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Preparing to build an NAS

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MikeJ

Registered
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
Almost finished building my new gaming rig, I am starting to look into
building a home NAS to hold all my movies, music, photos and documents.
FreeNAS for software
The parts I'm sure I will be using,
Case http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16811163255
HDD http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16822236342
I'm still up in the air about a lot of stuff
I want Intel and nVidia
I did read i should use ECC Memory. Any suggestions would be greatly helpful,
Thank you, Mike
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Why Inten and NVIDIA? YOu are building a NAS, not playing games... you will be limited by your internet connection before an any CPU slows you down.

I also wouldn't worry about ECC either.
 

wagex

Chapstick Eating Premium Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2011
Why Inten and NVIDIA? YOu are building a NAS, not playing games... you will be limited by your internet connection before an any CPU slows you down.

I also wouldn't worry about ECC either.

i think freenas recommends ecc beause of the zfs filesystem it uses alot of memory and something about a single memory error can ruin the whole disk configuration or something i cant remember off the top of my head.

i think the new skylake celeron or pentium cpu's would be a good choice with a motherbaord that supports the ecc function of the ecc memory. just double check the specific model on intels website to ensure the cpu is compatible with ecc memory but iirc most or all of them are.

then pick a motherboard with sufficient network and sata connections (probably going to need a server or workstation board to get the ecc options in the bios.)
 
OP
MikeJ

MikeJ

Registered
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
I have always use Intel and nVidia, but i am open to anything that works best and does not cost lots of cash.
 

Janus67

Benching Team Leader
Joined
May 29, 2005
How much of that is HDDs? Basically what I'm asking is how much of your budget makes up the mobo/cpu/ram/psu?
 

MattNo5ss

5up3r m0d3r4t0r
Joined
Aug 11, 2008
Here's my current FreeNAS for storage and Plex Server:

Intel Pentium G3258 - Cheap with IGP, so no need for a dedicated GPU just for a commandline OS
ASUS Z87I-Deluxe - ITX motherboard w/ 6 SATA ports
2x8 GB DDR3-1600 1.35V non-ECC RAM
5x2 TB HDD - for storage, jails, etc.
50 GB SSD - OS drive (Although, you can use USB thumb drives for this)
Gigabit+ network equipment

ITX boards are hard to find with a lot of native SATA ports (and the case you linked is ITX). So, you may need the PCIe slot for an HBA add-on card for more ports if you plan on a lot of drives and/or future expansion. That also means you'll need to use IGP for graphics, so be sure the CPU and motherboard support that. A dedicated GPU isn't needed since FreeNAS is just command line when on the actual FreeNAS PC (it uses a GUI for the remote access via web browser). You'll need a minimum of 8 GB of RAM and an 8+ GB boot drive (USB or whatever), zfs loves RAM so the more the better.
 
OP
MikeJ

MikeJ

Registered
Joined
Feb 3, 2008
All hardware is up in the air,
I just don't want a huge case and to be able to access
the HDDs from the front of the case,
Im not even sure how many hard drives i will need.
I can add HDDs after it is built

- - - Updated - - -

I like building :)
 

JrClocker

AKA: JrMiyagi
Joined
Sep 25, 2015
All hardware is up in the air,
I just don't want a huge case and to be able to access
the HDDs from the front of the case,
Im not even sure how many hard drives i will need.
I can add HDDs after it is built

- - - Updated - - -

I like building :)


QNAP.jpg


That solves all your requirements...except for the building part! :rofl:
 

Lochekey

Senior Pink Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2015
I recently built a small home server to store movies and videos and act as a plex server. I ended up using the Amahi operating system and have been mostly pleased with the results. I ended up using mostly parts I had lying around to keep costs down.

I3-530
Intel DP55wg motherboard
4gb of generic 1333 mhz ram

I initially installed a spare gpu to get it up and running but just now interface with it using SSH.

I have found that I am not even close too utilizing the cpu fully so I ended up turning off hyperthreading and underclocking the cpu slightly to save power.

I don't know if you are planning on using plex but if you are I found that by properly transcoding my videos with handbrake it allows me to play videos with almost no cpu load allowing my processor to be freed up for other tasks. This was important for me as someone in my house is constantly watching a video on the plex server and it allows me to continue to use the server for other tasks without issue.


I guess the point off my long rambling is that you can use pretty low powered equipment and still have a good functional set up.

-----------------------


Can I ask why the need to access the hdd from the front of the case? I have always found it is easy enough to access the hdd by taking the side of of the case.
 
Last edited:

Pinky

Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2001
Location
Narf City, USA
What is the advantage of home built nas vs. a store bought Qnap or Netgear?

This is precisely the same questions I've been mulling over for a few years now. I could really use a NAS like solution but instead have been sharing data from my main machine and running backups of the data drive weekly.

The downfall of buying a NAS device with say Raid5 (3 or more drives in parity/redundancy, striping) is if the unit fails, you're possibly SOL. The controller has to be able to pickup where the prior device left off, and that's assuming you want to replace with the same model that just died on you. Ideally you would have a NAS with two drives, running Raid1 (redundancy only), and in the case of unit death you can still, most of the time, toss the drive into any computer with a USB adapter to access the data. But if you need to store a lot of data you will be limited in Raid1 to the drive sizes the unit supports and largest single drives available on the market. Raid5 definitely allows you room to grow down the road, and you can swap any dead drives while still accessing the data [which is why this configuration is popular with small businesses that have local servers].

Building your own means, in part, that anything that's buggy or fails is your responsibility. It also means time configuring, learning the software you're using, etc. I'm also not sure how much cheaper it will end up being, definitely not if you consider the time involved. The benefit is that you will be able to swap hardware rather easily since it's standard PC components that would fail.

Performance wise I would expect the means of accessing the data (USB, Ethernet) to be the larger limiting factor, and that both solutions if configured and operating properly would offer home users the same experience.
 

rbstern

Registered
Joined
Nov 3, 2015
Location
Georgia
I'm in the middle of transferring files from a 2x1 TB NAS RAID 1 appliance to a server I built over the last week. My build:

3x2TB Toshiba DT01ACA20 (RAID 5)
120GB Patriot Blast SSD (boot drive)
16GB DDR3
Athlon 5350
ASRock AM1B-ITX
Corsair CX430 psu
Cooler Master Elite 130 case
CentOS 7, running Linux RAID and Samba

The above setup is good for up to four drives. Any more than that, and the case would need additional mods, along with a SATA expansion card.

I looked at using FreeNAS, NAS4Free, Rockstor, and others. I also strongly considered a QNAP or Synology box. In the end, I decided the server I would put together would do double duty as a CentOS development server, and none of those solutions gave me the flexibility of having a single home server for NAS and an industry standard LAMP stack.

Total build cost was under $400 after rebates.
 

rbstern

Registered
Joined
Nov 3, 2015
Location
Georgia
What is the advantage of home built nas vs. a store bought Qnap or Netgear?

If storing and/or sharing data are your only objectives, I think's best to stick with the store bought NAS units, albeit, one with the right set of features for your needs, because they vary greatly in capability. I was in this camp for a long time. I've been able to get by with simple, 2 drive RAID NAS appliances, for backups and file sharing, for the last five years.

For people who like to tinker, learn or have the requisite knowledge to do a custom setup, and have special objectives, home brew is the way to go. But it's not for the faint of heart. Even using software like FreeNAS still requires beyond a very basic level of skill with PC and networking issues.
 

Pierre3400

annnnnnd it's gone
Joined
May 15, 2010
Location
Euroland, Denmark
This is precisely the same questions I've been mulling over for a few years now. I could really use a NAS like solution but instead have been sharing data from my main machine and running backups of the data drive weekly.

The downfall of buying a NAS device with say Raid5 (3 or more drives in parity/redundancy, striping) is if the unit fails, you're possibly SOL. The controller has to be able to pickup where the prior device left off, and that's assuming you want to replace with the same model that just died on you. Ideally you would have a NAS with two drives, running Raid1 (redundancy only), and in the case of unit death you can still, most of the time, toss the drive into any computer with a USB adapter to access the data. But if you need to store a lot of data you will be limited in Raid1 to the drive sizes the unit supports and largest single drives available on the market. Raid5 definitely allows you room to grow down the road, and you can swap any dead drives while still accessing the data [which is why this configuration is popular with small businesses that have local servers].

Building your own means, in part, that anything that's buggy or fails is your responsibility. It also means time configuring, learning the software you're using, etc. I'm also not sure how much cheaper it will end up being, definitely not if you consider the time involved. The benefit is that you will be able to swap hardware rather easily since it's standard PC components that would fail.

Performance wise I would expect the means of accessing the data (USB, Ethernet) to be the larger limiting factor, and that both solutions if configured and operating properly would offer home users the same experience.

I have to say, I am reading, but not fully following your talk here.

I have a Netgear 4 bay, Running 4x 1Tb drives, to start with i had 4x Seagate drives, then two drives started to act up, so i replaced them with WD drives, and all is fine, no data lost, hot swap was great.
That said, I have had to use support a few times, and Netgear has a 24/7 service, that has been just great. I use my NAS to storing my documents and movies and similar, like OP needs. I have not ever felt limited i have to say, only by maybe not having all media share options. But as a basic run of the mill nas, thinking about it, i could make a better performance NAS unit yes, for the same money, but it would also mean having to put in a whole lot more time getting it working, and then also keeping track of it, where the netgear does all that for me.

If storing and/or sharing data are your only objectives, I think's best to stick with the store bought NAS units, albeit, one with the right set of features for your needs, because they vary greatly in capability. I was in this camp for a long time. I've been able to get by with simple, 2 drive RAID NAS appliances, for backups and file sharing, for the last five years.

For people who like to tinker, learn or have the requisite knowledge to do a custom setup, and have special objectives, home brew is the way to go. But it's not for the faint of heart. Even using software like FreeNAS still requires beyond a very basic level of skill with PC and networking issues.

I see this as the only real reason, for the applications that OP is looking for, buying a solid brand NAS would be the best options, but OP wants to build, and i fully get that, but i also feel that OP is going overboard on the build for what it needs to do, and space taken up will also be larger than may be needed.

I see LinusTech bulding HUGE SSD Nas servers to cope with the data, 4k video and such, i fully understand a custom build here, but as a home network serving as backup, and movie library i would put more time and money into my main rig.