the same disk. 

    https://stablebit.com/DrivePool/Plugins

     

  2. Answered above.  Very little, to a lot.

     

  3. yes and no.  This depends on the NTFS cache.  The first time on a boot, yes, it may spin up many of the drives.  After that, it should only access the disk in question. 

     

  4. From the pool drive.  it should work and function like a normal disk in almost all regards. 

 

As for the File Placement rules, the Pool driver checks the balancing settings, including the file placement rules, and will limit the placement of the files based on these settings.  meaning that if they are scattered, it's only on the drives listed for that folder. 

 

And yes, you'd need to create a rule for each folder, or if you have enough room, for the entire movies folder on one disk. 

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I've asked about this before, and the real solution to this is to implement a system where you can specify the level at which folders get split. see here - http://community.covecube.com/index.php?/topic/2302-file-placement-based-on-folder/?view=findpost&p=15946

 

But this is a big change, I'm also hoping Alex can get around to it sometime.

 

Yes, that's exactly what I'm looking for.  Didn't know UnRAID offered it.  Unfortunately, I need a Windows based solution.

 

So let's say that I want to do this folder selection and copying manually (just copying folders around using Windows explorer), completely outside of DirvePool control or knowledge.

 

Can DrivePool be used simply as a tool to combine the folder structures of all my individual drives under a single drive letter or path?  I don't want it to do any balancing or management at all and leave all files where they are.  Can it combine any folders with same root name from each drive so they show up together in a single folder for easier sorting.  For example, take d:\movies, e:\movies, and f:\movies and make them all show up under a virtual drive x:\movies containing the content of each individual "movies" folder.  This way I can scroll through a single list of all my movies instead of having to visit each drive's movie folder.

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The pool uses the "PoolPart.xxxx" folder path on each drive.  So, you *could* dump the data into there. 

 

We don't recommend accessing these folders directly, but that's mostly because it causes issues with the balancing system. 

 

So if you're not planning on using the balancing (which you can effectively disable in the UI) then it shouldn't bee too much of an issue. 

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I hate it when someone doesn't answer the question but instead offers an alternative in a forum...but I'm going to risk it.

 

I had the same problem before.  I was storing movies in BDMV format or VTS chapters for DVDs.  I was also using Drivebender.  I had a few drive crashes and lost a chapter here or chapter there of a movie.  Very frustrating.

 

So my suggestion is to store your movies in .iso format (it's easy to make them .isos from your folders).  Then you have the entire movie in just one file which Drivepool can put on two different drives in case of failure.

 

I have over 2000 Blurays stored this way and get a drive failure about every 6-9 months.  I've yet to lose a movie.

 

Just my 1/50th of a dollar.

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ISO's are a fantastic way to go.   And considering that most modern HTPC apps support ISO playback in one way or another, there isn't anything to be lost.

 

That said, I personally highly recommend enabling duplication for everything. 

Even though this does use up a lot more disk space, you can lose a drive, and not worry about what you may have lost.  Just remove the failed drive, pop in a new disk, and let it reduplicate the data.

 

Additionally, the Read Striping will help to optimize reads, so you'll get a bit better performance out of it, this way. 

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