I am planning to build a debian server which will use usb sticks instead of hard disks in order to reduce power consumption, noise and heat. My questions:
1.) Could you please make an opinion about this? I'd like to know whether it is reasonable to use USB sticks instead of hard disk. I don't really need much space.
2.) The thing I am mostly concerned about is how durable are these USB sticks? I mean, will they last for several years, in theory? This server will be mostly used as a web, mail, dns and ftp server.
3.) How much slower will the system be? I mean, for the upper purposes, will it be okay? Will a php/mysql based webpage load significantly longer?
4.) I will probably use two USB sticks, one 8gb as / and /home and one 2gb as swap. Will two USB sticks consume less power than one 3,5" 40Gb 5400Rpm drive?
5.) I would like to make my server as reliable as possible, should I use RAID1 with usb sticks? If I choose raid, I will have to use software raid, as my hardware does not support it. I was thinking about what this guy did: http://cs.joensuu.fi/~mmeri/usbraid/