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New NAS Build - Advice Required

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January 29, 2013 11:35:13 AM

Hi all,

I am about to take the plunge on a homebuilt NAS but wanted to gauge opinion first. I am planning to install WHS 2011 but could be tempted to change OS.

CPU - Intel Core i3 3220T, S 1155, Ivy Bridge, Dual Core, 2.8GHz, 3MB Smart Cache, Retail
MB - Asus P8H77-I
RAM - 16GB (2x8GB) Corsair DDR3 Vengeance Low Profile Cerulean Blue PC3-12800 (1600), Non-ECC, CAS 10-10-10-27, XMP, 1.5V
PSU - 350W be quiet! System Power S6 BN081, 80 PLUS, Fan, ATX v2.2, PSU
HDD - 2 x 3TB WD Red WD30EFRX RED SATA 6Gb/SEC, 64MB Cache, Internal HDD For 1-5 Bay NAS 24x7
Case - Lian Li PC-Q18
OS HDD - OCZ SSD (leftover from old PC)
Optical - Blu-Ray Reader (leftover from old PC)

I am planning to add 2 more WD30EFRX's after my next paycheck.

First I would like to know what you guys all think and if you believe the components will be compatible?

Secondly, your thoughts on OS? I am considering WHS 2011 with FlexRaid as the build will be almost exclusively used for serving media and I am comfortable in a Windows based OS.

Lastly, does anyone have any experience will ripping/transcoding blu-ray within WHS 2011? I would like to add an optical drive to the case for ripping my blu-ray collection onto the NAS.

Thanks all for your time!
Joe
January 29, 2013 12:27:39 PM

Joe,

16GB of RAM may be overkill for the build - 4GB/8GB would work nicely.

http://www.dvdfab.com/ is a good software suite - even though it costs $90 for the complete suite, it is worth the money.

http://handbrake.fr/ is also a very popular software for ripping DVD/BluRay - and it is free.

If you plan to rip a lot of DVD/BluRay discs - I would recommend the 8GB RAM.
January 29, 2013 5:05:59 PM

Thanks very much for the suggestions.

Any thoughts on the compatability of the components? Specifically the RAM?

Lastly, what are the limitations on WHS? Will any windows program run on this OS? I take it ripping/transcoding software works fine?
Related resources
January 29, 2013 5:09:31 PM

WHS won't run Windows Media Center, but will serve up the files. There is a few tricks on getting thing going, but it works.

Handbrake and DVDfab will both work on WHS.

My only suggestion - you might want to look at the WD Black drives vs. the red ones. They perform a little bit better - although the red ones aren't bad drives. If you are going to use a RAID setup - the WD Black should be your first choice.

Everything else looks good.
January 30, 2013 11:34:34 AM

Thanks!

Do you think I would be best off going for a build of this nature or instead going for a pre-built NAS like SYNOLOGY DS-1512+ or QNAP TS-569L? I dont seem to have saved too much money by going down the home-built root.

What am I gaining by not going for a pre-built solution which will have the software sorted out of the box and support for iOS apps etc.

Thanks
Joe
January 30, 2013 12:37:08 PM

The pre-built NAS devices may save you a dollar or two, but they are limited as to what they can do. They serve files only. By building a computer, you have the option to repurpose it for almost anything you desire.

The pre-build NAS devices are configured and optimized for what they do, and arguably may do it better....but they are single function machines.

I have used a few in the past, mostly for small offices where a file server didn't make sense, and budget/technical knowledge was a minimum.
!