[OxLUG] HDD and system configuration

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Author: Kevin Carmody
Date:  
To: Oxfordshire Linux User Group Discussion List
Subject: [OxLUG] HDD and system configuration
Hey all,

My machine is reaching storage breaking point. I'm averaging about 90%
across two drives totalling 800GB, though my main media partitions are
hitting well over the 95% mark. As I'm sure you could imagine, this is
not producing the best performance. To remedy this I've just bought
myself a 1TB drive, I wanted a selection of drives to make an array but
this just seemed to pack the most punch per pound. So now I have a clean
slate, we come to the questions section.

Firstly, should I part with another couple of quid and get an SSD for
system stuff? If so, what type? I saw some reasonably priced 8gb to IDE
stuff on ebay. Would I really notice that much of a difference?

Second, distro set-up. I've been an Ubunuphile for some time now, but
I'm tiring of it. I want the latest greatest software with minimal fuss.
Six month cycles are fine, unless you start to add different repos and
packages, then an apt upgrade becomes unthinkable (I'm stuck on Intrepid
at the moment). I want a rolling release cycle for everyday use (Arch?).
The machine also double as the house media server. I was wondering if it
might be sensible to just virtualise the hell out of it, but I don't
know which VM would give me native hardware support (nVidia, multicores,
music creation). What does the panel think is the best approach here?

Thanks for your time,
Kevin