What cheap NAS should I be looking in to? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 12:24 AM - Thread Starter
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The linksys NSLU2 seems to have a lot of firmware hacks.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=NSLU2+hack


any input on what NAS I should be looking at?
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post #2 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 07:21 AM
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i put a simpletech 250 in my basement a few weeks ago. all my music is now on it, so i can access it from any pc in the house. in fact, i am listening to led zep 2 right now. the audio is beamed to my main stereo via a logitech music anywhere device. sounds great!

of course, the NAS box also backs up my pc data, etc.

enjoy the toys!
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post #3 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 10:07 AM
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Get one with an Ethernet interface instead of USB 2.0, unless speed is of upmost importance.
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post #4 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 11:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpruceMoose View Post

i put a simpletech 250 in my basement a few weeks ago. all my music is now on it, so i can access it from any pc in the house.

I use the SimpleTech 160Gb NAS (ethernet connection) for my streaming MP3's too. No complaints. I even put a 1080i HD recording on it for a test... it streamed perfectly to my desktop computer too.

"If we ain't outta here in ten minutes, we won't need no rocket to fly through space."
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post #5 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 11:45 AM
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I can't cite the reference, but I remember reading somewhere that someone could not get their Buffalo Terastation NAS to work well with Dvarchive. I don't remember the details and they may have solved the problem. At the time, it was enough to make me balk at buying one.

I just yesterday bought (Fry's $159) a Venus T4U USB box that holds 4 IDE drives, configurable to treat them as one volume, 4 separate, lots of combination in between. I have been goggling to try to find some user comments, found a few with decent reports, few dissents. I am not sure that I want to committ terabytes worth of recordings to the JBOD scheme, have concerns about recovery if the JBOD fails. If anyone is interested in the results, post here and I will reply. FYI; Newegg has them for $129+$7 shipping.

Hope that helps.
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post #6 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 12:09 PM - Thread Starter
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ybdbdoo,

you can run the venus t4u without the jbod scheme, just 4 unaltered ntfs drives as 4 seperate volumes, correct?

screw jbod

.....

perhaps the trick is to find a case that fits 4 hds and a nano-atx mobo, and a big quiet fan(i remember now, that junk is overpriced)

dsidecomment: I also really don't understand people's visions of case cooling
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post #7 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 01:03 PM
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That is my hope, ie, that unaltered drives will work, still through one cable, hopefully muxed well enough to not stutter on streaming. I am going to put some already loaded NTFS drives into the enclosure, see how that works. If sucessful, it is what I need. The documentation is a one pager that does not address any of these fine points. I will post what I come up with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by icecow View Post

ybdbdoo,

you can run the venus t4u without the jbod scheme, just 4 unaltered ntfs drives as 4 seperate volumes, correct?

screw jbod

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post #8 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 01:55 PM - Thread Starter
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thanks. take your time. i'll be watching for the post
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post #9 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 02:04 PM
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icecow, make sure you look at the Kuro Box and Synology. They are amazing if you want something to hack and tweak. Lots of reviews available online for these if you google. They even have (optional) built-in torrent clients.
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post #10 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 02:27 PM - Thread Starter
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it seems anything that is both cheap and good house only one HD (correct me if I'm wrong).

All of the nobrainers are way overpriced (correct me if I'm wrong).

My strategy is to find a 'dumb box' that houses 4 HDs, and (and before I put oodles of time researching) let all the real NAS technology rippen, cheapen, and also let the hacks rippen/easy install/docs less turgid*.

*Excessively ornate or complex in style or language; grandiloquent
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post #11 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 04:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icecow View Post

it seems anything that is both cheap and good house only one HD (correct me if I'm wrong).

All of the nobrainers are way overpriced (correct me if I'm wrong).

My strategy is to find a 'dumb box' that houses 4 HDs, and (and before I put oodles of time researching) let all the real NAS technology rippen, cheapen, and also let the hacks rippen/easy install/docs less turgid*.

*Excessively ornate or complex in style or language; grandiloquent

why is four a magic number for you?
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post #12 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 04:50 PM - Thread Starter
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because i have a lot of IDE drives

and because I will have 2 drives going most of the time, sometimes 3, and 4 when I'm reorganizing stuff between drives
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post #13 of 91 Old 01-28-2007, 05:09 PM
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so it doesn't sound like you're using this for backup, just for general storage. if so, why not get a couple of IDE PCI cards and put them inside a PC (assuming you leave the PC on 24/7, of course). And did you check out Kuro Box and Synology? They rock!
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post #14 of 91 Old 01-29-2007, 12:20 AM - Thread Starter
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I could make a box but I'm trying to free my mind and time from maintainence and annoying glitches.

...

I skimmed about 40 pages and read about 20 pages (mostly about the Kuro). unfortunately as usual the what i read happened not to cover the first questions I wanted to know.

Kuro looks good, but I don't want to afford the time to fool with it.

I'm still wondering if the Kuro handles only 1 drive or what. perhaps it handles additional drives through its usb port(s) (if it has usb ports). I already forget what I read.

btw your synology link is broke. I went to the website/products, but dont know which model you meant. I guessed it was the lowest non-usb home model, which promptly didn't list a price. I wonder if it can house more than 1 HD, i bet it's expensive.

This is the exact sort of torture I didn't want to get into.


somehow i did run in to this useful site:
http://www.smallnetbuilder.com/conte...nt/view/85/93/

I'm sure there's a perfect NAS out there for me, but I'd rather get a dumb box and use it till information about the worlds best cheapst NAS comes to me.

...

what I still think i want:
>simple/dumb
>house 4 (at least two)
>fan (don't like the fanless cases that house 1 HD, heat is a HDs #1 enemy)
>ethernet port to connect to router
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post #15 of 91 Old 01-29-2007, 01:30 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YBDBDOO View Post

That is my hope, ie, that unaltered drives will work, still through one cable, hopefully muxed well enough to not stutter on streaming. I am going to put some already loaded NTFS drives into the enclosure, see how that works. If sucessful, it is what I need. The documentation is a one pager that does not address any of these fine points. I will post what I come up with.

wah

I just noticed it is USB. Wish to find one just like that with an ethernet port.

I know you clearly wrote USB. The other NAS I've been reading up on has an ethernet port and lets you plug in USB drives so my brain had 'USB' flagged as 'good'.

still curious if that thing can use ntfs and no jbod. still lemme know if you can
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post #16 of 91 Old 01-29-2007, 08:09 AM
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For what it's worth, I'm pretty happy with the NSLU2 using the version of OEM firmware that supports an NTFS drive -- but I don't think that version supports a second NTFS. I tried it for a while with two drives in the native linux format [don't remember what flavor that was], but it locked up too often. Besides, I wanted to have a drive format that I could plug into one of my windows boxes should the need arise. I've never had any problem with the current firmware and a single NTFS drive. My only issue is that it won't self-boot after a power outage longer than my ups can keep it alive. I have not looked seriously at any of the hack firmware so far, nor do I use it for dvarchive streaming -- only music and backup.
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post #17 of 91 Old 01-29-2007, 08:40 AM
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Point may be moot, but the Venus T4U accepted already formatted drives without any trouble. I am using it for some downloads and streaming to see if it has any bandwidth issues, none so far.

Hope that helps.
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post #18 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icecow View Post

btw your synology link is broke. I went to the website/products, but dont know which model you meant. I guessed it was the lowest non-usb home model, which promptly didn't list a price. I wonder if it can house more than 1 HD, i bet it's expensive.

There are only 4 products. I meant http://www.synology.com/enu/products...rise/index.php. It can house 1 drive internally and 3 externally with USB 2.0, plus even more with eSATA. If you must have 4 drives internal, then http://www.synology.com/enu/products...ries/index.php but that's a lot more expensive. Prices are here at newegg: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...NE&N=0&Ntk=all The one I recommended is 229.99 USD.
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post #19 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 09:40 AM
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Use 2 nslu4's are u guys crazy with 2 hard drives each??? There are the best thing since sliced bread.

The greatest part is you can buy idea drives on the cheap and just plug them in with 0 problems up to 500G, and if you "unslug" your slug u can run itunes server, backup jobs, stream movies to your xbox...

Man the $70 for each of my slugs is worth its weight in gold.

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post #20 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 10:15 AM
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mastiff your post is unintelligible gibberish. What the heck is a slug? I sincerely hope that English is not your first language because that post was atrocious.

icecow, If you are intersted in some medium priced solutions rather than extremely low priced solutions, this is the NAS solution I'm currently dreaming about:

http://www.digitalmediapc.com/storagecenter/index.php
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post #21 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 10:31 AM
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Quote:


mastiff your post is unintelligible gibberish. What the heck is a slug? I sincerely hope that English is not your first language because that post was atrocious.

Agreed.

NSLUs are first-gen devices. I wouldn't buy them anymore. They are dated.
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post #22 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 10:42 AM
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Sorry, was typing fast, had to run to a meeting, but the "slug" is what the linux devs call the nslu4 devices.

Anyways, even being 1st gen, i have nothing but good things to say about the slugs.

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post #23 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 11:47 AM - Thread Starter
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'slug' and 'unslung' are both real (weird) nslu4 terms.

I don't have a nslu2 (there's no nslu4 I know about), but my initial minimal research led right to it as being the cheapest smart NAS with the most punch..

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NSLU2 <<---info about nslu2, unslung, slug

...

The Synology Disk Station DS-106e, DS-106j looks worth its weight in gold too..but a lot more gold.
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post #24 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 12:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djdementia View Post

mastiff your post is unintelligible gibberish. What the heck is a slug? I sincerely hope that English is not your first language because that post was atrocious.

icecow, If you are intersted in some medium priced solutions rather than extremely low priced solutions, this is the NAS solution I'm currently dreaming about:

http://www.digitalmediapc.com/storagecenter/index.php

In the same price range: http://infrant.com/products/products...dyNAS%20NVPlus

http://infrant.com/products/products...=ReadyNAS%20X6
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post #25 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 06:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Those look $grand$ but I'd rather spend $62(shipped)(just did(ebay)) for a NSLU2 and spend ~$1138 on something else*. By not having an extra $1138 I'm also saving a lot in interest by not buying something else for $1138.

*http://www.netmba.com/econ/micro/cost/opportunity/
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post #26 of 91 Old 01-30-2007, 06:38 PM - Thread Starter
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Here's another interesting NAS route (for another day when prices drop).

itx-pico or nano motherboard:
http://www.linuxdevices.com/news/NS2154184680.html

NAS (free) software:
Openfiler (linux)
http://www.openfiler.com/about/
or
freenas
http://www.freenas.org/ (bsd) (fits on small thumbdrive)
unRAID Server(basic free, hmm, hope this isn't a hostage situation)
http://www.lime-technology.com/


small case that fits ~4 HDs with nice airflow:
?

edit: the comments here look prry informative. I'll have to look at them later, but don't want to forget:
http://www.digg.com/linux_unix/OpenF...S_Than_FreeNAS
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post #27 of 91 Old 01-31-2007, 08:09 AM
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I didn't realize you were entertaining the idea of do-it-yourself. Now that I know that, you should also consider RAID 5 on Windows 2000/XP without additional hardware. Here are a few links on it, but there are plenty more out there.

http://www.tomshardware.com/2004/11/...raid_5_happen/
http://www.tomshardware.com/2001/09/...onal_hardware/
http://www.techimo.com/articles/index.pl?photo=149

The nice thing about this solution is that you can take the drives, attach them to any Windows 2000/XP machine with standard IDE or SATA hardware, and (after a minute of configuration) access the RAID array. In other words, if any of the hardware (mobo, cpu, ram, etc) crashes or you want to upgrade said hardware, data isn't lost. This isn't true with most RAID implementations: generally, if the RAID controller fails, the RAID array is completely lost unless you can get the exact same RAID controller again.

Of course, this requires you to leave the PC on 24/7 in order for it to be NAS.
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post #28 of 91 Old 01-31-2007, 04:48 PM - Thread Starter
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I fell off the boat making a raid5 for the following reasons (or possibly misconceptions):
>the drives have to be the same size (a 200 gig drive, 300 gig drive and 400 gig drive would all have to be formated to 200 gig)
>windows and raid5 don't mix in my mind
>If I have a 4 drive raid, and lose 2 drives I've lost everything.
>If I have a 4 drive raid it would take effort and risk to downsize it to 2 drives if i decided I didn't need 4 drives running all the time
>I'm afraid I might destroy my data as I learned raid5 (new skill, minus a decade+ of data)
>I have so many small HDs I think it might just be simpler to backup an entire duplicate of everything I have and store them in a seperate location

The two things that get me most is not being able to pull a single drive and get data from it, and not being able to use various sized drives in the raid.

I have no experience with raid5 but it looks to me that the complex system is more dangerous then simply using the money to make a full duplicate of all data on backup drives.

...

The reason I've talked about different ways of doing things (USB NAS, pico-pc nas, etc) is the same reason I haven't made one yet. I just can't decide. I don't trust software based raids at all and don't particulary trust hardware raids. For one, if I get a raid5 pci card and have a hardware problem with it can I assure myself the same model card will still be availible in the market? These are the little things that nag me. the big nag is I can't even remember all of the little nags at the same time.

I'll give you credit that the synology looks like the most worthwhile option for me right now, but I'm pulling the belt in and got a NSLU2 from ebay for cheap. If I quickly move to a synology or a raid box I'll just shove the NSLU2 down someone's throat, who ~2 years down the road will nonchalantly admit having one was a good idea.

I have my eye on the synology, and will wait till raids can do varying sized drives. The 'unraid' link I left above might have said it does varying size drives. Will have to check again. So many options, so little trust.
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post #29 of 91 Old 01-31-2007, 06:43 PM
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Well, give us info on the NSLU2 you bought.

the www.gbpvr.com advocate
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post #30 of 91 Old 01-31-2007, 07:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grimholtz View Post

I didn't realize you were entertaining the idea of do-it-yourself. Now that I know that, you should also consider RAID 5 on Windows 2000/XP without additional hardware. Here are a few links on it, but there are plenty more out there.

http://www.tomshardware.com/2004/11/...raid_5_happen/
http://www.tomshardware.com/2001/09/...onal_hardware/
http://www.techimo.com/articles/index.pl?photo=149

The nice thing about this solution is that you can take the drives, attach them to any Windows 2000/XP machine with standard IDE or SATA hardware, and (after a minute of configuration) access the RAID array. In other words, if any of the hardware (mobo, cpu, ram, etc) crashes or you want to upgrade said hardware, data isn't lost. This isn't true with most RAID implementations: generally, if the RAID controller fails, the RAID array is completely lost unless you can get the exact same RAID controller again.

Of course, this requires you to leave the PC on 24/7 in order for it to be NAS.

opps. when I saw you talking about a software raid I thought it was stuff I already knew and started skimming.

I read it again carefully. Good info. Software raid does aliviate the 'find and replace identical hardware' problem.

...

dvasco,
What information are you looking for?. There is one model number and I'm presently ignorant if there differences in revision numbers, except that the old ones are underclocked(crippled) but can be uncrippled.

here's the wiki
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NSLU2
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