Recently I was looking for a large hard drive to have some massive storage for my media server that I decided to host on my college LAN. The challenge was to get hard drives for storage and connect them in such a manner that all of them showed up as one single device.
I came across Starwind a software from Starwind software that allows the users to create a SAN using a network of computers and it emulates a large storage device which can be accessed on the network.
I am in the process of setting it up and will be trying it out on a Windows 2008 based server later. Currently I am planning to test it on my XPS 1210 which is connected to an XPS 1330 and a couple of Inspiron 1525.
StarWind helps you build a rock-solid, high-performance IP SAN
Synchronous and Asynchronous Data Mirroring and Remote Replication.
No need to allocate storage capacity until it’s needed. Allocates only as much space as is required for data being written on that volume without predicting future capacity need.
Volume cloning and incremental backups with unlimited number of rollback points.
SAN image files stored on NTFS partitions can be encrypted and compressed.
StarWind fully supports iSCSI boot from SAN. This allows you to completely eliminate the need for dedicated hard disk drives installed on client machines.
StarWind is able to use Serial and Parallel ATA and SCSI, Fibre Channel, USB and FireWire storage hardware. Export an entire disk or a single file or partition on the hard disk as an iSCSI virtual disk.
- Windows Server 2008 or 2008 R2 and 2003 (SP2)
- 2 GHz Intel Xeon class processor
- 3 GB of RAM
- 10 GB of disk space for StarWind application data and log files
- 1 Gigabit Ethernet or 10 Gigabit Ethernet connection
StarWind software is compatible with*:
• Microsoft Windows Server 2008
• Small Business Server 2008
• Storage Server 2003 R2
StarWind is tested for compatibility with the Microsoft iSCSI Initiator and it has also been
tested for compatibility with various Linux and UNIX iSCSI initiators, iSCSI HBAs from Adaptec
and QLogic and hardware iSCSI accelerators from Alacritech.
* from the StarWind website
I am keeping my fingers crossed as this is just a test and I am unsure of the outcomes. Hope this would provide us with a 2TB storage for our movie database and we can start off for the time being.