File sharing from Vero 4K

I’d like to buy an external SSD drive (~500gb) to have permanently connected to my Vero 4K, that can run silently and as well as being a media location for the Vero, also be able to share it’s files around our network (i.e. to Apple TVs in other rooms using the Infuse app).

A few questions:

  • What is the best format that I should use for this drive, for optimum performance with the Vero? Am I ok to format it using sudo fdisk?
  • What would be the most efficient file server to use out of NFS and FTP? I see an FTP server is available on the App Store but would NFS perform better and if so I guess I would need to install/set it up myself?
  • Is there any difference between the USB ports? (Is one USB 3.0?)
  • I currently have a gigabit USB adapter in one of the USB ports. In terms of bus sharing, would I be better off using the built in ethernet port to optimise download (and upload) speed to/from a connected USB drive?


File server SW choice depends on your needs.

If your users will mainly just download/upload files and edit them offline, then FTP is completely fine. However, if your users would like to “mount” network file system and use it for in-place editing of files (opening Word documents, launching apps from network drive, moving “home folder” to that drive etc.) then FTP is not good and you need NFS, Samba or SSHFS (which is most secure from those three).

It seems that SMB should work pretty nice in Infuse app.

As for filesystem format, it is probably best to stick to some well-matured filesystems like ex4. I would avoid all closed-source or extravagant options, also avoid ntfs, fat32 as there are simply better alternatives. There are also people (and I am one of them) who avoid btrfs, because it is just not bug-free and is known to be relatively unstably, particularly if you plan to do some more advanced stuff on FS level.

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Many thanks for the reply. It would just be to read video files locally stored on the Vero, elsewhere on my network.

I would be happy to use FTP or Samba but I wondered if FTP might give better performance? For example, the Vero indexes media far faster that is shared by NFS vs Samba. Hence why I am a bit down on Samba, and it is not required for Infuse.

I’ve also slightly changed my mind and would now like to make use of either a 128gb Class 10 microSD card, or a 128gb USB 3 pen drive, both of which I now have spare.

Do you think ex4 is still the best format to go with?

Also, do you happen to know whether I would see better performance from the usb pen drive (I have since discovered they are only USB 2.0 ports) vs a (class 10) micro SD card in the micro SD card slot? Would one share bandwidth with my USB ethernet adapter and the other not?

Sorry for all the questions and thank you again for your advice!

Using either drive should be acceptable.
ext4 is the best file system format

I do not know if USB ports on Vero are on the same bus (sharing the bandwidth) or not. Maybe @sam_nazarko will know the answer for this, but I think that average USB flashdrive will give you better speeds than average SD card, but that is just statistical observation and does not have to be valid for your particular devices.

If Infuse app is able to handle FTP, then FTP might be the most x-platform and fastest solution for you, I do not use Apple products, thus I do not know if they support NFS by any chance. I would probably just try FTP, it is kind of easy to setup FTP server on VERO and test the throughput from other devices.

Also, as @sam_nazarko said, you cannot do wrong choice with ext4.

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In my experience, FTP will give the best performance.

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Thank you both. I will go with ext4. Sorry @sam_nazarko just want to re-iterate the bus sharing question.

I’ve just looked up the transfer speeds of the microSD card (100MBps) and USB drive (130Mbps). So both would saturate USB 2.0 (60MBps).

However, I also have the ethernet going through one of the USB ports. So, I wonder whether using the USB drive would half network transfer speeds (due to ethernet also going via USB) vs the microSD card? This is the case on my raspberry pi.

Edit: Using the USB pen drive would be the most convenient. So I suppose my question is, can both USB ports operate at full USB 2.0 speed simultaneously or do they share bandwidth like on a pi?

Excellent - thanks, I’ll go FTP then.

I can’t actually figure out how to slot the micro SD card in :frowning:

Is it the port with the two small slot holes below it on the same side as the USB ports? Connector side facing down? It just feels completely loose…

It’s upside down compared to a normal installation, so try with the card upside down.

Thank you - this was the issue!

So I did a bit of testing and read speed from the microSD over network is woefully slow.

This is via a gigabit USB LAN adapter and using a Samba connection (FTP didn’t work out connected to my Mac; I think there may be a filesize limit).

An 8Gb file took 18 minutes to copy off the Vero via Samba, the USB Ethernet adapter, and my gigabit LAN. That is something like 7.4Mbps, less than 10% what the MicroSD read speed is rated at (100MBps it is class 10 U1 and I’ve verified these speeds).

Notably this is less than Fast ethernet 100mbps - I wonder if the MicroSD card interface has the same transfer speed limitation as the Ethernet port (e.g. on the same bus or something).

Dang I wish this had gigabit Ethernet - only ordered it a few months before the Vero 4K+ came out. Just my luck lol.

A quick update: I have now also tested the USB pen drive. The same 8GB file copied over Sambda and a USB gigabit ethernet adapter, to my gigabit LAN, transferred in 6 minutes ~22.83Mbps. Interestingly, this is a bit less than half of USB 2.0 speed (which can run at up to 60Mbps). So, I think:

  • The USB ports do share the same bus. So if copying files from a USB stick, via a USB ethernet adapter, the maximum transfer speed is 30Mbps (in practice I see ~23Mbps)

  • The microSD card runs woefully slowly, whether doing internal file copies or off the Vero via a USB ethernet adapter. My theory is this shares the same limit as the built in ethernet port, i.e. 12Mbps (in practice I saw 7.4Mbps via a USB ethernet adpater).

So a USB drive is the better way to go, if you care about transfer speeds of files on and off the Vero, but the transfer speeds are slow.

The USB ports do share the same bus. So if copying files from a USB stick, via a USB ethernet adapter, the maximum transfer speed is 30Mbps (in practice I see ~23Mbps)

I received my brand new VERO4K+ some days ago and running some introducing tests right now, it seems like a nice piece of HW, but there are definitely some SW gotchas and I already got like 3 times a sad faces, I will write a review later…

That said, I ran lsusb and it really seems that those two USB 2.10 ports are connected to the same USB 2.00 bus + there is extra USB 3.0 bus with 0 external ports connected to it, which is used probably for some internal stuff…

I made some very basic and potentially misleading tests:

$ sudo hdparm -Tt /dev/sda

 Timing cached reads:   1640 MB in  2.00 seconds = 819.75 MB/sec
 Timing buffered disk reads: 118 MB in  3.02 seconds =  39.02 MB/sec

Both USB ports delivered the same results. Note that the reason why this test did not saturate 60MB/s USB bus is because of the USB drive itself - it is quite low quality USB drive.

Therefore it seems that USB bus in vero4k+ is able to deliver speed around 50-60 MB/s without any problem.

I also tried to read from two USB drives simultaneously with dd (caching disabled) and it seems that each drive is just able to hit 30MB/sec speed.

I also played some jellyfish UHD 120mbps samples from the same USB drive and they played without any issues.

I will do some deep testing when I buy some screen after we move to a new house, which will happen in April.

The sad faces are usually caused by Kodi crashing.
Ideally stay on 17.6 (stable for now); and post a log if you can reproduce reliably.