Jump to content
RESET Forums (homeservershow.com)

  • Dave

    This is a guest post by C. Winter.


    In December 2008 my home PC died taking with it my database, all MP3s, home videos, all my pictures and a full 1tb drive of films I had ripped from my collection.  So I got to thinking why not have some sort of server storing everything, backups,  and  on a battery backup.  So my journey starts there.  I spent the better part of 2 months every night looking for something that would suit my needs, but nothing looked like what I wanted for my project.  So I looked at custom builds... I needed something with about 6 drives for everything.


    I started to look at motherboards and I decided to use the The Intel® Desktop Board D945GCLF2 with 2 GB of ram.


    My very first build worked well for about 1month and then I started having problems with heat on the drives


    clip_image002 clip_image004


    This build I used


    6 X 1TB green Hard drives


    1 X 120mm fan for front


    2 X 80mm fan for back


    5 X caddy’s


    1 X LCD temp display


    1 X 550watts power supply


    1 atom 330 motherboard


    1 X 4 port sata card, no raid on the card


    Microsoft xp pro installed as os


    real vnc for remote desktop


    So I went back to the way it is designed, I asked the the company who cut the plastic if the caddy’s could be removed for some sort of removable slots. No problems. So then I got planning again.




    I removed everything from the first design and started again.


    The company that helped me with this build went through every step with me so we got it right first time round. I removed the caddy’s totally from my design. So I came up with this






    Finished build now testing and installing xp






    Hardware is the same as in my first build I just redesigned it for better air flow


    This systems is running


    XP Pro


    Xamp - (mysql, apache)


    Vnc – remote into the system from my network,


    Firewall, antivirus.


    This system has been running now for about 11 months with no problems




    Now I have all my music, pictures, databases, e-books and wallpapers all on one system I needed some sort of backup system. So I got to work again thinking why not use another system for safety


    So using the same motherboard as it is low in power, I came up with this.




    This system is about the same as the other system with sync software on it so I can make duplicates of everything on my main system.


    Instead of using a normal power supply I looked at using something smaller something like what a laptop has.


    So I used a PSU universal power unit adaptor 90w AC to DC and a picopsu 150w power supply mini-itx I purchased these of eBay.








    This system runs perfect at the moment there is 3 drives in this system. Totally backing up my main server, once a week I turn this server on and leave it on overnight.


    Now after doing these 2 servers I decided to hold my total collection of DVDs so I can store my total collection in the loft out of the way as I'm running out of space...


    So I looked at many options but went back to my second build with the hard drive slots.


    Planned 20 drives into my design and asked the company who helped my with my builds if this could be done. They said the plans needed to be very detailed but it could be done.


    I setup the system at first on the Intel® Desktop Board D945GCLF2 with 2 GB just to get me started, the same as my main server.


    The picture below has the raid card installed aswell.




    So I spent one month designing my server box and looking at what raid card to use.


    Is used the 4 Port SATA II Card, Low Profile Option, RAID Function, PCI With 5 Port SATA II Multiplier Bridge Board, RAID Function


    The main reason for using this card was the specs and good reviews it had,




    Port forwarding on the card had tobe a must to get me the 20 drives system spec of card


    Bus Type: 32 Bit PCI


    Internal Connector: 4 x SATA Female


    Supports RAID levels 0, 1, 0+1, 5 and JBOD


    Port Multiplier and NCQ (Native Command Queuing) support


    Compliant with PCI Spec 2.3, 32-bit slot, 5V or 3.3V slot


    Standard and Low Profile back plates included


    Software Compatibility: Windows NT/2000/XP/Vista/Windows 7/Server 2003, 2008 and Linux


    I also used the multiplier card to give me the 20 drive system I needed




    Chipset Silicon Image Sil3726


    Internal Connectors: 5 x SATA Female


    External Connector: 1 x eSATA Female


    Metal back plate attaches to standard external enclosure back panel


    Supplied with additional Slot Plate for installation into a suitable enclosure


    Port Multiplier and NCQ (Native Command Queuing) support


    Pin header for drive activity LEDs


    RAID 0, RAID 1, RAID 5, RAID 10, Concatenated and JBOD Groups supported


    I used 1 raid card and 4 multiplier cards


    The raid card can be set to just about any raid system you need, but I went for the JBOD (Redundant Array of Independent Disks) as I have the dvd originals so no need for backing up.


    So now I have tested and played around with the card on the Intel® Desktop Board D945GCLF2 and Works perfect for what I need – running on xp pro.


    After putting my plans together it all came together. the drawing I used


    clip_image028 clip_image030 clip_image032


    clip_image033 clip_image035


    after placing my plastic order, there was some of the details in needed to change. But everything went ok.


    Now for the plastic build.


    At first I taped everything together to make sure everything fitted in place. Perfect fit first time.




    Now to setup the fans, the top 4 fans are set tobe on all the time and the bottom to 4 can be switch off and on, depending on how many drives are installed.




    Now for the main build.


    clip_image041 clip_image043 clip_image045


    clip_image047 clip_image049 clip_image051


    Now the basic stuff is in, the wiring needs tobe set out and make sure the drives slot in ok on all the bays




    Before I turned this system on I checked all the wiring 3 times.


    clip_image058 clip_image060 clip_image062




    clip_image063 clip_image065 clip_image067




    I had a small streaming problem so I changed the motherboard from Intel® Desktop Board D945GCLF2 with 2 GB to the Asus AT3N7A-I Mini-ITX Motherboard Intel Atom 330 Dual Core nVIDIA ION with 4 GB of ram and it runs like lightning now.




    Motherboard Installed




    The system now has 10 drives in the system and works like a dream


    The system runs XP Pro with VNC remote login for maintenance and file sharing on.


    Below are the 2 systems finished and running? I also have an ups (1500w) system to prevent what happened to my old computer.


    clip_image073 clip_image075 clip_image077


    The ups system has a program with it so the power can be monitored, at present with the total setup when everything is on 240w of power.


    The ups system has stopped 5 power outs and 9 spikes in power, so for me a good investment


    The whole network runs on gigabit network for streaming


    Total cost and break down for the 20 bay system


    Motherboard                        -                £160


    Raid card                               -                 £90


    Forwarder card- multiplier (4)     -        £55 each


    Cathode lights x 2                -                 £8


    Case (total custom)            -                 £157


    Leds                                      -                 £40


    Fans (1.20watts) -                               £15


    Fan covers (£0.99 each)   -                £17.82


    Cables – sata - 50


    System drive (1TB green drive) £66


    20 drive at £66 = £1320 – I only have 10 installed at moment


    Notes from HSSDave: Thank you for the post Craig. Wouldn’t Windows Home Server run great on this box??? Hit the forums to discuss.


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments

    i have had a play with the first whs and licked it but i needed more from the os so decided to use xp as i had a copy. but i will be investing in the new whs 2010. there is some nice features on the new os.
    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    This windows server is amazing. The feature thing is great above all. Technology role the world and the world is nothing without technology. :)
    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    If you are really serious in procuring quality SEO services in sync with the advanced web promotion services, SEO Company ready to offer best seo services, internet marketing, social media marketing, Online Reputation Management.
    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Performance - based seo company & web design company Kolkata. We provide quality and Reliable web design, web design firm, Best web design, web design services, seo web design at affordable budget.
    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Spent the better part of 2 months every night. Wow! That's long enough. Good thing that you were really determined to finish everything. Patience.
    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    Create an account or sign in to comment

    You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

    Create an account

    Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

    Register a new account

    Sign in

    Already have an account? Sign in here.

    Sign In Now

  • Our picks

    • I throw this out every once in a while.  Is anyone interested in writing up "semi-formal" reviews here on the forums?  I say semi-formal because they don't have to be pro level, just a good attempt at telling the story about the gear.  Something you have purchased lately.  You don't have to go buy stuff, just incorporate what you have already have purchased.  Hit me up with any questions.  You never know where it will lead!
        • Like
      • 3 replies
    • D-Link has dropped a couple of new products and additions to their lineup of smart home gear.  Hold on because there is a lot of gear!
      Let's start with cameras.  D-Link has new Wi-Fi cameras, the Full HD Pan and Tilt Pro Wi-Fi Camera (DCS-8302LH) and Full HD Indoor and Outdoor Pro Wi-Fi Camera (DCS-8526LH).  These are not just new, and good looking cams, they can now perform people detection and glass break detection.  The new cameras also feature expanded ways for customers to save video, including ONVIF Profile S, which enables custom storage and streaming options to personal NAS devices, built-in storage microSD capacity up to 256 GB, as well as free and paid cloud storage options. 

      This year's camera models include both an indoor and an outdoor model. The outdoor model features a spotlight and siren that can be triggered when motion is detected, deterring potential intruders. The indoor model pans around to give a full 360-degree view of any room and tracks motion. Both include two-way audio. 
      Full HD Pan and Tilt Pro Wi-Fi Camera is the model (DCS-8302LH), available in Q2, 2020, and retail pricing will be $99.99.
      Full HD Indoor and Outdoor Pro Wi-Fi Camera is the model (DCS-8526LH), available in Q3, 2020, and retail pricing will be $119.99.
      One of my favorite products is Wi-Fi.  D-Link has a whole lot of new products coming including Wi-Fi 6, Mesh, Alexa and Google Assistant integration, IFTTT, Parental Controls, and more!

      There are so many new SKU's that I can't make heads or tails of them!  I'm going to be speaking with D-Link more this week and will sort all of these out. I do want you to see all they are offering and what the release date and projected retail pricing will be.

      AC1900 Scalable Mesh Wi-Fi Router (COVR-1900-US), Q1 2020, $119.99
      AC1750 Mesh Wi-Fi Router (DIR-1750-US), Q1 2020, $99.99
      AC1900 Mesh Wi-Fi Router (DIR-1950-US), Q1 2020, $119.99
      AC1750 Mesh Wi-Fi Range Extender (DAP-1755-US), Q1 2020, $99.99
      AC1950 Mesh Wi-Fi Range Extender (DAP-1955-US), Q1 2020, $109.99
      Smart AX1500 Mesh Wi-Fi 6 Router (DIR-X1560-US), Q1 2020, $119.99
      Smart AX1800 Mesh Wi-Fi 6 Router (DIR-X1870-US), Q2 2020, $139.99
      Smart AX2400 Mesh Wi-Fi 6 Router (DIR-X2460-US), Q3 2020, $159.99
      Smart AX5400 Mesh Wi-Fi 6 Router (DIR-X5460-US), Q1 2020, $279.99
      AX1800 Mesh Wi-Fi 6 Range Extender (DAP-X1870-US), Q2 2020, $129.99
      AX1800 Whole Home Mesh System (COVR-X1872-US), QX22020, $269.99
        • Like
      • 0 replies
    • RESET Merch Shop
      Get ya Merch here!  I've created a T-Shirt shop with the famous RESET paperclip. I've pasted that clip on just about everything so you can wear it around town!  Cable bags, Coffee Mugs, T-Shirts, and more. 
      or you can get it it via
      Here is the main design.

      Below is a part of the order that I put in!  

      The Heather Grey above is the Extra Soft version and it is awesome.  I highly recommend the softness!    The "Chili Red" is the Tri-Blend and probably my favorite feel and color.

      This is the Zip-Up Hoody, Heather Indigo, Sponge Fleece, Men's, Large.  In my podcast I couldn't remember what style it was but it is Sponge Fleece. It's REALLY soft on the inside. Soft outside as well. The only problem is with the zip up hoody the logo is on the back. Regular hoody, it will be on the front.
      or you can get it it via
      Thank you for supporting this community. Everything you purchase will help keep the lights on the hard drives spinning.
      • 0 replies
    • OneDrive Personal Vault and expandable storage
      Microsoft's OneDrive has a few new features and options worth pointing out.  Personal Vault and Expandable Storage.
      Personal Vault is a protected area in OneDrive that can only be accessed with a strong authentication method or a second step of identity verification, such as your fingerprint, face, PIN, or a code sent to you via email or SMS. 
      Personal Vault gives you an added layer of protection for your most important files, photos, and videos—for example, copies of documents such as your passport, driver’s license, or insurance information—should someone gain access to your account or device.
      Plus, this added security won’t slow you down. You can quickly access your important documents, photos, and files with confidence wherever you are, on your PC, OneDrive.com, or your mobile device.

      Beyond a second layer of identity verification, Personal Vault also includes the following security measures:
      Scan and shoot—Using the OneDrive app, you can scan documents or shoot photos directly into your Personal Vault, keeping them off less secure areas of your device, like your camera roll.
      Automatic locking—No need to worry about whether you left your Personal Vault or your files open—both will close and lock automatically after a period of inactivity.
      BitLocker encryption—On Windows 10 PCs, OneDrive automatically syncs your Personal Vault files to a BitLocker-encrypted area of your local hard drive.
      Restricted sharing—To prevent accidental sharing, files in Personal Vault and shared items moved into Personal Vault cannot be shared.
      Taken together, these security measures help ensure that Personal Vault files are not stored unprotected on your PC, and your files have additional protection, even if your Windows 10 PC or mobile device is lost, stolen, or someone gains access to it or to your account.
      Expandable Storage
      If you are and Office 365 Subscriber you get 1 TB of OneDrive storage space with all the other Office goodies like Word, Excel, etc.  I know personally that I have gone over the 1TB limit and have always wanted to be able to add additional storage to my account.  Now you can!

      Pick and option and keep on hoarding, errr, I mean saving! Cancel anytime, upgrade at any moment.
      • 1 reply
    • Ubiquiti adds new items to the Unifi Line including UAP Flex HD and the Unifi Dream machine
      Ubiquiti has been busy.  There area ton of new items to recently released and I'm going to share two of my favorites.
      The UAP Flex HD and the Unifi Dream machine. The Flex HD is a mouthful of descriptors like most of UI gear is.  It's a 2Ghz 2x2 MIMO, 5GHz 4x4 MU-MIMO, POE, Indoor/Outdoor, multi mount, mesh point that is no bigger than a can of Coke.

      You will still need the Unifi controller although you can configure it with basic functionality with the Unifi App.  I've always found it's best to configure with your controller and then use the app as an add-on.  There are several mounting options that include sitting it on a shelf! That is something that Unifi has not had before unless you count the ceiling AP I have awkwardly mounted placed on top of a few books.  It can be found on the Unifi store for $179.
      The Dream Machine is an altogether different beast that I hope lives up to its naming.  This is the gateway drug, for lack of a better term, to the Unifi world.  The starter kit.  It is an Access Point, Gigabit Switch, Security Gateway, and the Cloud Key all in one package.  The latter being the most significant as this is something that has deterred new users from getting started with Unifi.  Requiring new users to purchase a $100 item just to run the AP's has been somewhat of a roadblock in the past.  Granted, that is improving every year with the ability to run it in the cloud, on a NAS, a Pi, Docker, MacOS, and of course Windows, it is still a barricade to getting up and running when manufacturers such as Eero offer simplicity in an app.

      The switch includes 4 LAN Ports and 1 WAN port.  All of which are Gigabit and security services such as IPS are rated at Gigabit speed. It's $299 in the Unifi store but I'm unsure how nicely it will play with other Unifi gear.  This may be a nice "first AP" with its built in Cloud Key if you can add additional units or other Unifi access points.
      • 4 replies
  • Create New...