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post #11 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by lostsurfer View Post

Ok, I follow. He said Nas Server or Stand alone NAS. I gave my IMO and shared my expierence with him. That's why I'm gonna quit posting, cause no matter what you say someone else comes along and says my way is better, and that's it.

That's not the point we are making. The point is that while a prebuilt has it's advantages (support, warranty, solid, easy to set up) a custom-built can save money on hardware costs, allows more flexibility to run whatever OS you want with whatever level of hardware or software RAID, and you have so many more software options for things like torrent client, DLNA, cloud backups, etc, etc. Yes, most prebuilt NASs have apps built in, they are special packages for that NAS and aren't always the greatest, whereas if you have a custom built NAS running Windows OS, you can run any Windows app (and same goes for *nix, of course).

If you have more upfront money to spend, and you want something that will work right out of the box with 4 drives and no options to expand, then get a prebuilt. If you want to learn or save money on hardware, or have the option to expand up to 24 drives (or more), then build a custom one.

Also, just because you have a 700w PSU doesn't mean it is consuming 700w. 700w is the maximum amount that that PSU can put out.
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by DuckieHo View Post

You do realize that PSU size doesn't really matter... the system is consuming what it needs and not 700w.

wut?

your a moderator on a computer forum with 58k posts, i had assumed you may know a little about PSU's by now?



for what its worth Id go for a MITX chassis and not an atom. for a few good reasons. Also if you wish to run both NAS and HTPC at same time an AMD APU will be cheap and server you well, if not then a decent low powered i3 should suffice. personally id go with the APU
Edited by Pip Boy - 5/30/13 at 7:58am
post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by phill1978 View Post

wut?

your a moderator on a computer forum with 58k posts, i had assumed you may know a little about PSU's by now?



for what its worth Id go for a MITX chassis and not an atom. for a few good reasons. Also if you wish to run both NAS and HTPC at same time an AMD APU will be cheap and server you well, if not then a decent low powered i3 should suffice. personally id go with the APU

I know quite a bit about PSUs and the fact that a properly sized PSU will be more efficent at a given load..... however, the point was the OP provided the PSU size which is not really that relevant to the requirements. Futhermore, I really wish more companies would release quality 250-350w SFX PSU. I do have some electrical engineering background and have been a PSU mod....


It depends on his needs.... Atom/Brazos would be a fine file server. A nice mITX case would be the Fractal Design Node 304 since it can hold 6 HDDs natively.
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post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
I do appreciate the discussion. I have looked at both options, and what I didn't mention is this is a project for a friend. I do like the opportunity to learn, so the only reason I am looking at the prebuilt NAS devices is for my friend's sake in using it. However, the budget is $1000, so I am trying to bring down cost.

For the purposes of this discussion let's just say Synology was the prebuilt of choice, which is great because that was the second prebuilt I looked at and honestly my preference over the Seagate. The seagate was just chosen because it fit budget and came from a well known storage manufacturer.

With that out of the way I'd like to focus on design for a custom server NAS build. I very much like the idea of having design control on this project. In the original post I put a link to the current design idea. With current suggestions I might look into MITX build and more efficient processor. Also, I need a good RAID card.

Here is what I am thinking:
I need 12TB storage
Relatively low power
Relatively small case

Purpose:
Currently my friend is running a recording studio and has 3 MACs running Pro Tools. Currently projects are copied to USB drives to be moved between systems so that each of the Engineers can do what they need for Post Production. Ideally my friend wants to edit directly from shared storage, but after careful consideration the amount of money to make this happen is going to easily exceed budget. My friend is really just looking to consolidate storage from the 3 MACs and improve transfer time over sneakernet.
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post #15 of 20
Having used a Synology NAS at home and at a small business I'd say build your own NAS.

The prebuilt NAS systems available are not priced inline with their performance but with their convenience and support. They work ok as a backup device for an office and are adequate as a media storage device for some streaming.

Looking at your requirements I don't think you're going to get what you're looking for from any of the commercially available NAS products. I'd need to know more info before making suggestions for building your own, but I would definitely look into it.

EDIT: Should have been clear smile.gif You'll most likely look at doubling your budget to get an appropriate NAS. I'd look at the QNAP TS-869 Pro

http://www.qnap.com/useng/index.php?lang=en-us&sn=862&c=355&sc=526&t=690&n=9906&g=0

Or Thecus N7700PRO v2

http://www.thecus.com/product.php?PROD_ID=74
Edited by juryan - 5/30/13 at 9:15am
post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by ragnar2005 View Post

I do appreciate the discussion. I have looked at both options, and what I didn't mention is this is a project for a friend. I do like the opportunity to learn, so the only reason I am looking at the prebuilt NAS devices is for my friend's sake in using it. However, the budget is $1000, so I am trying to bring down cost.

For the purposes of this discussion let's just say Synology was the prebuilt of choice, which is great because that was the second prebuilt I looked at and honestly my preference over the Seagate. The seagate was just chosen because it fit budget and came from a well known storage manufacturer.

With that out of the way I'd like to focus on design for a custom server NAS build. I very much like the idea of having design control on this project. In the original post I put a link to the current design idea. With current suggestions I might look into MITX build and more efficient processor. Also, I need a good RAID card.

Here is what I am thinking:
I need 12TB storage
Relatively low power
Relatively small case

Purpose:
Currently my friend is running a recording studio and has 3 MACs running Pro Tools. Currently projects are copied to USB drives to be moved between systems so that each of the Engineers can do what they need for Post Production. Ideally my friend wants to edit directly from shared storage, but after careful consideration the amount of money to make this happen is going to easily exceed budget. My friend is really just looking to consolidate storage from the 3 MACs and improve transfer time over sneakernet.

Yeah, if this is for a business use, I would recommend going with the pre-built route. Support and warranty is key for hardware in a business, which is why a pre-built would make more sense.

I would consider Thecus, Synology, QNAP, and Drobo. If you need 12TB usable storage, you want some sort of RAID for redundancy. You don't want RAID 5 with an array over 8TB, so you need RAID 6, 50, or 10. To get 12TB usable in a RAID 6 you will need either 5 x 4TB drives or 6 x 3TB drives. To get 12TB usable in a RAID 50 you will need 6 x 3TB drives. To get 12TB usable in a RAID 10 you will need 8 x 3TB drives or 6 x 4TB drives.

I don't recommend 4TB drives right now, and 3TB drives are the sweet spot at around $130/ea. So to buy the minimum amount of drives, you will need 6 3TB drives which will cost you nearly $800. That leaves $200 in your budget for a prebuilt NAS that will support 6+ drives, which isn't going to happen. With that said, you may have to go the custom built route, foregoing what I said about warranty and support unless you can increase your budget. You also need to consider other things such as spare drives (hot, warm, or cold) as well as back ups.

The cheapest 6 bay prebuilt NAS I can find is an iomega 34769, at $550. This is new from Newegg. Thecus N5550 is a 5 bay, but can be had for under $500 on Amazon.

If you are connecting multiple computers to this device, I assume you have some sort of switch, which I would assume is gigabit. I would recommend a NAS device with at least 2 gigabit NICs, in LACP for redundancy and performance. That means you will need a switch that supports LACP.

That is the proper way to do storage for a small business.
post #17 of 20
To add to tycoonbob always-excellent write-up....

If you went the self-built, you don't need a good RAID card.... software or host-based RAID is good enough since your network will bottleneck anyways. Many mATX motherboards have 6 SATA ports.

I believe Newegg had 3TB HDDs for $110 a few days ago.

As stated $1000 for 12TB of redundent storage is not really enough.

In addition to redundency, is there a back-up/archive plan?
Edited by DuckieHo - 5/30/13 at 9:15am
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post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DuckieHo View Post

To add to tycoonbob always-excellent write-up....

If you went the self-built, you don't need a good RAID card.... software or host-based RAID is good enough since your network will bottleneck anyways. Many mATX motherboards have 6 SATA ports.

I believe Newegg had 3TB HDDs for $110 a few days ago.

As stated $1000 for 12TB of redundent storage is not really enough.

In addition to redundency, is there a back-up/archive plan?

I do appreciate the feedback, I suppose just getting into this project I hadn't put enough thought into those questions. I'll see what can be done about the budget. Let me revise the storage requirements. I think 4-8TB usable space is sufficient for active storage. With that said I'll need to develop an archive strategy. In the current network there is a gigabit switch, though I am going to have to run some cable. I've got that covered and that is not apart of the budget.

Also, when I say small business, I truly mean startup sized business. My friend is one of the owners and founder of this business and they employ 5 people. While I might be able to get the budget raised, I don't think $2000 is an option. I may scrap the RAID card and just do a software RAID for now, since as you said the network will likely be the bottleneck. I still think I will have to go with a custom server build, especially so that I can scale this over time. Right now the data is being stored on external USB drives and USB drives are used for data transfer, so the goal here is to simplify the process of transferring data and reduce data redundancy. The external hard drives can be repurposed for archiving for the time being. For the purpose of this conversation, archiving can be phase II of the project with a different budget to be determined at a later date.
Edited by ragnar2005 - 5/30/13 at 10:07am
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post #19 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by ragnar2005 View Post

I do appreciate the feedback, I suppose just getting into this project I hadn't put enough thought into those questions. I'll see what can be done about the budget. Let me revise the storage requirements. I think 4-8TB usable space is sufficient for active storage. With that said I'll need to develop an archive strategy. In the current network there is a gigabit switch, though I am going to have to run some cable. I've got that covered and that is not apart of the budget.

Also, when I say small business, I truly mean startup sized business. My friend is one of the owners and founder of this business and they employ 5 people. While I might be able to get the budget raised, I don't think $2000 is an option. I may scrap the RAID card and just do a software RAID for now, since as you said the network will likely be the bottleneck. I still think I will have to go with a custom server build, especially so that I can scale this over time. Right now the data is being stored on external USB drives and USB drives are used for data transfer, so the goal here is to simplify the process of transferring data. The external hard drives can be repurposed for archiving for the time being. For the purpose of this conversation, archiving can be phase II of the project with a different budget to be determined at a later date.

4-8TB is definitely doable. I cannot stress enough my recommendation to go the prebuilt route for this storage solution. Your friend makes a living on this company, and the last thing he wants to worry about is a RAM DIMM failing in a custom built server, when there are no tech savvy people around to troubleshoot and fix. He would also have to pay someone to troubleshoot and fix, unless he had an in-house IT guy (unlikely). I'm sure you would be nice enough to replace a DIMM for him, but you don't want to be forever on call to support the storage device for free, would you?

4 x 3TB drives will give you 9TB usable storage in a RAID 5 (which again, I don't recommend -- but if you had a good backup strategy such as offline USB externals on-site, then go for it). 4 x 3TB in RAID 10 would give you 6TB of usable storage, and great performance. You don't want to do a hardware RAID 6 due to the write penalty.

4 x 3TB drives is ~$500, leaving you plenty of money for a pre-built device with a long warranty and support. You can get a Thecus N4200ECO for around $450, which gives you the RAID levels you need, 4 bays, dual gigabit NICs, as well as 2 eSATA ports that you could use for eSATA externals for FAST backups. It has has 6 USB 2.0 ports that you could again, use for external HDDs for backups. You can even use the ZFS file system on Thecus NASs, for the snapshot functionality. Store your snapshots on externals for easy backups. Just an idea.

The next model up is the Thecus N4800ECO which gives you USB 3.0, double the RAM (2GB) as well as HDMI and VGA, for around $550.

Drobo 5N is around $550 but only has 1 gigabit NIC and no USB/eSATA ports.

I really think the Thecus will give you the most options out of any NAS device, for the price. Thecus also has a 5 bay N5550 for around $500, and the 7-bay N7510 for around $650.
post #20 of 20
In addition, he could use an eSATA expansion unit with the Thecus N4200ECO if he needs more storage down the road.
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