Clifton Royston wrote:
  My FreeBSD file server at home has been running for 5 or 6 years on a
succession of generic PC "small form factor" boxes (a.k.a "shoebox
cases".)  I'm not very happy with this approach, because the hardware
keeps dying every two years or so.  The latest incarnation is getting
flakier and flakier and it's time to replace it.  I think one problem
is that the cooling is lousy on the ones I've used, at least with two
hard drives - I've ended up running with the cover off so it won't die
rapidly - but maybe there are better ones out there.

  Can anyone recommend an integrated SFF system or other small
case/mobo combination which they're using with FreeBSD 6 or 7, and
which is both long-lived and fairly quiet?  (It sits on my desk, and
near my wife's desk, so the vacuum-cleaner-like noise levels from many
1U servers will not cut it.)

  As I am running two 200G PATA drives in gmirror - this has saved me
twice now - one additional requirement is that it must fit at least two
standard 3.5" hard drives and have an IDE interface.  (Eventually I may
switch over to SATA but would rather not change everything at the same
time.)  I'd consider running a Mac Mini (tiny, silent, s/b reliable) if
it weren't for needing 2+ drives for mirroring.

  I'm comfortable either building my own system, or buying a packaged
system if it offers better value.

  Any advice would be welcomed.
  -- Clifton

I've got a shoebox Gateway I love for the case size, however it's drive location for the HDD has to be the worst place on earth to put it there. I'm almost tempted to pull the floppy drive out and stick the hdd in there instead -- but I digress.

Taking a little more for desk space, you can always run with 1 internal 3.5" drive, and hook up an external USB drive for the mirror. FreeBSD won't think of it any different, it's just an 'ad' device and a 'da' device.

FWIW, this is just another option for you.

HTH --Tim
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