Thoughts on building your own NAS device

In a previous post I shared the research I did on the various NAS solutions that are available. I’ve been experimenting with the software solutions I described in that post, and have decided to forego a pre-built solution in favor of a DIY project. There were a couple of reasons for this:

  1. The hardware costs were significantly less than the pre built solutions.
  2. I have quite a bit more flexibility rolling my own box.
  3. The commercial solutions come with a ton of bells and whistles that I don’t really need.
  4. There are functional streaming solutions that run on top of Linux and FreeBSD.
  5. I don’t have to worry about my NAS being EOL’ed or the company that sells it going under.

I’m not sure if I’m going to run FreeNSD or openfiler, but I have settled on my hardware. Based on a recommendation from a reader named Dave, I ordered a HP micro server along with 4 2TB Samsung disk drives. The server cost me $300, and I got the disk drives on sale for $80 each. That puts the total price tag for a NAS device with 8TB of RAW disk at just over $600. Not bad! I’m planning to do a thorough evaluation of freenas and openfiler, and will post my thoughts on the two as I start digging into them further. Also planning to do some serious performance benchmarks to see which performs better. Viva la NAS!!

Part two of this series is available here.

This article was posted by Matty on 2011-01-20 13:34:00 -0400 -0400