Shucking a 8TB WD Elements vs 8TB WD Red

Shucking a hard drive is the practice of removing a hard drive from it’s (external) USB exclose. This may sound like a stupid thing to do, but this can save you some money (150 euro vs 220 euro) 🤑

The scary side of shucking is that you never really know what you will get, it is a little like a surprise egg for nerds. This time we got lucky, the WD80EMAZ is actually a helium filled HGST Ultrastar, modified to run at 5400 RPM (instead of 7200 RPM).

The shucked drive ( WD80EMAZ ) runs 5-6 degrees cooler than my original 8TB WD Red drives (WD80EFAX) 😎

Hard drive temperatures WD80EFAX (8TB WD Red) vs WD80EMAZ (Shunked 8TB WD Elements).

Update: I have multiple shucked drives in use WD80EMAZ (WD Elements with the blue text on the box) and WD80EDAZ (WD Elements with the orange text on the box). All drives have 256MB cache and are running without issues in a Synology NAS. The WD80EDAZ drives will run a lot hotter 😐

EvilDir, create an EVIL named directory in Windows

A little “fun” Qt5 console application to create a directory (a.k.a. folder) ending with a space character (” “). This directory can not be removed with standard Windows tools, including most console applications.

#include <QCoreApplication>
#include <QDir>

int main(int argc, char *argv[])
  QCoreApplication a(argc, argv);

  QString evil_dir_name("Remko is a little Evil !!! ");

  for(int i=1; i<a.arguments().count(); i++)
    if(a.arguments().at(i).compare("-d", Qt::CaseInsensitive) != 0)
      evil_dir_name = a.arguments().at(i);
      evil_dir_name.append(" ");

  return 0;

Reduce size (static) executables

This little (cross-platform) executable compression tool Ultimate Packer for eXecutables (UPX) can greatly reduce the size of (static build) executables. The executable filesize will be reduced to the size of a ZIP file containing the same executable.

The tool is very easy to use, just drag-and-drop your executable onto the upx.exe to use the default (fast) compression option of the tool, or type “upx <filename>” in the command-line. Adding the (much slower) “–utra-brute” command-line argument will reduce the filesize even further.

A static build Qt5.1.1 MinGW compiled application with a filesize of 12.972.032 bytes (12.3MB):

DEFAULT: 12.972.032 bytes (12.3MB) is reduced to 5.218.816 bytes (4.97 MB) using the (fast) default settings.

ULTRA-BRUTE: 12.972.032 bytes (12.3MB) is reduced to 4.488.704 bytes (4.28 MB) using the (much slower) “–ultra-brute” argument.

Qt 5.1.1 static build with MinGW

This is a small step-by-step howto compile a static Qt5.1.1 framework from source, using the MinGW 4.8.1 development environment.

Download MinGW Installer:

Download Qt5 Source Zip:

Patch mkspecs (line 69):

QMAKE_LFLAGS = -static -static-libgcc

Patch mkspecs (line 28) optional (reduce file size static builds):

QMAKE_CFLAGS = -ffunction-sections -fdata-sections ...

Patch Makefile.win32 (line 50):

LFLAGS = -static-libgcc ...

Patch for MinGW 4.8.1 (older MinGW 4.6.x works with-out patch):,63747

Replace file with patched version:

Patch for MinGW 4.8.1 (older MinGW 4.6.x works with-out patch):,64330,patchset=1

Replace file with patched version:

Python (needed by the qtjsbackend to fix the v8 error):

Add Python to Path:

set PATH=%PATH%;C:\Python33

Add MinGW to Path:

set PATH=%PATH%;C:\MinGWx32\mingw32\bin

Configure in <Qt5.1.x>\:

configure -platform win32-g++ -release -static -opensource -no-opengl -qt-zlib -qt-libpng -qt-libjpeg -nomake examples

Build with MinGW make in <Qt5.1.x>\:

mingw32-make -j

Build with Qt Creator:

Build & Run
Compilers -> Add MinGW used to build Qt5.1.x -> Add->MinGW -> Browse to <MinGW>\bin\g++.exe (Apply)
Qt Versions -> Add Qt5.1.x static MinGW build -> Add -> browse to <Qt5.1.x>\qtbase\bin\qmake.exe (Apply)
Kits -> Add Qt5.1.x static with MinGW compiler -> Add -> compiler:MinGW & qtVersion:Qt5.1.xStaticMinGW & qtmkspecs:win32-g++

Ready to build !!!