teeth_03
Posts: 284
Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2012 12:02 am

Is there a hard drive size limit?

Sat Jun 15, 2013 2:49 pm

Kind of a noob question, but can the Pi work with external 3 or 4 TB drives? They will probably be formatted in ext4 for performance reasons over NTFS.

I'm thinking about trying to make a NAS with 2 drives that sync (following a How To Geek article), before I invest in a Intel based server that does the same thing.

itimpi
Posts: 1090
Joined: Sun Sep 25, 2011 11:44 am
Location: Potters Bar, United Kingdom

Re: Is there a hard drive size limit?

Sat Jun 15, 2013 7:49 pm

They should work OK as long as they are externally powered.

teeth_03
Posts: 284
Joined: Sat Sep 08, 2012 12:02 am

Re: Is there a hard drive size limit?

Sat Jun 15, 2013 8:44 pm

Well, laptop hard drives aren't that big yet, and all desktop drives have to be externally powered. So I was just letting that be an assumption that they were externally powered.

But I've found some posts that make me believe there has been some issues before, and I need to know if they will work before I buy them. I was just wondering if the Pi's BIOS can recognize drives that big and if Raspian can read partitions that big as well.

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rpdom
Posts: 20191
Joined: Sun May 06, 2012 5:17 am
Location: Chelmsford, Essex, UK

Re: Is there a hard drive size limit?

Sat Jun 15, 2013 8:50 pm

The Pi does not have a BIOS, so that is meaningless in this context.

The Pi OS is usually Linux (Unless you use RISCOS or one of the other alternatives) and Linux will happily use any currently available size disk with ext4. The problem you may encounter is that the standard "MSDOS" style partition table can't cope with drives of that size, so you need to use the newer "GPT" partition table. I believe gparted can set that up for you, then you can do a normal mkfs.ext4 to create the file system and all will be well.

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