This past year it has been relatively calm on the mediaplayer scene with no real innovations! So I decided for the first part of the year to broughten my horizons in the world of Home Theatre and completely upgraded my system which has now a fear wow-factor.
During the summer the weather was terrible here in Belgium so I decided to look further into the Home-Made NAS systems.
I currently own 3 NAS systems, A QNAP TS-639 Pro and 2 Netgear ReadyNAS Pro Business Editions which I am fearly happy about. They reach good speeds but they are getting full.
I started off with 1TB drives as they wear the cheapest sollution @ the time. Last year I upgraded 2 NAS to 2TB drives, and started now upgrading a 3rd to 3TB drives!
it's nice that you don't have to buy your HDD's at once as you can start off with one drive, then a second,etc... But as I put complete blurays on my Nas they are getting full in notime!
NAS systems don't come cheap, especially when you want a decent one! Look @ QNAP who released a few new models recently but who will set you back alot of money!
Yes, for the noobs out there they are easy to use, look cool and you may want it next to your home theatre.
There are 2 reasons why you should consider a home-made NAS:
2.For people who aren't happy with 4-10 HDD configurations (which I consider to be amongst ...30TB and rising
I also started off with a 2-drive NAS which I sold very fast afterwards as it was too small.
We all think that we will never need all that space, but once in the mediaplayer scene things change rapidly!
The primary fuction of a NAS is storing stuff and...let's face it we don't wanna loose that stuff especially when it comes to family pictures and movies!
So I hope you'll all agree the aim for a NAS is redundancy....you hope your data will be secure! So I will be looking @ solutions which offer that redundancy.
I will be comparing NAS systems to homemade NAS in this section, the Pros and Contras....of both systems. I know a little has allready been discussed here in this section of the forum..the aim is to merge all info into this topic!
Lets start off with NAS:
2. Slick design
3. Low powerconsuption (not allways true!)
4. Extended software with addons (I'm running SABnzb, squeezebox on my QNAP)
5. Huge choice of redundancy
6. Fast enough for media streaming, the costlier the faster!
2. Limited to a certain number of HDD's
3. If you are running Raid ,HDD's need to be same size
4. Loose amount of space for parity (raid-5 33%)
5. Hardware not upgradable
Then Continue with HMN (Homemade NAS)
1. Fearly cheaper..you get more for your money
2. Ability to use older hardware
3. Customisable to your taste
4. Unlimited expandiblity
5. Can be Low Power
6. Different software sollutions
7. Easily upgradable
1. Certain amount of knowledge is required
2. Different hardware means different problems can arise
3. Speed and software depend on the amount of money you are willing to spend
(Feel free to comment or add suggestions)
We will be looking now @ the different solutions of Homemade NAS. I won't be explaining retail NAS as they have been thoroughly explained over time in this forum..just check the reviews!
2.You can use old hardware
3.HDD's can be different in size <-> RAID have to be same size!
5.Up to 21 drives
6.They sell ready-made sollutions
7.You can loose 1 HDD and can rebuild array
8.If you loose more then 1 HDD you only loose data on that drive <-> Raid-5 you loose everything
9.software has a free version for trying out
10.Pro version comes with ability to install cache drive which picks up the write speed 2x3x
11.Boots up from Software on USB flash
12.Parity drive needs to be same size as largest data drive!
13.Frequent software updates and community support
14.You don't need a raidcard which can be expensive, it just uses the motherboards' own sata or you can plugin an inexpensive sata extention card!
1.Speed is determined by hardware but is mostly slower than high-end NAS
2.Software Raid-4 = JBOD with parity drive <-> Raid-5 parity is distributed over the amount of disks
3.Software can be picky on hardware check forum for compatibility
4.Data is on 1 HDD so speed will be determined by HDD (Sata-300, Sata-600, SSD...)
5.A certain amount of knowledge is needed on installing hardware and software in linux
7.Preparing disks can take a huge time <-> Raid-5
The first build will be a rig for Unraid. As I want something better than I allready have, this build will be a huge leap forward from my NAS systems. Keep in mind you don't have to start off that big...you can as easily start with components you still have laying around... an old case, an old motherboard like a 775 dual core,etc...
Case: Norco RPC-4224 with a modded 120mm fan backplane with silent fans. --> http://www.norcotek.com/RPC-4224.php
Keep in mind this is a relatively well build server rig and will set you back about a 300$ or a 440€. Realtively cheap compared to other entry server chassis. The only downside that its made for 24/7 operation and has high pressure fans which are really loud...that's why I opted for the optional 3x120mm sata fan backplane. This motha comes with 24 Harddrive cages and can be used with 3.5" or 2.5" drives.
Review : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tf2lY...feature=relmfu
Note: I still have an Antec Twelve Hundred case laying around and could use that case instead but it holds a minimum of 4 5-disk Sata Hotswap drive cages which are expensive to buy around the same price as a complete new Norco case, so the decision on buying the Norco was quickly made!
Motherboard: Supermicro X9SCM-F server board--> http://www.supermicro.com/products/m...04/X9SCM-F.cfm
Has IPMI 2.0 so I don't need to plug it into a monitor to change bios settings,etc... I can change it over lan from any computer or even anywhere!
Memory: Kingston 8GB DDR3 1333mhz kit
Prosessor : Intel Xeon E3-1230
PSU: Seasonic X-760 80+ Gold Hybrid Silent fan as the Supermicro board can be a little pickey when it comes to PSU
CPU cooler: Scythe Shuriken Rev B
Case Coolers: 3x Noctua NF-P12-1300 120mm fans and 2x ARCTIC COOLING ACF8 Pro PWM 80mm
Harddrives : As I have 6 1TB 7200rpm laying around I will first build a test system around that first: 1 for parity, 1 for cache and 4 for data. Later when the build is definitive I will replace those drives with 2TB or 3TB sata drives. I'm also on the lookout for a SSD as cache drive.
Expantion cards : I'll need extra sata connectors as my motherboard only has 6. So I'll be investing in one or more SUPERMICRO AOC-SASLP-MV8 PCI Express x4 SATA-2 Low Profile SAS RAID Controller or Supermicro AOC-SAS2LP-MV8 which is Sata-3...ultimately I could buy a Areca ARC-1880IX-24 - Storage controller (RAID) Raid/SATA & SAS Drives 24 channell - SATA-600 / SAS - 600 MBps which will set me back alot of money but that's for another build!
Keep in mind that Unraid is very picky on hardware.....so check the forums for hardware compatibility!
TO BE CONTINUED...
PS: WE WILL BE LOOKING AT OTHER SOLLUTIONS BUT THIS WILL COME LATER... THE AIM IS A DETAILED ACCOUNT OF ALL POSSIBILITIES OF HOME MADE NAS WITH PROS AND CONS FOR EACH SYSTEM...A WORK IN PROGRESS... AND ALL FEEDBACK AND SUGGESTIONS WELCOME!
Yo, back from the dead!
It's been a while but I have my Unraid server up and running and in the process of preclearing the first 3 drives.
Took me some time to find all the hardware and had to wait for my Norco 4224 which was OUT-OF-STOCK and had to come from the US. So finally I received it this week and put everything together yesterday. So here are the final specs:
-Norco RPC-4224 V3 19"Rackmount 24-Disk server case
-Supermicro X9SCM-F Sandybridge socket 1155 Server board Intel C204 chipset ( this board has IPMI 2.0 which has been a blessing so far enabling a complete setup over KVM so no Vid-card necessary!)
-Intel Xeon E-1230 processor (Overkill SURE!!! But have been thinking about virtualisation (EXQI) and creating several servers in one)
-8 Gigs of ECC unbuffered ram (will need more with VT-D)
-Seasonic X-760 modular 80+ Gold PSU
-Supermicro AOC-SAS2LP-MV8 Sata-3 card with 8 ports
-Cables and PWM silent fans (so far running cool & quiet)
Also keep in mind that the financial crisis here in EU didn't do much good for retail prices. So I had to shop around to get the best prices. Now with the floods in Thailand it has even gotten worse with prices for HDD's skyrocketing!
So I will edit this post regularly and post back when I get user shares and NFS or SMB working!
UPDATE 2 31/10/201
So the first disks have been precleared and added to the system. Been copying about 3TB as a test to the array but speeds are a bit dissapointing when it comes to writing. Without a cache drive write speeds is a low 33mb/s as parity has to be calculated. Unraid is good for people who need a cheap backup server for archiving purposes and has a huge support forum, but for someone like me who comes from several fast NAS systems...it just doesn't cut it! The biggest advantage I came across is the fact that Unraid has 1 parity disk and you can add diffrent size in datastores..but for me that's it. I need something better so I have been looking into ZFS.
I have several options in ZFS...Freenas supports ZFS but doesn't support raid expantion where a true ZFS does. So I will be trying out Open Indiana (free-open source) with Napp-it interface:
-You don't need a expensive Hardware raid card, you just need an HBA card like a cheap
IBM ServeRAID M1015 SAS RAID which you can flash to IT mode which mostly comes out of a IBM server : http://lime-technology.com/forum/ind...?topic=12767.0
-You can make several pools of whatever you put into the server (mirror,raidz1-2-3,cache write/read)
-It's faster than Unraid
-Selfhealing and detects errors a normal raidcard wouldn't detect
For more info : http://www.solarisinternals.com/wiki..._Cache_Devices
- Your pools need to be made from disks of the same size
I'll be testing this the next 2 weeks and will keep you posted. Also will be looking at the Pros/Cons of this setup.
I'm getting 3 IBM ServeRAID M1015 SAS RAID which I'll be flashing in IT mode this week. I'll also add 2 SSD's for write cache and one for read cache. And finally will start off by making 2 pools of 4x2 TB for starters!
UPDATE 3 ZFS TESTING 11/12/11
Been testing several distros from Solaris ZFS and especially the latest Solaris 11 with Napp-it gui. Also tried Open Indiana but a driver problem kept going back to Solaris 11.
Solaris the most up-to-date version of ZFS with goodies like Deduplication, on-the-fly encryption and of course the Timeslider I have come to love!
The only problem right now is that Napp-it, the gui, is still in beta and some features don't work yet. Yo have to use the server interface directly on server to adjust those settings but this will be fixed soon enough.
I also read about Freenas 8.x and 7.x (both totally different) and also tried both versions. The webinterface is pretty good, with alot of nice addons and also ZFS allthough it's an older version. I liked it alot as the gui was more maturethen napp-it BUT....speed were terrible on both version. Using the same hardware and cache disks speed was cut in half compared to Solaris 11 + napp-it (60MB/s compared to 115MB/s to and from the server using 1 drive on PC)
Freenas has alot of good things too..you can use it running software raid or hardware raid...it supports ZFS! It has alot of addons you would find in a QNAP,Netgear or Synology.
But speeds using ZFS really suck. I tried using my pool with and without cache disks and got exactly the same iops.
There is still alot of work concerning ZFS and the problem is that Freenas is based on FreeBSD which uses a totally different file system.
So now I'm running Solaris 11 with Napp-it, it's easy to install and free of charge. I'm happy with my transfer speeds to and from the server which is around 115MB/s.
now the next step is setting up a backup-job from my QNAP NAS to the server and test those speeds which should be higher as it runs in Raid-5.
Napp-it homepage : http://www.napp-it.org/index_en.html
: ZFS + Napp-it forum
: Freenas homepage