2 Storage Servers ($200-500 each)

ralphus

Distinguished
Jul 29, 2009
1
0
18,510
APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE: Tomorrow (ASAP).
BUDGET RANGE: <500
PARTS NOT REQUIRED: keyboard, mouse, monitor, speakers, OS, hard drive
SYSTEM USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT: storage, playing media
PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS:newegg.com
OVERCLOCKING: No

Hi, all,

I'm putting together 2 storage servers. I would like each to have a 4-5 sata drive trayless (if possible) backplane. I'll provide the drives (probably all 1 TB greens) outside of these costs. One of these will sit in my office and one will sit in my home. It might be nice if the one in my home could connect to a TV to play the occasional TV show/movie (no recording necessary) just to make use of my big screen, but other than that, both will basically be NASs, running FreeNAS or Ubuntu (serving AFP to my Macs).

So, I know I need gigabit ethernet.

I'm not sure where to run the OS--on CF, SSD, 2.5s, PATAs, or separate SATAS, so I may need as many as 6 SATA connections. Or a couple PATA connections. I need advice here (FS advice welcome as well, although I can figure that out later I imagine).

A DVD and HDMI on the home box (for TV) might be nice. The home system would need to be powerful enough to play xvid/divx--no encoding/ripping necessary.

Since these will run 24/7, I would like to keep the power consumption to a minimum. I'd like the cases to be small, but with at least one internal 3.5" (depending on how you tell me to run the OS) and 3 5.25" drives to hold a 5 bay backplane.

Quiet is very, very good. Low temp is very, very good.

A port multiplier eSATA would be nice as well, or, if not on MB, the possibility to add a a PM eSATA card later (so PCI/x/e). I'd be willing to use a card instead of onboard SATA connections for the first 5 as well. The possibility of RAID would be nice (in case i decide to ever trust RAID5), although my setup now includes JBOD, where one drive is a mirror of the other (not RAID0), just croned to do a mirror + dated-diff-backup rsync on the second drive. I like having the possibility of roll back. The two machines will mirror each other offsite, so I"ll be fairly safe there.

I've done a lot of research so far, and it seems Addonics makes nice back planes, although not trayless. I'm just not sure about the rest--I just can't figure out how to balance power consumption with the specs I require. I've been stalking for a long time and have done enough research now to be comfortable enough to comment/answer any questions you have, but I'm really looking forward to your advice because I have too many options at the moment and none really fits the bill quite yet.

I'm finishing up the Ph.D. and just haven't had time to keep up on the homebuild world (plus I switched to Mac a few years ago and they don't give you many DIY options) but I've recently realized that for storage, DIY/*nix is the way to go to keep costs low (and of course gaming, HTPC, etc, but I don't have time for that ;)).

Thanks all!
 

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