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Old September 15, 2009, 08:29 PM
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lcdguy lcdguy is offline
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Default Rackmount NAS Build UPDATE PICS

As some of you may know. I am currently working on building a Rack mountable NAS. What i want to achieve with this project is to build a decent sized array 5TB+ of RAID 5 Storage that is capable of streaming content over my network to both my PC and PS3. I also want to do this as cheap as possible while retaining decent speed and data security. Seeing as my first batch of parts are due to arrive tomorrow i thought it fitting to start this build log. So i thought i would go over my choices for this project.

The hardware i choose for this project are as follows.

ASUS M2N68-AM SE2 mATX
Compucase RA455A00 Rackmount Case (6x5.25)
Kingwin KF-4000-BK Hot Swap Mobile Rack x2
Corsair VX550W
AMD Athlon X2 7550
Addonics Internal Sata to CF Adapter
Kingston 4GB CF Type I
Dell Perc 5/i Raid Card w/ BBU (made by LSI)
Intel Pro1000/MT Dual Port Nic PCI-X
8x 1TB WD green (if they work, black if they dont)
2x SAS to SATA Breakout Cables
2GB G.Skill DDR2 PC-6400

Now onto the rational. I choose the Asus board since it was cheap (around 52 bucks after PM). I also choose this board because it has an nvidia chipset (more compatible with the raid card) and has a PCie X16 and 2 PCI slots. The Compucase rackmount is a cheap affordable 4u case since i PM'd it down to 123.20. The kingwing racks just look super nice and give me 2 extra HDD mount points for a total of 8 drives. The CPU just incase i need that extra power since it maybe doing some transcoding. And finally the CF to hold the OS. The raid card was going to originally be an areca card but i was convinced to try the dell card since there was about a $300 price difference. If you don't trust dell (and why should you) 3ware has some end of life 9690 8IF cards for around $200 USD which is an AMAZING DEAL but it is a full height card but still that's a savings of over $400 bucks over the low profile version.

Now while i have been waiting i have been playing with the 2 more popular linux nas releases. All of the testing listed below has been done in vmware server. Freenas and Openfiler. Both have the pluses and minuses. The WUI (Web User Interface) on openfiler is much superior to freenas. however openfiler is much more complicated to configure (i could never get openfiler shares to been seen on windows.) Partially i think this is because openfiler seems to be more at home in an enterprise environment which would include some sort of ldap/domain controller. While freenas was up and running in less than 45 minutes. Both options offer basically the same features. Both have iSCSI, SMB, NFS, One thing i did like about freenas is the inclusion of a Itune/DAAP server and a Upnp Server with profiles for a ps3. These were very easy to setup once the raid array was configured. I have tested it both with my ps3 running firmware 3.0 and itunes 9.0 and both work perfectly. I am very pleased and will be using freenas.

One thing however. Freenas is much more geeky then openfiler due to it being based on BSD. as such the installer is not pretty but still pretty much idiot proof. The other quirky thing was configuring the raid as i had to import the disks, then format them into a software, then create the array then format the array in UFS.

Expect more pictures as i get my stuff in. I will also post pictures of my software setup. If there's interest i could even make some basic vmware boxes if people wanted to try them out. I think i can export the vmmachine and put it somewhere like filefront.

Anyway that's all i have for now. Until tomorrow. (and yes there will be pictures soon. so DON'T BUG ME ABOUT IT)
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and now for something completely different


Last edited by lcdguy; September 21, 2009 at 11:22 PM. Reason: Pictures updated
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