The architectural setup

The following list I want to connect to my eSATA SheevaPlug:

  • Flashdisk 4 GB SDHC class 4 (for the Debian root filesystem)
  • Eexternal USB or eSATA hard-disk 2GB or 4GB (for datastorage and variable data)
  • Network cable (supplied in kit)
  • miniUSB cable for serial access to the SheevaPlug (supplied in kit)
  • power cord (supplied in kit)

Explanation of this setup

Flashdisk SDHC 4GB

At a good quality SDHC card is very cheap: Kingston 4GB SDHC class 4, much faster is not necessary in my opinion. This card is 15 MB/s. 4 GB hard-disk space is enough for the root file system. The nice thing of the possibility to use the SDHC card is that the entiry root filesystem is can be placed on a flash-disk and that is very robust. The SDHC card will contain directories like /etc, /boot, /bin, /usr, /sbin, /lib, /root, /dev, /mnt and /proc. This is a flash-disk, so we do not like to use it for variable data.

External USB or eSATA hard-disk  2GB or 4GB

For data storage I want to use the Western Digital MyBook Studio II 2TB or 4TB external harddisk, this disk will contain the directories like /home, /var, /tmp.


This Western Digital MyBook Studio II contains 2 drives, which can be configured as RAID 1. This is ideal for our purpose, because the SheevaPlug has only one eSATA port. With this drive it is possible to have RAID 1, with only one eSATA cable! When one of the drives is bad or broken, it can be replaced with a new drive. The Western Digital MyBook Studio II contains 2 WD Green power hard-disks, robust and low-power.

Remark: The only thing is that you need to connect the MyBook to a Windows or Mac machine to put it in RAID 1 mode. After that you can use the MyBook as a proper RAID 1 drive. See a article about that here:

But for test purposes I am going to use an old WD MyBook USB external hard-disk.