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Getting started with a NAS

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Getting started with a NAS


In these topics we will give some guidelines for building and using a NAS. You can find how you should pick your parts, how to set it up and you'll even find example builds. These build are a good start, but you'll have to see what components are available in your region for what price.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

4-Bay NAS Example build

Note: this system is build with FreeNAS in mind, if you want to run Windows on this, please use a proper boot device.

 
The Case
For the case I picked the Fractal Design Node 304, it's compact, elegant and does the job.

fractaldes.jpgfractaxox.jpg


The CPU
I picked the Intel Celeron G1610, it's cheap and handles this 4-bay NAS perfectly. It has integrated graphics, so no extra video card is needed.

intelceler.jpg


The Motherboard
The MSI B75IA-E33 is the best bang for the buck ITX motherboard that I could find. It has all the features we need for this NAS.

msib75iae3.jpg


The RAM
I just went with some generic Kingston ECC memory, 2x KVR1333D3E9S/4G for a total of 8GB.

kingstonec.jpg


The NIC
We are limited by the board here because we only have 1 expansion slot, so we are going to use the on-board NIC.


The HBA/RAID card
I decided to with a dedicated RAID card on this one because the price is not that high, but the performance is that much better. The HighPoint RocketRAID 2710 has 1 SFF-8087 connector that we can split up to 4 SATA 6GB/s connectors.

highpointr.jpg


The Power supply
We have a lot of options here, but keep in mind that this system will be running 24/7, so a good quality PSU is a must. I went with the Corsair CX430, this one is worldwide available, unlike the VS series.

corsaircx4.jpg


The boot drive
FreeNAS only needs a 2GB boot drive, preferably, a USB stick, so I did precisely that, the SanDisk Cruzer Fit 4GB, it is compact, so you don't accidently break it of.

sandiskcru.jpg


The Storage drives
I picked WD RED drives, because they are still cheaper in most places here in Europe and perform pretty much the same. The capacity is completely up to you.

wdred3tb.jpg


Other stuff
You will also need a breakout cable to go from a SFF-8087 connector to 4 SATA connectors.

highpointi.jpg




That is all the stuff you need to build your very own FreeNAS 4-bay NAS server. If you want to modify stuff, be sure to check out the 'Building a NAS. How do you start?' guide to see what to look for.
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Posted · Original PosterOP

6-Bay NAS Example build

Note: this system is build with FreeNAS in mind, if you want to run Windows on this, please use a proper boot device.

 
The Case
For the case I picked the Fractal Design Node 304, it's compact, elegant and does the job.

fractaldes.jpgfractaxox.jpg


The CPU
I picked the Intel Celeron G1610, it's cheap and handles this 6-bay NAS perfectly. It has integrated graphics, so no extra video card is needed.

intelceler.jpg


The Motherboard
The MSI B75IA-E33 is the best bang for the buck ITX motherboard that I could find. It has all the features we need for this NAS.

msib75iae3.jpg


The RAM
I just went with some generic Kingston ECC memory, 1x KVR1333D3E9SK2/16G for a total of 16GB.

kingstonec.jpg


The NIC
We are limited by the board here because we only have 1 expansion slot, so we are going to use the on-board NIC.


The HBA/RAID card
I decided to with a dedicated RAID card on this one because the price is not that high, but the performance is that much better. The HighPoint RocketRAID 2720SGL has 2 SFF-8087 connector that we can split up to 8 SATA 6GB/s connectors.

highpojxj.jpg


The Power supply
We have a lot of options here, but keep in mind that this system will be running 24/7, so a good quality PSU is a must. I went with the Corsair CX430, this one is worldwide available, unlike the VS series.

corsaircx4.jpg


The boot drive
FreeNAS only needs a 2GB boot drive, preferably, a USB stick, so I did precisely that, the SanDisk Cruzer Fit 4GB, it is compact, so you don't accidently break it of.

sandiskcru.jpg


The Storage drives
I picked WD RED drives, because they are still cheaper in most places here in Europe and perform pretty much the same. The capacity is completely up to you.

wdred3tb.jpg


Other stuff
You will also need 2 breakouts cable to go from a SFF-8087 connector to 4 SATA connectors.

highpointi.jpg


You will also need some SATA power splitters.

satapowers.jpg




That is all the stuff you need to build your very own FreeNAS 6-bay NAS server. If you want to modify stuff, be sure to check out the 'Building a NAS. How do you start?' guide to see what to look for.
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Posted · Original PosterOP

8-Bay NAS Example build

Note: this system is build with FreeNAS in mind, if you want to run Windows on this, please use a proper boot device.

 
The Case
For the case I picked the Fractal Design Midi R2. A nice sleek case with support for 8 drives and ATX boards.

fractaafa.jpg


The CPU
I picked the Intel Celeron G1610, it's cheap and handles this 8-bay NAS perfectly. It has integrated graphics, so no extra video card is needed.

intelceler.jpg


The Motherboard
The MSI B75A-G41 is a good board, it has 2 16x PCIe slots, so we have some room to expand.

msib75ag41.jpg


The RAM
I just went with some generic Kingston ECC memory, 1x KVR1333D3E9SK2/16G for a total of 16GB.

kingstonec.jpg


The NIC
We have some room to add a nice NIC here, so I decided to add a dual NIC card, the Intel PRO/1000 PT Dual Port to be precise.

intelpro10.jpg


The HBA/RAID card
I decided to with a dedicated RAID card on this one because the price is not that high, but the performance is that much better. The HighPoint RocketRAID 2720SGL has 2 SFF-8087 connector that we can split up to 8 SATA 6GB/s connectors.

highpojxj.jpg


The Power supply
We have a lot of options here, but keep in mind that this system will be running 24/7, so a good quality PSU is a must. I went with the Corsair CX430, this one is worldwide available, unlike the VS series.

corsaircx4.jpg


The boot drive
FreeNAS only needs a 2GB boot drive, preferably, a USB stick, so I did precisely that, the SanDisk Cruzer Fit 4GB, it is compact, so you don't accidently break it of.

sandiskcru.jpg


The Storage drives
I picked WD RED drives, because they are still cheaper in most places here in Europe and perform pretty much the same. The capacity is completely up to you.

wdred3tb.jpg


Other stuff
You will also need 2 breakouts cable to go from a SFF-8087 connector to 4 SATA connectors.

highpointi.jpg


You will also need some SATA power splitters.

satapowers.jpg




That is all the stuff you need to build your very own FreeNAS 8-bay NAS server. If you want to modify stuff, be sure to check out the 'Building a NAS. How do you start?' guide to see what to look for.
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Posted · Original PosterOP

16-Bay NAS Example build

Note: this system is build with FreeNAS in mind, if you want to run Windows on this, please use a proper boot device.

 
The Case
We're at the point where normal computer cases can not handle the amount of drives we need, so we will go with server cases. I picked the Norco RPC-4216. It has 16 hotswap bays and plenty of airflow.

norcorpc42.jpg


The CPU
I picked the Intel Pentium G2020 for this one, it's a bit more powerful the the Celeron and not much more expensive. It should handle this NAS perfectly. It has integrated graphics, so no extra video card is needed.

intelpenti.jpg


The Motherboard
The MSI B75A-G41 is a good board, it has 2 16x PCIe slots, so we have some room to expand.

msib75ag41.jpg


The RAM
I just went with some generic Kingston ECC memory, 2x KVR1333D3E9SK2/16G for a total of 32GB.

kingstonec.jpg


The NIC
We have some room to add a nice NIC here, so I decided to add a dual NIC card, the Intel PRO/1000 PT Dual Port to be precise.

intelpro10.jpg


The HBA/RAID card
I decided to with a dedicated RAID card on this one because the performance is that much better then onboard when you go with this amount of drives. The HighPoint RocketRAID 2740 has 4 SFF-8087 connector that we can split up to 16 SATA 6GB/s connectors.

highpohgh.jpg


The Power supply
We have a lot of options here, but keep in mind that this system will be running 24/7, so a good quality PSU is a must. I went with the Corsair TX650.

corsairtx6.jpg


The boot drive
FreeNAS only needs a 2GB boot drive, preferably, a USB stick, so I did precisely that, the SanDisk Cruzer Fit 4GB, it is compact, so you don't accidently break it of.

sandiskcru.jpg


The Storage drives
I picked WD RED drives, because they are still cheaper in most places here in Europe and perform pretty much the same. The capacity is completely up to you.

wdred3tb.jpg


Other stuff
You will also need 4 SFF-8087 cables.

highpoigi.jpg




That is all the stuff you need to build your very own FreeNAS 16-bay NAS server. If you want to modify stuff, be sure to check out the 'Building a NAS. How do you start?' guide to see what to look for.
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Posted · Original PosterOP

24-Bay NAS Example build

Note: this system is build with FreeNAS in mind, if you want to run Windows on this, please use a proper boot device.

 
The Case
We're at the point where normal computer cases can not handle the amount of drives we need, so we will go with server cases. I picked the Norco RPC-4216. It has 16 hotswap bays and plenty of airflow.




The CPU
I picked the Intel Pentium G2020 for this one, it's a bit more powerful the the Celeron and not much more expensive. It should handle this NAS perfectly. It has integrated graphics, so no extra video card is needed.

intelpenti.jpg


The Motherboard
The MSI B75A-G41 is a good board, it has 2 16x PCIe slots, so we have some room to expand.

msib75ag41.jpg


The RAM
I just went with some generic Kingston ECC memory, 2x KVR1333D3E9SK2/16G for a total of 32GB.

kingstonec.jpg


The NIC
We have some room to add a nice NIC here, so I decided to add a quad NIC card, the Intel PRO/1000 PT Quad Port to be precise.

intelpiji.jpg


The HBA/RAID card
I decided to with a dedicated RAID card on this one because the performance is that much better then onboard when you go with this amount of drives. The HighPoint RocketRAID 2760A has 6 SFF-8087 connector that we can split up to 24 SATA 6GB/s connectors.

highpoifi.jpg


The Power supply
We have a lot of options here, but keep in mind that this system will be running 24/7, so a good quality PSU is a must. I went with the Corsair HX850.

corsairhx8.jpg


The boot drive
FreeNAS only needs a 2GB boot drive, preferably, a USB stick, so I did precisely that, the SanDisk Cruzer Fit 4GB, it is compact, so you don't accidently break it of.

sandiskcru.jpg


The Storage drives
I picked WD RED drives, because they are still cheaper in most places here in Europe and perform pretty much the same. The capacity is completely up to you.

wdred3tb.jpg


Other stuff
You will also need 6 SFF-8087 cables.

highpoigi.jpg




That is all the stuff you need to build your very own FreeNAS 24-bay NAS server. If you want to modify stuff, be sure to check out the 'Building a NAS. How do you start?' guide to see what to look for.
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Buying ECC ram won't do much good without an ECC capable motherboard.  The systems will probably boot but with ECC disabled.  You are going to want a board with a C2XX or C6XX chipset to get ECC working.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Buying ECC ram won't do much good without an ECC capable motherboard.  The systems will probably boot but with ECC disabled.  You are going to want a board with a C2XX or C6XX chipset to get ECC working.

As long is the CPU and the RAM both support ECC, you will be able to use it. Back in the day, when the memory controller was on the motherboard, you also needed a motherboard that supported ECC.
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Posted · Original PosterOP

Why so many posts for almost the same builds?

Also there is no real need for 8GB ram in a small NAS ...

Further I would choose a lower TDP processor like the g2030t

FreeNAS recommends 8GB or more when you use ZFS.
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As long is the CPU and the RAM both support ECC, you will be able to use it. Back in the day, when the memory controller was on the motherboard, you also needed a motherboard that supported ECC.

 

Interesting.  I just did a bit of google searching and for the most part it seems that you are correct. (TBH not a whole lot of information out there on running ECC ram on consumer boards.)  The consensus seems to be that the BIOS on the motherboard needs to be able to recognize the fact you inserted ECC ram.  Some motherboards don't have a BIOS capable of enabling ECC or support for the physical ECC lanes.

 

The biggest problem I have seen is that motherboard manufacturers don't list ECC support or even say it's not supported when it is.

 

http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z77E-ITX/?cat=Specifications

Supports DDR3 2800+(OC)/2400(OC)/2133(OC)/1866(OC)/1600/1333/1066 non-ECC, un-buffered memory

 

There was a forum thread where a guy confirmed ECC was working on this board.

 

I guess that's the main reason why I would prefer to go the server motherboard route so I know for sure it's going to work.

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Posted · Original PosterOP

Interesting.  I just did a bit of google searching and for the most part it seems that you are correct. (TBH not a whole lot of information out there on running ECC ram on consumer boards.)  The consensus seems to be that the BIOS on the motherboard needs to be able to recognize the fact you inserted ECC ram.  Some motherboards don't have a BIOS capable of enabling ECC or support for the physical ECC lanes.

 

The biggest problem I have seen is that motherboard manufacturers don't list ECC support or even say it's not supported when it is.

 

http://www.asrock.com/mb/Intel/Z77E-ITX/?cat=Specifications

 

There was a forum thread where a guy confirmed ECC was working on this board.

 

I guess that's the main reason why I would prefer to go the server motherboard route so I know for sure it's going to work.

That is true, but I also have confirmed myself that Asus and MSI support ECC memory on their boards. I will do some more testing when I get those exact motherboards in however.

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FreeNAS recommends 8GB or more when you use ZFS.

 

well alright then. I only used ubuntu server and ext4 for my home servers ;)

That was the other thing I thought is missing ... the actual software. But I see that this is still under construction.

 

kudos for making such a guide ;)


Mini-Desktop: NCASE M1 Build Log
Mini-Server: M350 Build Log

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Posted · Original PosterOP

kudos for making such a guide ;)

Thanks, I appreciate it.
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Could I pass on the info so you can add a guide on how to implement the Synology Diskstaion software on custom hardware? or is this not allowed with T@C's

 

Edit,

 

Sorry forgot to say good guide there butty...


Lian Li PC-V359WRX Micro-ATX Case | Intel 5960X Extreme 3.00GHz | ASRock Fatal1ty X99M KILLER | Crucial 32 GB 2666 DDR4 | Thermaltake NiC C5 | EVGA Supernova 1200W P2 | 2x 240GB OCZ Radeon R7 | 2x 256 GB Samsung 840 Series Pro | 2 X 120GB Samsung 840 EVO | 6x NF-F12’s | Place Holder GPU R9 290X |

Links Current 5960X Old FX9590

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Thanks for the info. i'm going to make a freenas box out of a old pc soon.


Rig CPU Intel i5 3570K at 4.2 GHz - MB MSI Z77A-GD55 - RAM Kingston 8GB 1600 mhz - GPU XFX 7870 Double D - Keyboard Logitech G710+

Case Corsair 600T - Storage Intel 330 120GB, WD Blue 1TB - CPU Cooler Noctua NH-D14 - Displays Dell U2312HM, Asus VS228, Acer AL1715

 

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24-Bay NAS Example build

Note: this system is build with FreeNAS in mind, if you want to run Windows on this, please use a proper boot device.

 

The Case

We're at the point where normal computer cases can not handle the amount of drives we need, so we will go with server cases. I picked the Norco RPC-4216. It has 16 hotswap bays and plenty of airflow.

 

 

How will you fit 24 drives in a 16 bay case?


Ryzen 5 1500x, Noctua NH-L9x65 SE-AM4, GA-AB350N, 16GB 1600Mhz, EVGA GTX 970, 250GB Samsung 960 Evo, 120GB Samsung 840 Evo, 1TB WD Green & 2TB Seagate Barracuda. 650w OCZ ZX & Cooler Master Elite 130. Acer CB241HQK 4K, LG IPS234V-PN 1080p, Ducky Zero Shine All Blue/Anne Pro Brown & Razer Naga 2014

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Not to be cocky here, but don't you think this a little bit one-sided?

 

Not everyone needs the same setup (both hardware and software wise). Threads like these would be way better if they explained

  1. What a NAS is
  2. Why you would want one (not everyone will benefit from it)
  3. Different types of NASes available

FreeNAS may be fine and dandy, but often times, it's better to go with a fully fledged OS (both Windows and Linux) for flexibility reasons. Same with ZFS: not everyone needs its capabilities and you can cut costs quite a bit by not using it, thus saving you money on the heaps of RAM you would otherwise need.

 

Also, if you are using software RAID, then why go for a RAID card? An HBA should be sufficient.

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