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Thread: Make your own NAS?

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    Make your own NAS?

    Was wondering how easy it would be to setup a NAS as current i have an icybox setup with 1.5TB storage, trying to make transfers and accessing the data is incredibly slow, main bottleneck is my 100mb/s Ethernet(although it says certified to cat5e gigabit... liars!), going to be swapping to cat6a(10gigabit, router etc use 1gb though) so that bottleneck will be gone, the next is simply the USB interface the icybox uses means that im stuck at a maximum 60MB/s, thats without taking into account any of the icybox hardware performance.

    Since i have a fairly small pc which contains:

    e8400
    9800GT
    4gb ddr2 ram
    asus p5n-d (1gb ethernet, 4 sata ports)


    I was basically thinking of shoving it on the network and filling it with the rest of my drives, that way i would be closer to maxing out the HDD reads/writes, cant see gigabit being and issue as a drive should only hit like 100MB/s anyways but regardless its nice to use the extra bandwidth.

    Would the above system be OK for a NAS? If not i was thinking about the AMD A series or something, if i did get a new system it would be compact and fairly quiet and for media use(streaming network media to a TV when we finally get into the LCD market!).

    And the main query(providing the above is OK), how do i go about setting this up? People seem to mention using Windows Home Server, i cant get access to that (dont want to be paying...) however i have access to alot of Windows Server, e.g. Windows Server 2003/8. Not sure if those are suitable though? Id assume they're for more useful things i.e a full blown server . What are the alternatives to just putting windows 7 on it and sharing the PC? As ideally i want to minimise power as much as possible, the system will be storage and accessing of VIDEOS and other content (game installation backups) so it doesnt need to be accessible 24/7, i would hope there was a system where it could power down the system and then power it up on request or am i hoping for to much?.

    Any suggestions/guides to setting something like this up would be greatly appreciated as this 5MB/s transfers are doing my nut in!.
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Total overkill.

    A NSLU2 with it's 133/266 arm processor will be able to saturate a 100m network.

    Why burn £100 of electricity a year on something that does nothing extra.

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    I don't really have any tips on the software side of things (although i'll be eagerly watching this thread for some!) but...

    Your current components would be overkill for a NAS from what I can tell. I'd stick with what you have atm and probably underclock/volt your stuff to a level you think is good enough not to affect transfer speeds and so on. As an idea, I've seen some suggestions which say an Atom is fine for most NAS purposes, and naturally, the less power: the less heat and noise.

    If the 4 ports aren't enough you could always buy a few plug-in SATA/RAID cards to boost possible capacity, although i imagine current HDD prices may have more control over that.
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Should have mentioned, HDD are already in my possession (drives from the icybox and spare down in the cellar doing nout!). Dont need more storage than the current sata ports on that board so fine in those respects.

    I thought it would be overkill , i will look at reducing it especially as an atom can somehow do a good job, didnt know that... or maybe ill have to look at that rasberry pi system!.

    Thanks for the quick replies!
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    It really depends what you want to do. If you're looking for an all-singing, all-dancing NAS solution with software RAID then a unix-based option like Openfiler is best.

    If you want a full-featured server, go for Server 2008. If you want a full-featured server that's easier to use, with integrated backup for your other PCs, automatic backup of the server, webpages, easy sharing configurations for different users, then go for Windows Home Server.

    If all you want to do is put in a few drives, share different things from each drive and use them separately, and you have no desire to do anything else with your server, then Windows 7 would be fine. Even Windows XP would do the job. Or some kind of basic unix configuration.

    In terms of hardware, Atom is fine for running WHS, which does a heck of a lot more than just share files, so any processor from the last few years would be ample.

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    HP Microserver + WHS v2 + Drives of your choice

    Will easily saturate GbE connection, easy to manage, low power (and if they are still doing £100 cashback - no idea if they are) cheap for the kit you get.

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    I went from a separate NAS box, to an eSATA DAS attached to my media PC, which is always turned on anyway... One less motherboard/CPU to power and plenty of room on the Ion board I use to deal with disk & network traffic whilst decoding HD video.

    Only worth doing if you already have a PC that's always-on, sat on your network.
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Cashback on microservers have been extended to the end of Feb....but only on the N40L model now.

    I wouldn't be surprised to see it extended again though.....it's been extended about 6 times already
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    Cashback on microservers have been extended to the end of Feb....but only on the N40L model now.

    I wouldn't be surprised to see it extended again though.....it's been extended about 6 times already
    What was the other model it was available on?

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Started on the N36L (was the original Microserver, as I've got) - think it was a few quid cheaper when the cashback offers were running side by side. Was also on the basic Proliant ML110s aswell at one point I think..?

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Quote Originally Posted by dave87 View Post
    Started on the N36L (was the original Microserver, as I've got) - think it was a few quid cheaper when the cashback offers were running side by side. Was also on the basic Proliant ML110s aswell at one point I think..?
    Yes, you're right - I have the N36L as well, but assumed that was discontinued by the time it came onto the N40L. It's the ML110 I'd forgotten about, and now vaguely recall

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    The ML110 offer finished end of January......it just didn't seem as much of a bargain. We have some here at work and they are no more of a real server then the microservers are tbh.

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Quote Originally Posted by shaithis View Post
    The ML110 offer finished end of January......it just didn't seem as much of a bargain. We have some here at work and they are no more of a real server then the microservers are tbh.

    Latest HP deals here
    Agreed. The only real advantages are the faster CPU's available and the fact they can take 16GB RAM. Which isn't enough for a server.
    Hence why I got an ML330 G6 with the Smart Array controller with BBWC
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Quote Originally Posted by badass View Post
    Agreed. The only real advantages are the faster CPU's available and the fact they can take 16GB RAM. Which isn't enough for a server.
    Hence why I got an ML330 G6 with the Smart Array controller with BBWC
    That's what I'm hoping to buy, although with hard drive prices the way they are I'm not going to bother for a while.

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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    Lots of replies, thankyou! Unfortunately im not really looking at spending loads (the hp servers with cashback would cost £150!) as it really is a basic task of simply storing and accessing drives via the network i wouldnt have expected it to be a costly investment .

    Knowing that the lanpc would be insane for use as a nas, how good would something like this be?
    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/d-lin...lan-usb-pc-mac

    Ideally around £50 mark but i think id be sacrificing something? Needs gigabit ethernet though.
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    Re: Make your own NAS?

    I see no point in going to Cat 6 cable. Cat 5e is fine for Gigabit (I run it all over the house).

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