Boot even with two SSD connected to RPi

I have HA OS on Pi5, running on an 120gb SSD. I have a 1tb SSD that I’m using for the Samba NAS add-on. I cannot reboot the system without unplugging the 1tb SSD for the NAS. Is there an easy way to fix this? Perhaps I can identify the 120gb SSD as the boot disk in a config file somewhere?

Try using a powered USB hub.

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The HA OS SSD is connected to the RPi. The NAS SSD is on a powered hub. With this setup I am experiencing boot problems.

Shall I plug the HA OS SSD into the hub as well? Will that have any effect?

A Pi5 should be able to power 2 USB connected SSD’s, assuming you have the 5V 5A PSU.

What a Pi can’t do is prioritize on USB; It can for a heterogeneous set of storage options, like SD and USB together. A way to workaround that is to block/mask the USB ID’s of the non-OS storage device. See RPI docs who to do that. That was sometimes also needed for certain other USB devices like mouse.
Your problem might also be due to the type of USB3-SATA chips used in one of the adapters. Or the type of filesystems on the non-OS storage device.

I would not use 2 SSDs, just use 1, that 120G one is only 10% of the other. You might need to change some partitioning, but I don’t know how this samba add-on ingrates and/or uses storage blocks.

I had added a second SSD to serve as an NVR media drive for Frigate. I thought it might be a good idea to have a separate SSD for this. Perhaps it’s too redundant with little added benefit. Can you confirm?

I my experience it is more troublesome then beneficial. The advantage of RPi is that it is a cheap computer and also low-power. Linux storage is extremely flexible, of course it needs some know-how and work to setup more advanced structures, but it is well worth it.
I have an an older Pi4-2GB where I connected a 120G Samsung that wasn’t needed anymore in a PC. That 120G SSD does not support UAS, also no TRIM and lists more than 1A current. I got it stable, but it took a lot of effort(and extra externally powered USB-hub).
Now I networkboot (TFTP boot and using NBD root) that Pi4 and is PoE powered. So no own local storage anymore, only connection is a network cable.

But If your Pi5 is more like a standalone server, it needs own storage.

The last data partion of HAOS is automatically extended and Ext4 formatted. So in your case, if you image-copy the 120G to the 1T SSD and then not connect the 120G anymore, you can boot from the 1T and after 1st boot, partition 8 is almost 1T. It should be possible to create some directory in there that serves as Frigate Samba-served storage. You can also first create a dedicated own partition 9 that you format/manage yourself. But you need to know how GPT/parted/etc work.

I actually run HA in a Virtual machine, PC’s and also Pi4 and Pi5 are overkill for HA, you can run many things more on it.

Many thanks for the thoughtful and detailed reply.

Frigate creates, and saves to, its own media directories within HA, so using just one SSD is not difficult to setup. I just uninstalled Frigate and backed up my HA on the 120gb SSD and copied the backup file to my laptop, then installed HA on the 1tb and restored from the backup. Then I installed Frigate again.

I am used to using HA in a VM environment but I’m setting up HA for someone else on this Pi5. The more I use this Pi, the more I think I might have raised a flag for no reason; the Pi boots and reboots so slowly compared to what I’m used to with the VM that maybe it was fine with two SSD connected all along. Maybe I just got impatient and unplugged the NAS SSD thinking that was preventing the Pi from booting, when in actuality it had no effect (the Pi is just slow).

I’ve moved on and I’m not going to test the theory.