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DIY NAS build

AK5963

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Hey guys

So I'm a newbie with PC and tech stuff and not that tech savvy, don't know whether I'm out of my depth in attempting this or I should just go and buy a ready made NAS (although budget plays a big role).
So my plan is to build a NAS with the sole purpose of running a Plex media server and just the general backups (and possibly for CCTV footage backup in the future).

Read a bit on it but not that much yet, which is why I'm here asking for advice from you guys (appreciate the help). Will do more research as I get some tips from this forum.

My Plex server at the moment is being run on my Mac, with 8TB of external storage always connected when it's running. Also don't like the idea of switching the Mac on and off whenever I wanna stream Plex. I normally stream TV in the lounge, and my library is used by just the people in my place, so no need for remote streaming (and therefore transcoding). The client is the Nvidia shield TV (that I bought recently on Carb), which to my understanding streams most if not all video and audio codecs. Before that was using an Xbox one x (had to transcode for audio that was more than the standard 5.1ch, which was handled well by the Mac)

So I guess the question is, with the above-mentioned system I got going on, what sort of a NAS build would I require, or would it be better to opt for a ready made NAS (taking into account affordability and value)

Also let me know if I'm missing out any important pieces of information. Sorry for the long post, and thanks again! (y) :)
 

eleventh

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The biggest issue is what processor the NAS needs. Depending on the how many streams you are running and what type of transcoding you do.

My requirements was one iPad one, transcribing with AirVideo.
For that, an HP microserver N34 was enough.

Everything is very easy to set up. I am using Debian for all my stuff.
 

AK5963

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The biggest issue is what processor the NAS needs. Depending on the how many streams you are running and what type of transcoding you do.

My requirements was one iPad one, transcribing with AirVideo.
For that, an HP microserver N34 was enough.

Everything is very easy to set up. I am using Debian for all my stuff.
Sorry for my ignorance (like I said not very tech savvy), but what is the fundamental difference between a microserver and a NAS? Does the microserver have the option to add multiple drives, and what's the maximum drive capacity?
Thanks
 

AK5963

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Also in response to your message. We prefer watching our content where the home theatre is so just in the lounge. Never have more than one stream running at anytime. Well not yet atleast.
Transcoding wise, the client handles all the codecs so no need for transcoding (I think)
 

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HI @AK5963

I have a self build nas running a HP microserver N40L (can add 5 drives, and if I really want to a 6th)
I have loaded synology software on it and its running great things like network share, plex, docker, etc

You can have a look at synology (the OS itself)

Buying a full blown NAS is pretty expensive, I can give you more info and examples if you really want
 

AK5963

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Hey @Havoc

That sounds like what @eleventh was talking about. If it works for you it will most likely work for me. Would really appreciate some more info and some examples, thanks!
 

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Hey @Havoc

That sounds like what @eleventh was talking about. If it works for you it will most likely work for me. Would really appreciate some more info and some examples, thanks!
what they basically saying is buying a full nas system would be very expensive and you really don't need to to that. you can buy a small server like those hp microserver (HPE P16006-421 now 35% off MicroSvr Gen10+ E-2224 16G NHP Svr)

install your HD and your OS or media server on it.

The link above is just an example, there are others cheaper option on the site, also check their site they have a lot of networking and servers devices.
 

borisxp

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or another option would be building your own computer and install your server there.
 

Qui_Illustrati

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Why not just run Plex Server on the shield with the external 8TB you have attached to the shield?
Aren't there apps for DVR from IP Cameras you can load on the Shield? TinyCAM pro ?
And perhaps other apps you can load for other requirements a dedicated NAS would provide like backups etc.
Seems the simpler option to me . . .no?
 

AK5963

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Hey @borisxp would consider if the cost isn't too high. Also might be a good experience considering I haven't built any tech thing from scratch before
 

borisxp

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Another very cheap option would be a Raspberry Pie, you can install your plex server there and attached external HD on there, even SSD, that's is what I would do if the cost was a problem. Setting up RaspBerry is easy, just need to read few small tutorials if you are new.
 

Phence

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mujeeb1

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This guy is really cool, buy this with a dedicated GPU:

Shameless plug is shameless
 

AK5963

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Hey @Qui_Illustrati

I looked into that but read more negative than positive reviews on having the Plex server on the shield itself. Also I'm sure I will run out of space (16gb) once adding apps for all these stuff?
 

Qui_Illustrati

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Hey @Qui_Illustrati

I looked into that but read more negative than positive reviews on having the Plex server on the shield itself. Also I'm sure I will run out of space (16gb) once adding apps for all these stuff?
Give it a go - reviews can, for the most part be very subjective. Hence the usual mixture of positives and negatives. Your use case is not complex and there's little to no transcoding that will be done. You have everything you need right now to try it. If it works - splendid. If not, reset and regroup at least all you've expended is an hour or two.
 

borisxp

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I will give you my opinion if I was you. i don't know what is your budget but if I was you I think buying a full NAS or a server just to install a plex media server is a waste of money. I would have buy a raspberry pie 4 8GB and install the Plex There and attached your Hard Drivers to it. its a very simple and economic solution. Raspberry Pie 4 8GB costs around R1200. I would have give it a go and if you don't like then buy a complete server and you can still keep the raspberry, there is so many things you can do with it, I recommend every IT person to have at least 1 raspberry board with them.

That's my honest opinion, but it's up to you.
 

Qui_Illustrati

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Rasperrys are awesome little devices. The Pi4 does not cope well with H265 and HDR 10bit. Yes, I know that's asking a lot from the little device, a little too much. But for some requirements, like mine, where my library consists mostly of the 4k HDR and Atmos variety, the Pi4, despite it's amazingness - falls a bit short.


It's certainly an option though if all you need is straight up streaming of 1080p 5.1 Dolby or something along those lines.
Before laying out any capital, work with what you have. Take that shitty MAC out the equation. Sell it fast. Apple is from the devil.
:ROFLMAO:
 
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AK5963

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Rasperrys are awesome little devices. The Pi4 does not cope well with H265 and HDR 10bit. Yes, I know that's asking a lot from the little device, a little too much. But for some requirements, like mine, where my library consists mostly of the 4k HDR and Atmos content, the Pi4, despite it's amazingness - falls a bit short.


It's certainly an option though if all you need is straight up streaming of 1080p 5.1 Dolby or something along those lines.
Before laying out any capital, work with what you have. Take that shitty MAC out the equation. Sell it fast. Apple is from the devil.
:ROFLMAO:
Lol what's so bad about Apple :rolleyes:. The interface is clean and un cluttered. Not very techy but prefer Mac OS to Windows and iOS to Android.

I also watch a lot of 4K HDR and Atmos and DTS X content. Good you mentioned about the raspberry Pi. I can take that off the list then
 

Qui_Illustrati

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Lol what's so bad about Apple :rolleyes:. The interface is clean and un cluttered. Not very techy but prefer Mac OS to Windows and iOS to Android.
Was just taking the piss.
Seems the consensus is the less tech savvy folks prefer the Apple ecosystem, and understandably so too. Sounds like you're well on your way to leveling up on those tech skills so don't be surprised when you wake up one day and think it will be a great idea to go full on native Windows on that Mac - and none of that dual boot/parallels stuff too :)
 

Soul Assassin

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Lol what's so bad about Apple :rolleyes:. The interface is clean and un cluttered. Not very techy but prefer Mac OS to Windows and iOS to Android.

I also watch a lot of 4K HDR and Atmos and DTS X content. Good you mentioned about the raspberry Pi. I can take that off the list then
I wouldn't take it off of the list, if you have a Shield that will direct play everything, if it won't transcode the Pi will just hang out.
 

AK5963

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Was just taking the piss.
Seems the consensus is the less tech savvy folks prefer the Apple ecosystem, and understandably so too. Sounds like you're well on your way to leveling up on those tech skills so don't be surprised when you wake up one day and think it will be a great idea to go full on native Windows on that Mac - and none of that dual boot/parallels stuff too :)
Haha great, hope to not like Apple one day then :p sucks to not understand what people talk about when it comes to tech haha

You mentioned you stream stuff in HDR Atmos etc, I'm assuming then you have a shield TV? If so, how do you safely eject a HDD from it? Asking cos of the loadshedding saga and not looking like it's going to go anytime soon. Worried that if in the meantime while my Plex server is on the HDD connected to the shield, there will be some sort of data loss/damage done to the HDD and even the shield (noticed it doesn't switch off fully but just goes to sleep)?

Thought the only possible solution would be to unplug the shield before loadshedding, but then worried about the effect this would have on the HDD?
 

AK5963

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I wouldn't take it off of the list, if you have a Shield that will direct play everything, if it won't transcode the Pi will just hang out.
This seems to be contradictory to what @Qui_Illustrati mentions in the previous comment. I understand that the client is responsible for transcoding so it does make sense. Care to comment @Qui_Illustrati ?
 

AK5963

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I wouldn't take it off of the list, if you have a Shield that will direct play everything, if it won't transcode the Pi will just hang out.
Could it be that the processing power of the shield can handle higher bitrate files while the raspberry Pi might struggle in that regard?
 

Qui_Illustrati

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This seems to be contradictory to what @Qui_Illustrati mentions in the previous comment. I understand that the client is responsible for transcoding so it does make sense. Care to comment @Qui_Illustrati ?
Indeed - it would seem to make sense. My experience on my Pi4 is another story though - some HEVC content plays fine, some not at all and most with massive buffering/stuttering.
Same content streamed from a dedicated Plex Microserver streams flawlessly, all content, on the same tv and audio config I tested my Pi4 with.
On paper the Pi4 shouldn't need to do much heavy lifting as it's 4K HDR content being sent/streamed to a 4K HDR TV. In reality though my testing on the Pi4 was extremely erratic and not sustainable as a long term Plex solution - for my requirements.
I'm sure my issues with the Pi4 were related to the way the content was encoded, I just, overall, found it an unsuitable option for me as far as having something that works for every iteration of content one comes across.
 
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AK5963

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Indeed - it would seem to make sense. My experience on my Pi4 is another story though - some HEVC content plays fine, some not at all and most with massive buffering/stuttering.
Same content streamed from a dedicated Plex Microserver streams flawlessly, all content, on the same tv and audio config I tested my Pi4 with.
On paper the Pi4 shouldn't need to do much heavy lifting as it's 4K HDR content being sent/streamed to a 4K HDR TV. In reality though my testing on the Pi4 was extremely erratic and not sustainable as a long term Plex solution - for my requirements.
I'm sure my issues with the Pi4 were related to the way the content was encoded, I just, overall, found it an unsuitable option for me as far as having something that works for every iteration of content one comes across.
Seems I'd rather go with the option less likely to give me trouble rather then outlay an extra R1.5k for something that might give the same problem you're having. Will stick to the shield for now, and slowly build a microserver in the meantime and as I see components come up for sale on Carb. Thanks for your input though. It did help 👍🙂
 

AK5963

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@Qui_Illustrati one more thing, I'm new to Carbonite and I think people are reluctant to reply to my ads I'm guessing cos I'm new. Also I only posted two ads so far and none of them pc components so maybe that's another reason. I understand their reluctance as I wouldn't trust someone who hasn't sold on the site before either. Just don't know how to overcome that first hurdle. I bought the shield from a guy on Carb but don't know if that reflects on doing a deal with me whether in buying or selling. Saw something about an iTrader on the forum, how do I check this as I haven't seen anything on the site about it?

Asking you as you seem to be comfortable on the site hope you can give some insight.
Thanks 👍
 

Qui_Illustrati

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@Qui_Illustrati one more thing, I'm new to Carbonite and I think people are reluctant to reply to my ads I'm guessing cos I'm new. Also I only posted two ads so far and none of them pc components so maybe that's another reason. I understand their reluctance as I wouldn't trust someone who hasn't sold on the site before either. Just don't know how to overcome that first hurdle. I bought the shield from a guy on Carb but don't know if that reflects on doing a deal with me whether in buying or selling. Saw something about an iTrader on the forum, how do I check this as I haven't seen anything on the site about it?

Asking you as you seem to be comfortable on the site hope you can give some insight.
Thanks 👍

As a start, contact the seller you bought the Shield from and ask him to submit feedback and a rating for the deal on Carbonite. You need to do the same for him as the buyer. Itrader feedback is mandatory.
Be prepared to pay for items and/or shipping first. Initially I'd recommend only dealing with higher Itrader members. Also, be prepared for high itrader members to ask you to send whatever you're selling to them and for them to pay on receipt and testing. If possible stick to meeting face to face initially until you are more comfortable.
Don't ever pay a holding deposit if someone asks you to. It's not common at all, but I guess it happens every now and then.
Unfortunately, now more than ever, scams are on the up and up, I think going with one's gut is important - that and a very healthy dose of critical thinking, to avoid becoming a statistic.

All the best bud, Carbonite is full of trustworthy folks and the Itrader system and the sense of community helps that. Every once in a while though some dumbfuck sneaks in to the system and throws a spanner in the works. Nature of the beast though, can't have the good without the bad I guess :D

And I think the Microserver option is the better option. Try to aim for the newer generation Microservers if you can. If you get an older gen one for dirt cheap it's also worth exploring I reckon. Very capable little things.

Oh - and read the forums rules - it really helps

@Jack_Bauer_ZA has a full write-up on safe dealing on Carbonite - Guide for safe dealing on Carbonite! | Guides, Stickies and Useful Stuff

And more details on Itraders
 
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