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fruitwerks 05-31-2010 11:38 AM

Looking for the right NAS
I currently have a Dell PE2850 - maxed out with 1TB of RAID5. This has lasted for about 3 years, being very conservative with what I decide to archive. I am looking into a NAS solution and I am planning to sell my 2850.

I was hoping to find something within the $200-300 range (Diskless) but I am having trouble doing so. Yes there are plenty of them out there, but none of them have the features I am looking for. I noticed most of them have buggy or limited firmware, or not enough capacity or options.

Here is what I am looking for;

RAID 0, 1, (5,10?)
Two Bays will be fine if it can handle 2TB drives, but 4+ would be best.
Expandable ram for cache / or Dedicated Cache ram
Support for managing how the disks are configured, partitioning and file systems, LVM possibly.
nfs, smb, rsync, ftp, ssh (at least busybox?) / web ui
'Low Power' is a must.

The ability to run a torrent client maybe
Possibly dual 1GB nics with 'teaming / bridging' support
Possibly a Bay for DVD/ Blu-ray
Maybe a Wi-fi as an AP

I don't want to watch a video in the browser, and I don't need streaming support for game consoles, or AFP... So really it looks like I want to build a big bulky file server like I already have. This is not the case. I have seen a few ATOM based boards, but I think performance would suffer with such a wimpy processor.

I have looked into older rack mount systems, like the ML11x series, but that may be expensive by the time I am done. I don't care if this is a 4U system, or setup in a wooden box - I just want some massive redundant storage without the power draw, the PE2850 has two 700W PSU's and if I take one out, it only runs for about 5 minutes almost idle...

Thanks All

cantab 05-31-2010 12:21 PM

Why not build your own low power system? Since you think the Atom is 'wimpy', think about the low-power variants of AMD's desktop processors, which consume about 45 Watts. Linux can do software raid, which avoids the need to get specific hardware.

fruitwerks 05-31-2010 12:49 PM

I was expecting an answer like that. I guess I will go with a 'headless' system. I have a PSU that I can use, don't care about a case for now. I will need to find an older system and spend a bit on a nice SATA RAID card, I don't want fakeRAID!

I'll update this post as the project progresses! - I'm still open to hardware suggestions, case / chassis ideas. Also any OS suggestions are welcome. I am not very fond of package based distros, but I am open. I am an experienced Linux admin so I am not afraid to compile everything.

Thanks Again!

fruitwerks 05-31-2010 03:30 PM

I think I will be going with a Chenbro RM414 for a case. It will scale well. If I pack it full of 2TB drives, I can get up to 28TB in a raid5. I can start with cheap hardware and sell it as I upgrade :)

I can get that case for $150 - all bays / slides functional, CD-RW or DVD-RW + Floppy, but no mobo / psu.

I think that is a good deal, anyone think otherwise?

cantab 05-31-2010 03:40 PM

It does seem like a lot of your budget on just the case. But I won't deny that it looks very capable. After the cost of a quality PSU you're not left with much for mobo, CPU, and RAM.

A bit related - with 16 drives I'd suggest RAID6 not 5, so you can tolerate a double failure - which if multiple drives are bought at a time may be more likely than you'd expect if failures were uncorrelated.

fruitwerks 06-23-2010 03:32 PM

Yep that is a budget killer, I didn't get the case yet - but he still has it :)

I'm going with a very minimal setup to start with, just ordered an Atom 330 mobo. with 2gb of ram and a 2tb drive. The board has one pci slot, and I need that for a second NIC. In about a week I can order another drive so I can mirror.

Going to use lvm2 / dmraid until I fill up 2tb - then I will need to get a real mobo and a very expensive controller :D

I'll keep you all posted!

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