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Build Advice NAS Server Set-up?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Shikkari, 20 Feb 2011.

  1. Shikkari

    Shikkari I know what a Dremel is XD

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    Hey there everyone,

    This is going to be my first build and I am just looking for some expert advice on a NAS server I am currently building, I would just like to know if people think this set up is okay or should I change something for the better, I am not that much limited in terms of money probably £300 and I can buy things weekly if needs be.

    I think I will be using FreeNAS as it fits my needs, but I'm not sure whether I should use Ubuntu, it may seem like a silly question but can I use FreeNAS on maybe one HDD and use Ubuntu on the other? or is that impossible?

    But anyway, my current set up consists of:

    Case - Arianet 5003B - http://www.aria.co.uk/Products/Comp...der+w/+300W+PSU?productId=42598&rqcType=q#rqc [Already purchased]

    (Probably going to get rid of PSU in case and buy a more efficient one)

    Motherboard - Asrock N68-S3-UCC - http://www.microdirect.co.uk/Home/Product/48535/Asrock-motherboard-N68-S3-UCC-AMD-AM3-DDR3-mATX [Already purchased]

    CPU - AMD Sempron 145 (2.8Ghz) - http://www.ebuyer.com/product/238329

    CPU Cooler - Scythe Shuriken - http://www.ebuyer.com/product/148079

    HDD - Western Digital 1TB Green x2 - http://www.ebuyer.com/product/182435

    RAM - Corsair 2GB stick - http://www.ebuyer.com/product/178942- Most unsure about any better suggestions??

    Thanks in advance to everyone.
     
  2. Shikkari

    Shikkari I know what a Dremel is XD

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    Anybody?
     
  3. Flibblebot

    Flibblebot Smile with me

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    Why would you want to use freeNAS AND Ubuntu? freeNAS comes with the OS needed to run it, so you don't need another OS on top of what's already there.

    The hardware spec looks OK - you don't need massive amounts of horsepower just to run a NAS - many people use Atom-level hardware without any issues.

    And, just because it's my sworn duty to mention it any time a NAS thread comes up, take a look at unRAID as an alternative to freeNAS.
     
  4. Guest-16

    Guest-16 Guest

    Looks good. 2GB of memory is tons for FreeNAS, but you need to test the board first to see if it's completely compatible. I would also opt for the stock AMD cooler too if that CPU is retail, save some monies.
     
  5. cpl

    cpl Minimodder

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    I built a FreeNAS box last month, there may be some useful information in this thread and another thread linked from that one.

    In the end I built the completely fanless:
    Mobo: Intel d510mo
    Case: Lian Li PC- Q7
    PSU: PicoPSU 150W + 60W SMPS (made an ATX PSU sized rack to mount SMPS inside the case)
    Storage: 2TB Samsung Spinpoint EcoGreen F4
    Boot Drive: 4GB USB drive + Motherboard header USB
    RAM: 2GB DDR2 800MHz

    Even my Atom doesn't get heavily loaded, so your Sempron certainly won't. So, I'd only consider an improved aftermarket heatsink if you are aimng to run it fanless.

    My 2GB ram (had already, after upgrade) never reaches 20% useage, I reckon 1 GB to be safe, or you could get awaywith 512MB if you can find it saves £!

    You could consider a Pico PSU and an SMPS for better efficiency. I got mine here. Not as cheap as an earthwatts 380, but about 10% more efficient at sub 100W operation, and silent so worth the premium and mod needed to me.
     
    Last edited: 24 Feb 2011
  6. azazel1024

    azazel1024 What's a Dremel?

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    I am doing a similar build right now, but for Ubuntu 10.10.

    Rosewill Blackbone case (bought)
    Mushkin Enhanced silverline 1333 DDR3 2GB (single stick, bought)
    Antec 380D Earthwatts PSU (it has one of the highest rated efficiencies in the 25-50W power consumption range of any PSU, even better than most silver/gold...ordering tomorrow)
    Sempron 140 (why spend the few extra bucks on 100mhz when 2.7GHz is WAYYYY more than enough for a file server)
    MSI 760GM-E31
    Samsung F2 7200rpm 1tb (initial disk and for higher speed transfers. Looking at dropping a second disk, probably an F4 5400rpm 2tb drive in later)

    Everything you listed is fine, but I'd go with the lower spec Sempron to save a couple of bucks. You'll notice no performance or power consumption difference with the faster processor.

    Picos are all fine and nice, but the cost is a lot more betweenn the Pico and power brick...and I doubt they are much more efficient when you have to include the efficiency of the power brick and also the Pico itself (figure around 80-85% for the power brick, for a good efficient one, and around 92-95% for the Pico for a final figure of maybe 75-78% efficient...the Earthwatts is about 72% efficent at 25w draw and around 80% efficient at 80w).

    For the difference of maybe 1 or maybe 2w of power consumption difference, at most, you are paying a fair amount more. At average US utility rates that is $1-2 per year if the thing is on 24/7/365 idling. In sleep mode, you'd probably see even less power consumption difference and less cost difference.

    Power efficiency is great to a point, but unless you have a max cap because the install is in something like an RV or boat, 1 or 2 watts really is nothing.
     
  7. Shikkari

    Shikkari I know what a Dremel is XD

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    Well lots of information here, thanks to everyone for the information.

    Flibblebot, I don't know why I want freeNAS and Ubuntu it was getting a bit late and I was tired, but I think the reason was so I could surf the web but that was probably a silly idea. Also the unRAID seems quite good, definitely suits my needs so I'll think about it.

    Thanks for every letting me know the specs are okay, I was hoping they are. :)

    And regarding the Pico PSU, I'm undecided about it, I have never heard of them before so I did some research and they seem good, but it's so much easier to buy a normal PSU. :/

    Anyone got any more information about Pico compared to normal PSU?

    Thanks again!!!
     
  8. Bumfluff101

    Bumfluff101 Minimodder

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    There is some good info on SFF builds and Pico's here
     
  9. cpl

    cpl Minimodder

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    PicoPSU + SMPS is a bit more efficient than you think. Check SPCR.

    The average efficieny of the SMPS bundled with the PicoPSU from the PicoPSU manufacturer is 87%, the PicoPSU is 96%+ optimum.

    From the SPCR review, you'll get 85% if you 50% load your SMPS (87%+ optimum) combined with a PicoPSU. 25 W is a good case to look at considering as a home NAS is idle most of the time, so you can easily get 10%+ better than the Earthwatts for such a NAS :)

    The compactness and silence appeal to me too. However, you pay your money and you take your choice as it's US$65 for a 80W SMPS/Pico bundle, way more expensive than an Earthwatts 380.
     
  10. azazel1024

    azazel1024 What's a Dremel?

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    Normal PSU is easier.

    I mentioned approximate efficiencies.

    Total power supply efficiency of a Pico between the Pico itself and power brick (you have to buy one seperately) is about 80% basically through out its range and the bigger bricks and Picos can handle about 150w (which is overkill for anything file server related if a low power build. Heck my desktop with 2 HDD, SSD and core 2 duo only sucks about 120W at max power consumption, about 65w at idle). The Antec Earthwatts 380D is about 72% efficient at 25w and about 80% efficient at 50w (over 80% efficient above that).

    If your system had a DC draw of 25w at idle and 50w at maximum power consumption (probably in that range for what you are building) you'd see about 31/62w draw with a Pico's efficiency and about 34/62w power draw with the 380d Earthwatts. Sleep power consumption will be effectively the same as it is going to be stupidly low (my PC draws 1.8-2.2w in S3 sleep mode from the wall, admittedly that is not with WoL enabled, but I doubt that would add more than a couple of watts to your sleep power budget).

    If the machine spends most of its time in S3 sleep, say 80% in S3 sleep, 10% idle and 10% partial or full load you might see a savings of about $1 per year on your low power setup. At a cost of, at least when I was looking in to Picos, about $30-50 above and beyond the cost of something like the Earthwatts.

    Picos are best for setups where case size is at an absolute minimum and you don't want to have to fit even an ITX sized PSU in to the case. When power consumptions get as low as we are talking, 4-5% extra efficiency buys you very little actual wallet, or even environmental power savings.

    Its like a hybrid car versus a small sedan. My Dad'd Prisus in the summer gets and admirable 51mpg on average. My Mazda 3i gets an average 40mpg in the summer. Its a difference of 25% or so, which is nice...but 12,000 miles a year means a savings of 65 gallons of gas. Nothing to sneer at, but not all that much when you think of the hybrid premium cost involved. Now 25% improve fuel economy on a medium sized SUV that averaged 18mpg before, and gets 22.5mpg now in the same 12,000 miles would mean a savings of 132 gallons...much more impressive.

    Sub 100w power consumption PCs deserve some attention to power supply efficiency, but not at any great expense. Even at 100w a 5% improvement in efficiency for something that burned 100w 24/7/365 is $~5 and ~44kw/hr. 5% improvement in efficiency for something that burns 500w on the other hand would be $~25 and ~220kw/hr.

    So if you are purely looking at it from the point of view of economics, it just isn't worth more than a very small handful of dollars/pounts to get improved efficiency. Maybe a few bucks on a build such as this, but not much more than that.

    One thing to keep in mind though, some of the bargin basement power supplies get truely appaling efficiency, we are talking 40-60% in low power consumption applications. Some of them also suck a lot of power at a minum, several watts all on their own, so in sleep mode you'd have much higher power consumption because the PSU itself is going to use 3-10w (and would be the same while off!) this is in addition to what the PC itself is going to use in sleep mode.

    So it is worth it to move up to an 80+ rated PSU at a minimum, as most have much better low power efficiencies than the bargain basement PSUs, and also significantly better sleep/off power consumption numbers. Beyond the cheapest of the high efficiency power supplies, spending anymore probably just isn't worth it unless you are talking a use case of years being constantly on, with no sleep mode use at all.
     
  11. azazel1024

    azazel1024 What's a Dremel?

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    Hmm, efficiency is a little higher than I had thought. Still ends up being 83.5% total power supply efficiency at optimal and 82.6% in lower power scenarios. As you mentioned, about 10% higher efficiency, but that still only translates to maybe 2-4w at idle and less at higher power draws as the Earthwatts' efficiency climbs a lot faster than the SPCR's does, spread would maybe more like 1-3w at full load.

    For a silent and/or compact system its great, or power draw on a low power system is critical its great, but if the system is out of the way its probably not the way to go.

    My PC is about as silent as I can get it with a fan controller, Gelid silent spirit and 5 80mm silent Gelid fans (one on the passive 5570 heatsink). Corsair 430cx PSU. Thing makes a bit of noise at first power on, but the room has to be pretty quite to hear it once everything is done its initial spool up even sitting right at my desk. Runs really cool even at full system load.

    I haven't heard an Earthwatts 380d, but with that in the case you could probably get away without using any case cooling, or maybe a single low speed 120mm case fan drawing air in. Run the CPU's cooler with dynamic MB fan speed control with a very low speed and some undervolting and you probably wouldn't hear it resume from sleep if you were standing 10ft away in a quite room.
     
  12. cpl

    cpl Minimodder

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    Yes indeed.... definately not going to save any money worth talking about on your electricity bill with a 2 W saving :)
     
  13. Shikkari

    Shikkari I know what a Dremel is XD

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    Very interesting information, it's very much appreciated.

    Well I was just about go with a normal PSU when I realised that the case that I've brought has a specially built PSU fitted into it, and it's extra small, so I can't fit a normal size PSU into the case. :wallbash: So it looks like I'm going to have to go with the Pico PSU and spend that extra cash.
     
  14. law99

    law99 Custom User Title

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    unRaid sounds interesting.
     
  15. Da_Rude_Baboon

    Da_Rude_Baboon What the?

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    After a week of banging my head against Linux I would not recommend Amahi. :eyebrow:
     
  16. Flibblebot

    Flibblebot Smile with me

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    unRAID. No head banging required :D
     
  17. scott_chegg

    scott_chegg Minimodder

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    FreeNAS. No head banging at all.
     
  18. cpl

    cpl Minimodder

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    Perhaps a micro ATX PSU would fit? Such as this one from Be Quiet? Your case is advertised as 'micro ATX', but you'd have to check :)

    I'm not sure about the efficiencies and noise on that Be Quiet PSU at low load, but I think it's a good brand. Others may help with details if it will fit???
     
  19. azazel1024

    azazel1024 What's a Dremel?

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    There are some micro ATX PSU that are bronze rated that are still only around $40. You might want to do a little research on the one in the case, but a lot of "case supplied" power supplies are the really cheap, super low efficiency kind. That said, personally I'd build the rest of the box, get it up and running and attach it to something like a Kill-o-watt meter and see what it is drawing. If it seems kind of high, especially in sleep mode or off, I'd go with a high efficiency PSU as the case supplied one is probably low efficiency then.

    Example of small form factor power supply that is cheap Seasonic PSU
     
  20. Shikkari

    Shikkari I know what a Dremel is XD

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    Thanks for the help everyone, I'm going to take your advice azazel1024 and build the rest of the box and then look at what wattage its using then decide on whether I need a new PSU.

    Many thanks everyone!!
     

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