[geeks] Cheap Dell Servers
ploopster at gmail.com
Thu Feb 7 12:24:40 CST 2008
Francois Dion wrote:
>> Those cheap Dell servers that people have been picking up lately... do
>> their motherboards conform to a standard form-factor or are they
>> something proprietary?
>> The reason why I ask is that I've found a case which has 9 (!) 5.25"
>> open drive bays in the front for less than $110 shipped. I'd love to be
>> able to throw a few hundred dollars at the problem to get a solution as
>> beefy as an 8-core Xeon.
>> I'm building an extensible NAS box. I'll be able to fit up to fifteen
>> 1TB SATA drives in this thing, five at a time.
> You can deffinitely saturate more than 1 gig ethernet ports with that...
That's alright, because I will have more than one gig-E port on the
motherboard, I believe, and I definitely already have the switch capacity.
Whether I'll need that much bandwidth capacity is very doubtful, since
there will be, at most, two users on the NAS at any given moment.
> Compare my minuscule NAS media backend I have built. An almost free
> NAS (plus the cost of drives) with a Compaq EVO w/P4, a second 100 Mb
> ethernet card and a few 500GB usb drives (less than $100 each).
> Nexenta with no GUI as the OS, ZFS boot/root mirror on the two
> internal drives, ZFS raidz on the external drives. I dont have a
> problem recording OTA HDTV while playing a movie on my solaris media
> box, and streaming music to my phone, laptop, and wife's computer.
> HDTV stream is only 20Mb, and mp4 at most 20Mb also, but usually
> lower, while I can, thanks to ipmp, feed 20MB/s, which is plenty more.
> In fact I could record yet another OTA HDTV stream (which can contain
> up to 5 channels in SDTV) and theoretically play yet another video
> stream, although I have not tried it yet since I have yet to order a
> HDHomerun tuner.
I'll be using it for similar purposes, but I'll be buffering my
recording on the local disk of the multimedia machine (which has an
almost-empty 400GB SATA drive) and then copying onto the NAS. The NAS
will be running FreeNAS, in all likelyhood. If not that, NetBSD.
Anyway, right now I'm about to run out of space on my 1TB external USB,
and I'm tired of it. One 4TB RAID should hold me for a while. And the
ability to move to 12TB is a big plus. And there will likely be
larger-than-1TB drives in the future, which would give me drastically
larger capacity later on.
One thing I'm still trying to work out is how to set the disklabel drive
parameters for a RAID. What is the RPM of a RAID? How does one
determine a physical sector count for a virtual disk?
> I could have gone multi core, gigabit etc... But I cant even saturate
> 2 x 100 Mb/s links. That way I stay completely in the domain of stuff
> you can get for almost free (100Mb cisco switches, P4 pcs, etc).
Like I said, I already have switch capacity. I doubt I need the
capacity afforded by a multi-core box right now, but it would be nice to
have some headroom. In all likelyhood, I'll end up going with a single
dual-core Opteron now, though. It's less than half the cost.
The main cost I will be dealing with will be the ~$1250 for the first
> With Nexenta, Solaris SXCE 81 or Solaris SXDE4 (1/08), you also get
> CIFS beside of NFS on your ZFS filesystem, so visitors with their
> windows based laptops can also play music or movies that I store on
> the NAS.
That's the whole point. 8-)
I'm centralizing my home directory storage and my media file storage.
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