Author Topic: looking for a NAS box  (Read 657 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Online Simon

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 13552
  • Country: gb
  • Did that just blow up? No? might work after all !!
    • Simon's Electronics
looking for a NAS box
« on: September 11, 2019, 06:55:44 am »
I'm looking for a NAS box to act as my main storage to access at home and outside. Any suggestions?

Alternatively I have my own VPS but cPanel webdisk is a joke and owncloud requires a dedicated server so is a no-no.
https://www.simonselectronics.co.uk/shop
Varied stock of test instruments and components including EEVblog gear and Wurth Elektronik Books.
Also, if you want to get ripped off: https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/simons_electronics?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
 

Online amspire

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3686
  • Country: au
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2019, 07:32:17 am »
I am a big fan of the dedicated NAS boxes. I am currently using the Netgear RN10200 (which unfortunately is no longer available). If you can find used RN10200's on ebay, they are great as they use BTRFS for the disk and they are basically a Debian computer system. They tend to be very reliable. I have a second NAS running as a virtual machine on a PC I run at home, but the Netgear NAS boxes run at a fraction of the power. The RN10200 use about 17 watts.

Don't touch the older versions of Netgear NAS's that do not run Netgear ReadyNAS 6.x. You want to look for numbers like RN102 (for a 2 disk mirrored NAS) or RN10200, RN104(4 drive), RN212, RN312, RN412, RN414, etc. Numbers like that. The ads sometimes have the extra 00 on the end and sometimes not.

There are lots of other good brands. Synergy are superb, but last time I looked, the budget models were a different OS and I would not use them. I think the good Synergy models can run BTRFS.

The other big brands I am sure are also excellent.

You want a NAS that has a file system with a genuine snapshot ability, and redundancy in the drives. BTRFS allows you to scrub the drives regularly that basically checks every bit of data on all the physical drives is correct. I have had BTRFS NAS's save a client from cryptoviruses a few times now. When I set up NAS boxes for companies as a backup, I turn off windows networking and use rsync for all the synching from workstations and servers. Rsync does run well on Windows and it is completely free - you just have to know how to pinch it along with the few DLL's it needs from a cygwin installation to get the latest rsync in a portable form.
 
Raid has been the main weakness of BTRFS, and Netgear uses the venerable Linux mdadm RAID system instead and runs BTRFS on top effectively as a single disk drive. This arrangement seems to be rock solid.

One NAS is not a backup. Ideally you want the NAS contents synched to an offline location - like the cloud, relative's house, etc. I use rsync to provide the synching. Quite often, I am synching terabytes of data over a humble ADSL line.

Richard.
 

Online Simon

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 13552
  • Country: gb
  • Did that just blow up? No? might work after all !!
    • Simon's Electronics
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2019, 07:37:35 am »
Western digital have a nice looking one that does not have great reviews. I nearly bought it thinking surely they know what they are doing but lots of reviews say they bought it as an automatic upgrade to a previous well known model and have been disappointed which is why I am edgy about what to buy.

Currently, I carry around an encrypted hard drive but it's becoming too much of a nuisance.
https://www.simonselectronics.co.uk/shop
Varied stock of test instruments and components including EEVblog gear and Wurth Elektronik Books.
Also, if you want to get ripped off: https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/simons_electronics?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
 

Offline borjam

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 727
  • Country: es
  • EA2EKH
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2019, 07:38:53 am »
I have two HP Microserver Gen 8 servers and they are great.

I run FreeNAS on one of them and FreeBSD on the other one. Moreover, if you need more CPU muscle compatible low power Xeons are cheap now.
 

Online legacy

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4088
  • Country: ch
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2019, 08:58:31 am »
You want a NAS that has a file system with a genuine snapshot ability, and redundancy in the drives. BTRFS allows you to scrub the drives regularly that basically checks every bit of data on all the physical drives is correct. I have had BTRFS NAS's save a client from cryptoviruses a few times now.

For a similar problem, I have created a utility that gets the SHA256 hash of each file in the volume when you archive a file into a snapshot, and then it randomly checks if the calculated SHA256 hash matches the archived one. This stuff uses a b+tree algorithm as a database engine, and process up to 8 files in parallel. So you know if a file has got corrupted or modified.

Snapshots passing the check also go burned into MO, DVDram, and DLT tapes.

This stuff works on ext3 filesystem, and the reason is ... we have an older kernel 2.6.39, we cannot upgrade the kernel, so we cannot use btrfs because it was not stable on kernel 2.6

What do you think?

p.s. from which kernel version have you started trusting btrfs?
 

Online legacy

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4088
  • Country: ch
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2019, 08:59:16 am »
FreeBSD

ZFS on FreeBSD can be an option.
 

Offline borjam

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 727
  • Country: es
  • EA2EKH
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2019, 09:07:29 am »
FreeBSD

ZFS on FreeBSD can be an option.
That's what I use. You have real snapshots, you can even do incremental replication, etc.

And FreeNAS is a user friendly FreeBSD with plugins such as Samba and of course ZFS.

The only downside of ZFS is, there is no free lunch. It's recommended to have 16 GB of memory. But with four disks in a RAIDZ2 configuration you can survive the simultaneous death of two disks.
 

Offline NANDBlog

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4402
  • Country: nl
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2019, 09:16:46 am »
I've been looking at NAS boxes, and all of them seems quite expensive. It costs around 100 EUR to place a HDD on the network.
Instead I ended up buying a refurbished Supermicro server. I can move all my HDDs into them, and it can live comfortably on the other end of the house, where I dont hear it. 12 HDD bays and as much computing power as I want.
And yes, it uses more power than the NAS box, but it also does more.
 

Online amspire

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3686
  • Country: au
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2019, 09:18:34 am »
p.s. from which kernel version have you started trusting btrfs?
Not sure. For years, Netgear ReadyNAS was running a BTRFS version 0.26 from memory. Never had a problem with 4 different NAS boxes running in businesses. As I said, Netgear do not use RAID mode on BTRFS which was where a lot of the problems were.

My NAS virtual machine is running on Arch Linux kernel version 5.2.9 on a Proxmox virtual machine host using kernel 2.6.32. Runs great.
 

Offline borjam

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 727
  • Country: es
  • EA2EKH
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2019, 09:24:38 am »
I've been looking at NAS boxes, and all of them seems quite expensive. It costs around 100 EUR to place a HDD on the network.
Instead I ended up buying a refurbished Supermicro server. I can move all my HDDs into them, and it can live comfortably on the other end of the house, where I dont hear it. 12 HDD bays and as much computing power as I want.
And yes, it uses more power than the NAS box, but it also does more.
Of course you can use refurbished servers, but be careful with power consumption.

HP's Microservers are really reasonable.
 

Online amspire

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3686
  • Country: au
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2019, 09:28:26 am »
I've been looking at NAS boxes, and all of them seems quite expensive. It costs around 100 EUR to place a HDD on the network.
Instead I ended up buying a refurbished Supermicro server. I can move all my HDDs into them, and it can live comfortably on the other end of the house, where I dont hear it. 12 HDD bays and as much computing power as I want.
And yes, it uses more power than the NAS box, but it also does more.
If you only run a NAS box occasionally, power consumption doesn't matter.

If it is running 24/7, it does matter. If you are living in a country where power is 30c/KWH and you are using a PC box consuming 100W, then that is $262 a year just for the electricity. A NAS appliance using 15W costs $40 a year. The good NAS appliances usually run for about 10 years, and even if it costs $600, it can be cheaper then the NAS server built on an old PC motherboard. In this example, it is $2620 power costs for the old PC motherboard vs $400 for the NAS appliance.
 

Online legacy

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4088
  • Country: ch
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2019, 09:30:54 am »
kernel 2.6.32

Before kernel 4.*, Btrfs was "defined" experimental, which means "rolling" in terms of implementation details. I have never investigated the warning disclaimer written here and there on the kernel source.

I am asking because I need to make a decision: if to invest a lot of time and effort in the purpose of resurrecting the support for PPC4xx boards in order to have a modern Linux Kernel so I can use Btrfs without the fear of not being able to "use" the pool of hard-drives with another machine (in case of hardware failure with PPC4xx) due to the different implementation of Btrfs.
 

Offline borjam

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 727
  • Country: es
  • EA2EKH
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2019, 11:09:37 am »
If it is running 24/7, it does matter. If you are living in a country where power is 30c/KWH and you are using a PC box consuming 100W, then that is $262 a year just for the electricity. A NAS appliance using 15W costs $40 a year. The good NAS appliances usually run for about 10 years, and even if it costs $600, it can be cheaper then the NAS server built on an old PC motherboard. In this example, it is $2620 power costs for the old PC motherboard vs $400 for the NAS appliance.
Indeed. My HP MicroServer Gen8 servers are consuming about 55 W. I replaced the CPUs with Xeons (E3-1260L) and if you run processor heavy tasks power consumption can climb to 80W 90 W. But in a home NAS you won't run CPU intensive stuff. I was running an ElasticSearch cluster and other behemoths on them. With the stock CPU they would need about 40 W if I remember well.

They have 16 GB of memory, four WD Red 3 TB disks and a SSD for some transaction acceleration.

A recommendation: avoid 7200 rpm disks.
 

Online amspire

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3686
  • Country: au
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2019, 11:10:22 am »
kernel 2.6.32

Before kernel 4.*, Btrfs was "defined" experimental, which means "rolling" in terms of implementation details. I have never investigated the warning disclaimer written here and there on the kernel source.

I am asking because I need to make a decision: if to invest a lot of time and effort in the purpose of resurrecting the support for PPC4xx boards in order to have a modern Linux Kernel so I can use Btrfs without the fear of not being able to "use" the pool of hard-drives with another machine (in case of hardware failure with PPC4xx) due to the different implementation of Btrfs.
I have not followed BTRFS that closely, so I cannot comment for sure. My understanding was they used the term experimental in case a massive problem was found that required a change to the architecture, but that they were going to absolutely everything possible to avoid this occurring. I have never seen a compatibility problem, and so I suspect they never did loose compatibility, but I may be wrong.  Definitely, if you are using it on 2.6, do not use BTRFS RAID. Use mdadm to make a raid volume and place a single BTRFS drive on that volume.
 

Offline borjam

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 727
  • Country: es
  • EA2EKH
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2019, 11:12:37 am »
I have not followed BTRFS that closely, so I cannot comment for sure. My understanding was they used the term experimental in case a massive problem was found that required a change to the architecture, but that they were going to absolutely everything possible to avoid this occurring. I have never seen a compatibility problem, and so I suspect they never did loose compatibility, but I may be wrong.  Definitely, if you are using it on 2.6, do not use BTRFS RAID. Use mdadm to make a raid volume and place a single BTRFS drive on that volume.
For such an application I really prefer ZFS. It has all the required features without relying on additional volume managers and I have been using it since about 2007.

Now I have lots of servers running ZFS on 24 SSD drives and working like a charm.
 

Online amspire

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3686
  • Country: au
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2019, 11:23:08 am »
Indeed. My HP MicroServer Gen8 servers are consuming about 55 W. I replaced the CPUs with Xeons (E3-1260L) and if you run processor heavy tasks power consumption can climb to 80W 90 W. But in a home NAS you won't run CPU intensive stuff. I was running an ElasticSearch cluster and other behemoths on them. With the stock CPU they would need about 40 W if I remember well.

They have 16 GB of memory, four WD Red 3 TB disks and a SSD for some transaction acceleration.

A recommendation: avoid 7200 rpm disks.
I have been using NAS systems mainly for archive use, but they are becoming full powered servers in their own right. For small companies, unless they absolutely have a have a Windows server, they can probably do everything the company needs on a NAS box with no licensing issues at all. No User CAL's. No Windows updates with the endless rebooting.

What do you think of FreeNAS? I last tried it when it was still a bit rough, but I gather it is pretty impressive now. Does the ZFS require a lot of RAM?
 

Offline borjam

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 727
  • Country: es
  • EA2EKH
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2019, 11:30:08 am »
I have been using NAS systems mainly for archive use, but they are becoming full powered servers in their own right. For small companies, unless they absolutely have a have a Windows server, they can probably do everything the company needs on a NAS box with no licensing issues at all. No User CAL's. No Windows updates with the endless rebooting.

What do you think of FreeNAS? I last tried it when it was still a bit rough, but I gather it is pretty impressive now. Does the ZFS require a lot of RAM?
Depending on your usage, ZFS recommends 16 GB of memory.

FreeNAS is really good, even for people without experience. It's mostly a FreeBSD system, using ZFS, and with lots of user friendly stuff. I really recommend it.

Pity HP's MicroServers aren't so cheap now. I remember I got both of them for €200 each (to which I had to add memory, hard disks...). The current model, G10, doesn't allow upgrading the CPU. But if you are not into CPU intensive stuff it works like a charm.
 

Offline NANDBlog

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 4402
  • Country: nl
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2019, 12:27:26 pm »
I've been looking at NAS boxes, and all of them seems quite expensive. It costs around 100 EUR to place a HDD on the network.
Instead I ended up buying a refurbished Supermicro server. I can move all my HDDs into them, and it can live comfortably on the other end of the house, where I dont hear it. 12 HDD bays and as much computing power as I want.
And yes, it uses more power than the NAS box, but it also does more.
If you only run a NAS box occasionally, power consumption doesn't matter.

If it is running 24/7, it does matter. If you are living in a country where power is 30c/KWH and you are using a PC box consuming 100W, then that is $262 a year just for the electricity. A NAS appliance using 15W costs $40 a year. The good NAS appliances usually run for about 10 years, and even if it costs $600, it can be cheaper then the NAS server built on an old PC motherboard. In this example, it is $2620 power costs for the old PC motherboard vs $400 for the NAS appliance.
A 12 bay NAS starts at 1700 EUR, I payed less than 500 for my server. So at 5 years, you might break even with the price. Of course you can argue, that you dont need 12 bays. I though that, bought a 2 bay NAS, became full. Replaced HDD, migrating data is PITA. And then of course you can buy a smaller server to start with. With 1x CPU, only 4 HDD space. A Dell R310 or a HP DL320 or similar. If you need more storage, extend it through SAS. A well built server with a reasonable CPU runs at 30-40W BTW.
I went with an overkill one, with 2x10 cores CPU and 128GB RAM, cause I am an unhinged crazy person, but you dont have to.
BTW, I still will pay less for the power to run it, than for my Internet.
 

Online amspire

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 3686
  • Country: au
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2019, 12:42:05 pm »
I went with an overkill one, with 2x10 cores CPU and 128GB RAM, cause I am an unhinged crazy person, but you dont have to.
It is only 256 times more RAM then my Netgear NAS box. I wonder how the 2x10 core CPUs compares to the mighty single core 1.2GHz Marvell ARM chip in my Netgear ReadyNAS?

 

Online Simon

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 13552
  • Country: gb
  • Did that just blow up? No? might work after all !!
    • Simon's Electronics
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2019, 01:08:40 pm »
Look, I only want some online storage, not to run the internet ;)
https://www.simonselectronics.co.uk/shop
Varied stock of test instruments and components including EEVblog gear and Wurth Elektronik Books.
Also, if you want to get ripped off: https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/simons_electronics?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
 

Online Simon

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 13552
  • Country: gb
  • Did that just blow up? No? might work after all !!
    • Simon's Electronics
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #20 on: September 13, 2019, 05:16:56 pm »
i am looking at this: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Synology-DS119j-Bay-Desktop-Enclosure/dp/B07KTCHKH1/ref=sr_1_18?keywords=nas&qid=1568393950&s=computers&sr=1-18&th=1

Ntere is a 2 bay version but I am in two minds. I do not need/want Raid for speed or capacity, only backup. But what happens if the NAS box itself fails. So really it looks like for proper security I'd need 2 boxes to back each other up?
https://www.simonselectronics.co.uk/shop
Varied stock of test instruments and components including EEVblog gear and Wurth Elektronik Books.
Also, if you want to get ripped off: https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/simons_electronics?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
 

Offline capt bullshot

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 1582
  • Country: de
    • Mostly useless stuff, but nice to have: wunderkis.de
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #21 on: September 13, 2019, 05:46:05 pm »
Just ordered a Synology box (DS118) and a new HDD, to replace my old Synology box and its HDD (call it preventive maintenance). When it arrives, I'll copy all the stuff from the old one to the new one, and stash the old one away (cold reserve and "long term backup").

To back up my data, I've got a simple scheme: Important stuff gets backed up from the various computers to the NAS, either on a regular schedule or on demand.
From there, I'm running a simple homebrew backup script on a regular schedule that transfers all the newly arrived stuff from the Synology NAS to an external USB HDD. The USB HDD is physically disconnected and kept in a different room than the NAS.

Since the NAS is running 24/7, one important criteria is low power consumption, the DS118 looks good here spec wise, don't want the fancier or RAID boxes, since these usually consume more power.

Edit: My experience with the Synology stuff: It just works and does the job, and if you like, you can install various fancy apps to it, the Media Server (DLNA / PnP) is quite useful.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2019, 05:49:24 pm by capt bullshot »
Safety devices hinder evolution
 

Online Simon

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 13552
  • Country: gb
  • Did that just blow up? No? might work after all !!
    • Simon's Electronics
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #22 on: September 13, 2019, 06:48:05 pm »
So you think i should be using one NAS to back up the other if i want data security?
https://www.simonselectronics.co.uk/shop
Varied stock of test instruments and components including EEVblog gear and Wurth Elektronik Books.
Also, if you want to get ripped off: https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/simons_electronics?_trksid=p2047675.l2559
 

Offline richnormand

  • Supporter
  • ****
  • Posts: 350
  • Country: ca
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #23 on: September 13, 2019, 07:31:14 pm »
I got an Asustor NAS (6 bays) around 2012 or so (cant remember) at about half the price of the better known names at the time. I guess they were making an effort to gain visibility.
Lots of applications and regular software updates. It has been "on" 24/7 since then on top of my bench.
No issues at all. You might want to look them up and see if they are competitive now.


Edit: running 6 WD red drives
« Last Edit: September 13, 2019, 07:41:42 pm by richnormand »
 

Offline edavid

  • Super Contributor
  • ***
  • Posts: 2792
  • Country: us
Re: looking for a NAS box
« Reply #24 on: September 13, 2019, 07:34:06 pm »
i am looking at this: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Synology-DS119j-Bay-Desktop-Enclosure/dp/B07KTCHKH1/ref=sr_1_18?keywords=nas&qid=1568393950&s=computers&sr=1-18&th=1

Ntere is a 2 bay version but I am in two minds. I do not need/want Raid for speed or capacity, only backup. But what happens if the NAS box itself fails. So really it looks like for proper security I'd need 2 boxes to back each other up?

All the common NAS boxes run Linux and use normal Linux disk formats.

If the NAS box fails, you can take out the disk drives and connect them to a PC running Linux to access your data.

So, just having a RAID 1 NAS will protect you from most failures.
 


Share me

Digg  Facebook  SlashDot  Delicious  Technorati  Twitter  Google  Yahoo
Smf