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Andy2

DrivePool Black Hole

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So, I guess this is on me, but I wanted to share a bad experience with DrivePool.

I've been using DrivePool for a number of years, and though it generally works well, I find the balancing tools to be very frustrating if you want files to be placed on a specific drive, and drives to be written to in order of their performance.

Recently, I added a pair of 4TB SSDs to the pool, and wanted to move all of my music and photos exclusively to those drives.

Well, DrivePool's balancer is as dumb as rocks, and no matter how many times I set the file placement, disabled all other balancers, or even reset the DrivePool settings, I kept getting a message that DrivePool was "unable to move 3.5TB" in the file placement tab (to an empty drive with enough space) and those files were being left where they were.

 

So I did what I have done in the past, and assigned letters to my drives to move the files from the pool to that drive manually.

The next day, since it was a lot of small files and DrivePool had placed them on my slowest SMR drives, I do a re-measure of the pool… to find that it now has a lot of extra free space.

I guess that I forgot to disable the DrivePool service before moving these files, or I moved them from the pool rather than the individual drives, and they've now ceased to exist.

 

Now, my family photos should be backed up in two separate locations, and I have many binders full of CDs as my "backup" for that media (I am not looking forward to that project), but I also had data which I considered to be "not important enough for external backups" and instead relied on DrivePool's folder duplication feature to store several copies so that they could survive several disk failures. Well, that doesn't help when you moved those files off the pool, does it? 

I'm not really expecting anything from this, just frustrated and venting.

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I'm sorry to hear about the experience.  

As for moving the files, yeah, you would need to remeasure the pool after manually moving the files. This is one of the reasons we recommend against doing so. 

 

As for the file placement stuff, if you disable balancing (in the main settings tab for balancing), this will affect the file placement rules, as well. 

Otherwise, if you continue to see this, let us know, as we would like to make sure there are no bugs here. 

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It's not that the pool needed remeasuring, the files are gone.

I don't think it was a bug, the issue is that I moved the files from the Drive Pool to the PoolPart folder on a specific drive, rather than going from one PoolPart folder to another with the DrivePool service disabled. They were "moved" via Explorer but disappeared; hence the "black hole" in the title.

And I think the file placement issue itself probably was caused by having automatic balancing disabled. I had been running balancing manually recently, because I was trying to figure out an issue where it would just keep running balancing over and over again without ever getting out of the red.

 

So far, I've been able to restore about 750GB of that data, but there is about 40GB or so of archived websites that no longer exist, which wasn't being backed up due to a Junction not being followed (lesson learned: don't rely on automatic backup validation). The rest of that ~3TB should be able to be reacquired from the source.

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