In case you don't know, Backblaze is somewhat famous for making custom ginormous boxes of disks made entirely out of consumer grade parts for their file hosting business. Their newest version holds 135 terabytes for $7,384, which is significantly cheaper than any existing "enterprise" solution.
For reference, the "pod" holds 45 disks. If their 2.0 pod uses the same basic configuration as the 1.0 pod, every 15 disks is in its own RAID6 array with 2 pairity disks out of the 15. In total this leaves 87% usable space. Failure rate isn't too much of a problem; over their total 9,000+ hard drives, an average of 10 per week fail, or 5%. The newer 2.0 pods see less than 1% failure rate
However I thought that running consumer hardware as a server was bad. Especially on ServerFault, people get on to them like a pack of angry wolves saying "Don't use consumer hardware, use server hardware!" There was a giant answer I saw a while ago that talked about all the horrible things that result from using Consumer SATA disks (Failure rate, speed, RPMs, Bad Sector in Raid issues, not being "certified" etc). Here's another one. Sometimes they are called "toys". Mark wouldn't even put a consumer grade server ON the server's network.
With all the horrible issues with consumer hardware, how is Backblaze able to run their entire business from them? How was the Sysadmin able to sleep at night? Was all the hype about enterprise drives just fear mongering or blown out of proportion?
More importantly, why can't I or someone else do something similar? 135 terabytes seems like a lot of data for such a cheap price. Even two pods mirroring each other seems like it would be cheaper than the equivalent "enterprise" solution, and in some cases it might be more redundant since its essentially RAID-60 over two separate machines.