Ive got more external drives than I know what to do with, as amatter of fact one of the things that dfrew me to the Raspi was the ability to run an inexpensive NAS
unfortunately it rarely is as easy as the instructables lay out......
HOWEVER I too have several Elements , mine are almost all 2GB, but same idea USB2, external powered hub.
you NEED to find a solution that will allow you to run and properly configure ntfs3g
I know some of the media servers have it built in, and ive never had any success, matter of fact IM going to create a post in a minte that may be up your alley, for a similar reason.
HOWEVER my big challenge has been my DAC. I have a DAC that is GREAT, just not supported by ANYTHING out of the box.
load the drivers and it works fine.
now I know in theory I should be anle to load one of the Jessie lites, load NTFS3g, or in my case the DAC drivers, an VOILA.
unfortunately I as you, am having head meeting wall, repeat, issues with making that work. Its like NO ONE have EVER perdidted through this.
Of course when I did my 1st MP3 server I too gave up, spent $18 and bought a supported dac. I just wanted the darn thing to run.
So my suggestion is this:
1) Either WRITE what you want
2) give in and use another solution that will reciognize your drives out of the box.
I will admit that even with the solution I DO have in place (VOLUMIO), it takes longer than normal to "see" the drive. Meaning if Im unsing Volumio a lot and the drive is constantly in memory and loaded and being used, theres no problem
but if I leave it be for a while OY, its a few reboots,,,,,,
trust me, if you load a traditional OS deskop or CLI and then load NTFS3g, than you know what the issue is, whether you have the time and willingness to write a solution. GREAT, if not there are 1000's of alternatives
But from someone who knows the Raspi is well supported