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Old Feb 23, 2012, 12:59 PM   #1
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Lupine
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Default Thinking about building a NAS (HP Proliant N40L)

I've been thinking about getting a NAS for awhile now, but always ended up balking at the entry cost, since I'd want it to support at least the 4+ drives in my existing data array.

Saw a deal posted at SD for a barebone HP ProLiant N40L @ $179 shipped (link) - MSRP $350. I'm thinking I could either use the bundled 250GB drive for the OS (Windows Server or WHS - or Linux if someone holds my hand during config), then move my RAID card (hpt4320) along with my four WDC 2TB drives to the box (currently RAID10). Would probably buy a couple 4GB ECC sticks to max out the memory. Toss the whole thing out into my shop, and run it headless. Performance should be more than adequate, I'd think.

Thoughts? Pros/cons?
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 01:17 PM   #2
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I have a nas running no cons really only Pros. electric bill = con ? that's about it.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 01:29 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nycdarkness View Post
I have a nas running no cons really only Pros. electric bill = con ? that's about it.
I should have clarified my question. I'm not asking for pros/cons of running a NAS in general, but rather about building one vs simply buying something like a ReadyNAS.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 02:26 PM   #4
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Ugh. $17 tax to the lovely state of Washington, but still a good deal. The more I read about it, the more I like.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 02:34 PM   #5
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I posted this a while back (when hdd's were cheap ) http://www.rage3d.com/board/showthread.php?t=33974543

I'm still undecided. Part of me likes the hands-off readiness of the *cough* ReadyNas line but the rest of me hates the price. The build-your-own nas option has some appeal (expandable, cheap, etc.) but I'm concerned about upkeep and the fact I have never used WHS or Linux. I also wish the latest WHS had retained the drive-expander component (add a drive and the machine rebuilds the array) like all comparable nas-in-a-box offerings (Synology, Netgear, etc.).

Lupe, if you build one post your progress here. Your success may give me enough confidence to venture fourth.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 02:40 PM   #6
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Ah, I remember that thread, but wasn't in the market at the time. I'll be sure to update my progress if I indeed go for it.

For reference, have been reading through this crazy big thread on the N40L @ avforums.com. Lots of great info in there.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 03:30 PM   #7
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I would say build it yourself. Get the enclosure you want and drive options you want. The nas software that comes with prebuilt has features that most wont find useful in a home setting, so freeware will work just fine.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 03:32 PM   #8
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Well, shame on me for not paying attention to the SD effect. OOS, so looks like I have time to weigh options a bit longer now.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 03:36 PM   #9
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Dead deal? Link in OP doesn't work and searching for N40L brings up an item for $279. -edit OK, dead.

That NAS also doesn't support hot swap, although maybe a BIOS update/OS can override that so at least it's capable, just not slide-a-caddy easy.

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Old Feb 23, 2012, 04:54 PM   #10
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Anyone ever try http://nexentastor.org/ ? It's free for up to 18TB.
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Old Feb 23, 2012, 06:32 PM   #11
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No, I was thinking about FreeNAS. As of v8.3 it supports Raid Z with dedup. Also EON

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Old Feb 23, 2012, 08:05 PM   #12
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The first question is what do you want it to do? If you just want file storage just about anything should be fine. Whats limiting you right now that you want to get a new system?
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Old Mar 14, 2012, 11:40 AM   #13
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Deal is back on: http://www.pcconnectionexpress.com/I...257&cac=Result

Quote:
Originally Posted by lil bastard View Post
The first question is what do you want it to do? If you just want file storage just about anything should be fine. Whats limiting you right now that you want to get a new system?
File storage / media server. I retired my home / virtualization server a couple years ago, and have been running my storage array and running test VMs in my main system ever since. I made the move due to budget issues - I was totally underusing a high power C2Q system for server duties at the time.

The N40L (or equiv) would give me a low power cheap NAS option, allowing me to go back to having my data in a lower-risk environment (hands-off box). While I think I'd be more than satisfied with standard network storage device, the pricing goes through the roof once spec'd to hold 4+ drives.
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Old Mar 14, 2012, 06:51 PM   #14
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Looks like the deal's already dead (again). Damn...I probably would have jumped on that to replace my MediaSmart box...
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Old Mar 22, 2012, 11:30 PM   #15
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Check out. UNRAID.
Been working flawlessly for over a year.
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Old Mar 23, 2012, 09:11 AM   #16
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I have a Synology DiskStation 211 and am pretty happy with it. Has a lot of built in features (VPN, itunes sharing, accessable via mobile apps, etc.) Think I paid $200 for it. The new 212 just came out and is also $200.
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Old Mar 23, 2012, 09:49 AM   #17
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Those look nice. I'd really like a 4-bay unit, to accommodate my existing data array's 4x WD2002FAEX (WDC 2TB SATA3 6 GB/s Black) drives.
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Old Mar 23, 2012, 10:41 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadowless View Post
I have a Synology DiskStation 211 and am pretty happy with it. Has a lot of built in features (VPN, itunes sharing, accessable via mobile apps, etc.) Think I paid $200 for it. The new 212 just came out and is also $200.
I got one of those as well and it works. Today I think I would build my own off an Atom, A6 or Via C7 (I haven't really spent the time to figure out which is best). The difference in cost is just really small and as a student I have free access to Windows Server. The C7 is cheap low power, fan-less and I think it would be plenty fast for a home NAS. I guess that can be true of the Atom as well.
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Old Mar 23, 2012, 02:00 PM   #19
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Is there a way to combine a home NAS and XMBC in the same package?

A while back I picked up a ZyXEL NSA221 on teh cheap and I've got 2 "Green" WD 500GB HDDs in it. But I've noticed the throughput no matter what I do isn't very awesome. Streaming content to or from this drive usually caps out at just 3-5 MBps even though my PC and the drives are on the same 100 MBps switch and the content being transferred is coming locally off my PC or something.

In the bedroom I have a Logitech Revue, U-Verse cable box and an XBox 360 but I end up using the 360 99% of the time because messing with the big Revue remote (for watching Amazon VOD for instance) or fussing with the U-Verse interface through the Revue is too much of a hassle.

I'd really like to bring it down to something just simple that the wife could use. Remotes via Android apps on our phones through XMBC would be nice...
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Old Mar 23, 2012, 03:29 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lupine View Post
Those look nice. I'd really like a 4-bay unit, to accommodate my existing data array's 4x WD2002FAEX (WDC 2TB SATA3 6 GB/s Black) drives.
I didn't realize you wanted a 4-bay setup. You're on the right track then. I'm going to throw all my SAS drives into one of my poweredge 2950's and use FreeNAS on it.
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