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Thread: Building a NAS server at home

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    Elite Master Razor's Avatar
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    Building a NAS server at home

    Hello. I need to build a NAS server so that I may be able to store my data on it and access it from everywhere.

    The requirements for this is:
    • I need it to work with any drive size (4TB/8TB) - want compatibility with any size
    • can work with any number of drives


    It's all down to money: in an ideal world, we could get 4x4TB drives and be happy, but sometimes you lack the money and just get any drive on the market. Thus I may end up with multiple drives sizes, speeds, may small drives etc. I need to take this into consideration.

    What would you recommend for me? Should I go with synology (or other NAS solutions) or something else like a computer/laptop?
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    Moderator anon's Avatar
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    A laptop isn't going to work with multiple drives, unless you're willing to buy USB or eSATA enclosures for each one of them. I'd just run Windows and install the features I want manually, but you're likely looking for something more sophisticated... so I'd recommend installing FreeNAS on a desktop and doing JBOD with it, that way you'll get all the functionality you could ever want and having a disk salad won't be a problem.
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    Elite Master Razor's Avatar
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    What about a raspberry pi? What your input on it?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Master Razor View Post
    What about a raspberry pi? What your input on it?
    In general raspberry pi is great, but as it only comes with USB 2.0 (not 3.0) ports this will probably be a limiting factor when it comes to disk speed. You could look for raspberry pi alternatives like cubieboard, banana pi, etc... (which are usually more expensive).
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    @ cheetah
    I understand there are better and more potent devices than raspberry pi but I also need community support (i.e lots of documentation, lots of examples, lots of users, popular devices). If it's not popular I will not get very far with it.

    If it would be possible, could you show me an example of how would you build it? I'd like to have at least 10 sata ports if that's even doable.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Master Razor View Post
    What about a raspberry pi? What your input on it?
    You'll need a SATA-to-USB adapter and a SATA port replicator, so don't expect much performance. Can't beat the power consumption, though

    Another idea if you value community support over performance: USB router + USB hub + OpenWrt... but seriously, I'd try a desktop first so that you have a specific idea of what functionality you need.
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    what's your budget?

    you can have as many sata as you need with a non-raid host bus adapter. I use 2 supermicro HBA but they're not cheap (I think 80 euros each) then you also have to buy SATA to SAS cables, they're not cheap either. (and I just threw away 4 of them, for lack of motivation to post an add online).

    I've seen motherboards with around 10 SATA ports.
    There used to be a time, where Port Multiplier promised multiple disks on a single SATA port, but it sort of disappeared, probably not stable enough.

    My current server has 24 disks (mostly 3 and 4 TB disks). But I can't stand the noise anymore and the electricity bill is just too high now.
    This summer I plan to build a new one with only 6 disks of the highest capacity available then. Less noise, cheaper to run and much smaller footprint.

    If you have 10 disks, I hope you will find a good place to put your server if noise is a concern to you.

    I also tried multiple disks on USB3 (via an expensive USB hub), but it didn't work well with torrenting. the disks would just drop several times a week and a restart would solve the problem, I had to shut down the PC. But this was 4 years, things are maybe better now.

    Edit: I built my server mostly based on the recommendations/discussions from Servethehome
    Last edited by molosse; 18.04.18 at 01:50.
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