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Newbie wants to build NAS + DCS server + Chia mining rig + Video surveillance server

chnapo
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Hi guys. So the current state: I am running about 100 TB of HDDs mining Chia on one machine, Z170 + 16GB RAM + some early 14nm Pentium. For personal storage I have Zyxel NAS326 with a single 5TB WD Red and I am a fan of DCS: World game/flight sim, I ocasionally create a server to play with my friends on my personal PC. I also live in Slovakia and our salaries are 1/10-1/5 of what you lucky guys in USA/Canada can enjoy. So I am looking for a really cheap solution.

Here is my stream of thoughts and plans, please feel free to correct me or suggest something better if I am going the wrong way.

What I want to do: NAS - I want my files a little more secure in case of a drive failure. I also want more space. So I want dedicate 4 WD Red 4TBs from Chia mining (instead of the one 5TB) to create a RAID 5, that will provide me roughly 12TB of storage and one drive can safely fail.

Besides that, we got some mildly sketchy guys knocking on our doors, so we would like to set up a camera and need a place for it to record.

Besides that, I am a big fan of DCS: World and would like to host a small server for 8, possibly 10-16 players to play missions with my friends or publicly. The requirements are not very exact, minimum: i3 (I am guessing a dual-core 2+ gen) 2.8 GHz, 4/8GB RAM and iGPU, recommended i5 3+ GHz (I am again guessing 4-core 2+ gen) 8/16G GB RAM and iGPU. In both cases it should be DX11 compatible.

So the easiest to set up is to buy a new NAS, keep the chia rig as it is and
Cheapest 4-bay NAS here is ZYXEL NAS542 priced at around 280 EUR (1 eur = 1.13 USD = 1.42 CAD) and it is not the best machine in the world, while already being more expensive than I hope for, solving only 2 out of my 4 use cases. So I would like to try and unite these 4 things into one machine.

Option 1: Upgrade the chia rig to i5/i7 and with some VM magic that I am not yet aware of, make it run something like freeNAS for the NAS part and Windows for Chia mining and DCS server and I am not sure how the video surveillance would fit in, but either of these could handle it as well? I would actually prefer to run it on Windows with Chia, because for that I have WD Purple drives that are meant for surveillance, instead of WD Red made for NAS. I am not sure how the board would handle it and how I could use my mouse, keyboard, LAN connection etc. if there are 2 VMs or if it at all can run VMs, or if I have to use VMs at all. Also not sure if 4 cores would be quite enough for all this, but maybe yes.

Option 2: Sell all the motherboards and CPUs that I have and buy some older server goodies, some 4+ core 32nm or 22nm Xeon, cheap DDR3 server RAM (I could easily get 32GB for like 60 eur) etc. and run it that way.

I would highly appreciate if anyone was willing to help me pull that off or find a different solution.

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Id be tempted to use the chia server. What specs and os does it have now? If its windows, you can just make a raid with storage spaces, and then make a network share in windows. Then you can easily add drives from the chia pool as needed to the nas drive pool. Then you can create vms using hyper-v on that host. The pentium should be fine for a few vms and nas use though, so id just try the current hardware first.

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2 hours ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

Id be tempted to use the chia server. What specs and os does it have now? If its windows, you can just make a raid with storage spaces, and then make a network share in windows. Then you can easily add drives from the chia pool as needed to the nas drive pool. Then you can create vms using hyper-v on that host. The pentium should be fine for a few vms and nas use though, so id just try the current hardware first.

Thanks, I will try. Currently it runs W10 from an SSD, but the pentium just barely makes it run. But it is true that NAS could be fine with pentium and for DCS server I would update the CPU as per need. Can I create raid in windows? I doubt the motherboard has raid controller, or does it? Should be Asus prime z170 and I want raid5.

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8 minutes ago, chnapo said:

Can I create raid in windows?

Yup, storage spaces in windows can do this.

 

Id just give it a shot, wy not.

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15 hours ago, Electronics Wizardy said:

Yup, storage spaces in windows can do this.

 

Id just give it a shot, wy not.

So you would just share the drive over network? Because I am currently using some of the NAS functionality, such as my TV recognizing it and I am sure it doesn´t recognize any folders that I share on my PC. I think the Zyxel NAS has some media server function or something. So I thought some additional software would be needed in order for it to be somewhat equal to a prebuilt NAS. That´s why I mentioned the VMs, I imagined I would somehow do some linux magic and have NAS in that way 😄 also is Windows RAID safe? What if a drive is lost, can it be rebuilt? What if the OS is broken, can a different machine recover my RAID?

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5 hours ago, chnapo said:

So you would just share the drive over network?

Yup, its the exact same smb share that almost all nases use

 

5 hours ago, chnapo said:

such as my TV recognizing it and I am sure it doesn´t recognize any folders that I share on my PC.

What type of shares can it mount? Might have to setup something like plex if it doesn't like smb shares

 

5 hours ago, chnapo said:

also is Windows RAID safe?

Yea fiarly safe, but always have backups

 

5 hours ago, chnapo said:

What if a drive is lost, can it be rebuilt?

If setup with redundancy it can be

 

5 hours ago, chnapo said:

What if the OS is broken, can a different machine recover my RAID?

Yup, any system with windows 10 can read the raid array.

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