Post by Edward Ned Harvey (opensolarisisdeadlongliveopensolaris)
Sent: Friday, February 15, 2013 11:14 AM
I have a few coworkers using it. No horror stories and it's been in use about 6
months now. If there were any showstoppers I'm sure I'd have heard loud
complaints by now :)
So, I have discovered a *couple* of unexpected problems.
At first, I thought it would be nice to split my HD into 2 partitions, use the 2nd partition for zpool, and use vmdk wrapper around a zvol raw device. So I started partitioning my HD. As it turns out, there's a bug in diskutility... As long as you partition your hard drive and *format* the second partition with hfs+, then it works very smoothly. But then I couldn't find any way to dismount the second partition (there is no eject) ... If I go back, I think maybe I'll figure it out, but I didn't try too hard ... I resized back to normal, and then split again, selecting the "Empty Space" option for the second partition. Bad idea. Diskutillity horked the partition tables, and I had to restore from time machine. I thought maybe it was just a fluke, so I repeated the whole process a second time ... try to split disk, try to make the second half "Free Space" and forced to restore system.
Lesson learned. Don't try to create an unused partition on the mac HD.
So then I just created one big honking file via "dd" and used it for zpool store. Tried to create zvol. Unfortunately zevo doesn't do zvol.
Ok, no problem. Windows can run NTFS inside a vmdk file inside a zfs filesystem inside an hfs+ file inside the hfs+ filesystem. (Yuk.) But it works.
Unfortunately, because it's a file in the backend, zevo doesn't find the pool on reboot. It doesn't seem to do the equivalent of a zpool.cache. I've asked a question in their support forum to see if there's some way to solve that problem, but I don't know yet.
Tim, Simon, Volker, Chris, and Erik - How do you use it?
I am making the informed guess, that you're using it primarily on non-laptops, which have second hard drives, and you're giving the entire disk to the zpool. Right?
Actually, my usage is with a laptop, but I've pretty much given up on doing anything serious in ZFS without going whole disk, so I hadn't run across the partitioning issues or the lack of ZFS.cache for mounting file based pools.
Back to the day to day usage. I'm using it primarily with my MacBook Air and I have Seagate GoFlex thunderbolt adaptor into which I plug SSDs holding VMs and sources. While on the move, I leave the external drive in my bag and use a 1m thunderbolt cable so I'm tethered to the bag, but it's usable.
Eventually, I'll probably get one of the StarTech 4 disk toaster docks on USB 3 for while I'm at the office, and continue to rely on the thunderbolt SSD while on the road.
On the partitioning front, after thinking a bit, you should be able to tell Zevo to use a second partition on the main disk. The trick would be creating the partition normally as an HFS+ volume, unmounting it with something like sudo diskutil unmount disk0s4, followed by sudo zpool create zevo disk0s4
Oh, other side notes I almost forgot. To ensure that you don't chew up all of your memory with ARC it's also a good idea to disable spotlight searching on ZFS volumes (sudo mdutil -i off /Volumes/Zevo)