Seagate FreeAgent Pro

While searching for an external harddisk to replace my broken DAT streamer I found the Seagate FreeAgent Pro. Because the price of the 750GB version seemed to be reasonable and reviews on the Internet suggested that the noise emission is low I ordered one online.

The harddisk arrived yesterday and I tried it out on the same day. The case looks nice enough and appears to be robust. It starts glowing when you power up the disk and connect it to a computer. The light effect results in a high WAF according to my wife. I would personally have prefered a full size USB socket on the case but its micro USB socket works fine so far. And last but not least: the harddisk works fine with my server.

After partitioning and formatting the drive (newfs -i 1048576 saves a lot of time when you create a 698GB filesystem under NetBSD) I started my backup script. Three hours and over 150GB later I had a complete backup. Copying the most important filesystems (about 25GB) to the DAT streamer would have taken twice as long. And there is still free space for three more backups on the external harddisk.

Overall I’m happy with FreeAgent Pro. It works fine, offers a lot of diskpace and isn’t noisy.

Movie of the Week: Ratatouille

After getting promoted for several months Ratatouille was finally released in the UK last Friday. Because Silke and I really liked the trailers we went to the movies on the opening weekend.

The screening started with the filmlet Lifted which was hilarious. And the main movie was great fun, too. It had all the ingredients of a good Pixar movie: great characters, homour, action and a hint of feelings. It was not as good as Finding Nemo perhaps but very entertaining nevertheless.

I just hope that this movie doesn’t result in a lot of plagiarism. There were more than enough bad copies of Finding Nemo already.

Streamin’ Streamin’ Streamin’ – Though the tapes are screamin’

After 6 years and one day of reliable services my Sony SDT-9000 DAT streamer broke down. It started acting up last Saturday and refused to recognize two of my tapes. I used two new tapes and managed to backup my server to the tape drive one last time.

Today the streamer didn’t recognize any tapes again, not even the two tapes which worked last week. I tried using a cleaning tape but it didn’t help. After I powercycled my server the streamer wasn’t even detected any more. Another powercycle brought it back but it still wouldn’t accept any tapes. I finally gave up and removed the streamer and the SCSI hostadapter from my server.

I’ve considered buying a new DAT streamer but decided against that option. An external harddisk offers better performance and price than a tape drive these days. So I will use my external USB 2.0 harddisk for the time being.

Taking comfort in the Unfairness of the Universe