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Thread: Nas...

  1. #1
    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Nas...

    Hey all

    I have three external Hard Drives at the moment of varying size and to be honest having them all separate is taking up to much space for my liking.

    Now am looking for a cheap NAS to house the drives as I don't have a lot of of money to spare.

    I also don't know much about NAS's so I was wondering, if I were to add my drives to the NAS, would I have to wipe them completely or could I just stick them in?

    Thanks in advance.
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    hmm wrong section..mods please move...sorry :s
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    Anyone got any suggestions at all?
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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    Re: Nas...

    When I was after something like your looking at, the cheapest way I found was to get an old corporate sff PC and shove the drives in that. The original one was run without sides and had an extra drive mounted externally, the rig also had 2 old printers plugged in to it and worked as a download box. Think I paid under £30, and being ex corp had an xp license. A mate tried something similar with nas and found he couldnt share media to his xbox 360, which turned out to be a bit of a pain.

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    Big, Mean and Ugly! circuitmonkey's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    Quote Originally Posted by Disturbedguy View Post
    Hey all

    I have three external Hard Drives at the moment of varying size and to be honest having them all separate is taking up to much space for my liking.

    Now am looking for a cheap NAS to house the drives as I don't have a lot of of money to spare.

    I also don't know much about NAS's so I was wondering, if I were to add my drives to the NAS, would I have to wipe them completely or could I just stick them in?

    Thanks in advance.
    you can pick up networked USB host devices that convert external USB drives into nas drives and i don't think that you'd have to wipe your drives first. down side is that they are normally quite slow.

    As for commercial NAS drives, I have a feeling that they require the drives be formatted and then the NAS' OS installed upon them first. I may be wrong about this though.

    I'm personally leaning towards building, or converting an old system into a NAS device.
    Was looking for something that didn't require to much power 24/7. I was thinking about an Atom based device, but will either have to pair it with a PCI RAID controller, or wait till someone pairs the atom with a ICH9R southbridge. Anyone seen something like this?

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    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    I too have thought about converting an old system or building a NAS but I figured for the same money I would spend on building a new machine (I don't have old machine to convert) I may as well buy a NAS, if I have to format its no worries, I have a spare 60Gb HD I could throw my important stuff on then stick the three lager drives in the NAS and format..only thing is it will mean putting the NAS downstairs (where the router is).

    Was wondering, could I stick a second Network card in my system and connect it to the NAS without me having conflict problems?

    Thanks again
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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    Big, Mean and Ugly! circuitmonkey's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    Quote Originally Posted by Disturbedguy View Post
    I too have thought about converting an old system or building a NAS but I figured for the same money I would spend on building a new machine (I don't have old machine to convert) I may as well buy a NAS, if I have to format its no worries, I have a spare 60Gb HD I could throw my important stuff on then stick the three lager drives in the NAS and format..only thing is it will mean putting the NAS downstairs (where the router is).

    Was wondering, could I stick a second Network card in my system and connect it to the NAS without me having conflict problems?

    Thanks again
    Yer, that would be fine, just make sure you set up the NAS on a different ip range, i.e. 10.0.0.1 - 10.0.0.254

    Personally though, although buying a pre-build NAS may work out to be cheaper (I'm not so sure about this) your through put would be better with a full Intel, possibly even dual core x86 processor.
    I've actually just remembered about this machine I found the other day, I think it would make a very good NAS machine, and cheaper than my current Synology NAS.
    Based on Core 2, with 1GB RAM, 160GB HDD, 1000T Ethernet and ICH9R southbridge for plenty of RAID options. and at £120, bit of a bargin really.

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    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    It would actually and ive just been looking at NAS devices and they are a hell of a lot more expensive then that machine.
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

  9. #9
    root Member DanceswithUnix's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    How about putting one of these Atom based motherboards into a small PC case. Should be FreeNAS compatible.

    2xSATA, 1xIDE port for storage, just add a stick of RAM.

    The PCI slot allows a cheap SATA board to be plugged in if you need more disks.


    Or just put together a cheap socket AM2 box. Quite often see CPU for 30 quid, motherboard for 30quid so works out nearly the same price overall but with slightly higher power requirement once built but then you would also get Gigabit networking and more SATA sockets.

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    Re: Nas...

    You don't need much power for a NAS because all it does is serve up files, so you definitely don't need a dual core processor or anything like that. If it's going to be on 24x7, then the lower the power consumption, the better. Any old, VIA or mobile CPU will do. I have an old pentium-m processor in my self build NAS.

    With regards to the disks, it really depends on what you want it do. You can just put all of your drives into a box and have it as JBOD, but if you want raid then you will have to wipe all of the disks. If you are just serving one computer, JBOD should be fine; I don't know how well it will serve multiple computers at the same time.

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    root Member DanceswithUnix's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    You don't *need* much power, but old PC components tend to consume more watts than the latest stuff when running idle. 2 idle cores takes about the same power as one idle core, but the sales volume is in dual core so they are sometimes the cheapest component you can buy.

    My main requirement for this sort of machine is that it is silent. I have a single core 3000+ AMD chip on a 6150 chipset motherboard. These days I would use the more efficient 8200 chipset so that those big fans can turn even slower. VIA chipsets consume less power, but then they are old and so you have to add a gigabit ethernet card which defeats the power saving and cost advantage (I do sometimes move virtual machines, video files etc around so gigabit is essential for me).

    A bit of grunt in the CPU is nice though. I can use a secure web connection to my disk box at home and tell MythTV to record some program off freeview (I have a cheap PCI TV card in there) and it also handles email for my domain. That would all work on a slower CPU, but having no lag on the interface is good.

    I suppose what I am saying is that it is easy for a NAS box to get mission creep, so expansion & performance can end up mattering.

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    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    Really great suggestions above but the main thing am looking for is saving space and money so i do need something extremely small.

    I do like the look of that Mini ITX board now only if I can find a decent small case that isnt going to take up too much space then all I have to do is save then have a tinker and get it all working....

    I would need a system drive though wouldnt I so the network card is recognised?
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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    Re: Nas...

    Quote Originally Posted by DanceswithUnix View Post
    You don't *need* much power, but old PC components tend to consume more watts than the latest stuff when running idle. 2 idle cores takes about the same power as one idle core, but the sales volume is in dual core so they are sometimes the cheapest component you can buy.

    My main requirement for this sort of machine is that it is silent. I have a single core 3000+ AMD chip on a 6150 chipset motherboard. These days I would use the more efficient 8200 chipset so that those big fans can turn even slower. VIA chipsets consume less power, but then they are old and so you have to add a gigabit ethernet card which defeats the power saving and cost advantage (I do sometimes move virtual machines, video files etc around so gigabit is essential for me).

    A bit of grunt in the CPU is nice though. I can use a secure web connection to my disk box at home and tell MythTV to record some program off freeview (I have a cheap PCI TV card in there) and it also handles email for my domain. That would all work on a slower CPU, but having no lag on the interface is good.

    I suppose what I am saying is that it is easy for a NAS box to get mission creep, so expansion & performance can end up mattering.
    Indeed. I only got my pentium-m because I could get a cheap pentium-m desktop motherboard with dual Gbit ports. And it does help with "mission creep". If you think you will use it for other things, as I did, then it is better to allow for that now in your build rather than have to upgrade again later.

    You will need a system drive to run the whole thing. I use a XP and a normal HD, but you can use any bootable device with small distros such as FreeNAS. I used XP because I have no experience of Linux and so it was easier for me.

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    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    So am looking at the cost of a motherboard, one stick of ram, an OS and a case and psu?

    Hmm going to have to do some thinking, can anyone recommend a decent, yet small case?
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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    Re: Nas...

    Buying Windows could almost double the cost of the project.

    I run Fedora, but then I am happy with that and it gives me tons of options.

    FreeNAS is supposed to be an easy to use system that uses a web interface to setup. Not used it myself, but have been told by someone who has that it was easy. Might be worth a download for you. underneath it is BSD Unix, but on top it is just an appliance and should hide that from you.

    As for size, if you want to rack up lots of hard drives then that sets your case size and even with the ITX motherboard you will end up using a uATX case as mini-ITX cases only take 1 HDD max. A uATX case is also cheap

  16. #16
    HEXUS.social member Disturbedguy's Avatar
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    Re: Nas...

    Hmm thanks for the info about FreeNAS and in regards to cases etc, I just need something that will take the three drives I have at the moment.
    Quote Originally Posted by TAKTAK View Post
    It didn't fall off, it merely became insufficient at it's purpose and got a bit droopy...

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