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Assassin Server Project

post #1 of 116
Thread Starter 
A few weeks ago I offered to build a server for an AVS member free of charge for some testing that I am doing.

The parts arrived today.











More to come.

And yes, that is a quarter used for scale with one of the largest case fans I have ever seen.
post #2 of 116
Is that tower a Fractal Design Define XL Black Pearl? I recently purchased one for a future server build. I'll have to subscribe to this thread
post #3 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlad Theimpaler View Post

Is that tower a Fractal Design Define XL Black Pearl? I recently purchased one for a future server build. I'll have to subscribe to this thread

It is indeed.
post #4 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

It is indeed.

Sweet! I'm definitely keeping an eye on this one. Planning on using all 10 internal 3.5" HDD bays + adding 4 more HDDs using the external 5.25" bays on the top (using 5.25"-to-3.5" adapters). Thinking about dropping in a SSD for the OS + programs, but there's no room if I mount 14 HDDs in the case. Do you think I could use velcro and stick the SSD somewhere inside the case outside of the bay areas? Thanks.
post #5 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlad Theimpaler View Post

Sweet! I'm definitely keeping an eye on this one. Planning on using all 10 internal 3.5" HDD bays + adding 4 more HDDs using the external 5.25" bays on the top (using 5.25"-to-3.5" adapters). Thinking about dropping in a SSD for the OS + programs, but there's no room if I mount 14 HDDs in the case. Do you think I could use velcro and stick the SSD somewhere inside the case outside of the bay areas? Thanks.

Sure there is. You can either use velcro somewhere inside or turn 2 of the 5.25" bays into 3 new 3.5" bays with an adapter.

So this case could actually fit 16 hard drives.
post #6 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

Sure there is. You can either use velcro somewhere inside or turn 2 of the 5.25" bays into 3 new 3.5" bays with an adapter.

So this case could actually fit 16 hard drives.

What software bundles will you be using on this build, if you don't mind?
post #7 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tomandbeth View Post

What software bundles will you be using on this build, if you don't mind?

WHS 2011 and Flexraid RAID-F + Pooling

Software portion won't be discussed at all here though.
post #8 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

WHS 2011 and Flexraid RAID-F + Pooling

Software portion won't be discussed at all here though.

Understood. I had seen your querys in the Server Sticky as you did research.
post #9 of 116
Are we likely to see a assassin server on sale soon??
This could save me a lot of research work and time!
post #10 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pokekevin View Post

Are we likely to see a assassin server on sale soon??
This could save me a lot of research work and time!

We do servers.
post #11 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post


We do servers.

Pmed.
post #12 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlad Theimpaler View Post

Sweet! I'm definitely keeping an eye on this one. Planning on using all 10 internal 3.5" HDD bays + adding 4 more HDDs using the external 5.25" bays on the top (using 5.25"-to-3.5" adapters). Thinking about dropping in a SSD for the OS + programs, but there's no room if I mount 14 HDDs in the case. Do you think I could use velcro and stick the SSD somewhere inside the case outside of the bay areas? Thanks.

I have a 5 x 3 bay adapter in mine. So that gives me a DVD and room for 15 drives. I did have to set it back a little bit because the foam front door will block off the cooling on the hot-swap bays.
post #13 of 116
Assassin that case only has one fan in the front I suggest adding the second one for the hard drives.

Are you adding any controller cards?
post #14 of 116
Yeah, this thing needs a SSD for the OS
post #15 of 116
I have a server myself in that case, an SNB generation Xeon system though (C204 chipset board, Xeon E3-1240 CPU)
It does more then just serve files for me.

Currently 8x2TB + OS drive, although if i get a HDD cage for the 5.25 slots, there is still room to expand (got 4 more ports on the SAS controller, but still PCIe slots to also expand that if need be)

I mostly went with this case instead of one of the 19" offerings because it packs alot of space, but still keeps relatively quiet (not to mention that the Norco cases everyone likes around here so much are hard to come by outside of the US)
I would definitely recommend installing both front panel fans for HDD cooling, though.
post #16 of 116
I have that Fractal Design case and love it. Heavy as all hell but so roomy and easy to work with. It's quiet enough to use in the same room even when packed with drives as long as you aren't using loud 10k rpm drives.

The tech support at Fractal was very helpful as well when I was asking questions. One tech even opened up the case he had at home to send me some pictures.
post #17 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

Assassin that case only has one fan in the front I suggest adding the second one for the hard drives.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nevcairiel View Post

I would definitely recommend installing both front panel fans for HDD cooling, though.

Thanks. I had actually sent him an e-mail recommending the exact same thing.
post #18 of 116
Be advised that one reviewer on Newegg reported that there may be cable organization and cable reach issues with respect to the Fractal tower's PSU placement and HDD bays:

Quote:


Cons: The placement of the cage for the power supply is pretty awful. You will need a power supply with extra long cables or cable extensions in order to get the cables organized. Also, the side where all the cables feed out from the hard drive bays is very cramped and if you have stiff cables, you're going to need to just shove them in, close the case, and hope nothing gets disconnected.

Other Newegg reviews here (click on the Feedback tab):
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16811352017
post #19 of 116
Very interesting thread! I'll have to keep my eye on this one...
post #20 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

And yes, that is a quarter used for scale with one of the largest case fans I have ever seen.

Nah, doesn't hold a candle to what came in my Azza Solano; two 230mm fans!
The build quality is probably not as good as the Fractal Design but it is solid enough. And it has the best cooling that I have ever seen. Two front-facing drive cages to hold 8 drives and each has a 140mm cooling fan.
Exceptional Cooling Performance: The AZZA Solano 1000R features two huge 230mm red LED fans (one top exhast and one side intake), two 140mm red LED fan in the front, and one 120mm rear exhaust fan for exceptional cooling performance.

I got three of these a few years ago when they were sold for $50 w/FS.
It holds 8 drives in the cages but I have 9 in there right now.

Your build looks too cool right now!
Eager to see progress pics....jealous, jealous (especially of the 3TB)!
post #21 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlad Theimpaler View Post

Be advised that one reviewer on Newegg reported that there may be cable organization and cable reach issues with respect to the Fractal tower's PSU placement and HDD bays

I had not one single build issue with my system in the Fractal Design case.
Just don't buy a PSU with extra short cables, but with a tower in that size that should be a given.

As a general rule, the PSU is one of the worst places to try to save money. Not only do cheap ones cheap out on the cable, but also on the components.
post #22 of 116
With the end of the TV season coming up and my plans to rework/rebuild my HTPC, I was also considering a server. The server would also record TV so I won't have the cards in my new HTPC streaming box if I decide to go that route.

I'm subscribing.
post #23 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

So this case could actually fit 16 hard drives.

@Assassin,
Your pictures in the original post show 7 HDDs. But is the end product here going to actually contain the full 16 HDDs that this case can accomodate?

If so, then I would be interested to hear what PSU you end up going with, as it would have to have 17 SATA power connectors (16 HDDs + 1 SSD), and -- for those connectors -- the PSU cable reach issue could be a problem for any of the 17 SATA devices you'll need to connect to. Thanks again for starting this thread, I and others are watching with interest
post #24 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vlad Theimpaler View Post

@Assassin,
Your pictures in the original post show 7 HDDs. But is the end product here going to actually contain the full 16 HDDs that this case can accomodate?

If so, then I would be interested to hear what PSU you end up going with, as it would have to have 17 SATA power connectors (16 HDDs + 1 SSD), and -- for those connectors -- the PSU cable reach issue could be a problem for any of the 17 SATA devices you'll need to connect to. Thanks again for starting this thread, I and others are watching with interest

7 HDD and a Bluray drive to start. Ability obviously later to add additional drives.

I have some ideas on the power connections that I will share in time.
post #25 of 116
Wow ... what a kick butt project you have going on here . I know some of us members have been buggin u to post up something like this and really appreciate your taking the time and effort .

I really love the fractal case . This is the first I have ever heard / seen of it and really like the fact that it appears to be very versatile and plenty roomy not to mention that it is very easy on the eyes . Nice choice .

One thing I must ask . I have seen two posts in this thread mentioning ssd in this build .

Is there any real value to an ssd in a server that will mostly run 24/7 . Not like the o.s. is going to be loading like a htpc ?

I mean , if the theater data is kept on the server (assuming it is d/l using the htpc) and then played back over a wired network , then what is the need for the ssd ?

This assumes some things on my part on how the end user will set up the server for everyday use
post #26 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

Assassin that case only has one fan in the front I suggest adding the second one for the hard drives.

Are you adding any controller cards?

Quote:
Originally Posted by flocko View Post

Wow ... what a kick butt project you have going on here . I know some of us members have been buggin u to post up something like this and really appreciate your taking the time and effort .

I really love the fractal case . This is the first I have ever heard / seen of it and really like the fact that it appears to be very versatile and plenty roomy not to mention that it is very easy on the eyes . Nice choice .

One thing I must ask . I have seen two posts in this thread mentioning ssd in this build .

Is there any real value to an ssd in a server that will mostly run 24/7 . Not like the o.s. is going to be loading like a htpc ?

I mean , if the theater data is kept on the server (assuming it is d/l using the htpc) and then played back over a wired network , then what is the need for the ssd ?

This assumes some things on my part on how the end user will set up the server for everyday use

Thanks.

No real need for a ssd if you are simply streaming media and running a few programs. The only real benefit would be possible quicker installation times but that is a one time deal.

I am a ssd guy but for a server its just not needed.
post #27 of 116
Quote:
Originally Posted by assassin View Post

7 HDD and a Bluray drive to start. Ability obviously later to add additional drives.

I have some ideas on the power connections that I will share in time.

Here is what I used

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16812162011
post #28 of 116
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy_Steb View Post

Here is what I used

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16812162011

I saw that one. There are others as well.

The PSU has triple SATA x2 so that will take care of the bottom 6. Just need a molex to SATA adapter for the top 4 and bluray drive.
post #29 of 116
Thread Starter 
Few more pics from today. I am having to donate some very valuable free time to this build so it will be a very relaxed pace...









post #30 of 116
I noticed you used slot b1 and b2 for memory ???

Or A2 + B2?

Usually the manual for Asus reccomends first and third slot?? Any particular reason you used 2 and 4 ?




















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