[SOLVED] Best OS for a home server

ZachMan1030

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May 14, 2017
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I am in the process of creating my own home server, but since I am new to this I am not sure what OS would be the best for me to use. In addition to being a NAS, I would want the server to be able to burn media and have the potential to be a game server.
 

helper800

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I have the most experience using Windows, but I’d be open to learning Linux or using more UI-based Distros like Mint or Ubuntu. That being said, I have almost no experience in this area as the most I have done really is build and setup PCs.
I would definitely start with a Windows-based system then. You could always try putting one of the distros on later and play with it.
 

ZachMan1030

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May 14, 2017
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What OSs do you feel comfortable using?
I have the most experience using Windows, but I’d be open to learning Linux or using more UI-based Distros like Mint or Ubuntu. That being said, I have almost no experience in this area as the most I have done really is build and setup PCs.
 

helper800

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I have the most experience using Windows, but I’d be open to learning Linux or using more UI-based Distros like Mint or Ubuntu. That being said, I have almost no experience in this area as the most I have done really is build and setup PCs.
I would definitely start with a Windows-based system then. You could always try putting one of the distros on later and play with it.
 
There are a lot of ways to answer a question like that.

Are you using purpose built hardware or older hardware, piecing something together, etc?
What are the requirements of the game server?

If you are just doing basic NAS/file sharing you can use below potato computer equipment and go with a free OS like FreeNAS, Ubuntu, etc. Of course, as requirements to run your operations (and number of) increase, so should your hardware ability. (obviously...I am getting there)

In my own case I tend to use purpose built or "last gen hand me downs" on a Win 10 Pro setup. I am familiar with the OS, it's easy to set up shares and such, can easily remote in from other Win machines, etc. Not to mention you can put it somewhere to be utilized for streaming, gaming, general PC use, or even a back up to the back up (lol).
 
For a NAS the easiest and best thing to do, at least in my opinion, is get a home sizes NAS from QNAP or Synology. They are easy to use and to setup shares on them and easily attachable to your router's RJ45 ports for network sharing. If you go this route, but sure to get one that is at least 2 drives so you can run a RAID 1 configuration on it. If you get 4+ drive one you can run either RAID 10 or RAID 5.

For the game server you can get by with Win10 Pro. If you feel adventurous and just want to go straight command line, you can run Ubuntu Server 18.04 LTS.
 
For a NAS the easiest and best thing to do, at least in my opinion, is get a home sizes NAS from QNAP or Synology. They are easy to use and to setup shares on them and easily attachable to your router's RJ45 ports for network sharing. If you go this route, but sure to get one that is at least 2 drives so you can run a RAID 1 configuration on it. If you get 4+ drive one you can run either RAID 10 or RAID 5.

For the game server you can get by with Win10 Pro. If you feel adventurous and just want to go straight command line, you can run Ubuntu Server 18.04 LTS.
this is preferred. You would not want to purchase a license for Server 2019 (which is AWESOME by the way, super small footprint, no garbage, super fast and you can disable updates with group policy. However, it's probably more cost effective to buy the QNAP or Synology NAS boxes

I use Server 2019 at work and man, it's impressive and FAST.
 

ZachMan1030

Commendable
May 14, 2017
39
0
1,540
1
There are a lot of ways to answer a question like that.

Are you using purpose built hardware or older hardware, piecing something together, etc?
What are the requirements of the game server?

If you are just doing basic NAS/file sharing you can use below potato computer equipment and go with a free OS like FreeNAS, Ubuntu, etc. Of course, as requirements to run your operations (and number of) increase, so should your hardware ability. (obviously...I am getting there)

In my own case I tend to use purpose built or "last gen hand me downs" on a Win 10 Pro setup. I am familiar with the OS, it's easy to set up shares and such, can easily remote in from other Win machines, etc. Not to mention you can put it somewhere to be utilized for streaming, gaming, general PC use, or even a back up to the back up (lol).
I would be building it from scratch essentially. The game server wouldn't have to be too powerful though. I know Nextcloud is very popular for NAS, but it only runs on Linux. If it could function as a normal computer too that would be great.
 
I would be building it from scratch essentially. The game server wouldn't have to be too powerful though. I know Nextcloud is very popular for NAS, but it only runs on Linux. If it could function as a normal computer too that would be great.
IMO, if you are purpose building this and are already familiar with Windows the only real roadblock would be license costs in reference to going that way. It would have to be more powerful that an equivalent Linux flavor build. If nothing else you could go that way later as the hardware ages.

I will say this in reference to parts selection. I tried to do a simple file server and Plex server using one of the new AM4 Athlon builds and totally would NOT suggest going that way as CPU selection.
 

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