Anyone switch from Synology to FreeNAS? - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 23 Old 11-06-2013, 05:00 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
bigmillz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 35
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Are you happy you did? Regret it? Switch back?

Thinking about doing it (again) for something to tinker with. I've worked with FreeNAS before with no issues.
bigmillz is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 23 Old 11-06-2013, 05:15 PM
Advanced Member
 
bluechunks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Maple Grove, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 933
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 62
Just did it. No regrets, but I also went in with eyes wide open.

I wanted a few things in my new NAS as I had outgrown the Synology:

1) Media server (via NFS)
2) Time Machine backups for an iMac
3) Plex Server
4) Low power usage (for a server)
5) High reliability and data safety

FreeNAS checked all the boxes provided I could find the right hardware. After looking around a bit and reading all I could about FreeNAS I decided I wanted an Intel Haswell based system (low idle power consumption) yet had true horsepower for video transcoding when required along with lots of ECC memory for ZFS.

Server boards that supported Haswell and had digital video output were on the high end of what I wanted to spend as I was not ready to try building a headless system and I only have digital monitors.

Luckily, I stumbled across the Lenovo TS140 that has been a dream machine. FreeNAS runs great and I have five 3TB Seagate NAS drives in a RAIDZ2 with 16GB of system memory. The TS140 I selected is the i3 CPU model and cost far less for a chassis that any pricing I could have done by assembling the parts myself. One of the drives failed the first week and it was totally painless to replace which was a great confidence builder in FreeNAS.

I only need Plex for one TV with a Ruku 3 attached and the i3 cuts through transcoding like a knife through butter and doesn't break a sweat with 1080p.

There is definitely a learning curve to setup and use FreeNAS compared to Synology but luckily there are lots of guides on the internet.
bluechunks is offline  
post #3 of 23 Old 11-07-2013, 06:24 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
bigmillz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 35
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
AWESOME reply! Thank you!

I looked into that little Lenovo box and can see why you used it.

Any reason you didn't go with an i5?
What sort of throughput numbers are you seeing? I can max out a gig connection easily with my Synology, so I don't want to be one of those "I get pretty good speeds...20mb/s" stories.
You said you use it for transcoding as well, are you doing that in FreeNAS, booting another OS, running ESX, etc?
bigmillz is offline  
post #4 of 23 Old 11-07-2013, 12:00 PM
Member
 
soobaerodude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 81
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluechunks View Post

Luckily, I stumbled across the Lenovo TS140 that has been a dream machine. FreeNAS runs great and I have five 3TB Seagate NAS drives in a RAIDZ2 with 16GB of system memory. The TS140 I selected is the i3 CPU model and cost far less for a chassis that any pricing I could have done by assembling the parts myself. One of the drives failed the first week and it was totally painless to replace which was a great confidence builder in FreeNAS.

From newegg reviews, the previous model TS130 only allowed a handful of Windows OSs and Red Hat Linux to boot from an internal hard drive. Is that still the case with the TS140? Are you booting from USB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmillz View Post

AWESOME reply! Thank you!

I looked into that little Lenovo box and can see why you used it.

Any reason you didn't go with an i5?
What sort of throughput numbers are you seeing? I can max out a gig connection easily with my Synology, so I don't want to be one of those "I get pretty good speeds...20mb/s" stories.
You said you use it for transcoding as well, are you doing that in FreeNAS, booting another OS, running ESX, etc?

i5 does not have ECC support, and isn't supported on intel server chipsets. Only Pentium, i3, and Xeon
soobaerodude is offline  
post #5 of 23 Old 11-07-2013, 12:19 PM
Advanced Member
 
bluechunks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Maple Grove, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 933
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by soobaerodude View Post

From newegg reviews, the previous model TS130 only allowed a handful of Windows OSs and Red Hat Linux to boot from an internal hard drive. Is that still the case with the TS140? Are you booting from USB?
Don't know about other operating systems as I'm booting FreeNAS from a small USB flash drive.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmillz View Post

AWESOME reply! Thank you!

I looked into that little Lenovo box and can see why you used it.

Any reason you didn't go with an i5?
What sort of throughput numbers are you seeing? I can max out a gig connection easily with my Synology, so I don't want to be one of those "I get pretty good speeds...20mb/s" stories.
You said you use it for transcoding as well, are you doing that in FreeNAS, booting another OS, running ESX, etc?
As soobaerodude mentioned, the i5 does not support ECC. However, the next CPU option up from the i3 in the TS140 is a quad-core Xeon (no hyper-threading) which is essentially an i5 anyway. I figured I'd try the i3 and if I need more I can always swap out for a Xeon (4C/8T) but right now I don't see the need.

Apparently it will easily max out the gigabit network as the iMac reports ~110MB/s using AFP. In "real world" use I have served two separate 1080p streams (1:1 Blu Ray rips) while Plex transcoded a third 1080p stream. No sweat.

And speaking of transcoding, I'm only using the Plex Server add-on for FreeNAS (it's brand new) and it transcodes and streams to a Roku 3. Plex Server also has the ability to transcode for DLNA but I have not bothered with to use it as it requires some custom "profile" creation beyond anything generic.

With all five drives spinning and the unit simply streaming the kil-a-watt meter shows ~42W while during heavy transcoding it will show 70-80W. The CPU really powers down nicely when not heavily loaded. I was concerned about the TS140 having a 280W power supply but I've never observed anything more than 1/3 of that.
bluechunks is offline  
post #6 of 23 Old 11-07-2013, 12:23 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
bigmillz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 35
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by soobaerodude View Post

From newegg reviews, the previous model TS130 only allowed a handful of Windows OSs and Red Hat Linux to boot from an internal hard drive. Is that still the case with the TS140? Are you booting from USB?
i5 does not have ECC support, and isn't supported on intel server chipsets. Only Pentium, i3, and Xeon

Not quite sure what I'd be booting from yet, probably flash of some sort (which I did for my last FreeNAS box).

I noticed a lot of people swear by using ECC...if this isn't mission critical data, would you say it's really that worth it? I had a Mac Pro years ago when I was in college, with 16GB of ECC, wow that took a few Christmases to put together eek.gif
bigmillz is offline  
post #7 of 23 Old 11-07-2013, 12:31 PM
Member
 
soobaerodude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 81
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmillz View Post

Not quite sure what I'd be booting from yet, probably flash of some sort (which I did for my last FreeNAS box).

I noticed a lot of people swear by using ECC...if this isn't mission critical data, would you say it's really that worth it? I had a Mac Pro years ago when I was in college, with 16GB of ECC, wow that took a few Christmases to put together eek.gif

If you're going to run FreeNAS and use ZFS, you should use ECC. There's a whole discussion about about using ZFS and the risks of not using ECC at hardforum
soobaerodude is offline  
post #8 of 23 Old 11-08-2013, 06:38 AM - Thread Starter
Member
 
bigmillz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 35
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by soobaerodude View Post

If you're going to run FreeNAS and use ZFS, you should use ECC. There's a whole discussion about about using ZFS and the risks of not using ECC at hardforum

That's actually the most convincing read I've seen yet on it, with regards to bit flips.

Most every other article just says "you're building a server so you need to run ECC" rolleyes.gif
bigmillz is offline  
post #9 of 23 Old 11-11-2013, 10:15 PM
AVS Special Member
 
pdawg17's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Cali
Posts: 1,787
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 26
I'm thinking of going Synology to Freenas but am new to this.

In the Synology I did not do any RAID so would I be able to just pop the drives in a FreeNAS box or do I actually have to buy new drives, format them through FreeNAS and then transfer the data over?
pdawg17 is offline  
post #10 of 23 Old 12-30-2013, 11:36 PM
Senior Member
 
funhouse69's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 431
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 89 Post(s)
Liked: 35

I have been debating this for a while now. I have an existing RAID System in my house that I have been very happy with but the motherboard is starting to give me problems so now I am trying to decide what to do next. I was originally thinking a FreeNAS System but the more I dug in to it I wasn't sure. I want a LOT of storage which means a LOT of SATA Ports. How are you building your systems? Are you using some kind of external enclosure? I currently have a 13TB System and it is almost full, I want to be able to go well beyond that. I was looking at the Synology 12 Bay RAID Array which on the surface seems like a ton of money but to build something similar its really not that bad of a deal.

 

Any thoughts / suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated.

funhouse69 is online now  
post #11 of 23 Old 11-22-2014, 06:38 PM
Newbie
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 1
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 0
Quote:
Originally Posted by bluechunks View Post
Just did it. No regrets, but I also went in with eyes wide open.

I wanted a few things in my new NAS as I had outgrown the Synology:

1) Media server (via NFS)
2) Time Machine backups for an iMac
3) Plex Server
4) Low power usage (for a server)
5) High reliability and data safety

FreeNAS checked all the boxes provided I could find the right hardware. After looking around a bit and reading all I could about FreeNAS I decided I wanted an Intel Haswell based system (low idle power consumption) yet had true horsepower for video transcoding when required along with lots of ECC memory for ZFS.

Server boards that supported Haswell and had digital video output were on the high end of what I wanted to spend as I was not ready to try building a headless system and I only have digital monitors.

Luckily, I stumbled across the Lenovo TS140 that has been a dream machine. FreeNAS runs great and I have five 3TB Seagate NAS drives in a RAIDZ2 with 16GB of system memory. The TS140 I selected is the i3 CPU model and cost far less for a chassis that any pricing I could have done by assembling the parts myself. One of the drives failed the first week and it was totally painless to replace which was a great confidence builder in FreeNAS.

I only need Plex for one TV with a Ruku 3 attached and the i3 cuts through transcoding like a knife through butter and doesn't break a sweat with 1080p.

There is definitely a learning curve to setup and use FreeNAS compared to Synology but luckily there are lots of guides on the internet.
Hello!

How did you fit the extra drives in the TS140. I tried putting in a 5.25 bracket on my hard drives in there but since you can't open the other side of the case how did you screw it all in?
ippikiokami is offline  
post #12 of 23 Old 11-23-2014, 01:18 AM
Member
 
travanx's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 169
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 11
I also have a similar setup. I was able to place a drive in one of the bays. And placed another drive or 2 using brackets from another case. There is plenty of room to find a place to attach drives without buying the extra Lenovo bracket. Just have to be creative. Zip ties would have been my other choice.

Plex, Dune, Roku, RaspBMC and Denon Receiver are all using the media library. Also working as a 4th backup for my small business. Synology is used as the main backup.

Temps are fine on the drives and the unit sits in a closet with all the rest of the electronics of the house.

My build:
PC: Lenovo TS140
Ram: Extra 8GB Crucial ECC
HD: 5x 3TB WD Red
Sandisk 4GB USB drive

travanx is offline  
post #13 of 23 Old 11-23-2014, 06:16 AM
Advanced Member
 
bluechunks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Maple Grove, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 933
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Liked: 62
Quote:
Originally Posted by ippikiokami View Post
Hello!

How did you fit the extra drives in the TS140. I tried putting in a 5.25 bracket on my hard drives in there but since you can't open the other side of the case how did you screw it all in?
As travanx mentioned, you have to be (mildly) creative. I'm not home to take a look, but I think I simply used a bracket I had in my accumulated 'spare parts box' and only attached it with screws to the open side. I figured it's not like the server is being moved, shipped, or jostled from its location.
bluechunks is offline  
post #14 of 23 Old 11-26-2014, 03:22 PM
Member
 
mjt5282's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Old Greenwich, CT, USA
Posts: 193
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 12
i built my own Freenas server using a Supermicro chassis and Intel Xeon processor. I have been very, very impressed with it so far, with the ZFS and server/sharing support being first class. I recommend it as a solution to anybody that needed more than average storage for their home networks.
mjt5282 is offline  
post #15 of 23 Old 11-26-2014, 08:29 PM
Member
 
ash_man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 178
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Liked: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by funhouse69 View Post
I have been debating this for a while now. I have an existing RAID System in my house that I have been very happy with but the motherboard is starting to give me problems so now I am trying to decide what to do next. I was originally thinking a FreeNAS System but the more I dug in to it I wasn't sure. I want a LOT of storage which means a LOT of SATA Ports. How are you building your systems? Are you using some kind of external enclosure? I currently have a 13TB System and it is almost full, I want to be able to go well beyond that. I was looking at the Synology 12 Bay RAID Array which on the surface seems like a ton of money but to build something similar its really not that bad of a deal.
 
Any thoughts / suggestions you have would be greatly appreciated.
I have the synology 12 bay, the 2413+ and while it was a ton of money, its worked well for me, no issues at all in the year and a half that I have had it. You can certainly build your own system, but for me its too much of a hassle, all the parts, building it, an OS, I want something that is really simple, that I don't have to bother with hardly ever. Now I know many of you reading this are saying 'but the NAS system I built doesn't give me any problems either, and that may well be, but its got a bigger foot print, draws more power and has more parts that can go wrong then a brand name NAS, in my opinion. Like I said in another thread, what works for you, works for you, I am not saying brand name NAS's are the way to go for everyone, just what I prefer and what works for me. They are simple no nonsense and they work.
ash_man is offline  
post #16 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 12:12 AM
Senior Member
 
funhouse69's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 431
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 89 Post(s)
Liked: 35
Since my post back almost a year ago I messed around with FreeNAS and even FlexRAID but since I've been building Servers for a while I decided to give Synology a try, I ended up picking up a small 2 Bay unit for my work which really impressed me after that I picked up a DS1813+ for my house and I have to say it is very impressive / easy to set up / use (although I feel things are a little more "Hidden" since Version 5 of DSM came out).

I am very impressed with the speed of this NAS as I can saturate a Gig link without any problems. I haven't been able to get the Multiple Ports working as I think it should be but I also think that is an issue with my switches not the Synology itself.

Interestingly enough I had my first drive fail on me tonight. The drive is a 4TB Seagate NAS Drive that isn't even 9 months old. That makes me nervous for sure but I decided to go with an SHR with two parity drives.

I know this is completely subjective and I am not saying that one direction is better then the next. I just felt like going with a dedicated NAS was the way to go instead of looking for some kind of a hot-swap case, building up the system and putting some kind of OS on it (unless I went with FreeNAS of course) as the OS itself can be well over $500 if you go with Windows Server.

I am a little sad that I didn't go with the 12 Bay unit as I have mine loaded with Drives and will need to expand beyond next year. Of course I can buy an expansion unit which will hopefully go on sale before the end of the year.
funhouse69 is online now  
post #17 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 07:47 AM
Member
 
ash_man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 178
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Liked: 21
If you are talking about bonding the two network ports, you can only do this with a managed switch, there are many companies that make small managed switches that are 8 ports or less, I use a small Cisco managed switch to bond the network ports for my 12 bay and a 6 bay Qnap NAS I have.
ash_man is offline  
post #18 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 08:28 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Charles R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 10,258
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 222
Quote:
Originally Posted by ash_man View Post
If you are talking about bonding the two network ports, you can only do this with a managed switch, there are many companies that make small managed switches that are 8 ports or less, I use a small Cisco managed switch to bond the network ports for my 12 bay and a 6 bay Qnap NAS I have.
Netgear's ReadyNAS features two bonding methods that don't require any "additional network support"...

http://kb.netgear.com/app/answers/de...s-os-6-storage

I use... now my NAS floods the network (Gigabit) with SMB but if I remember correctly I get a bounce with iSCSI.

Adaptive Load Balancing
Includes transmit load balancing plus receive load balancing for IPV4 traffic and does not require any special switch support. The receive load balancing is achieved by ARP negotiation.
Charles R is offline  
post #19 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 09:02 PM
Senior Member
 
funhouse69's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 431
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 89 Post(s)
Liked: 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by ash_man View Post
If you are talking about bonding the two network ports, you can only do this with a managed switch, there are many companies that make small managed switches that are 8 ports or less, I use a small Cisco managed switch to bond the network ports for my 12 bay and a 6 bay Qnap NAS I have.
Not to hijack this thread but I am pretty familiar with Networking and all of my switches are Managed. I have a Cisco SG300-28P for my main switch which is what my Syunology is connected to. I have a two port bond set up which is working (LACP Enabled on the Switch Side) and 803.3ad dynamic link aggregation enabled on the Synology Side but I am not getting any load balancing.

I understand that I will not get it from one system (as Synology doesn't yet support Multi Channel SMB) but when accessing the Synology from two different systems on the same Cisco Switch all the traffic goes through the same port.

I've tried removing / recreating the LAG Group on the Switch and still traffic will only go trough the same port. If disconnect that port it will fail-over to the other port as expected.
funhouse69 is online now  
post #20 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 09:04 PM
Member
 
ash_man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 178
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Liked: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charles R View Post
Netgear's ReadyNAS features two bonding methods that don't require any "additional network support"...

http://kb.netgear.com/app/answers/de...s-os-6-storage

I use... now my NAS floods the network (Gigabit) with SMB but if I remember correctly I get a bounce with iSCSI.

Adaptive Load Balancing
Includes transmit load balancing plus receive load balancing for IPV4 traffic and does not require any special switch support. The receive load balancing is achieved by ARP negotiation.
Load balancing and bonding are not the same thing, I was talking about bonding ports.
ash_man is offline  
post #21 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 09:09 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Charles R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 10,258
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 222
Quote:
Originally Posted by ash_man View Post
Load balancing and bonding are not the same thing, I was talking about bonding ports.
Might read the link...

What are bonded adapters and how do they work with my ReadyNAS OS 6 storage system?
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	Ultra6Plus.png
Views:	13
Size:	97.1 KB
ID:	389249  

Last edited by Charles R; 11-27-2014 at 09:15 PM.
Charles R is offline  
post #22 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 09:13 PM
Member
 
ash_man's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 178
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Liked: 21
You can do many things when you bond two network ports, what I should of said is link aggregation is what I was talking about which is something different from load balancing. With link aggregation the two ports become one effectively doubling the network throughput and its normally done on the switch where you create LAG groups.
ash_man is offline  
post #23 of 23 Old 11-27-2014, 09:24 PM
AVS Addicted Member
 
Charles R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Indianapolis
Posts: 10,258
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Liked: 222
Quote:
Originally Posted by ash_man View Post
You can do many things when you bond two network ports, what I should of said is link aggregation is what I was talking about which is something different from load balancing.
The URL covers link aggregation... and my iSCSI speed increases per the first post. I'm done.
Charles R is offline  
Reply Networking, Media Servers & Content Streaming



Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off