Beginners questions

Nikolai Lifanov lifanov at
Fri Nov 29 12:26:51 PST 2013

On 11/29/13 15:14, John Marino wrote:
> On 11/29/2013 18:48, Cassandra von Ahrcanburg wrote:
>> Hello everybody!
>> I've read quite a few of the posts on this list and from what I can
>> tell there is a certain lack of females. :-) Oh well, with me being a
>> computer nerd and all I am pretty much used to being around men. :-P
> Yeah, if there are many around they don't say much.
> Although we had a female GSoC participant this year, she was around a
> lot this summer.
>> Graphics board
>> Since I am buying and I have no personal preferences towards AMD or
>> nVidia, maybe you can tell me which company is the better choice for
>> Dragonfly. I am a gamer at times, so I will be buying something in the
>> area of an X770 (or a similar AMD model, maybe an R9 280). I have asked
>> this question before in a German BSD newsgroup (concerning FreeBSD).
> nVidia is not a good choice for FreeBSD.
> Their current models are supported via proprietary BLOBs on FreeBSD
> which are loaded by kernel modules.  While it's likely still possible
> create a wrapper and use the FreeBSD blob on DragonFly (this was done a
> few years ago), nothing exists today.
> AMD Radeons have a slightly more promising future.  The older drivers
> work, and the new KMS-based drivers have had support imported from
> FreeBSD but this is still too unstable to use.  It's on our to-do list
> to fix before the next release.
> Apparently your best bet is KMS-based intel graphics chips.  People are
> using these with great success, but I am not speaking from personal
> experience.  As a (sad) nVidia customer, I'm stuck on vesa driver.
>> The second version of this legendary FS won't be out for some time yet,
>> as I have written on the list. I have read a few things that are
>> working now but very little about what the endgame is. Is there a
>> document out there that says what HAMMER2 will do?
> The only docs I know are about two years old.  Matt posts from time to
> time on the mail list about current status (which can also be seen on
> Shining Silence), so google can help there.
> Here's some links though:
>> The server I am building will mainly be for cold storage. I had
>> considered ZFS (and still am) because it also contains a volume manager
>> and I can "grow" the filesystem should the need arise. With "grow" I
>> mean: add one or more drives to the pool and let the FS heal itself.
>> Not elegant, but it should work fine. I plan to make a raidz2
>> (RAID6-like). Is this sort of thing possible with HAMMER? I know that
>> HAMMER won't do this by itself, I will need LVM with that. But can I
>> create a RAID6-like "thingy" :-) and grow it if I have to?
> I'll have to let others comment here.
> I know about HAMMER1 just enough to be dangerous. :)
> John

You will have a much better experience adding disks to HAMMER than ZFS.
HAMMER relies on hardware raid for redundancy, and you can just add
"hammer volume-add" new disks and it will concatenate them.
With ZFS, you have to add disks one leg at a time. So, with a
triple-parity raid10 with 2 legs (6 disks), you will have to add 3 disks
at a time. To a raidz2 with 8 disks, you will need to add 8 at a time...
You get the picture.

- Nikolai Lifanov

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