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Al_Borges

Goodbye to Windows 10 as a Homeserver

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Ikon-TNG

Well, I just went from my father's WHS2011 to Windows 10 Pro as my server. I have my main storage pool in the server chassis. I have 2 external 5-drive enclosures that I use for backup, as well as a 2-drive BlacX drive dock for only my most important data. The data from the main pool gets backed up every night. I basically put everything on the server; virtually nothing locally.

 

Besides the main pool, the drives in each external enclosure are also pooled, all done with Stablebit DrivePool. So far, I haven't noticed any issues with Windows 10 Pro updates causing problems with the storage pools. What I have noticed, unfortunately, is a tendency for the server to reboot itself after I eject and shut down one of the external enclosures, and then start it up again. The reboot seems to happen on the start up. It's annoying, and I'm thinking it's the motherboard; although, the 2 external enclosures are connected to a USB3 add-in card. Hmmmm.

 

Since Windows 10 Pro doesn't have client computer backup (at least, as far as I know), I'm using Acronis 2015 to do client backup; basically just the boot drive.

 

 

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schoondoggy
On ‎1‎/‎13‎/‎2018 at 7:22 PM, ImTheTypeOfGuy said:

 

I was looking for unRAID and found this thread. A lot of good opinions, thoughts, etc. Did anyone go wiith unRAID?

 

For those that are using servers today, especially the microserver crowd, what OS are you running? I see S2016 is about $400. I feel like I always want to have an OS that allows me to create VM's. Of course it is expensive but I am willing to pay that if I feel it is the product I want to use.

 

I like the idea someone posted about having a NAS just for file management and keeping virtualization, media requirements, etc on a completely separate box. Sounds like it would definitely simplify things. I currently have a WHS v1 as my file server, bare metal backups, and media server. I also have an HTPC. I also have a S2008R2 that is primarily for backup my my WHSv1 and my BlueIris (surveillance software) software. I am afraid my WHS v1 may die so I have been looking at an alternative. I don't like Synology hardware due to the lack of high end performance. I don't care it is just serving files, it needs to be at least an i5 or higher. At least that is my current thought. I have been debating a plex server but not sure where all the content for it comes from (more research needed). I have been posting back and forth with itGeeks on xpenology. I am also looking into Stablebit DrivePool to see if I can use it as a file server, with security. As you can see I am struggling to figure out my next move.

I tend to have storage and compute in separate systems. How much storage capacity are you looking for? As for running VM's I like to run ESXi or Hyper-V Server 2016 instead of an OS that supports VM's. The only concern I have with virtualization running at home is the risk of 'too many eggs in one basket'. If all of your VM's are running in one big server, what do you do if it dies? A certain level of distributed computing may be in order.

 

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Joe_Miner
On 1/13/2018 at 8:22 PM, ImTheTypeOfGuy said:

I like the idea someone posted about having a NAS just for file management and keeping virtualization, media requirements, etc on a completely separate box. Sounds like it would definitely simplify things. 

 

I would vote for keeping the boxes separate when possible for that very reason.  I'm still using WHS2011 on a X58 machine with an i7-930.  W10Pro is where I'm leaning right now for a replacement because of cost (though if I could I would just reinstall WHS2011 with DrivePool) and I would consider continuing with Stablebit DrivePool because of it's brain dead simplicity and reliability.  I would caution that even W10Pro can be a PIA (as OP mentioned) when they pounce a new "improve" update.  My critical files (family photo's and video's mostly of grandkids) I back up with CrashPlan which is working well with WHS2011.  Your existing copy of S2008R2 (already sunk cost) may be a good interim step also.  

 

Lots of great ideas and options in this thread!

 

I still hope more low cost (yet reliable and brain dead simple) options will surface in the future.

 

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itGeeks
On 1/14/2018 at 1:48 AM, MGD9000 said:

Go with esxi.. I run xpenology plex and Windows 10 on it.

Another thought instead of adding another level of complication using esxi is to install XPEnology bare metal (my preference) and run any VM's you want from Synology DSM using the new "Virtual Machine Manager" found here I had setup a Windows 10 back in November for testing and it worked great. There also a how-to video you can check out found here

 

I also agree with schoon on the whole to many eggs in one basket. The advantage of running the VM's on DSM is you can 'fail over' free of charge, You just need to build another identical box and have a spare NIC on each. You can read about it here There is just so much baked into the Synology DSM and most of it FREE of charge, It blows away what your able to do with a Microsoft OS even at a cost.

Edited by itGeeks

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Poppapete

To me, the first question to ask is what do want to serve and which "service" is the most important?  Once you have the answer then the options become self limiting.

File Server

Media Server (& do I need decoding)

Backup Server

VM Server

Redundancy

I require all of the above except redundancy so I really need Windows Server.  The only problem is it costs time and money.  Once setup the time factor is markedly reduced especially if you go the "skipdomainjoin" route.  After 5 years of 2012R2E the cost is starting to look pretty good too.

 

I do not use RAID (not needing redundancy) and find Drivepool flawless especially the Duplication for my important files. ( I bought the package including Scanner). I have 7 pooled disks (24TB) of which 8TB are duplicated.

I do not use the MS backup as I have had many problems with the connector over the years (I have 5 PC's connected) and although I could usually fix the problems I gave up and use Veeam(free) for nightly bare metal backups which has NEVER failed on any of the 5 PC's

I use Plex and Serviio as my media Servers(both free)

 

I do backup my important files once a month to AWS using Cloudberry.

 

Edited by Poppapete

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ImTheTypeOfGuy
On ‎1‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 11:08 PM, schoondoggy said:

I tend to have storage and compute in separate systems. How much storage capacity are you looking for? As for running VM's I like to run ESXi or Hyper-V Server 2016 instead of an OS that supports VM's. The only concern I have with virtualization running at home is the risk of 'too many eggs in one basket'. If all of your VM's are running in one big server, what do you do if it dies? A certain level of distributed computing may be in order.

 

 

I need about 12 t o15 TB's of data due to all the duplication of data I set up. Today I am using RAID for backing up my data. Well I guess it would be more appropriate to say I am using RAID to store my data. I use WHS v1 for my file server. I duplicate the important data on it and copy all of my data to a RAID array on my s2008r2 box. To date I have never put any critical VM's on the s2008r2 box. I use it primarily for testing but may use for unRAID or xpenology in the future. 

 

On ‎1‎/‎15‎/‎2018 at 11:24 AM, Joe_Miner said:

 

I would vote for keeping the boxes separate when possible for that very reason.  I'm still using WHS2011 on a X58 machine with an i7-930.  W10Pro is where I'm leaning right now for a replacement because of cost (though if I could I would just reinstall WHS2011 with DrivePool) and I would consider continuing with Stablebit DrivePool because of it's brain dead simplicity and reliability.  I would caution that even W10Pro can be a PIA (as OP mentioned) when they pounce a new "improve" update.  My critical files (family photo's and video's mostly of grandkids) I back up with CrashPlan which is working well with WHS2011.  Your existing copy of S2008R2 (already sunk cost) may be a good interim step also.  

 

Lots of great ideas and options in this thread!

 

I still hope more low cost (yet reliable and brain dead simple) options will surface in the future.

 

 

I have been testing with W7 and W10 with DrivePool. I like the product but I really want separate shares for each user and with security. Unless I am overlooking it, that doesn't exist. I also use CrashPlan for my offsite backup. Yes s2008r2 isn't going anywhere so I continue to use it. I am just trying to plan for my next hardware/software options.

 

On ‎1‎/‎15‎/‎2018 at 11:54 AM, itGeeks said:

Another thought instead of adding another level of complication using esxi is to install XPEnology bare metal (my preference) and run any VM's you want from Synology DSM using the new "Virtual Machine Manager" found here I had setup a Windows 10 back in November for testing and it worked great. There also a how-to video you can check out found here

 

I also agree with schoon on the whole to many eggs in one basket. The advantage of running the VM's on DSM is you can 'fail over' free of charge, You just need to build another identical box and have a spare NIC on each. You can read about it here There is just so much baked into the Synology DSM and most of it FREE of charge, It blows away what your able to do with a Microsoft OS even at a cost.

 

I didn't know about DSM having a VM Manager. I will have to investigate that.

 

Before reading these latest posts, I have been leaning towards replacing my WHS v1 with the synology 1817+. Yes it is much larger than I need but it is only about $150 more than the 5 bay version. I also thought I could try xpenology and/or unRAID on the whs v1 box or I may purchase the Lenovo x3550 M4 storage server. Many have suggested ESXi so I may try it as well. So many options, which are complicating my decisions, and I don't have time for them. But I appreciate everyone's contribution to the discussion.

 

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