Title is TLDR. More info about what I’m trying to do below.

My daily driver computer is Laptop with an SSD. No possibility to expand.

So for storage of lots n lots of files, I have an old, low resource Desktop with a bunch of HDDs plugged in (mostly via USB).

I can access Desktop files via SSH/SFTP on the LAN. But it can be quite slow.

And sometimes (not too often; this isn’t a main requirement) I take Laptop to use elsewhere. I do not plan to make Desktop available outside the network so I need to have a copy of required files on Laptop.

Therefor, sometimes I like to move the remote files from Desktop to Laptop to work on them. To make a sort of local cache. This could be individual files or directory trees.

But then I have a mess of duplication. Sometimes I forget to put the files back.

Seems like Laptop could be a lot more clever than I am and help with this. Like could it always fetch a remote file which is being edited and save it locally?

Is there any way to have Laptop fetch files, information about file trees, etc, located on Desktop when needed and smartly put them back after editing?

Or even keep some stuff around. Like lists of files, attributes, thumbnails etc. Even browsing the directory tree on Desktop can be slow sometimes.

I am not sure what this would be called.

Ideas and tools I am already comfortable with:

  • rsync is the most obvious foundation to work from but I am not sure exactly what would be the best configuration and how to manage it.

  • luckybackup is my favorite rsync GUI front end; it lets you save profiles, jobs etc which is sweet

  • freeFileSync is another GUI front end I’ve used but I am preferring lucky/rsync these days

  • I don’t think git is a viable solution here because there are already git directories included, there are many non-text files, and some of the directory trees are so large that they would cause git to choke looking at all the files.

  • syncthing might work. I’ve been having issues with it lately but I may have gotten these ironed out.

Something a little more transparent than the above would be cool but I am not sure if that exists?

Any help appreciated even just idea on what to web search for because I am stumped even on that.

  • @Ludrol
    22 months ago

    2 internal hdds

    As I understand the PC case is some sort of small form factor and the motherboard has more SATA ports to plug in disks.

    If that’s the case then try to find old pc case in the dumpster or from a neighbour. It should have more space for disks.

    Some PCs 15 years ago had incompatible layouts so be a little cautious but gratis is a fair price.

    • @linuxPIPEpower@discuss.tchncs.deOP
      12 months ago

      Do you mean take the board out of this case and put it in another, bigger one?

      I actually do have a larger, older tower that I fished out of the trash. Came with a 56k modem! But I don’t know if they would fit together. I also don’t notice anywhere particularly suitable to holding a bunch of storage; I guess I would have to buy (or make?) some pieces.

      Here is the board configuration for the Small Form Factor:

      I did try using #9 and #10 for storage and I seem to recall it kind of worked but didn’t totally work but not sure of the details. But hey, at least I can use a CD drive and a floppy drive at the same time!

      • @Ludrol
        22 months ago

        As far as I can see you could try to attach 1 ssd to SATA0 (it can dangle in the air) and 2 hard drives to SATA1 and SATA2 (They are capped to 300MB/s and should be attached to the case with screws)

        There should be space somewhere to put the drives as I can see in the specification. You will probably need to remove the CD drive.

        There is also a question if power supply has enough power sockets to attach to the disks. You could try to find eSATA -> SATA adapter to attach something to the last port.

        You probably won’t find the bigger case as motherboard isn’t standard size.

        I would probably try to upgrade to standard motherboard size but I would also calculate the cost of consumed electricity in a year vs cost of more efficient hardware.