W. H. Heydt
Posts: 13971
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2012 7:36 pm
Location: Vallejo, CA (US)

Re: What to do with 4 old sata drives?

Wed Nov 29, 2017 6:56 am

I keep seeing this thread and not reading it... What strikes me from the subject line is...gut the drives and turn them into Pi enclosures. Not sure they'd be unique...but they'd certainly be unusual.

Posts: 17123
Joined: Tue Jul 17, 2012 3:02 pm

Re: What to do with 4 old sata drives?

Wed Nov 29, 2017 7:07 am

Have you ever opened a hard drive? I have one open in front of me now. I'm not sure it's possible to get a Pi in there.

There is not enough height for the USB ports on a Pi 3.

There is all kind of metal work in the way.

On this particular drive the motor is not held down with screws it's a press fit in a hole. So far I haven't figured out how to get it out without a press. Or a large hammer! :)
Memory in C++ is a leaky abstraction .

Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Mar 02, 2017 3:11 pm

Re: What to do with 4 old sata drives?

Thu Nov 30, 2017 3:56 pm

I use the metal disks as spacers for one of the machines here at work instead of the cheap plastic disks that came with it - they're identical in size

Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 26, 2019 7:22 pm

Re: What to do with 4 old sata drives?

Mon Aug 26, 2019 8:19 pm

This post is a bit older but maybe someone is still interested.
I asked myself the same question: What to do with 4 unused sata drives (and a raspberry pi (2+))?

So i decided to build a NAS Server for file sharing, TimeMachine Backups and stuff like that.

To power the four 2,5" hard drives and the pi itself i bought a 5-port USB powerport.
And with a sata to

I build a rack to mount the drives with wood laying around. Meanwhile I mounted the powerport and i want to paint the rack.

Its not fast, but for me this is totally enough. soon i will upgrade to the next raspberry pi 4 so that the speeds will rise :)
pi-nas-with-4-usb-powered-hard-drives-3.jpeg (183.46 KiB) Viewed 1100 times
pi-nas-with-4-usb-powered-hard-drives-2.jpeg (201.75 KiB) Viewed 1100 times

Posts: 6332
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:47 am

Re: What to do with 4 old sata drives?

Tue Aug 27, 2019 3:58 am

MuntyScruntfundle wrote:
Mon Nov 27, 2017 3:50 am
I have 4 old internal 80Gb sata drives, not much value in them, but they're all identical and good quality. So why not build a raid I hear you say! Well, I was thinking the same thing.
I've been using using this four bay powered USB 3 enclosure for about a year with an Intel-compatible computer and just tried the Pi 4B and found it works fine.


While such an enclosure seems like too much for 4 old 80GB drives, having all drives in the same box means one is less likely to accidently start the array in degraded mode by forgetting to power all the drives on.

After becoming tired with how slowly Linux software RAID rebuilds the array, I've been using BTRFS in mirror mode. In addition to the redundancy and reliability, I find the copy-on-write snapshot capability very useful. Unfortunately, btrfs-progs is currently broken on Raspbian Buster; however, after copying over the btrfs binary from Stretch everything works fine. More information is available here

Return to “General discussion”