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79 posts

Master Geek
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Topic # 64820 23-Jul-2010 13:38
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I currently have a reasonable computer I built a couple of years ago asus M2N Sli mobo, 4gb ddr2 ram, nvidia 8500gt 512mb graphics card, AMD Athlon 64 X2 3.2 ghz processor have vista installed on a 500gb hard drive and a 1tb hard drive to store all my media on both hard drives are now full.

I was going to get a 2tb Caviar Green WD hd drive to add additional space, but was wondering would a server be a better option? have everything centralised in one place for access to laptop, pc and even tv as I have a 40 inch series 6 Samsung LED tv with DLNA (which I can't seem to get to work with my PC, can access videos in the videos file under my documents but can't get it to access the 1tb HD without it freezing up)

Or then I could just upgrade my PC to a decent HTPC with decent graphics card, new mobo with ddr3 ram, 64 bit windows and an i3 or i5 processor

hmmm decisions... sorry kind of babbled on there, but your thoughts would be appreciated!

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  Reply # 355356 23-Jul-2010 14:17
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Was much the same position as you a year or so ago, and looked at various options.

Windows Home Server with a couple of HDD's fitted the bill perfectly - a bit of redundancy with having 2 or more HDD's in WHS with WHS Folder duplication on, is a reasonable protection against a single HDD failure.
As well as being connectable to Xbox and other myriad of network capable products clinched it.

Off loaded all music, vids and photos to WHS, remotely accessible, etc.
Great !!






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  Reply # 355451 23-Jul-2010 16:31
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I was in a simlar position with a XP box with a 120G C drive, 250G D drive with some content and 2 1G USB drives with more content. I decided to replace the MB with a cheapie Athlon 64 x2 3600 and just put Win 7 Pro on it. It serves up content fine but I have no RAID capability etc.  If I were to upgrade I would spring for a NAS and use a tiny box to serve up the content (to two Popcorn Hours and an Oppo BDP 80 BluRay player).




System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen. Harman Kardon HK AVR 254 7.1 receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast

 


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  Reply # 355785 24-Jul-2010 14:44
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I have a server with a 5 or 6TB of data storage on it. I use it to backup all my photos and backups of the machines to and also to host data to be able to play on the HTPC and laptops.

It's been great except for when the wireless goes down due to my crappy WRT600N or whatever it is. I live in an apartment that won't let me run wires through the concrete walls so it had to be that way :(

Regardless it's been great.

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 355832 24-Jul-2010 16:13
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Rather than a server you might want to consider buying a NAS: http://www.ascent.co.nz/productspecification.aspx?ItemID=373638




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  Reply # 355920 24-Jul-2010 21:39
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I run home server and have since it came out. One advantage is that you can retask an existing PC. The current version does not need much in the way of hardware. An old P4 will do the trick. You just keep throwing disks at it as needed and add them too the "pool" of space.

There is a new release in beta at the moment but it is not massively different as far as features from what I have seen however it does require a 64bit capable CPU as it is based on Server 2008 x64.







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

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  Reply # 355980 25-Jul-2010 08:16
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I would love to have a NAS but at $400 for an empty chassis it doesn't stack up to an old PC lying around that you repurpose. Of course even if you have an old PC lying around, you do need to purchase an OS. If you don't have a legit copy then Win7 Home is about $150 ish I think so that's still cheaper than a NAS. And if you are keen there's FreeNAS.




System One: Popcorn Hour A200,  PS3 SuperSlim, NPVR and Plex Server running on Gigabyte Brix (Windows 10 Pro), Sony BDP-S390 BD player, Pioneer AVR, Raspberry Pi running Kodi and Plex, Panasonic 60" 3D plasma, Google Chromecast

System Two: Popcorn Hour A200 ,  Oppo BDP-80 BluRay Player with hardware mode to be region free, Vivitek HD1080P 1080P DLP projector with 100" screen. Harman Kardon HK AVR 254 7.1 receiver, Samsung 4K player, Google Chromecast

 


My Google+ page 

 

 

 

https://plus.google.com/+laurencechiu

 

 


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  Reply # 355990 25-Jul-2010 09:28
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lchiu7: I would love to have a NAS but at $400 for an empty chassis it doesn't stack up to an old PC lying around that you repurpose. Of course even if you have an old PC lying around, you do need to purchase an OS. If you don't have a legit copy then Win7 Home is about $150 ish I think so that's still cheaper than a NAS. And if you are keen there's FreeNAS.


Home Server OEM $232.52 (note there is only the OEM version)
http://www.ascent.co.nz/productspecification.aspx?ItemID=380650







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 356046 25-Jul-2010 12:48
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Old PC + FreeNas = $$SAVE$$




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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 356055 25-Jul-2010 13:26
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FreeNAS for the win, run it from a CF card, and set the drives to spin down when inactive. I've got mine setup in a MATX chassis with an Atom mobo and it uses bugger all power.



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 356133 25-Jul-2010 18:04
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thanks guys. ok cool think i will go with the server idea, have got windows home server somewhere and can get a cheap older computer to run it 2.6ghz celeron processor, 512mb ram and 80gb hd to install WHS on, will just rip that out and transfer it to an old server box with internal fans i can get off mate. will see how that goes and upgrade as necessary. 

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  Reply # 356248 25-Jul-2010 23:11
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I am a bit new to all of this, but am also toying with a NAS box. Something like this:

http://www.ascent.co.nz/productspecification.aspx?ItemID=377571

The price ($600) isn't outrageous, and it seems that I can keep adding disks over time as needed. Presently I think I need 2-3TB of storage (to make backage images of 3 machines and store my data/media files), and I was thinking that getting one of these and adding 3 x 2TB drives to give me 4TB in Raid 5 would be the way to go. I can add another drive later if I need more space as the media library grows. It seems a bit more low effort than a server. Or am I missing something - what advantages would WHS provide that this wouldn't?


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  Reply # 356327 26-Jul-2010 08:09
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http://www.microsoft.com/windows/products/winfamily/windowshomeserver/default.mspx

It really does leave a NAS for dead. The PC backup alone makes it worth while IMHO. In fact what blows me away is that the home server backup system works better (with no complex configuration) then the enterprise system we use at work.

Think about it. You PC starts playing up. Three days later you find that it is a software issue and you cannot fix the problem or it is just too hard to fix. No problem. Just restore the backup from four days ago and you PC is backup and running.
What's more you don't have 7+ full backups of each PC chewing though your storage. Instead there is just one copy of each file/file version. Not across the PC but across all your PC's.

You can also do a lot of very cool things with the addins that are available. *I was going to link to We got served but their web site seem to have a issue currently only showing the news page.







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64



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Master Geek
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  Reply # 356393 26-Jul-2010 11:00
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Yeah all the NAS storage options seemed way over priced to me for what they are and do and besides the verstility of an old pc along with WHS allow for endless customisable options and upgrades!

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Master Geek
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  Reply # 356404 26-Jul-2010 11:12
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I have an HTPC to record TV shows etc. It also behaves as a server, allowing me to stream music and movies to other systems in the house.

I looked a separate server, but the HTPC is on all the time, so having a server as well would mean two systems running 24 hours a day, for very little advantage.

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  Reply # 356541 26-Jul-2010 14:27
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Buzzy is there a particular reason that you do not have your HTPC go to sleep?







Media centre PC - Case Silverstone LC16M with 2 X 80mm AcoustiFan DustPROOF, MOBO Gigabyte MA785GT-UD3H, CPU AMD X2 240 under volted, RAM 4 Gig DDR3 1033, HDD 120Gig System/512Gig data, Tuners 2 X Hauppauge HVR-3000, 1 X HVR-2200, Video Palit GT 220, Sound Realtek 886A HD (onboard), Optical LiteOn DH-401S Blue-ray using TotalMedia Theatre Power Corsair VX Series, 450W ATX PSU OS Windows 7 x64

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