Over the years, a number of manuals and datasheets have been accumulating, also because of my inclination to keep a copy of more or less every document I have used for repair jobs, etc. – sometimes servers go down, and the files disappear in the vastness of the internet.
For some years, I have been dealing with USB drives and NAS storage devices, to keep local copies, and to keep files accessible, but this has become troublesome with space running out, and multiple copies, on multiple drives. Time for a better solution.
(1) A Dell PowerEdge SC1425: 64-bit dual Xeon 2.8 GHz processors, 2 GB RAM. Available surplus, essentially, for the cost of shipment.
(2) 2 pcs Seagate 3 TB drives S3000VN000, these are NAS-optimized drives – essentially, the same hardware as common desktop drives, but targeted for 24/7 operation, with specifications that correspond to long-lifetime “medium”-performance requirements. Performance – this is a private fileserver, and reading rates of 20-40 MB per second are plenty, you don’t need any 10K/15K drives to achieve this.
The drives are operated in RAID1, full redundant.
(3) Ubuntu 14.04.1 – server. This is a common solution that can provide both Samba (Windows shared folder) and web (Apache) server functionality, at no cost.
Also, it provides the RAID1 functionality (software raid).
Putting these things together, not a big deal – one should think. It took quite some hours to figure out all the settings to get the RAID1 working, and all the files transfered from the old harddrive (~150 GB, the essentials).
Another item to consider, the noise. The SC1425 will be put in the attic, so there is no issue, but don’t consider having this machine anywhere close to where humans reside – it is noisy. 4 fans, cooling the dual CPU, right in the middle of the case (red frame).
Some performance stats:
Roughly 100 MByte/s read/write on the RAID1 pair – perfectly fine to support a 1 GBit/s network speed. Over Samba, I get about 25 MByte/s.
Maybe you noticed the name of the machine – arctur – wondering what it is? – a star, quite a bit bigger than our sun, and not too far away – just about 11 parsec, or 37 light-years! Glad that data server is just a few nano-seconds away, at least, counting the light path.