Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'd like to build a DVD library (probably later to become a tape library) with a home-built robot that moves media between a store area (i.e. the 'shelves' where the physical DVDs are kept) and the DVD drives, and its own server to interface between network and the library. I'm going to use DVD-RWs for now as proof of concept (and because I'm lacking the funds even for a single LTO Drive). So basically a physical media library with a robot, as we all know them from automated tape libraries.

After planning the hardware I'm looking into my software options. Specifically, I'd like to have this exposed to my network as single file system with R/W capabilities that I can just read from and write to while the server is transparently handling locating the files or locating available space on physical media and changing the DVDs accordingly.

I'm looking into HP LTFS, but it seems to require LTO-5-Drives, and doesn't appear to support managing and auto-changing a set of physical media, and apart from that google didn't yield any options that appear to do what I want to do.

So my question is does someone know a file system for linux that could handle this? Obviously I need to write my own HAL for the robot, as it is non-standard hardware, but apart from that I was hoping to find something that already exists, and that I can use with little to no modification for this purpose. Or at least software components that I could use to piece this together?

share|improve this question
Sounds like you want to be tapping into Device Mapper. – Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams May 26 '12 at 22:14
It sounds like tiered storage. HP and IBM have few solutions for that. – Hubert Kario May 27 '12 at 14:27

On most modern linux systems the contents of a medium automatically appears in a directory named /media/ as soon as the medium is attached to the system. If you now would give all your media the same name they would appear at the same point in your system and you will always have read- and write access; If you don't like the fact that the directory only exists if there is a media you can even create a folder while the media is absent and your system will from then on keep that folder

The only thing that might give strange results is if you remove the media during playback. But normally the system will recover from this, too.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.