Jump to content
RESET Forums (homeservershow.com)

Need Some Guidance on First Build


FleurDeLis425
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hello!

 

I am looking to build my first home server, as I am sure many new people on this forum are looking to do. However, even after days of research, some things are not clear and I was hoping I could get some guidance.

 

CPU: I guess I am not sure what CPU is reasonable for a server that will be running 24/7. Not looking to do anything like Virtualization. Looking to do the following:

  • Storage of Pictures/Music/Video
  • File Server
  • Media Streaming
  • Torrenting
  • WebServer
  • Mumble Server
  • Possible Game Server
  • Backup of PCs

However I am not sure what is enough and what is just sheer overkill. Pentium, i3, i5, Xeon? Thoughts? Will a Xeon handle the 24/7 operation better? Is an i5 and Xeon just overkill for what i want to do? 

 

Hot Swap: Been trying to decide if hot swap is worth it. How often do HDD's fail? Is it worth it to spend the money on a case with hot swap?

 

Software vs Hardware RAID: This I am sure is a question you guys get asked alot, but I cannot find a solid answer? Is a hardware RAID worth it? I was also considering Storage Spaces? Will either of these solutions make it easy to expand the drive space by adding drives as time goes on? I know with the hardware raid you will need to add matching drive sizes. Trying to figure out if the $400 cost of a card is worth it.

 

Quad/Dual NIC: How many of you guys use a quad NIC? Is it also worth the cost of the card? In addition, is it safe to assume that a separate Intel quad NIC will perform better than a motherboard with quad ports?

 

Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 21
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • ikon

    7

  • Joe_Miner

    2

  • schoondoggy

    3

  • FleurDeLis425

    7

CPU-The game server line item may push you up, but I would think a latest generation i3 with as much memory as you can afford would work well.

Hot Swap- Technically true hot swap is generally found only on higher end servers. The removable drives on most products are not hot swap. I find removable drives are a nice feature for taking drives off site. I would save the money and skip the removable bays. 

RAID- Before you decide on RAID you should determine how much storage you need and the performance you need. Remember RAID is not a backup.

On servers I like to mirror/RAID 1 my OS drive. Depending on how much data I have I would use RAID 1 or RAID 5 for data. Personal preference for me is software RAID 1 for the OS and hardware RAID 5 for data. You can get a RR 2720sgl for $159.

NIC-The only time I have need more than two NICs is when I am building a firewall.

 

What OS are you going to use?

Is there a certain case size you are looking for? mATX?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the response.

 

For the CPU, if I ran the game server, would you think i5 or even higher? Like I said, it was a possibility, but not a must have for me.

 

In terms of case, I was thinking ATX with a Fractal Define R4. Size is not the largest concern to me. Was kind of hoping for more of a square case, but all those seem to cost more than I want to pay.

 

 

In terms of OS, I am still debating between Ubuntu Server or Windows Server Essentials 2012. Still debating that front a bit. 

 

In terms of the raid, I was thinking of adding 4 3TB drives, but I would like the option to easily add more as time goes on. What are your thoughts on ZFS I started researching it a bit. Any reason you typically go with RAID 5 vs RAID 10?

 

Thanks!

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think a fast i3 with a lot of memory will be fine. I would price out an i5 just to get a feel for the difference. PC DOC has posted several items on Haswell builds, lots of good info.

Fractal makes great cases. I seem to be overly enamored with the CoolerMaster Stacker;

http://coolermaster-usa.com/microsite/hafstacker/

and the pretty factor of BitFenix;

http://www.bitfenix.com/global/en/products/chassis/survivor

 

I think I have stayed with RAID 5 on a hardware controller, because I am comfortable with rebuild times with 2-3TB drives. As drives get bigger and faster I seem to be advocating RAID 1 more and more. Its simple and safe. If RAID 1 is not fast enough, then I start considering RAID 5 or RAID 10.

 

I like ZFS and it is an easy way to grow. The LSI RAID controllers are popular with the ZFS crowd. Running them as pass through.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I like Fractal cases.  Just a better product, in my opinion.  Not for looks but for ease of build, cable routing, etc.  I also think the i3 will be plenty as long as you can get enough RAM.  I have 8 VM's running on an i5 and the CPU usage never pegs above 20%.  RAM is always the bottleneck.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

-snip-

 

Software vs Hardware RAID: This I am sure is a question you guys get asked alot, but I cannot find a solid answer? Is a hardware RAID worth it? I was also considering Storage Spaces? Will either of these solutions make it easy to expand the drive space by adding drives as time goes on? I know with the hardware raid you will need to add matching drive sizes. Trying to figure out if the $400 cost of a card is worth it.

 

-snip-

 

Instead of Storage Spaces I prefer to use Stablebit DrivePool 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with most of the responses.  Because you might demanding a bit from you server and may add to it, I would spring for the extra $70 and get an I5.  I have recently built 3 of the low power I5 and so far they run great.  For storage, I would use either the 2720 as schoondoggy said which is my choice of cards, or us  something like stablebit as Joe_miner mentioned .  Personally I would stay away from storage Spaces.  Fractal makes very good (and very heavy) cases.  I have two of my servers in Fractal cases and they are amongst the quietest and roomiest cases I have used to date. Just remember they are a bit heavy.  My Fractal XL weights in at about 70 lbs loaded with 11 drives. Skip the quad NIC and put the money in the raid card of choice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I, too, echo pretty what everyone has said, especially staying away from Storage Spaces. I use an LSI/3ware RAID card in my server, but the RocketRAID 2720 is very popular with forum members, and has proven to be quite reliable for them. I'm too old to lug around a 70 lb. case anymore, so I would go for a nice Lian-Li aluminum chassis :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks everyone for the responses!

 

In terms of a low power i5, would the i5-4570S work (65W)?

 

Just curious why people seem to want to stay away from storage spaces. Can you give me some insight? I heard Server 2012 R2 fixed some of the issues.

 

 

 
Link to comment
Share on other sites

"Fixed some" is not the same as "this is a kick-A$$ storage technology that everyone should use". Basically, Storage Spaces has not lived up to its billing -- it's slow and, to me at least, too complicated. You can find a lot of posts in these forums that discuss it. pcdoc, in particular, has done a lot of testing on it, and is not impressed.

 

As with many new MS technologies, it will likely take 3 or 4 iterations before Storage Spaces becomes a great product, if MS sticks with it that long.

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
 Share


×
×
  • Create New...