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First Build [UK] Will it FreeNAS?

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#1
Hello Community,

You are looking at my first build! I went through the parts list and I was looking for some expert advice.
I did some research, but I am sure that I will miss something :)

What I am trying to achieve is a very reliable NAS to trust my DSLR photos, and share files between the computers, TVs and cell phones at home. I am not expecting to have a lot of jails. transmission I will have for sure and maybe plex. My main objective is to build something that I don't need to be worried about loosing data. I am not too bothered about performance. In terms of budget, I would like to stay below £800, but from what I am looking at the moment, I am close to £1000 :( Everything is more expensive in the UK :mad:

Case - Fractal Design Node 804
£105.00 "https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fractal-De...gn+Node+804&qid=1557527242&s=computers&sr=1-1
Tried to find something smaller and cheaper, but nothing with enough space for HDs.

Power supply - Seasonic FOCUS Plus Gold 550W SR-550FX £75.00
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Seasonic-F...psu+450&qid=1557572565&s=gateway&sr=8-1-fkmr1
Should be enough to power everything and have something left.

CPU - Intel Core i3-6320 3.9 GHz LGA 1151 Processor £144.99
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Intel-BX80662I36320-Core-i3-6320-Processor/dp/B015VPX48I/ref=sr_1_4?crid=3JYW5NQD7KQ1R&keywords=intel+6300&qid=1557576249&s=computers&sprefix=intel+63,computers,129&sr=1-4

Motherboard - Supermicro X11SSM-F £216.00
https://serverfactory.co.uk/components/motherboards/supermicro-x11ssm-f-motherboard.html
IPMI, 8 SATA (6 HD RAIDZ2 + 2 SSDs for Boot)

RAM - Crucial CT2K8G4DFS8266 16 GB Kit (8 GB x 2) DDR4 2666 MT/s £87.39
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Crucial-CT...am+16gb+udimm&qid=1557599380&s=gateway&sr=8-6

SSD OS - Kingfast 2.5 Inch Internal 32GB SATA 3.0 2x£8.76 £17.52
https://www.amazon.co.uk/KingFast-I...SATA&qid=1557867460&s=gateway&sr=8-1-fkmrnull

FANS - Noctua NF-A14 PWM 2 £18.90 £37.80
https://www.amazon.co.uk/NF-A14-PWM.../dp/B00CP6QLY6/ref=sr_1_2?keywords=noctua+nf-
a14+pwm+140mm&qid=1557869898&s=gateway&sr=8-2
Two additional FANS for the HDs

Disk - Seagate 1 TB IronWolf 3.5 Inch 5900 RPM Internal Hard Drive for 6x £50.99 £305.94
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01LXUFPY9/ref=psdc_430527031_t2_B008JJLXO6
It will give me 4TB, more than enough for me right now.

Extras +2 SATA cables, because the motherboard only comes with 6 SATA cables

Like I mentioned, for data RAIDZ2 and SSD mirroring for the OS. I didn't bought anything yet and I didn't found anything 2nd hand.
I appreciate your feedback. Apologies for my bad English.

EDIT: The box is going to be in my living room, so being quiet is a requirement.
 
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#2
I have a very similar build. I love the Node 804! Let me know if there's any pictures you want of it.

-Are SSD's recommended now for boot drive? I personally prefer freeing up the SATA ports over the possible increased reliability of small SSDs. I built my NAS almost two years ago. This is just me though.

-Can you stretch your budget for some 2TB drives? I think 1TB drives are worse for price/gb. I've read even 2TB aren't the sweet spot.

-The i3 supports ECC memory, I would strongly suggest getting ECC memory. And a single 16gb stick will give you more upgrade room in the future.

(I'm nowhere near an expert, this is just my opinion based on me building my NAS two years ago)
 

gpsguy

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#3
In recent years, we've seen more boot failures with flash drives. Mirrors help, in that a ready spare should be available. With SSD's being cheap these days, @thesecfreenas is making a wise decision.

-Are SSD's recommended now for boot drive? I personally prefer freeing up the SATA ports over the possible increased reliability of small SSDs.
I would also recommend a single 16GB stick of ECC RAM for the reasons mentioned below.

-The i3 supports ECC memory, I would strongly suggest getting ECC memory. And a single 16gb stick will give you more upgrade room in the future.
 
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#4
In recent years, we've seen more boot failures with flash drives. Mirrors help, in that a ready spare should be available. With SSD's being cheap these days, @thesecfreenas is making a wise decision
Yeah I think I've read that in another thread recently that the "general recommendation" has transitioned to SSDs for reliability. This makes me nervous, as my USB boot drive is not mirrored. I ordered a second drive recently, but it ended up being slightly smaller, so I can't mirror it. I have a new 2-pack of 64gb USB drives on the way. If I had vacant SATA ports, I'd probably transition to cheap, tiny SSDs myself.
 

Chris Moore

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#5
I know that availability might be different in the UK, but I would go with something like this instead because some of the 'off brand' SSDs have been less than reliable under FreeNAS.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/40GB-SSD-2-5-Intel-320-Series-SATA-Solid-State-Drive-For-Laptop-Desktop/264296801166
A quality used SSD like this Intel unit is vastly superior to a ultra cheap drive like the one you are considering.
Disk - Seagate 1 TB IronWolf 3.5 Inch 5900 RPM Internal Hard Drive for 6x £50.99 £305.94
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01LXUFPY9/ref=psdc_430527031_t2_B008JJLXO6
It will give me 4TB, more than enough for me right now.
The price difference to go to 2TB being as small as it is, I would very much recommend getting the 2TB drives to start. They are good for around five years, so it is not a bad investment.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01LWVCZ6N/ref=psdc_430527031_t2_B008JJLXO6?th=1
 

KrisBee

FreeNAS Guru
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#6
@thesecfreenas A few thoughts:

DISKS - IMHO, buying 6 X 1TB is a waste of money. Buy a pair of 4TB NAS drives (ironwolf or wd reds) to use in a single mirror @ £200 approx.
When you can afford it, expand your pool by adding a second 4TB Mirror (You could buy a third 4TB now as a spare). You haven't said, but I'd guess you will be using 1Gb networking. So, your network limits the max xfer speed to and from your NAS to 100-115MB/s approx. A pool consisting of a single 4TB mirror will give this xfer speed for sequential read/write if you're using Windows shares (less is using NFS shares).

MEMORY - Buy ECC memory - nothing else. To my mind, two 8GB sticks is fine for your proposed use. With a m/board capacity of 32GB, you can add two more 8gb Sticks if/when needed, and you are far more likely to find s/hand 8gb sticks than 16GB sticks.

CASE - I still favour the Fractal Design Define R4/5 (blackout version) over the node 804. A tower may not suit a living room, but I'm sure you would find it quieter. My desktop PC is housed in a Fractal R3 case and it's whisper quiet with two front intake fans, one rear and a Hyper 212 CPU cooler. IIRC, the tower cases include one front an one rear fan, so just another fractal front fan saving on the cost of the tow Noctuas. Put that money towards a CPU cooler if you want to.

BOOT DRIVE - FreeNAS 11.2 will still run from a USB2 stick, but a small SSD is far far better, if you have a enough SATA ports. IMHO, you don't need to mirror the boot drive for a home server. As already suggested/hand intel SSD are a good choice, add low capacity S3500 to your wish list.


Yes, prices are high in the UK and s/hand server grade m/boards are hard to find. But I'd say buy a supermicro x10 series m/board and DDR3 memory, as you don't really need the latest 1151 generation. So, even in the UK there is the potential to save money. For example the guts of this ebay sale: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Supermic...m443cdc99da:g:kh8AAOSwNX1cAVgs&frcectupt=true
 

Chris Moore

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#7
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#8
I have a very similar build. I love the Node 804! Let me know if there's any pictures you want of it.

-Are SSD's recommended now for boot drive? I personally prefer freeing up the SATA ports over the possible increased reliability of small SSDs. I built my NAS almost two years ago. This is just me though.

-Can you stretch your budget for some 2TB drives? I think 1TB drives are worse for price/gb. I've read even 2TB aren't the sweet spot.

-The i3 supports ECC memory, I would strongly suggest getting ECC memory. And a single 16gb stick will give you more upgrade room in the future.

(I'm nowhere near an expert, this is just my opinion based on me building my NAS two years ago)
@JohnnyGrey
SSDs are recommended according to the guides!

Did you included any extra FANs in your build ? Are the stock FANs quiet ? Do you have any heating problems?

I will look into the 2TB drives, I really appreciate the heads up on that! ;)
ECC memory I have missed it, ECC is one of my requirements.
 
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#9
I know that availability might be different in the UK, but I would go with something like this instead because some of the 'off brand' SSDs have been less than reliable under FreeNAS.
https://www.ebay.com/itm/40GB-SSD-2-5-Intel-320-Series-SATA-Solid-State-Drive-For-Laptop-Desktop/264296801166
A quality used SSD like this Intel unit is vastly superior to a ultra cheap drive like the one you are considering.

The price difference to go to 2TB being as small as it is, I would very much recommend getting the 2TB drives to start. They are good for around five years, so it is not a bad investment.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01LWVCZ6N/ref=psdc_430527031_t2_B008JJLXO6?th=1
@Chris Moore
Thank you very much for the feedback. I was going for the cheapest/smallest SSD I could find. I thought that since they were mirrored, it wouldn't really make a difference. Can I use the additional space on the SSD for jails? It's difficult to find small SSDs, most of them are 128 Gb and bigger but it is a waste if Freenas only uses around 16 Gb.

Regarding the HDs I will be looking at the 2TB. I will update my build with the new information shortly.
I appreciate you feedback!
 
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#10
@thesecfreenas A few thoughts:

DISKS - IMHO, buying 6 X 1TB is a waste of money. Buy a pair of 4TB NAS drives (ironwolf or wd reds) to use in a single mirror @ £200 approx.
When you can afford it, expand your pool by adding a second 4TB Mirror (You could buy a third 4TB now as a spare). You haven't said, but I'd guess you will be using 1Gb networking. So, your network limits the max xfer speed to and from your NAS to 100-115MB/s approx. A pool consisting of a single 4TB mirror will give this xfer speed for sequential read/write if you're using Windows shares (less is using NFS shares).

MEMORY - Buy ECC memory - nothing else. To my mind, two 8GB sticks is fine for your proposed use. With a m/board capacity of 32GB, you can add two more 8gb Sticks if/when needed, and you are far more likely to find s/hand 8gb sticks than 16GB sticks.

CASE - I still favour the Fractal Design Define R4/5 (blackout version) over the node 804. A tower may not suit a living room, but I'm sure you would find it quieter. My desktop PC is housed in a Fractal R3 case and it's whisper quiet with two front intake fans, one rear and a Hyper 212 CPU cooler. IIRC, the tower cases include one front an one rear fan, so just another fractal front fan saving on the cost of the tow Noctuas. Put that money towards a CPU cooler if you want to.

BOOT DRIVE - FreeNAS 11.2 will still run from a USB2 stick, but a small SSD is far far better, if you have a enough SATA ports. IMHO, you don't need to mirror the boot drive for a home server. As already suggested/hand intel SSD are a good choice, add low capacity S3500 to your wish list.


Yes, prices are high in the UK and s/hand server grade m/boards are hard to find. But I'd say buy a supermicro x10 series m/board and DDR3 memory, as you don't really need the latest 1151 generation. So, even in the UK there is the potential to save money. For example the guts of this ebay sale: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Supermic...m443cdc99da:g:kh8AAOSwNX1cAVgs&frcectupt=true
@KrisBee
Regarding the disks, having the mirror won't tolerate the failure of two HDs. This is the reason why I went for the smaller disk size, more disks. RAIDZ2 will tolerate two HD failures. Also, I have seen people in the forums saying that sometimes during resilvering the likelihood of burning the other disk is high. That's really my fear!

For the memory, ECC is a requirement for me, I managed to somehow miss it with the PN I have pasted. This is the main reason why I am posting the information in the forum, a second pair of eyes it's always advised! :D

Regarding the Case, I will do some research on the suggested fractal, so thanks for the remark.
 

KrisBee

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#11
@thesecfreenas I still think 6 x 1TB is a poor choice. How would you expand such a raidz2 pool in situ if you ever wanted more than 4TB of usable storage? In your case, you'd have to replace each disk one by one with bigger drives, and it would not be until all six were replaced that your pool would be properly re-sized. Even 4 x 2TB in raidz2 is better. I shouldn't be hard to set a budget and then work out your sweet-spot for the number of HDDS and pool layout that gives the desired balance of capacity, performance and redundancy.

The argument about failures during resilvering is valid when comparing radiz1 to raidz2. AFAIU, the re-build process in mirrors puts less strain on the non-failed half than resilvers in raidz pools. ( One man's view: https://jrs-s.net/2015/02/06/zfs-you-should-use-mirror-vdevs-not-raidz/ )

But never forget that raidz, mirrors etc. are no substitute for backups.
 

Chris Moore

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#12
I still think 6 x 1TB is a poor choice. How would you expand such a raidz2 pool in situ if you ever wanted more than 4TB of usable storage? In your case, you'd have to replace each disk one by one with bigger drives, and it would not be until all six were replaced that your pool would be properly re-sized.
It is true. Prices were different back in 2011 when I built my first FreeNAS system. I built it using an old Dell Precision Workstation and 5 x 1TB drives in RAIDz1. I later built a better system with 6 x 2TB drives in RAIDz2 and copied all the data over from one system to the next. Later than that I replaced one drive at a time in the RAIDz2 pool to go from 2TB drives to 4TB drives. Any capacity upgrade is a difficulty.
RAIDZ2 will tolerate two HD failures.
I like the RAIDz2 plan. When my last set of disks were around the five year point, I started to have a lot of failures and I did have two drives in the same vdev fail at the same time. That safety is not always needed, but there is no substitute for it when it is. Also, no RAID is a substitute for a backup.
 
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#13
@JohnnyGrey
... Did you included any extra FANs in your build ? Are the stock FANs quiet ? Do you have any heating problems?
I splurged when I built my NAS. I have six Corsair ML120 fans. CPU temps aren't a concern of mine, since I have a 35w i3. My hard drives stay in the mid to upper 30's, but they did climb above 40 degrees during scrubs before I implemented a fan script a couple of days ago. My Corsair fans are usually always at the minimum, 400rpm. During my recent scrub, they climbed to a whopping 600 rpm, but it kept my hottest drive at 37 degrees. The fans are capable of 2400rpm, but I don't think they would EVER get near that.

Despite not really containing "vital" data, I opted for a RAIDz3 config, using eight 2TB Ironwolf drives. I just don't want the headache of losing my media collection. I had one drive fail about a month in, and FINALLY got around to RMAing it a few days ago. Luckily I had a 2TB WD Red in my main rig that used to house my media, I swapped that in, and it's been chugging near-24/7 since. Once i get the replacement Ironwolf, I'll probably replace the WD red and keep it as a cold spare. I have all eight SATA ports occupied, so I have no choice but to pull the WD and resilver.
 
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