Cheap media storage server - unRAID, FreeNAS, prebuilt ?


I can't decide what to do for my media server. Building a system seems like it might be more expensive than buying a prebuilt diskless NAS but the prebuilts seem so limited for the price; WD 8TB diskless (limit) model is $900! for the price after disks I can definitely do better but then I have additional concerns of power management - I want this machine on 24/7 and really don't want to run a 700Watt PSU.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I'm considering going with unRAID but I'm still having trouble finding a rig that's under $400 before buying disks.

I would like to be able to grow the machine to 8-12 disks before I have to invest in a new machine (starting with 2-4 right now).

Thanks for any help or suggestions!
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More about cheap media storage server unraid freenas prebuilt
  1. If you are technically inclined or not afraid to fiddle/read alot get freenas

    if you just want it to work get windows home server.

    what speed requirements do you have?
    a dual core atom should be good for 50MB/SEC+ on gigabit.

    for ease of use I would snag WHS (60$ at tiger direct)
    a decent case with separate high efficiency power supply (250-400 watt range)

    ^^ dont go for a combo deal all the combo power supplies that come with cases usually are terrible.

    atom motherboard +2gb ram = 125$

    4x 2tb hdd of your choice ~~80 each
    with whs you can start with one and expand.
  2. falieson

    yes you can DIY a NAS which cost around 900~1000

    Most of the Atom motherboard rang < 100.00 only has 2x SATA ports

    1 - Get a MB about 150~200 with 2x Gb E and 6x SATA ports and use software raid either WHS, FreeNAS or Openfiler

    2 - Get a low cost ITX-220 or equivalent and use Hardware raid controller SPM394, so when system raid running it wont tax host CPU, therefore fast transfer rate via GbE

    # 2 solution, each of SATA port can handle 5 drive (3TB support), this mean you can have up to 30TB RAW

    Look at the freeNAS, you wont disappointed... I'm using it, I donate $100.00 to freeNAS :-), after three months using it
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