Overclock.net › Forums › Specialty Builds › Servers › Server Rack VS NAS vs 2 PCs for File Server
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Server Rack VS NAS vs 2 PCs for File Server

Poll Results: Which is best for file server

 
  • 28% (2)
    Server Rack
  • 42% (3)
    Custom PC or Two
  • 28% (2)
    NAS
7 Total Votes  
post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hello, I am about to start a very big project which will involve having to store thousands of GBs of images.

Currently a person who already has a similar project going has a basic dell rack with 6 1U Dell 725N's

What I am wondering is, what will be the easiest, cost effective and above all easiest to maintain solution for my project.

5-6 1TB NAS drives

2-3 Basic Pentium 4 or Core 2 PC's with Several TB HDD's each

New Rack with servers similar to dell 725N's


Uptime is not super important but they will be always-on and should have 0 downtime during operating hours (9-5)

They are in a LAN and all will have GB net cards.
Workoholic REborn
(16 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 2600K P8Z68-V PRO NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 12GB 1x4GB+1x8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 Series WD Black ASUS DVD+RW Sunbeam Twister 120 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate LG OLED65C7P Oculus Rift Logitech K400 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 620 Modular Lian Li V1020B G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
Workoholic REborn
(16 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 2600K P8Z68-V PRO NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 12GB 1x4GB+1x8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 Series WD Black ASUS DVD+RW Sunbeam Twister 120 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate LG OLED65C7P Oculus Rift Logitech K400 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 620 Modular Lian Li V1020B G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
post #2 of 16
Option 4: One single dual-core server with multiple 1TB or 2TB drives in a RAID array.

You don't need much processing power for a file server. If you aren't opposed to building one yourself as opposed to a proprietary vendor, you can throw together a decent rig for about $300-$400, put Debian on it and use Linux Software RAID. Free, very stable OS and rock solid RAID performance which outperforms all but the very high-end RAID cards in most situations (exceptions are very large arrays). If you can afford it, use RAID 10 for redundancy with the fastest speed (will require twice the amount of drives though) if you can't use RAID 5 or RAID 6 (RAID 5 for 4 or less drives, after that you'll want RAID 6 for it's ability to suffer 2 disk failures and still be intact).
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 970 @ 4.0 GHz 1.22 Vcore Asus Rampage II Gene GTX 260 216SP G.SKILL PI 3x2gb DDR3 1600 @ 7-8-7-24 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
2x 500gb Seagates RAID 0, 1x 500gb non-RAID Windows 7 Professional x64 ASUS 24'' VH242H / Spectre 24'' WS Corsair 750TX 
Case
Corsair 300R 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 970 @ 4.0 GHz 1.22 Vcore Asus Rampage II Gene GTX 260 216SP G.SKILL PI 3x2gb DDR3 1600 @ 7-8-7-24 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
2x 500gb Seagates RAID 0, 1x 500gb non-RAID Windows 7 Professional x64 ASUS 24'' VH242H / Spectre 24'' WS Corsair 750TX 
Case
Corsair 300R 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 16
Have to agree with the turtle. One system on a lightweight linux distro will easily hold that stuff, YAY for mdadm. There have been WHS builds with 16 drives in them. Imagine a server with 16 2 tb drives...? should take care of the storage issue.
post #4 of 16
Yup. One server...
Main Rig.
(14 items)
 
Battlefield 2 review.
Battlefield 2 PC Game EA
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Bulldozer FX4100 Gigabyte GA-M68MT-S2 MSI 7770 Kingston Hyper X | 2 x 2 GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
WD 2 TB  LiteON DVD/CD R-W Drive AMD Standard cooler Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
32' Luxor Full HD TV Microsoft comfort curce Antec 450 Watt OcUK Value case 
MouseAudio
Microsoft wireless mouse Logitech speakers & Bass 
  hide details  
Reply
Main Rig.
(14 items)
 
Battlefield 2 review.
Battlefield 2 PC Game EA
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Bulldozer FX4100 Gigabyte GA-M68MT-S2 MSI 7770 Kingston Hyper X | 2 x 2 GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
WD 2 TB  LiteON DVD/CD R-W Drive AMD Standard cooler Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
32' Luxor Full HD TV Microsoft comfort curce Antec 450 Watt OcUK Value case 
MouseAudio
Microsoft wireless mouse Logitech speakers & Bass 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
I plan to hold windows on it, probably Windows Server

If I put together a Pent Dual Core Rig for example, I would need several RAID cards for as you said 16 1TB drives.

As for RAID... Can someone explain RAID6 a bit more.

Suffering 2 HDD deaths

Also what would be a good RAID6 card and HDD combo for 10TB storage..

Finally what if the single server mobo/cpu/ram fails and takes the entire thing offline.. Wouldn't it be better to have the RACK?

For instance

Rack of 10 PCS, first five are operational, second five clone the first five? Each PC has 2TB storage 2x5=10TB storage with 10 Backup, no RAID needed thinking.gif
Workoholic REborn
(16 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 2600K P8Z68-V PRO NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 12GB 1x4GB+1x8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 Series WD Black ASUS DVD+RW Sunbeam Twister 120 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate LG OLED65C7P Oculus Rift Logitech K400 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 620 Modular Lian Li V1020B G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
Workoholic REborn
(16 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 2600K P8Z68-V PRO NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 12GB 1x4GB+1x8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 Series WD Black ASUS DVD+RW Sunbeam Twister 120 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate LG OLED65C7P Oculus Rift Logitech K400 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 620 Modular Lian Li V1020B G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 16
I said 2 tb drive, but that is beside the point. I would use either multiple small raid cards, or a really good intel or LSI sas raid card with breakout cables. Though a higher end raid card like that can run easily $500 - $1000. Not to mention the copious amounts of hard drives....

Why windows though? If all it is going to do is hold files, all that can be more easily compacted into a small linux distro. Very low CPU usage compared to even a stripped down windows server.
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by MGX1016 View Post

I plan to hold windows on it, probably Windows Server
If I put together a Pent Dual Core Rig for example, I would need several RAID cards for as you said 16 1TB drives.
As for RAID... Can someone explain RAID6 a bit more.
Suffering 2 HDD deaths
Also what would be a good RAID6 card and HDD combo for 10TB storage..
Finally what if the single server mobo/cpu/ram fails and takes the entire thing offline.. Wouldn't it be better to have the RACK?
For instance
Rack of 10 PCS, first five are operational, second five clone the first five? Each PC has 2TB storage 2x5=10TB storage with 10 Backup, no RAID needed thinking.gif

RAID6 is just RAID with distributed parity, where the amount of parity data is equivalent to two of your drives. Algorithm for RAID-6 is (n-2)x, where n is the number of drives greater than or equal to 4, and x is the size of the drives.

So with 16x2TB drives, your effective storage space would be 28TB [(16-1)x2TB].

Since you have high-availability requirements, I would personally probably just go with two brand-name SAN units, such as Dell PowerVault.

Then again, with the current price of hard-drives, you might want to wait a bit.
ESXi Host 1
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
(2x) Intel Xeon E5520 Dell OnBoard Matrox G200 24GB DDR3 12x2GB UDIMMS (18 slots total) 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
PERC6-RAID50 Intel 730 480GB Intel 320 300GB Synology DS414 iSCSI SAN 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
VMWare vSphere5 Enterprise Plus Dell iDRAC6 Remote Management [KVM-Over-IP] Dell iDRAC6 KVM Dell Hot-Swap Redundant 1100W 
CaseMouse
Dell PowerEdge T710 Stock Dell iDRAC6 KVM 
  hide details  
Reply
ESXi Host 1
(15 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
(2x) Intel Xeon E5520 Dell OnBoard Matrox G200 24GB DDR3 12x2GB UDIMMS (18 slots total) 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
PERC6-RAID50 Intel 730 480GB Intel 320 300GB Synology DS414 iSCSI SAN 
OSMonitorKeyboardPower
VMWare vSphere5 Enterprise Plus Dell iDRAC6 Remote Management [KVM-Over-IP] Dell iDRAC6 KVM Dell Hot-Swap Redundant 1100W 
CaseMouse
Dell PowerEdge T710 Stock Dell iDRAC6 KVM 
  hide details  
Reply
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by MGX1016 View Post

I plan to hold windows on it, probably Windows Server
If I put together a Pent Dual Core Rig for example, I would need several RAID cards for as you said 16 1TB drives.
As for RAID... Can someone explain RAID6 a bit more.
Suffering 2 HDD deaths
Also what would be a good RAID6 card and HDD combo for 10TB storage..
Finally what if the single server mobo/cpu/ram fails and takes the entire thing offline.. Wouldn't it be better to have the RACK?
For instance
Rack of 10 PCS, first five are operational, second five clone the first five? Each PC has 2TB storage 2x5=10TB storage with 10 Backup, no RAID needed thinking.gif

Ok, I'm confused. You mentioned cost effectiveness and then mention a massively expensive fully hot-spare redundant setup.

First, the rack method would be incredibly difficult to admin on top of your normal work load with regards to keeping everything in check, ensuring fail over is working properly, etc... Further, you'd then have 5 separate locations for your data - meaning 5 different places for people to remember which file is where. On top of that, the more pieces to the puzzle you add, the chance of failure goes up.

Seriously, stick with one server. Throw a high end LSI MegaRAID card in with enough ports and a battery backup unit into a server with redundant PSUs from Lenovo or Dell if you require extremely high availability. Use ECC RAM and RAM related faults will be extremely rare. That's if you are insistent on Windows.


I still highly recommend Linux in place here. You don't even need to have touched Linux before to get it up and running in under 2 hours and still have it more stable than a Windows box. Using SAMBA will make it so Windows clients still think they're talking to a Windows box.
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 970 @ 4.0 GHz 1.22 Vcore Asus Rampage II Gene GTX 260 216SP G.SKILL PI 3x2gb DDR3 1600 @ 7-8-7-24 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
2x 500gb Seagates RAID 0, 1x 500gb non-RAID Windows 7 Professional x64 ASUS 24'' VH242H / Spectre 24'' WS Corsair 750TX 
Case
Corsair 300R 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 970 @ 4.0 GHz 1.22 Vcore Asus Rampage II Gene GTX 260 216SP G.SKILL PI 3x2gb DDR3 1600 @ 7-8-7-24 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
2x 500gb Seagates RAID 0, 1x 500gb non-RAID Windows 7 Professional x64 ASUS 24'' VH242H / Spectre 24'' WS Corsair 750TX 
Case
Corsair 300R 
  hide details  
Reply
post #9 of 16
Linux... woo.
Main Rig.
(14 items)
 
Battlefield 2 review.
Battlefield 2 PC Game EA
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Bulldozer FX4100 Gigabyte GA-M68MT-S2 MSI 7770 Kingston Hyper X | 2 x 2 GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
WD 2 TB  LiteON DVD/CD R-W Drive AMD Standard cooler Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
32' Luxor Full HD TV Microsoft comfort curce Antec 450 Watt OcUK Value case 
MouseAudio
Microsoft wireless mouse Logitech speakers & Bass 
  hide details  
Reply
Main Rig.
(14 items)
 
Battlefield 2 review.
Battlefield 2 PC Game EA
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Bulldozer FX4100 Gigabyte GA-M68MT-S2 MSI 7770 Kingston Hyper X | 2 x 2 GB 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
WD 2 TB  LiteON DVD/CD R-W Drive AMD Standard cooler Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorKeyboardPowerCase
32' Luxor Full HD TV Microsoft comfort curce Antec 450 Watt OcUK Value case 
MouseAudio
Microsoft wireless mouse Logitech speakers & Bass 
  hide details  
Reply
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboTurtle View Post

Ok, I'm confused. You mentioned cost effectiveness and then mention a massively expensive fully hot-spare redundant setup.
First, the rack method would be incredibly difficult to admin on top of your normal work load with regards to keeping everything in check, ensuring fail over is working properly, etc... Further, you'd then have 5 separate locations for your data - meaning 5 different places for people to remember which file is where. On top of that, the more pieces to the puzzle you add, the chance of failure goes up.
Seriously, stick with one server. Throw a high end LSI MegaRAID card in with enough ports and a battery backup unit into a server with redundant PSUs from Lenovo or Dell if you require extremely high availability. Use ECC RAM and RAM related faults will be extremely rare. That's if you are insistent on Windows.
I still highly recommend Linux in place here. You don't even need to have touched Linux before to get it up and running in under 2 hours and still have it more stable than a Windows box. Using SAMBA will make it so Windows clients still think they're talking to a Windows box.

In regards to the Linux, I don't think it is going to be compatible with the software I am using. I finally got into the new location where I am building this setup and the file server is currently Dell Power 725N (two offline, three operational)

The software that takes the files from the server requires that the files are stored on a shared windows PC and when I import new files through the software if I try to use it from a hard drive or something it gives me an erro that the files must be on a shared PC.. If this means Linux I don't know yet. I guess with Samba (never used any Linux before) might work, but I don't really see a need for it. Even if the damn entire rack decides to go for a reboot I won't mind provided it boots back. I don't need 24/7 ON but during business hours I need files to be accessed for about 10 minutes at a time...

So currently I have three operational dell 725N's with 2TB RAID5 Storage total through SATA drives. Looks like they are seagate though frown.gif

I am going to hope they last till WD's drop in price and then I will replace all the drives in the Dell's. Do you guys think it is going to be best to just leave the dells? Should I be in a hurry to replace them? I was looking at a 16Bay hotswap 2U case w/ LSI 16 port card it's about 2k (650 for LSI and 1k+ for case)

Currently the Setup is not the worst, but not the best with tons of Cat5e cables everywhere.

It's a few rooms of crap so I'll try to explain,and I hope you guys can advise me on the best steps to take (keep in mind I don't have much money atm but in a few months I should have the capacity to make significant changes (close to 5K)

Upstairs office space 20 wall Ethernet jacks with cat 5 running down into a server rack room.
Inside server rack room is a Dell 2324 24-Port Unmanaged switch (it only has one gigabit port) which I connected to the other Dell 2324 Switch which the rack connects to.

Server rack has 5 Dell 725N's, one of which is an IDE to some kind of weird connector, broken 1U, 4 SATA 1U 725N's one of which is broken (fan whistles whatever that means)

A cable then goes to another room to connect a THIRD Dell 2324 Switch which has a VERY loose power jack connector.
This room contains the server which runs a MySQL database and software, a few workstations (which I am decommissioning) and an Ethernet Wall Jack device with 4 ports..

My eventual hope... Place 4-5 Core i3 Workstations upstairs, build a new server to host a 100GB-500GB MySQL database and place it in the same room as a file storage with space for 6-8TB. Also have 3-5 PC's for web browsing and such.

It will be used for image processing, so should I really focus on getting gigabit switches? They run into the 2-3K for the 30 port switches.

Sorry for the stupid long post, I am a complete noob to servers and I hope in no time I can move from being a computer repair tech to a server admin.

EDIT: Also I forgot to mention in 2-3 months time I plan to put a Linux Online Server w/ Verizon Fios so clients can send me files. Would I be able to use just any rack to connect to that or should I have a separate PC, especially since the racks will be Windows. How does the Linux vs Windows debate change for FTP server?
Workoholic REborn
(16 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 2600K P8Z68-V PRO NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 12GB 1x4GB+1x8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 Series WD Black ASUS DVD+RW Sunbeam Twister 120 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate LG OLED65C7P Oculus Rift Logitech K400 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 620 Modular Lian Li V1020B G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
Workoholic REborn
(16 items)
 
  
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7 2600K P8Z68-V PRO NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 12GB 1x4GB+1x8GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Intel 520 Series WD Black ASUS DVD+RW Sunbeam Twister 120 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 Ultimate LG OLED65C7P Oculus Rift Logitech K400 
PowerCaseMouse
Corsair 620 Modular Lian Li V1020B G9x 
  hide details  
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Servers
Overclock.net › Forums › Specialty Builds › Servers › Server Rack VS NAS vs 2 PCs for File Server