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Help with NAS hardware (first timer)

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September 12, 2007 6:09:02 PM

Hello everyone - after accumulating close to a TB of music i've "finally" decided to quit being an idiot and back it up.

I"m considering building my own NAS instead of drobo or some other pre-built option.

After spending the bulk of the past 6 hours on newegg i've put together a list of hardware built from the ground up:

Basically I'm interested in a Raid 5 or 10 setup. Is this overkill what I have here? Is it not enough? am I missing something? anything you would do different or could suggest? I went with a MOBO w/ a built in raid controller.

Anyway let me know if i'm way off base here before I start spending $$.

Thanks, Matt

More about : nas hardware timer

September 12, 2007 7:00:39 PM

A celeron is to low end and at that price you can get a DUAL CORE AM2 CPU and a mid to high end am2 MB for less.

Also Raid 5 or 10 sucks on with on board raid and a 430 psu may be to low for that many hd's.

You also want dual channel ram
September 12, 2007 7:10:21 PM

I agree that you should go with a hardware (card based) raid, motherboard based ones are slow and not very reliable and are generally software based.

If this is going to be NAS only, I'd look at a mobo that has built in video since you dont need anything high end to run the nas software of choice (which would be?)

dual channel ram shouldnt matter very much....

what are you running as hard drives?
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September 12, 2007 7:41:44 PM

it'll be 4 500GB seagates.

yeah i was pretty much settled on a AMD MOBO/chip w/ the built in video. and the dual core Am2 cpu.

but what basically steered me back to the intel w/ the built in raid was I was struggling to find a raid card that I was sold on. I'd like to keep the whole build under $500. (excluding HD's of course)

after thinking about it alot - i'm not even sure NAS is the right application for me. It might really be after DAS w/ Raid 5.

Honestly I'm not sharing files across many environments. The only computer I own right now is a mac osx. But at the same time i could certainly see myself utilizing the NAS down the road. I don't want to be revisiting this 2 years from now. i'd rather build a system that I can expand not redo.

but basically I have about 5 random external harddrive that are full of music/movies/etc. My needs are more for security right now - protecting myself from data loss.

Other than nightly/weekly backups - the system probably wouldn't be used that much. But like I mentioned before - I see the value in the NAS.

Also - if i built the NAS, i'd probably be running Ubuntu or some other Linux distro
September 12, 2007 8:39:46 PM

"I agree that you should go with a hardware (card based) raid, motherboard based ones are slow and not very reliable and are generally software based."

On-board Controllers ARE hardware-based otherwise they wouldn't be found on the motherboard, they would be an application you install or configure such as Microsoft Windows Dynamic Disks.

While onboard controllers may not perform as well as expansion cards, I have not seen them to be any less reliable and I have replaced plenty of burned out Adaptec Server-class PCI cards.

You will need to decide what RAID flavor you want before you go shopping for cards. Then you can pick the right card based on cost, RAID version and support for the OS that you are running on it.


September 12, 2007 9:00:18 PM

While they are on the motherboard they are basically the equivalent to software based raid.

A pci or pcix card gives you greater flexibility and perforemance. If the mobo fails, in general you will have to start from scratch as even another version of the motherboard could have a different firmware revision making the arrays in-accessable.


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