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The Old Myron Siren

Home Server Usage Ideas

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I've recently built a server to use in my home consisting of the following parts:

 

Rosewill 4U Server Chassis

Two Xeon x5690

A Gigabyte GA-7TESM Motherboard

A Radeon 7770 HD

72GB of DDR3 ECC RAM

Six 4TB Mid-Line Drives at 7.2K RPM

One 3TB HDD from an external WD Drive

One 8TB HDD from an external WD Drive

One 120GB PNY SSD for the OS

One 750W PSU (I actually am not entirely sure as to the make and model of the PSU)

 

I'm currently running two Minecraft servers on it, one open to friends and another that I use for personal usage, as well as an Emby Server that I share with close friends and family, but I feel like I'm under utilizing it. I've thought about adding in some of my extra RX580s or GTX 970s into the machine and using it as a render machine for Blender or Power Director, but that would require a serious upgrade in the PSU department.  I figured this would be the best place to go for usage ideas and to get a general opinion on the build. Any and all comments are welcomed and appreciated, thanks everybody!

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what is it with people today and posts about servers?

a lot of people seel to buy / build a server then try to find a use for it. (sorry OP just had to rant a little)

 

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1 minute ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

I figured this would be the best place to go for usage ideas and to get a general opinion on the build. Any and all comments are welcomed and appreciated, thanks everybody!

I can only mention the things I use my own server for, but, well, those things are: virtual machines for whatever I happen to need at any given moment, a git-server (Gogs), Nextcloud cloud-storage for me and others, samba for local file-sharing, printer-/scanner-server, home-automation (this entails running both an MQTT-broker and Openhab2), Zoneminder for security-cams, Plex, lxc-containers for various dev-environments (including a container for a Wordpress-site I was paid to do), mail-server, Haproxy, and I've been thinking of adding Steam-caching to it as well.

 

I make quite a lot of use of my server.


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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4 minutes ago, UrbanFreestyle said:

what is it with people today and posts about servers?

a lot of people seel to buy / build a server then try to find a use for it. (sorry OP just had to rant a little)

Curiosity, most likely. Some people just wanna play with the stuff and learn, and in the process expand their general understanding of the landspace better. I see nothing wrong with that.


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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1 minute ago, WereCatf said:

Curiosity, most likely. Some people just wanna play with the stuff and learn, and in the process expand their general understanding of the landspace better. I see nothing wrong with that.

yeah sorry, i dodnt mean to be 'that guy' just seen about 4 posts pop up today

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Just now, UrbanFreestyle said:

yeah sorry, i dodnt mean to be 'that guy' just seen about 4 posts pop up today

Aye, I get where you're coming from 😀


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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Hello WereCatf,

 

Im in the process of upgrading mine. I currently dont have a raid nas just a computer with HDDs running windows 8. Below is what I use it now for and what I want with the upgrade.

 

I completely understand the wanting to build one to expand your knowledge and tinker since thats the reason I built my windows 8 "nas" in the first place. Then I started to find more and more reasons to need one once I started to tinker and saw how useful it is. The way I see it you can have all these things run in the "background" of any computer but having a designated system thats always on running all these in the "background" of your house really makes a difference. And the benefit is that its not taking up your personal computers resources and the setup wont mind if your personal computer is not on or not on the local network. Its like a brain for your house. Figure out what you want to run in the "background" of you house and ideas will come up. Good Luck.

 

Now:

- Media Server ([Edit] all the movies and TV shows are stored on it)

-- Sonarr

-- Radarr

-- Jackett

-- Deluge

-- Kodi (this "nas" is connected to a TV.

- MetaTrader 4

- Backup for my laptop

 

With the upgraded nas:

- Everything on the before (still seeing how im going to run MetaTrader 4)

- OwnCload

- Home Assistant

- PiHole

- Backup to all the computers in my house

- Lidarr

 

 

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Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, UrbanFreestyle said:

what is it with people today and posts about servers?

a lot of people seel to buy / build a server then try to find a use for it. (sorry OP just had to rant a little)

 

Understandable, I've had the server for a few months now and like @WereCatf said, I really built it out of curiosity and wanted to see what kind of benefits/tricks I could get out of a home server.

 

1 hour ago, WereCatf said:

I can only mention the things I use my own server for, but, well, those things are: virtual machines for whatever I happen to need at any given moment, a git-server (Gogs), Nextcloud cloud-storage for me and others, samba for local file-sharing, printer-/scanner-server, home-automation (this entails running both an MQTT-broker and Openhab2), Zoneminder for security-cams, Plex, lxc-containers for various dev-environments (including a container for a Wordpress-site I was paid to do), mail-server, Haproxy, and I've been thinking of adding Steam-caching to it as well.

 

I make quite a lot of use of my server.

I've thought about setting up a cloud, but what I've done so far is just mapped some of the 4TB drives as network drives and used it that way. It seems to work great so far, but then again I've never used a proper Cloud before so maybe I don't know what I'm missing? I've heard that theres ways to turn Raspberry Pis into router based Ad Blockers, but I never really looked too far into it. Is there any way to do this with a server? Also, I have five ethernet ports on the board and I genuinely have no clue what I can use them for. I have one going into my home router at the moment, is there any benefit that I'm missing out on not utilizing all of the ports? I'm not really all that knowledgeable on servers and networking. 

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18 minutes ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

I've never used a proper Cloud before so maybe I don't know what I'm missing?

Well, for example, the Nextcloud-client keeps automatically all the files between on your cloud in sync between all the clients. Say, you change a file on your desktop, the changes are automatically synced to the server and from there to your laptop as well. There's also a phone-app for Nextcloud, so the same files can be kept in sync there as well (in the phone-app you have to manually select which ones you want to automatically downloaded to your phone and kept in sync, though, because many people have datacaps and stuff. On the desktop-client the default-setting is to keep everything on your Nextcloud-account in sync)

 

Also, the phone-app can automatically upload all pictures and videos you take on your phone up to Nextcloud. There's a setting for only uploading when the phone is connected to WiFi as well, in case you have datacaps.

 

Also, Nextcloud keeps versions of the files, so if you do like e.g. I do and keep your Keepass-database on your Nextcloud-account and for some reason the Keepass-database got corrupted, you could just log into Nextcloud and reset the file to an earlier state. Handy!

25 minutes ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

I've heard that theres ways to turn Raspberry Pis into router based Ad Blockers, but I never really looked too far into it. Is there any way to do this with a server?

Yes, you basically just do the same thing on the server -- either in a VM, if you like to separate it from your usual stuff, or not. I haven't had any need to use Pihole, so I can't really give any more guidance on that.

27 minutes ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

Also, I have five ethernet ports on the board and I genuinely have no clue what I can use them for. I have one going into my home router at the moment, is there any benefit that I'm missing out on not utilizing all of the ports? I'm not really all that knowledgeable on servers and networking.

Better networking-performance for any VM or container you run, if you give the said VM or container one ethernet-port all to itself, for example. If you e.g. ran Linux as the server's main OS and you had to run Windows in a VM because some game's dedicated server doesn't work under Linux, that dedicated server's network-performance would suffer somewhat, if all the data-traffic had to go through several translation-layers to reach the VM's virtual NIC. On the other hand, if you dedicated one of your ports to the VM so it can use it directly, there wouldn't be this loss of performance.

 

You could also turn the server into a router as well, if you wanted to. You could e.g. run Pfsense in a VM and dedicate a couple of those ports to it.


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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NAS

VM host

Compute system

Game server

Encode server/photo editing

"Home away from home," secure remote access

 

That's what I use mine for.  


"Anger, which, far sweeter than trickling drops of honey, rises in the bosom of a man like smoke."

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I was thinking of maybe putting a RX580 in there and then running HDMI cables through my walls, connecting it to various TV's through out my house. Since I use Emby as my media server, it's somewhat difficult to go it onto actual TVs seeing as none of the TVs in my home are smart TVs, so an "On TV" app is out of the question. Would I be able to utilize one GPU and then assign one of its multiple HDMI outputs to different VMs? I've never attempted VMs before or anything of the sort so I am completely clueless on the limitations and possibilities.

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21 minutes ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

I was thinking of maybe putting a RX580 in there and then running HDMI cables through my walls, connecting it to various TV's through out my house. Since I use Emby as my media server

You'd be better off just buying a couple of NVIDIA Shield TVs for that purpose. They're actually built for playing all sorts of media with a UI that's designed for the big screen.


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
21 minutes ago, WereCatf said:

You'd be better off just buying a couple of NVIDIA Shield TVs for that purpose. They're actually built for playing all sorts of media with a UI that's designed for the big screen.

Hmmm, I have about three different TV's in the house so I wouldn't really want to be dropping that much money. I know its off topic, but do you think an Amazon Fire Stick would be adequate? I do know that Emby has an app compatible with the Fire Stick, but I don't know how powerful the Fire Stick is. It seems rather small to me so I find it hard to imagine its incredibly powerful whatsoever.

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1 minute ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

Hmmm, I have about three different TV's in the house so I wouldn't really want to be dropping that much money. I know its off topic, but do you think an Amazon Fire Stick would be adequate? I do know that Emby has an app compatible with the Fire Stick, but I don't know how powerful the Fire Stick is. It seems rather small to me so I find it hard to imagine its incredibly powerful whatsoever.

No idea. Never used any Amazon-hardware nor do I plan to.


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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Posted · Original PosterOP
1 hour ago, WereCatf said:

No idea. Never used any Amazon-hardware nor do I plan to.

Figured I'd give it a shot, but thanks! I'm currently looking to install NextCloud in a Docker right now, I run windows 10 on the machine currently. Thanks again for all the suggestions everyone! 

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Well after banging my head against a wall for the last 5 hours or so, @WereCatf, my will has been broken by Docker and NextCloud. I cannot seem to figure out how to go about setting it up while still maintaining a Windows 10 OS install. Worst comes to worst, I'll have to switch over to a Linux distro over the weekend, but does anyone have any assistance they could lend me in setting this up within Docker and Windows 10?

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3 hours ago, The Old Myron Siren said:

Well after banging my head against a wall for the last 5 hours or so, @WereCatf, my will has been broken by Docker and NextCloud. I cannot seem to figure out how to go about setting it up while still maintaining a Windows 10 OS install. Worst comes to worst, I'll have to switch over to a Linux distro over the weekend, but does anyone have any assistance they could lend me in setting this up within Docker and Windows 10?

Not me, sorry. I find Windows a terrible platform for running a server and thus have zero experience with Docker or such on it.


Hand, n. A singular instrument worn at the end of the human arm and commonly thrust into somebody’s pocket.

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