Hold onto your storage!

in STEMGeeks4 months ago


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If you didn't think the great GPU shortage of 2020 wasn't bad enough, we may soon be facing a new crisis. All thanks to a little thing called Chia. If your mind immediately goes to the beloved clay pots from the 80's that grow plants into wacky animal shapes, you would be mistaken.

I am also not talking about the nutrient rich seeds that have become all the rage in the past five years or so and are being touted by some as a superfood...

What I am talking about is The Chia Network. This "proof of space" blockchain was created by the inventor of BitTorrent. I don't think Chia is totally new, so I am sure others have covered this, but the way the consensus works is that it basically uses the empty space on your hard drive to store information and verify consensus. If you happen to be closest to the hash that the algorithm is looking for, you win the block.

I think I got that right. Correct me if I am wrong someone.

What this means is, the more storage space you have available, the more hashes you can store and the more hashes you can store the better chance you have of winning a block.

As you can imagine, this has started to cause quite a run on storage devices. The article I was reading which I will link at the bottom of my post said that in Vietnam large capacity drives are basically out of stock because of the interest in Chia. My guess is @gooddream bought them all up and he has a storage farm running mining Chia!


"A 10TB drive gives you a 0.000257 percent chance of winning a block"


Apparently, the desire for these higher capacity drives is also increasing the price for solid state drives. It is a trickle down effect that is impacting the entire market.

Since the higher capacity drives are not readily available, this has led investors to start picking up the SSD's. Unfortunately, the SSD's can't handle the transactions like traditional mechanical drives can. In the article they claim they are seeing SSD's last anywhere from 40 to 80 days. That is pretty pitiful if you ask me.

I have been moving as many of my machines to SSDs as possible. With cloud storage so easily accessible, I don't see the need to have a traditional hard drive. The speed increase on an SSD more than makes up for the storage space that I am losing.

I have been pretty happy to see the prices of even higher capacity SSDs finally get to a fairly reasonable level. I am not ready for the gouging that this new method of mining is going to cause. Thankfully I have a stack of SSDs ready should I ever need to replace one in a machine, but once those are gone, my tech budget might be feeling the pinch.

Then again, this could just be a fad that quickly passes.

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Sounds like another case of bad crypto, which I would lump in with Bitcoin. If you coin requires exponential hardware and/or energy use then it's bad. It can hard other areas of life. If it destroys hard drives then it is even worse. I get that you need to exploit some scarce resource to control mining, but maybe that is the wrong path to go down. Even Elon Musk has at last twigged that the energy use of Bitcoin goes against the green philosophy of his car company.

But greed tends to win out in the short term.

Elon is playing a game right now. I don't think he even cares honestly. I've lost a lot of respect for him over the past couple of months.

Oh boy. Glad I don't have to worry about this stuff. I don't have the skillz bozz man has when it comes to all of this stuff. hehe. I think your right, @gooddream has a bunch running in is apt and poor Nadi is wasting away from all of that heat generated. AND... It's already hot in Vietnam. 😫

Hahaha, yeah. I can just see stacks and stacks of spare HDs sitting around his condo.

Exactly why I bought a few extra SSD's the other day. Not to mine with but as backups since they will most likely be in short supply and skyrocket soon. I honestly hope this one doesn't take off.


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Smart move. I've got a bunch of 256 and 128 GBs laying around. If I need more storage than that, whatever I am doing belongs on a server!

This is going to expensive mining exercise.
With each rewrite and overwrite, it decreases the life of a storage device. You would need a dedicated SSD drive where you are not doing keeping anything else.

Yeah, for sure. It sounds like people have massive NAS's and things like that running to mine this.

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I heard of it being mentioned before but I think it also destroys harddrive over time. I guess it might be fine if you are using one where you have no important data available though.

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Yeah, 40 days of use out of a 500 GB SSD before it fails. No thanks. Not worth it to me.

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Is it really killing them in 40 days? :D

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Yeah, that is what the research was showing...

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this could just be a fad that quickly passes

I'm guessing it will be. Unless the first people in start making insane amounts. It's an attractive idea. Especially to someone like me who knows nothing about hard drives. The article you talk about that explained how quickly they burn out though was enough to bring me back to my senses. Although I did find myself wondering whether the message was yet to reach the UK and if so, if there were any large capacity drives to be had. 😂

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