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Should I build or buy a 4 terabyte NAS?

alexd

Administrator
Staff member
I need a NAS to backup stuff and I am wondering if it is cheaper to build a NAS or to buy a NAS. I am looking for the most economical way to do this...

I need maybe 4 tb mirrored in a raid and that should be sufficient for me I guess, so I would need an enclosure with either 2 or 3 slots to throw 4tb drives into, or a pre-built NAS with a 4 terabyte capacity...

Any suggestions?
 

cyberphox

New Member
I was gonna buy a Synology one, but ending up building my own FreeNas box in a Fractal Design Node 304 case. Never looked back and it's expandable up to 4 hard drives.
 

Vise

TRIBE Member
I was gonna buy a Synology one, but ending up building my own FreeNas box
Same here, I was using FreeNAS at first but switched to NAS4Free... I upgraded my PC and used the old system as a NAS box. Plenty of space to upgrade drives (can hold up to 12) and it transfers data miles faster than the old dedicated NAS enclosure I had before. Piece of cake to setup running off a USB key too.

I only have 10tb in it now but I need to add more storage pretty soon...
 

alexd

Administrator
Staff member
So is FreeNas basically a small, stand alone operating system that allows the drives in the case to be seen/accessed by a network?
 

Aaron Bradley

TRIBE Promoter
This is a great thread. I have the D-Link 321 that has 2 bays for drives. It's true, transfer speeds aren't that fast (my RAID configuration is mirrored, not striped).

Do the new enclosures take SSD drives? Is that possible today?
 
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lobo

TRIBE Member
I just bought myself the QNAP TS-420 for $329+taxes the other day. I was researching a bit on them because the current setup just wasn't doing it for me anymore.

I still have a D-Link DNS323 2-bay NAS with 2x1TB drives running RAID0 to get the most performance out of it. Best speeds out of that thing are about 13MB/sec but it's limited to that and 2TB drives. I tried FreeNAS for the past 6 months too just for shits and giggles and it was not bad. I had a spare AMD X2 system lying around and 2TB WD Green drive and I was able to get speeds of 70-80MB/sec for read/write performance. Definitely very good but the things I didn't like about it are the somewhat high requirements for having a decent system running the ZFS(?) file system and the fact that this older PC was very power hungry. I think it was running around 90watts.

The new NAS I bought hovers around 30watts or less under load and with 4 bays and it supporting 4TB drives I could go up to 12TB with one spare for protection in a RAID5 setup. That should last me a very long time as I'm just filling up my 2TB setup I have now.

Aaron Bradley, yes new enclosures (like mine) will take SSD drives but no one is doing that because SSDs are still too expensive for the amount of storage they give you.

Lobo
 

Vise

TRIBE Member
So is FreeNas basically a small, stand alone operating system that allows the drives in the case to be seen/accessed by a network?
Yep, you can basically toss a bunch of hard drives into any case and run FreeNAS off a USB key. Setup is relatively simple and then you can just map the network drives it creates on any PC/Mac.
 

Blysspluss

TRIBE Member
Synology 412+ has been good to me so far, got mine in December. If you do buy a 4-bay and use large drives(2TB or more), just remember, RAID5/6 are to be AVOIDED at all costs.

UREs are ugly. I know the SHR might be tempting, but I didn't go that route either for similar reasons.

I'm in RAID 10 and it's decent. Love having the extra apps like plex and sabnzbd runnin on the NAS itself. There's more to choose from depending on your need.
 

Aaron Bradley

TRIBE Promoter
I posted my model in error earlier. I have the DNS323 2-bay NAS.

@lobo - what do you use yours for? I only have 2x 500GB drives mirrored inside.
 
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alexd

Administrator
Staff member
Yep, you can basically toss a bunch of hard drives into any case and run FreeNAS off a USB key. Setup is relatively simple and then you can just map the network drives it creates on any PC/Mac.
That's cool!
 

lobo

TRIBE Member
I posted my model in error earlier. I have the DNS323 2-bay NAS.

@lobo - what do you use yours for? I only have 2x 500GB drives mirrored inside.
I was using it for storing my MP3s and movies. Pointed the wife's laptop to it for Windows 8's File History feature too.

Lobo
 

lobo

TRIBE Member
Synology 412+ has been good to me so far, got mine in December. If you do buy a 4-bay and use large drives(2TB or more), just remember, RAID5/6 are to be AVOIDED at all costs.

UREs are ugly. I know the SHR might be tempting, but I didn't go that route either for similar reasons.

I'm in RAID 10 and it's decent. Love having the extra apps like plex and sabnzbd runnin on the NAS itself. There's more to choose from depending on your need.
Can you expand on why RAID5/6 should be avoided? I was planning on going with RAID5 but only because I thought it was the best option. :confused:

Lobo
 
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