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Storage *Help needed* NAS recommendations

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Parge, 16 Mar 2011.

  1. Parge

    Parge the worst Super Moderator

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    Like many of you, I run a homebuilt NAS box, based on a 2800+ Sempron, Vista Business an 80GB low power 2.5” HD and a 7200rpm 1.5TB 3.5” drive for storage. However, lately because that computer only has a single SATA port, and the add in SATA card keeps losing its connection to the HD, I’ve thought about buying a prebuilt NAS. I used to have a Netgear ReadyNAS duo, but found that to be slow to use, and it kept disappearing from the network. As a result, I sold it about 18 months ago. However, I’m now prepared to try again.

    I have about 2.2TB worth of data that needs storing, but have no real need for RAID 1 since the most important stuff is also backed up on external HDs. I’d likely sell the 7200rpm 1.5TB and buy something green/low power/eco etc. The NAS would be wired directly to my router (not sure if it’s a gigabit or just 10/100, but it is wireless N)

    I have £150 worth of Amazon vouchers, for my birthday, which could be put towards it. So what do we all think? Bit Tech recently reviewed the Synology DS211J and rated it highly– but I can’t find too many more reviews for it on the net.

    Any ideas appreciated. :D
     
    Last edited: 22 Mar 2011
  2. planem997

    planem997 What's a Dremel?

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  3. Parge

    Parge the worst Super Moderator

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    They seem insanely expensive..... The cheapest one Amazon starts at over £600!
     
  4. Cookie Monster

    Cookie Monster Multimodder

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    I run 2 x Linksys Media Hub's, one contains my itunes folders which stream video / music fine and the other contains all my backed up documents.

    Both are probably a bit overkill for what I use them for but I found them for £105 so snapped them up.
     
  5. wyx087

    wyx087 Homeworld 3 is happening!!

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    go for Synology NAS!

    the 11j series (eg. Ds211j, 2 means 2 bays, 11 means released around 2011, j means budget) has a 1.2GHz ARM processor, pretty speedy for a storage home NAS. for reviews, look for Ds210j and imagine it's 50% faster. i have Ds410j, runs 800MHz ARM processor. fantastic NAS, has 4 2TB drives making 3.5TB RAID-5 volume plus a single drive for weekly backup of most important files in-case RAID controller fails.

    best part is how easy it is to mod the Synology NAS boxes. it's basically a CLI Linux. i have installed: Wake-on-Lan app, SABnzbd+ app, Transmission torrent (better than its stock one) and Sickbeard TV series searcher. there are a lot others can be downloaded using IPKG INSTALL command.
     
  6. Chunkers

    Chunkers Meat Popsicle

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    I recently bought a Synology DS211j for my network storage needs, in my opinion a really excellent piece of gear.

    I use mine as a media and Squeezebox server and also for backing up critical stuff like family photos and videos. Currently it has a single 1Tb disk in it, at some point in the future I will probably add a second and run it in a RAID configuration.

    The interface and management software is web based and very nice, a massive leap ahead of the usual clunky interfaces you see on routers, there is a good demo of it on the Synology website.

    The transfer speeds seem very good, probably more limited by other things in my network than anything else at the moment (I have it connected to a Gb switch onto my main system which is a mixture of Gb and 100mbs)

    If you want to read NAS reviews then my recommendation would be to have a browse of the Small Network Builder website and forums.

    Cheers

    Chunks
     
    wyx087 likes this.
  7. Fingers66

    Fingers66 Kiwi in London

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    +1 for the Synology 211j.

    You can try out the DSM interface online here: http://www.synology.com/enu/products/demo/index.php (this is great fun, have a go!).

    Cracking units, I want one but can't afford it yet. All reports and reviews I have seen think they are great. The feature list is huge.

    £162.00 + P&P direct from Synology through Amazon here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0047CNX...de=asn&creative=22218&creativeASIN=B0047CNXJ2.

    Slightly cheaper at Scan and CCL but you said you have Amazon vouchers.

    With the 211j you can have a maximum of 6TB (2 x 3TB RAID 0/JBOD) or 3TB (2 x 3TB RAID 1).

    If you want 4 bays, there is also the 410j:

    £242 @ Scan
    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/syno...-personal-and-home-use-sata-(no-hdd-included)

    £265 @ Amazon
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Synology-DS...YSV4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1300277892&sr=1-1
     
  8. Ljs

    Ljs Modder

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    If only the Synology 211j came in black... :(
     
  9. Kakeshoma

    Kakeshoma What's a Dremel?

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    +1 for DS211j, got mine a couple weeks ago. Very happy with it :)
     
  10. koola

    koola Minimodder

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    I got a HP Proliant MicroServer for my NAS as you get £100 cheque back. Google it and you will see it's very capable.
     
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  11. droitwichdosser

    droitwichdosser What's a Dremel?

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  12. Parge

    Parge the worst Super Moderator

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    Wow, I really like the interface! The only thing thats putting me off is that I know it’ll take sooo long to copy all my data across the network.

    So I’m thinking 2 x 2TB Eco drives. Does anyone have any recommendations as to which would be the best to choose – since it seems a bit of a minefield!

    Also, how good is transmission? Can I set it so it only runs between say 2AM and 10AM - this is a deal breaker for me.
     
  13. azazel1024

    azazel1024 What's a Dremel?

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    From everything I have read, I'd go Synology DS111, 111j, 211 or 211j if you want a ready built NAS with some speed.

    You can set the Synologies for deep sleep during certain hours.

    One thing to keep in mind though, they are going to be more limited than just building a file server. They will certainly be lower power though, and setup is as straight forward as can be on them.

    Rosewill blackbone case
    Asus M4A78LT-M LE motherboard
    AMD Sempron 140
    2GB stick of Mushkin Enhanced silverline DDR3 1333
    1TB Samsung F3 7200rpm HDD
    120mm Gelid silent fan

    Whole thing ran me $250. Or the cost of a DS111 with that same 1TB Samsung F3 in it. There is room for a lot more drives in there.

    I just also dropped a Samsung F4eg 2tb drive in there and I am looking at getting an Intel NIC (since it seems like the GbE adapter on the board is a dud as the receive speeds are only about 22-25MB/sec, but transmit is up around 75MB/sec). That still brings the total cost up to only $350 for 2.7TiB of storage (3TB). DS211j plus both of those HDD would only be a few bucks cheaper (within $25) and it would be slower and be out of space for more drives (other than adding external drives, which can only be USB2).

    Now, the Synology NAS are going to be using less power, certainly, but they aren't nearly as flexible.

    Drives spun down my file server uses about 40w, a DS211j I think uses something around 15w with the drives idled. If you spent a few bucks more and went with an Atom instead of a Sempron your system if built properly would probably only use about 30w.

    Also, if you are going to go Synology NAS...get a gigabit switch if your router can't do gigabit. Not much of a point to getting a NAS that is capable of a bunch of speed (over 30MB/sec) if you are limited to about 10MB/sec of network throughput. A simple 5 port gigabit switch is only going to run you about $30, and you'd see a massive speed increase.

    If you only connect wirelessly, then don't bother with a synology NAS. You are just wasting money on speed you aren't going to be able to use. Look at getting a D-link DNS211 or 213. They are about $50-100 cheaper than the 2 disk Synology NASs, can do pretty much everything they can, and only use a tiny bit more power. The downside is that they max out around 20MB/sec absolutely maximum transfer speeds...but a 10/100 connection is going to give you 12.5MB/sec theoretical maximum, and 9-10MB/sec in practice. An 802.11n router is probably only going to get you 3-6MB/sec.
     
  14. wyx087

    wyx087 Homeworld 3 is happening!!

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    default Synology download manager (that can also do torrent downloads) can do between set hours, i've set my to be 1AM to 15PM.

    Transmission is a 3rd party torrent downloader that is able to monitor a folder to automatically add a torrent download. (so you don't have to login to DSM to add a download) it doesn't do time periods pause, but it can do time period throttling. i've set my to throttle down to 2 Mbps up/down between 15PM and 11:59PM.


    for HDD choices, i think mix and match is the best option. this is so that you run less risk of drives fail at the same time. my RAID5 is running 3 different drives, two Samsung F3eco but bought at different times, and a Seagate drive.


    copying data is a pain, but there's no getting away from it :( but once you have it setup, it'd be great.


    btw, rep+ for that smallnetbuilder.com website.


    edit: agree with above, get Gigabit router, or you won't be able to do anything while copying files. but i disagree about flexibility. enable SSH, and putty into Synology for anything everything you can do on a Linux CLI.
     
  15. YEHBABY

    YEHBABY RIP Tel

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    I would say go for a Synology NAS. I have the DS209 which is the same as the DS211j except mine has more memory 256mb vs 128mb.

    Very pleased with NAS and the ds211j is excellent value.

    The only problem I can see you having is that as you already have over 2TB of data a 2 bay NAS would quickly run out of space. I have same problem and have to run my NAS in Raid 0 with 2x2TB (4TB total). Raid 0 increase the chances of data loss.

    I would recommend rather than run raid 0/JBOD or buy 3TB disk, to instead spend the extra money on a 4 bay nas like the DS411j. I wish I had!!!

    The DS411j is on scan for £266 and is same spec as DS211j except has 4 bays vs 2.
    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/synology-ds411j-4-bay-nas-12ghz-cpu-sata-gbit-lan-2x-usb-1x-esata
     
  16. scott_chegg

    scott_chegg Minimodder

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    The guy next to me in the office has just got a Synology 211j and he loves it. The interface does look very good.
     
  17. Fingers66

    Fingers66 Kiwi in London

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    Transferring your files would be a one off occurrence. Use robocopy and forget about it for a day or so :D.

    Either the 2TB Samsung F4's or the 2TB WD Caviar Greens - Scan do deals on 2 of each at least once a week. The F4's have been going on Today Only for under £120 for two.

    Have a browse of the Synology forums to see if Transmission can be scheduled, I would be surprised if it wasn't a feature of Download Station.
     
  18. Parge

    Parge the worst Super Moderator

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    Ok, I think you've all convinced me to get a DS211j!

    I'm making a bit of a fuss about the copying, its not too much hassle, I could just plug all the HDs into the £100 gaming machine, and walk away for 24 hours.

    With the exception of photo's, I wouldn't be putting much extra data on the box from my PC's around the house - assuming the B/T client works. I'm limited to a wireless N connection for that, since I live in rented accommodation with no chance of running ethernet around the house..

    @Yeahbaby - would love a 4 bay, but just can't afford the cost!

    Think I'll wait for a Deal of the day on Scan to come up and buy two Samsung 2TB HD204UI
     
  19. wyx087

    wyx087 Homeworld 3 is happening!!

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    there's photo station, audio station and web hosting on the Synology NAS. so don't forget to put those photos onto pre-created photo folder, music into music folder :thumb:
     
  20. Fingers66

    Fingers66 Kiwi in London

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    On right now for £119.99 with 50 DVD-R's for free. :thumb:.
     

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