Running Rockstor from USB

Hi folks. I’ve done a forum search around this but found nothing conclusive.

So, does anyone have experience of running Rockstor from a USB stick/thumbdrive?
Particularly interested in whether there were notable speed issues or failures sooner than might be expected when compared to running from a ‘proper’ SSD or HDD?

I’m currently running v4 from SATA attached SSD, which means all 4 SATA ports are used (1 system, 3 data). Am considering adding another data drive and thus moving the system drive over to USB. I could simply move the current SSD to USB via an adapter, but a USB stick is also on my mind.

Answers/thoughts on a postcard… :slight_smile:

@GeoffA, highly theoretical, as I’m not running Rockstor from a USB stick. However, even if the read/write from the system drive is fairly low, I would expect that you first would only do it with a 3.x capable USB port/stick combo.
Additionally, I would look for an SLC based USB stick, which is what you find in SSDs. Most of the USB thumbdrives out there are using MLC which has a much lower life-expectancy (I think around 1/5 of that of an SSD).
I thought this post was insightful on the performance side, but it obviously didn’t deal with the reliability:

I haven’t figured out how to get the “host writes” on my system drive to give you an idea what my system SSD has been doing over the last 5 years, so if I do, I’ll post it. That might help with determining longevity requirements.


@Hooverdan thanks for this. Yes, what you’ve summarised there are most of the things that have gone through my mind. Thanks also for that link, I’d not come across that one before.
My inclination is to go with SSD connected via USB3 internally using the motherboard header, as I already have the system on the SSD.


I use a SanDisk Extreme usb 3.0 - there built as little ssd’s with a usb-to-sata bridge. I’ve had no problems with it. I presume their successors are similarly built.


@ajk Hello again,

Yes, I’ve used these myself also. But as you indicate they are no longer available, which is a shame as with the addition of the ‘-d sat’ custom smart option:
Disk Custom S.M.A.R.T Options
they could also offer a modicum of smart info. This I have yet to see work on one of the successors I tried from a little while ago:
SandDisk Extreme Go USB 3.1
which is faster in some ways but not by much, and slower in others. Sorry no current test data on that and I’ve only tried it in older USB 3.0 ports as well. Worked as a Rockstor system drive though.

Incidentally, I’ve also had a long service Extreme USB 3.0 start showing smart warnings as well. Wear limit I think it was, don’t have it any longer unfortunately. But it had done a few years service.

Hope that helps.