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Help building a Linux raid 5 sever

denandyas Avatar
8y, 3m agoPosted 8 years, 3 months ago
Hi there I am looking to build a Linux Raid 5 server with 3 1TB drives, I have a old PC a pentium 4 and am going to buy 3 1TB hard disks. Was wondering if anyone had any info or point me into the right direction to as to what raid controller to buy, what version of linux to use, and how I can link the media fils mp3s avi div x and so on to a PS3 and xbox running xbmc?

Any help will be greatly apprciated. Thanks!
denandyas Avatar
8y, 3m agoPosted 8 years, 3 months ago
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#1
Look up openfiler or FreeNas.
Openfiler I have on my laptop, still trying to use it, but the user guide costs money even if the software is Linux.
My idea is to use a laptop with 2x pcmcia slots. one slot will have a 4 port USB hub, and the other slot will have a gigbit interface.

I am hoping that the combo of USB2 external drives, and the gigabit interface will be a lot faster than the dual SATA NAS box I bought from Maplin. It only has a Fast Ethernet and only uploads to it at approx 2MB/sec, downloads at approx 5MB/sec.

The addition of Linux on the laptop will also mean that I get good power management, with the drives and the laptop going into sleep or hibernate, and being woken by the Wake on LAN(still have to find out if WAKE ON LAN works from Hibernate.

FreeNAS CDROM ISO: I cannot et this to boot on the same laptop.
#2
myjess
Look up openfiler or FreeNas.
Openfiler I have on my laptop, still trying to use it, but the user guide costs money even if the software is Linux.
My idea is to use a laptop with 2x pcmcia slots. one slot will have a 4 port USB hub, and the other slot will have a gigbit interface.

I am hoping that the combo of USB2 external drives, and the gigabit interface will be a lot faster than the dual SATA NAS box I bought from Maplin. It only has a Fast Ethernet and only uploads to it at approx 2MB/sec, downloads at approx 5MB/sec.

The addition of Linux on the laptop will also mean that I get good power management, with the drives and the laptop going into sleep or hibernate, and being woken by the Wake on LAN(still have to find out if WAKE ON LAN works from Hibernate.

FreeNAS CDROM ISO: I cannot et this to boot on the same laptop.


Something wrong with that picture, fast ethernet is a lot faster than that perhaps its the laptop thats at fault, wouldn't happen to know the data limit on PCMCIA do you?

@OP
Why raid if you are only putting 3 drives in?, and why raid 5?, what about backups?, consider raid 3
#3
Could well be that the NAS box I am using cannot handle any faster throughput than that.It's not my switches, cos they are all gigabit.

No idea what the pcmcia data speed is going to be. I was hoping someone on here could have told me.
#4
The project seems a tad flawed to me.

1) No point with RAID except for redundancy, and even then, RAID redundancy is a poor substitute for real backups. Remember, the main cause of data loss is accidental deletion, and RAID does nothing to help you there. Performance won't improve with RAID striping - Samsung's F1 1TB drives already read at around 90MB/s+, which is ample for pretty much anything, and is almost enough to saturate a gigabit connection just by itself.

2) Linux is overrated. You'll run into no end of problems with it. Just install WinXP and enable filesharing on the drvies, it couldn't be easier

3) Unless you've already got 3TB of stuff to put on the system, there's no point buying drives just yet. Seagate have already got a 1.5TB harddisk on the way, and there's not much point having drives sitting idle, losing their value.

4) The whole architecture is wrong, actually. If you're going to use a PCI SATA card, you've got a maximum of 133MB/s to make use of over the entire PCI bus. Striped RAID will therefore peak at a little over 100MB/s, which is a tiny speed increase, and certainly not one worth the associated risk of hardware failure. Also, I asusme you're going to be connecting via gigabit, also using a PCI card. Bit of maths here - take the total bandwidth of the PCI bus, subtract 33MB to account for system activies and stuff, then divide by two to account for the bandwidth being split between SATA and the Gigabit cards. Subtract another 10% to account for headers and such, and then maybe a little more to account for the added seek tims, and pretty soon, you're looking at a super-powerful RAID soluton that performs worse than a firewire harddisk.


The way I'd do it would be to buy a 775-based mobo with gigabit on the internal PCI-E bus and a stack of SATA connectors, add a cheap CPU, and intall XP Pro on it.
#5
myjess
Could well be that the NAS box I am using cannot handle any faster throughput than that.It's not my switches, cos they are all gigabit.

No idea what the pcmcia data speed is going to be. I was hoping someone on here could have told me.




CardBus are PCMCIA 5.0 or later (JEIDA 4.2 or later) 32-bit PCMCIA devices, introduced in 1995 and present in laptops from late 1997 onward. CardBus is effectively a 32-bit, 33 MHz PCI bus in the PC Card form factor. CardBus includes bus mastering, which allows a controller on the bus to talk to other devices or memory without going through the CPU. Many chipsets are available for both PCI and CardBus, such as those that support Wi-Fi.

The notch on the left hand front of the device is slightly shallower on a CardBus device, so a 32-bit device cannot be plugged into a slot that can only accept 16-bit devices. Most new slots are compatible with both CardBus and the original 16-bit PC Card devices.

The speed of CardBus interfaces in 32 bit burst mode depends on the transfer type; in byte mode it is 33 MB/s, in Word mode it is 66 MB/s, and in DWord mode it is 132 MB/s.


So I guess it depends.
#6
2) Linux is overrated. You'll run into no end of problems with it. Just install WinXP and enable filesharing on the drvies, it couldn't be easier

If you use a Linux distro your data will be much safer, no need for a firewall as all ports on Linux are by default closed, no need for an antivirus as viruses for Linux are extremely rare and no need for antispyware/malware software as malware doesnt exist for Linux. There are less vulnerabilitys found in Linux meaning there is less chance of hackers.
You can enable file sharing in Linux with samba, its extremely easy to install and configure. Linux crashes way less than Windows! All Linux software is free and open source!
If your a Linux first timer I would recommend Ubuntu as its the most user freindly and very point and clicky. Ubuntu works straight out of the box, easy to install and all drivers are already installed. The only problems Ive had with Ubuntu, when it comes to compatability is wireless cards and printers, apart from that everything just works. If you looking for something a bit more powerful id recommend Red Hat.
Go with Linux!
#7
dxx
1) No point with RAID except for redundancy, and even then, RAID redundancy is a poor substitute for real backups. Remember, the main cause of data loss is accidental deletion, and RAID does nothing to help you there.

Well, it can be useful for availibility at home as well. For example a setup holding a movie library that would take you several weeks to re-rip and reconvert might benefit. However, as dxx says it's not a good idea for backup.

dxx

Performance won't improve with RAID striping - Samsung's F1 1TB drives already read at around 90MB/s+, which is ample for pretty much anything, and is almost enough to saturate a gigabit connection just by itself.

I think you're overestimating it there, the performance is closer to 60MB/s.

dxx

2) Linux is overrated. You'll run into no end of problems with it. Just install WinXP and enable filesharing on the drvies, it couldn't be easier

While it can have problems as a normal desktop for this sort of project Linux would be ideal.

@denandyas: I would just use the motherboard's onboard raid controller or entirely software raid, a good RAID 5 controller is expensive.
#8
wow so many things to digest, not sure where to go, so Raid no the ideal setup?? It just I have issues with my media libary before, with a hard disk failing and losing all the data and its quite frustrating re ripping everything. I have back ups of everythign I got because I got all CD & DVDs which is why I thought the RAID setup would be a better way to go! I pretty much sure Linux is the way to go software wise, its free and open source, and as well I have always wanted to develop my linux skills.

Anyone know and good websites that can help with this sort of thing? And how can I then get the PS3 and or Xbox running xbmc to see it and play stuff from the server?:-D
#9
Sounds like some serious overkill to me. If you're running a web server that needs to be available 24-7, then RAID 5 is great particularly when paired with hot-swap drives. But for a home media server? I'd suggest investing in some backup tapes if the data is really that important, you should be able to pick up an old DAT drive or similar relatively cheaply from eBay or somewhere.

There are plenty of tutorials out there on setting up Linux as a media server, for example: http://rubbervir.us/projects/ubuntu_media_server/ if you need help. I'd second the choice of Ubuntu by razta, there's a fairly big community behind it that are more than willing to help out: http://ubuntuforums.org/.

Personally I'd steer clear of Windows for anything that needs to be on all the time. Particularly if it needs to go anywhere near the internet, then you're just asking for a big security headache. It can be more of a pain to set up Linux initially, particularly if you're command line phobic, but it's solid as a rock once you get it going.
#10
denandyas
wow so many things to digest, not sure where to go, so Raid no the ideal setup?? It just I have issues with my media libary before, with a hard disk failing and losing all the data and its quite frustrating re ripping everything. I have back ups of everythign I got because I got all CD & DVDs which is why I thought the RAID setup would be a better way to go! I pretty much sure Linux is the way to go software wise, its free and open source, and as well I have always wanted to develop my linux skills.

Anyone know and good websites that can help with this sort of thing? And how can I then get the PS3 and or Xbox running xbmc to see it and play stuff from the server?:-D


Take it one step at a time. get the server going and then do the xbox etc
No the RAID isn't a waste of time and backups on that quantity will be hard to manage, thats why I suggested raid 3 google it and you will see the advantages, agreed linux is the way to go for this to minimise the viral risk which raid won't protect you from
#11
if i did go for the RAID 3 what sort of controller card would I need to get?
#12
razta;2861844
If you use a Linux distro your data will be much safer, no need for a firewall as all ports on Linux are by default closed, no need for an antivirus as viruses for Linux are extremely rare and no need for antispyware/malware software as malware doesnt exist for Linux. There are less vulnerabilitys found in Linux meaning there is less chance of hackers.
You can enable file sharing in Linux with samba, its extremely easy to install and configure. Linux crashes way less than Windows! All Linux software is free and open source!
If your a Linux first timer I would recommend Ubuntu as its the most user freindly and very point and clicky. Ubuntu works straight out of the box, easy to install and all drivers are already installed. The only problems Ive had with Ubuntu, when it comes to compatability is wireless cards and printers, apart from that everything just works. If you looking for something a bit more powerful id recommend Red Hat.
Go with Linux!


I agree with the original recommendation for Windows, while you make claims about Linux being safer and easy to use I've seen some horrendous Linux setups where people have been unsure what they're doing and ended up leaving it open as that's the only way they could get it working. It takes a couple of minutes to configure AV and a firewall on Windows, as for the 'crashing' that's a rather tired old excuse - I have a simple Windows machine for all manner of serving and in its years of service it's yet to crash once.

John
#13
denandyas
if i did go for the RAID 3 what sort of controller card would I need to get?


http://www.scan.co.uk/Product.aspx?WebProductId=225506
these are ok for a cheap home server, i have 2 of them, not tried with linux so suggest google it but should be ok as has own bios
#14
thanks for your your help espicaly the Ubuntu guide, It think that the way to go, but not sure about the RAID 3 or Raid 5 will have to look into it!
#15
What version of Ubuntu would I use?
#16
The latest, 8.04. Use the server version if you want something lightweight, the desktop version if you want a GUI.

http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu/download

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