USB Expander + /mod on a Stick + External HDD... What's the state of the art?

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I'm thinking ahead to my HD-FOX + Edimax WiFi + Qumi "home theatre" set-up.

My intention is to only use NTFS on the HDR-, and while I expect to stream from that in the main, when I'm travelling (or even while at home if it proves more convenient) I will need to have any media files on external drive.

Without NTFS support added to the HD-'s CF (which would be really handy by the way, is there room?) I will have to fall back to an Ext3 drive, or run the MSP from a USB stick with a splitter so there is still a socket left for the HDD (no need for the WiFi in this configuration).

I believe there have been conflicts when operating the MSP from a stick and having a HDD plugged in at the same time. Not sure what the last word is on that. In this case, if the HDD is NTFS it won't be recognised until the stick has loaded, so there should not be any asynchronous problems.

Of course, one can't record to an NTFS drive (not that I need to)... or can you? Would transplanting the hidden .tsr folder magically make ANY drive recordable?!

I throw the floor open for comments...