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Please Help - Dell Perc System for Home Server Specification Questions

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi,

After spending an entire night reading information on the various forums out there (and getting lost in a 500+ page thread here lol) I was hoping one of the experts who has first hand knowledge could point me in the right direction or possibly answer a few questions.

My questions are what hardware and OS would you use considering the following?

Requirements as low as possible Total Cost of Ownership (Power Requirements and Initial Hardware Cost - without having unrealistically impossible goals)

I need to build a Rackmount NAS to migrate my storage into this will be in either a 2U/3U/4U or 2x2U depending on the base system, fitted into full height full depth 42U rack.

It/They will mainly be serving HD content over a home gigabit network as well as providing redundancy for home storage requirements prior to bieng partially backed up to removeable media. So minimum performance is designated by the ability to stream HD content to two locations on the LAN simultaniously.

Hardware choice must able to support connecting Raid 5 arrays via two internal SFF-8087 Mini SAS connectors which connect the backplane for 2x4 hotswap drives in the 2U Chassis

Torrent Client/Remote Access (FTP or other) would also be nice but not a requirement

existing hardware & configuration of disks I would like to use ->

[Mirror] 2x Crucial m255 64GB SSD (for operating system)
[Raid5] 5x1TB WD 1001FALS - Western Digital Caviar Black (for primary storage with 3 slots for expansion or hot spare etc.)

Hotswap support would be a bonus but is not a requirement

Expandability at some point (by adding another Perc 5/i or 6/i) in the future would also be a nice bonus as I will also need to create a arrays using ->

[Raid 5] 5x2TB WD20EARS (Western Digital Green Power)
[Raid 5] 4x74GB WD Raptors

But this could also be achieved by building duplicate barebones systems and fitting a different array in each system depending on costing

So far I've came to the conclusion that the best price/performance for the SAS backplane connectivity and TCO is the Perc 5/i (giving SATA 1.5 support for the older drives)

I think the best motherboard cpu combo is going to be either an Atom based or AMD AM2+ 7xxx Series CPU

As far as OS I'm open to suggestions at the moment its looking like Openfiler/Freenas but would also consider using a Windows server

If anyone could please help me out It would be much appreciated as I've seen multiple configurations that people appear to have working but no difinitive answers what is the best route to take,

What I'm really after here is a hardware/software blueprint of what works so if anyone has anything similar please list Cost-Power-CPU-Mem-MoBo

Thanks,
post #2 of 7
Not sure about case as i tend to go for tower cases on a shelf in a rack cabinet on custom builds (alot lower cost)

Mobo/CPU wise, personally your best bet is going to be an AMD board not atom, you then get more PCI-E/PCI

My two file servers im making this weekend are having Sempron 140, ASUS M4A78LT-M LE and 2GB Ram each. low power and low cost but i am not sure of compatibility with dell perc's
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Ragnarok
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post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks Norse for you input on the Atom vs Sepron this is exactly the type of clarification I'm looking for. I hope some others can answer my questions about Perc compatability.
post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoneGhost View Post
Thanks Norse for you input on the Atom vs Sepron this is exactly the type of clarification I'm looking for. I hope some others can answer my questions about Perc compatability.
Edit after looking at some info on the Perc's. your best bet might be full ATX mobo that has VGA then you get 2 PCI-E x16/8 which will make the perc's faster
Ragnarok
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Yggdrassil
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Sapphire R9 290X 8x Samsung 8GB DDR3 1333 ECC 3TBx2 in Raid 1 Noctua NH-U12DO 
CoolingOSMonitorPower
120mm Fractal Design 1200rpm Case Fan Silent Se... Windows 7 Pro x64 1x24" 2x22" Corsair Professional HX1050 
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Ragnarok
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Yggdrassil
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Sapphire R9 290X 8x Samsung 8GB DDR3 1333 ECC 3TBx2 in Raid 1 Noctua NH-U12DO 
CoolingOSMonitorPower
120mm Fractal Design 1200rpm Case Fan Silent Se... Windows 7 Pro x64 1x24" 2x22" Corsair Professional HX1050 
CaseAudioOther
Fractal Design XL R2 Titanium Grey Asus MIO 892 Purple and white Braided/sleeved cables 
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post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks again, what I would really like is someone to say is I've used xyz for my server setup as there are so many variables while trying to spec this thing up and TCO is a big issue so can't just order parts and play around at the moment

To start the only things that are currently fixed are -

the chassis which can accomodate E-ATX

Dell Perc 6i

5x WD1001FALS

But cheers for your help so far
post #6 of 7
Arg, I was hoping that I'd be able to help some since I've been doing a lot of research into a lot of what you're asking, but I'm still pretty new dealing with controllers and backplanes. I'll try to look into this for you, but no promises.

Good luck!
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Tismon7
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Hard DriveOptical DriveOSMonitor
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post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks Tismon, as far as controllers & backplanes go, Thats why I've settled on the Dell Perc 6/i to match upto the SAS Backplane fitted in the chassis we hope to use.

Obviously If I can spec up a barebones system that will accomodate 2x Perc 6/i or 1x 6/i and 1x 5/i that would be ideal as the cost of finding a single controller to support upto 16-20 drives is just prohibitively expensive at this time.

So the end system will hopefully be able to host -
(2x4 Disks )x2 Controllers [16 Total]+ 4 disk Raid 5 array on motherboard raid controller or 2 Disk mirror for OS

Thanks again.
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