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BestConfigs Poll - NAS PC

Last response: in Systems
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Which NAS PC BestConfig do you like best?

Total: 70 votes (15 blank votes)

  • Rusting's Leviathan
  • 20 %
  • Dicky's NAS
  • 37 %
  • Palladin's Home Server
  • 44 %
August 1, 2011 2:51:53 PM

It's time to vote on your favorite build for this category!

Please see below for a list of the choices available.


Rusting’s Leviathan
Processor: Intel Core i3-2100T @ $134.99
Motherboard: ASRock H67M-ITX @ $86.99
RAM: Corsair XMS 4GB DDR3 @ $39.99
Graphics Card: Onboard
Hard Drive: Kingston SSDNow S100 16GB @ $51.99
Case: Lian Li PC-Q08B @ $109.99
Power Supply: Seasonic X series SS-400FL 400W @ $129.99
Cooling: Stock
DVD Burner: None
RAID: Areca ARC-1220 @ $449.99

Total: $1,003.93

Dicky's NAS
Processor: Intel Core i3-2100 Sandy Bridge 3.1GHz - $124.99 x 1 = $124.99
Motherboard: MSI H67MA-E35 H67 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX - $84.99 x 1 = $84.99
RAM: Mushkin Enhanced Silverline 4GB (2x2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 1333 Dual Channel Kit - $29.99 x 1 = $29.99
Graphics Card: Integrated Intel HD 2000 - $0.00
Hard Drive (SSD): OCZ Vertex 2 OCZSSD2-2VTX40G 2.5" 40GB - $74.99 x 1 = $74.99
Hard Drive: HITACHI Deskstar 5K3000 2TB SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive - $79.99 x 5 = $399.95
Case: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case - $44.95 x 1 = $44.95
Power Supply: CORSAIR CX430 V2 430W 80 PLUS Active PFC Power Supply - $34.99 x 1 = $34.99
Cooling: Stock Heatsink/Fan - $0.00
DVD Burner: No Optical Drive Used - $0.00
Additional: HighPoint RocketRAID 2680 SGL PCI-Express x4 SATA / SAS Controller Card - $99.99 x 1 = $99.99
Additional: 3ware Multi-lane Internal SFF-8087 Serial ATA Reverse Breakout Cable - $16.99 x 2 = $33.98

Total = $928.82

Palladin's Home Server

Processor: Via Nano 1.6Ghz
Motherboard: Jetway Via Nano JNC74-2007 $119.99
RAM: Crucial 4GB DDR3 10600 $30.99
Graphics Card: Onboard Via Chrome IGP
Hard Drive: WDigital Scorpio Blue WD2500BEVT 250GB 5400 RPM 8MB Cache 2.5 inch notebook HDD, $46.99
Case: Morex 2766 Expandable Mini-ITX case $82.50
Power Supply: Included in case.
Cooling: Included in case / mobo
DVD Burner: Not used.

Storage System:
MediaSonic PRORAID 4 Bay eSATA / USB 3.0 enclosure 199.99
WD10EALX 1TB 7200 RPM 32MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5 $59.99 x 4
Optional Samsung EcoGreen F4 HD204UI 2TB 32MB Cache SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5 $79.99 x 4
SATA to eSATA bracket, required for to connect the Media Sonic Enclosure 6.99

Total Cost of Storage Subsystem: $446.85

Cost of System without Disks: $487.45 (Cheaper then Commercial "NAS" solutions")
Cost of System with 4x1TB disks: $727.32
Cost of System with 4x2TB disks: $807.41

More about : bestconfigs poll nas

August 1, 2011 10:13:26 PM

I really expected to see some AMD E-350 boards in here.

ASUS has one with 6 SATA6.0Gb/s ports. That and using software raid instead of the overpriced RAID cards / enclosures would save a lot of money.

Of course I'm assuming that the NAS is just used for media storage at home and not in an enterprise setting.
August 2, 2011 1:13:01 AM

Well "NAS" is a really misleading term. These can do network file sharing along with anything else you want, Proxy Server / DNS Server / Active Directory and so forth. It's really a general purpose low-power home server. Or at least should be low power, power ain't cheap these days.
Related resources
August 2, 2011 1:39:47 AM

I'm going to assume the first two are running something other than windows, so its down to them for me... i likes.
August 2, 2011 3:02:50 AM

clonazepam said:
I'm going to assume the first two are running something other than windows, so its down to them for me... i likes.


??? The OS is irrespective, its up to the owner to put one on. I've used Win 2003 along with CentOS and Solaris 10.
August 2, 2011 5:14:34 AM

clonazepam said:
I'm going to assume the first two are running something other than windows, so its down to them for me... i likes.


How do you figure that the first two systems are NOT for Windows? If anything, the last system is more catered towards a Linux environment, even though all of them can handle any OS.

At least the last one has power consumption in mind, along with all the functionality of an actual home server environment.
August 2, 2011 6:36:49 AM

I do not think this article will lead anyone astray because basically, any nas review says it uses dual core atoms and performance is more than adequate for a typical home user. It goes without saying that if a dual core atom is adequate the more expensive AMD E-350 will also float your boat. If you are an AMD fan and are willing to jump fast, some reviews say E-350 is more energy efficient than atom for the next month or so until atom 32 nm comes out with its widely publicized price cuts. Also, there is a school of thought that every unreviewed ARM wild-card is an ace. However, that school is not working out so great for the big RISC vendors whose market share Intel is currently mopping up.

In any event, A Gigabyte GA-T525TUD, 512 MB of memory, a Chenbro ES34069, 4 SEAGATE st2000dl003 drives, and debian mean that for under $525 you get software raid 5 (4x2TB) and hot swap disks with reasonable performance for what a home user wants to do. The extra costs are all fantastic, but what is the benefit for a home user?

I think storage execs say the growth is all about p2p and porn. I get that ssd means more silicone but silicone deficiency has never been Angelina's issue. What are you trying to acomplish?
August 2, 2011 11:06:31 AM

The rule of thumb is that conventional power supply efficiency is good in the band of 20-80% utilization. Outside the band, efficiency stinks and I did see one unsubstantiated report indicating 30% efficiency below 4% utilization. Even though the two 400 watt power supplies mentioned above are of excellent quality, below 80 watts their presumed efficiency sucks. Unless the target NAS is subject to substantive 24x7 demand or powered down when not in use, It typically will operate at less than 80 watts and you are spending way too much for power. The power supplies do provide headroom adequate to drive a competent graphics card, but that is outside the scope of a NAS. These power supplies will not destroy your motherboard, but they will damage your wallet long after the purchase price is settled.

I am curious about the Via Nano chip mentioned above. Has this chip been reviewed anywhere interesting? I have a vague sense that the chip is not very energy efficient, but I lack a source to confirm or disprove that impression. Obviously, the chip earns "not Intel" bonus points, but is there anything else in its favor?.
August 2, 2011 11:10:16 AM

Really disappointed that Joe hasn't linked to the original thread here.

Myself and others added extra information as part of the configuration.
August 2, 2011 1:41:18 PM

Wait a minute.

Rusting does your NAS build have a $450 raid card but no actual hdd's to RAID?? What am I missing here because I only see a puny 16gb ssd here.

Dont get me wrong sure this "could" make a great NAS but the way you configured the system it cannot fufuil that purpose without some more investment.

The other builds include storage costs.
August 2, 2011 3:17:16 PM

dealcorn said:
The rule of thumb is that conventional power supply efficiency is good in the band of 20-80% utilization. Outside the band, efficiency stinks and I did see one unsubstantiated report indicating 30% efficiency below 4% utilization. Even though the two 400 watt power supplies mentioned above are of excellent quality, below 80 watts their presumed efficiency sucks. Unless the target NAS is subject to substantive 24x7 demand or powered down when not in use, It typically will operate at less than 80 watts and you are spending way too much for power. The power supplies do provide headroom adequate to drive a competent graphics card, but that is outside the scope of a NAS. These power supplies will not destroy your motherboard, but they will damage your wallet long after the purchase price is settled.

I am curious about the Via Nano chip mentioned above. Has this chip been reviewed anywhere interesting? I have a vague sense that the chip is not very energy efficient, but I lack a source to confirm or disprove that impression. Obviously, the chip earns "not Intel" bonus points, but is there anything else in its favor?.


That's the really messed up part, Toms hasn't done any reviews on a low-power server with anything Via inside. The closest was over a year ago with some sort of Atom vs Via in a power efficiency contest. The Via had significantly more processing power then the Atom with slightly more power consumption (across the platform). And they never ~EVER~ tested / benchmarked Padlock, yet the moment Intel released their own hardware based encryption Toms was all over it like it was something new and that Intel invented it. I've been using Via Padlock encryption for my VPN's and Disk Encryption for years now and its 10x to 100x faster then software encryption, I'm not making those numbers up.

Anyhow on the original post I posted the PSU wattage and the mod's conveniently "edited" it out when they posted this for voting. While the two other systems have 400W+ PSU's the Via Nano build has a 60W for the system and a 60W on the external enclosure. Having measures power usage the system's less then 40W at full load. Of course this is all mentioned in the original system post. So yeah 120W vs 400W in the PSU departments. The whole of that system is to sip power while providing home network services, where I live electricity can get ridiculously expensive. Thus for a system that's running 24/7 I think it does pretty well.

From the vender, the Morex 2766 comes with a 60W external power brick and an internal 80W DC board. You can option for the 80W external brick, or opt to remove the Board / Brick and install a PicoPSU instead. I usually recommend this if someone is requesting I build a mini-ITX system for them, but I opted for a simple install for the NAS server post. Wanted to keep the cost down to under $500 for the base system without disks.

Quote:
Power Supply Built-in 80 W DC board
External 60 W AC adapter (brick)
August 2, 2011 3:19:28 PM

cknobman said:
Wait a minute.

Rusting does your NAS build have a $450 raid card but no actual hdd's to RAID?? What am I missing here because I only see a puny 16gb ssd here.

Dont get me wrong sure this "could" make a great NAS but the way you configured the system it cannot fufuil that purpose without some more investment.

The other builds include storage costs.


Yep if you read the original post it stated that it didn't include hard drive costs as the user was expected to purchase their own. The mod's just dropped that part out when they posted. So anyone voting on #1 is essentially choosing a $1000 USD "NAS" server with 120GB of storage. Ohh the irony.
August 3, 2011 8:33:49 PM

animeman59 said:
How do you figure that the first two systems are NOT for Windows? If anything, the last system is more catered towards a Linux environment, even though all of them can handle any OS.

At least the last one has power consumption in mind, along with all the functionality of an actual home server environment.


I was just looking at the size of the boot disks, or atleast what I think are the boot disks. If I build out a NAS; I definitely don't want to fork more money over to Microsoft... so... low boot disk space and free OS = linux. That was my train of thought. By the time I got to NAS voting, and it being a somewhat anti-climatic build compared to the others, I mighta been sleepy. :pt1cable: 
August 4, 2011 1:37:10 AM

clonazepam said:
I was just looking at the size of the boot disks, or atleast what I think are the boot disks. If I build out a NAS; I definitely don't want to fork more money over to Microsoft... so... low boot disk space and free OS = linux. That was my train of thought. By the time I got to NAS voting, and it being a somewhat anti-climatic build compared to the others, I mighta been sleepy. :pt1cable: 


So ... the fact that two builds decided to put an expensive SSD into a server that will have next to zero user interface and will be restarted once every few months made you think they weren't for windows? You do realize that the boot disk on a server is where SSD's make the least sense, their awesome performance will only realized once every few months when you patch / reboot the system. Otherwise services are already running from memory once the system is up. The choice not to use a SSD was an economical one, I could fit more and provide more options by using a 5400RPM low power HDD then by spending money on a SSD.

And did it ever cross your mind that just maybe my predominate installation OS isn't Windows but CentOS 5. Anyone looking to spend under $1K for a mini server isn't going to want to spend money for a MS Server OS unless they already have the license from somewhere else.
August 4, 2011 4:23:17 PM

No I didn't. I don't know jack about a nas box but I sincerely appreciate the education. I plan to build one, but I haven't read up like i should b/c the funds aren't secured yet. I did learn that CentOS 5 is a linux distribution, and since I didn't mention any specific linux distribution, i suppose it would fall under the blanket term I used "linux".

It seems you feel quite strongly about all of this, however its not always easy to determine by reading text.

When I post for nas box build recommendations, I do sincerely hope you join in on the conversation, as I will need all the help I can get. :D 

Edit: The ideal nas box for me would also double as a light duty system for basic email / web browsing. I don't know how much that would effect hardware choices. I figure since its always on it makes more sense to use it than fire up the system in my sig (not built yet, all parts arriving today except motherboard ::sad: : ) just to check email and browse the web. You can clearly see I'm a novice in the realm of NAS boxes so I'd appreciate it if you took that into account and dismiss my ignorance.
August 5, 2011 12:15:53 AM

It seems to me that a NAS machine should also be an HTPC--to make it substantially more useful. If that is the case, I'd go with the E-350. Obviously, this wasn't a contest requirement, but I think the job would be best accomplished that way.
August 5, 2011 1:17:28 AM

Well it's really up to the user what they want to go with. When people talk "NAS" what their usually talking about is a small home server with central file storage. It's used so that multiple systems, Desktops, Laptops, HTPCs, phones, tablets, and appliances (WDTV Live as example) can all access the same files. As such you could download something on your Desktop, your wife could then watch it on her netbook / tablet while your watching a different movie on your home theater. When you download software, firefox, MSIE, Windows Service Packs, Adobe, ect.., you can store it in a central location so that you can install it on demand without needing to download it multiple times.

Essentially a "home server" provides for a centralized home network. If your crafty you can setup LDAP + Kerberos and get centralized account logins and security. You can even go so far as to build a DNS and web Proxy for better control of your network. Restrict your children from visiting certain sites and so forth.

To dalauder, the reason most people don't recommend a NAS also be a HTPC is location. A HTPC is usually inside a home theater system, meaning it must be stylish and most importantly quiet. Tossing a bunch of HDD's and the requirement cooling can defeat that purpose. Usually "NAS" type devices are kept in a home office or network cabinet somewhere out of sight. You stream the video over the home network which is more then fast enough to provide access to HD video. But it's always the customers choice.
August 5, 2011 3:44:46 AM

I figured a lot of those NAS builds, including yours above, use a separate HDD case and a reasonably slylish mini-case for the computer portion. I figure there's no reason the HDD case can't be hidden while the computer stays available and visible for HTPC usage--I actually got most of that idea from the fact that your case looks like a DVD player.
August 5, 2011 3:54:20 AM

Well depends on the home in question. My home has marble walls and my LCD / theater system is on a mount. There really isn't a place to hide the HDD array, that and electricity gets crazy expensive out here in SK. At the end of August I'm expecting a $500 electricity bill. I like to turn off everything I possibly can when not in use and whatever needs to stay on 24/7 has to sip power.

If your home system is such that you can easily hide the HDD container, then by all means do that. A wood paneled console would work out well, make a hidden compartment and ensure it's ventilated somehow. As I always say, its the users / customers choice here.
August 5, 2011 4:20:37 AM

That's the trouble with the "Best Configuration"--it always depends on the end user.
August 5, 2011 12:57:30 PM

palladin9479 said:
So anyone voting on #1 is essentially choosing a $1000 USD "NAS" server with 120GB of storage. Ohh the irony.


Excuse me?

In my build I gave reason behind every single component and defined the build context which was not defined in the first place. Just because it may not fit into your definition does not merit your belittlement of my build nor anyone voting for said system.

At the end of the day the point of this thread and the forum is to help people. Which is why I asked Joe to include a NAS section in the builds, why I posted on it and why I post on this forum.
August 5, 2011 1:14:14 PM

cknobman said:
Wait a minute.

Rusting does your NAS build have a $450 raid card but no actual hdd's to RAID?? What am I missing here because I only see a puny 16gb ssd here.

Dont get me wrong sure this "could" make a great NAS but the way you configured the system it cannot fufuil that purpose without some more investment.

The other builds include storage costs.


You're right, there aren't storage drives included in the initial build. For several reasons:

1) I've gone for hardware raid so the costs are higher
2) The HDD configuration will depend on the user
3) Commercial NAS solutions do not come with HDDs without additional costs either

Like I said in my original post, I would have preferred something larger as the OS drive but it really depends on what OS you are planning on running.

Someone else has questioned the use of SSD. The motivation of using a SSD was never for performance. It was all about low power consumption and silent operation.
August 7, 2011 12:43:43 AM

So in any "usable" situation you entered a $1250 system into a competition that caps at $1000. Kinda like battery's not included.

This is something the Admin's need to spell out, whether HDD"s are included or not. The box I built above came out at $487.45 without HDD's, that places your at 205% the price point. Something that needs pointing out.

So yes, anyone choosing the spec above is paying $1000 for a whopping 16GB of storage. And if you were going for lower power / noise then you should of used a CF based storage medium, would of came out better in the long run.
August 11, 2011 7:47:01 AM

In my build I gave reason behind every single component and defined the build context which was not defined in the first place. Just because it may not fit into your definition does not merit your belittlement of my build nor anyone voting for said system.

September 29, 2011 3:17:24 PM

This topic has been desticky in top of the forum by Jpishgar
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