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Last post Author Topic: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?  (Read 12321 times)

40hz

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #25 on: September 30, 2012, 11:06:32 AM »
I once joked I'd like to use one of those Dysan bladeless fans for it.
Interesting idea - Dyson makes some pretty awesome stuff. The first time I saw one of those bladeless blowers, it was almost indistinguishable from magic :-)


My only question is how much (if any) electrical interference is caused by it. I'm guessing not much since he's got UI approval (in the USA) and those [people look very carefully at electrical and RF interference measurements before they ok a product for consumer home use.

And to your point about magic, it is pretty magical when you see one in operation. :-* I'm impressed every time. Very clever insight he had about it being the fan motor, and especially the blades that are responsible for almost all the sound emanating from a fan. Something military submarine designers figured out years ago when they addressed the similar problems of engine noise and propeller "cavitation."

 8)
« Last Edit: September 30, 2012, 11:18:56 AM by 40hz »

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #26 on: October 03, 2012, 02:58:12 PM »
I like Lian Li's stuff, very nice.  So check this out, this is called PC-D8000 and it holds up to 20 hard drive, yes!  And it looks like it shouldn't be as loud as the normal rack stuff with the 120/140mm fans.
d8000-01.jpgBarebone server: what else do I need to complete it?

Looks like this will be my case then.

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #27 on: October 03, 2012, 03:30:09 PM »
I like the CaseLabs products as well.

It doesn't seem like these cases are very loud.  I saw a few videos with enthusiasts using water cooling, and the cases weren't that loud at all.  But none of them are using a lot of hard drives, most of them have just a couple.  I think they like the big case for the space to put the water cooling system, but I'm not sure.  Why buy such a huge case if you're not going to stuff it with drives?
« Last Edit: October 03, 2012, 03:50:07 PM by superboyac »

f0dder

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #28 on: October 03, 2012, 04:11:59 PM »
A couple of things to keep in mind:

1) while your amount of harddrives are going to require *some* cooling, even if you end up with very silent cooling the vibration from the harddrives are going to make a fair amount of noise. You'll want the case to be massive, not the flimsy few-millimetres-thick that even high-quality cases usually are made of.
2) even if you put in power supplies that are ridiculously over-specced (which you shouldn't), be sure to set the harddrives to "staggered spinupw" (or Powered-Up-In-Standby) individually before you attempt turning on the system that's been finally assembled with 20 disks.
- carpe noctem

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #29 on: October 03, 2012, 04:33:13 PM »
A couple of things to keep in mind:

1) while your amount of harddrives are going to require *some* cooling, even if you end up with very silent cooling the vibration from the harddrives are going to make a fair amount of noise. You'll want the case to be massive, not the flimsy few-millimetres-thick that even high-quality cases usually are made of.
2) even if you put in power supplies that are ridiculously over-specced (which you shouldn't), be sure to set the harddrives to "staggered spinupw" (or Powered-Up-In-Standby) individually before you attempt turning on the system that's been finally assembled with 20 disks.
Are you saying the Lian Li case is not thick enough?  What are my alternatives?

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #30 on: October 03, 2012, 04:48:07 PM »
After a quick review of all the enclosures I could find, unless I fabricate my own, the Lian Li is the best one.  Why?  It's the most spacious of them all for 20 drives.  The other ones resort to 5.25 drive bays that cram 3-5 drives together really closely, which I'm guessing is bad for heat.  I feel I'll be able to get more effective air flow with the Lian Li.  Plus it has a lot of spaces for big fans.

I also liked Caselabs, but their innards would cramp the drives together more.  The enthusiasts seem to like it better, though.  But most of them were doing a couple of hard drives and big water cooling systems, which is different than mine.

I also checked out separate towers for the motherboard and hard drives, but there are none that can go more than 10 drives (without resorting to the drive bays cramming).  So i think I'm stuck with the Lian Li pc-d8000.

40hz

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #31 on: October 03, 2012, 04:54:01 PM »
A couple of things to keep in mind:

1) while your amount of harddrives are going to require *some* cooling, even if you end up with very silent cooling the vibration from the harddrives are going to make a fair amount of noise. You'll want the case to be massive, not the flimsy few-millimetres-thick that even high-quality cases usually are made of.
2) even if you put in power supplies that are ridiculously over-specced (which you shouldn't), be sure to set the harddrives to "staggered spinupw" (or Powered-Up-In-Standby) individually before you attempt turning on the system that's been finally assembled with 20 disks.
Are you saying the Lian Li case is not thick enough?  What are my alternatives?

Many high end cases are fabricated out of aluminum. So they're not as sturdy as a comparable steel case. But unless you're moving them around a lot, or you're in the habit of sitting on them, it's seldom a problem. At least from my experience. I've never seen many problems with them except when somebody (not me) got too heavy handed during a build and damaged one.

The Antec Sonata line is a steel case designed to minimize noise while still providing adequate cooling. But that would severely limit the number of drive spaces available since it's a PC rather than a server case. You could use it for the server and put the drives in a separate cabinet. But that wouldn't solve the problem of fan and drive noise for the array...

I don't know of anything that supports a large number of drives that is going to be very quiet.

About the only way I know to keep noise down and minimize power requirements with large numbers of drives is to go with 2.5" (laptop style) drives. Which isn't what you'd likely want to do at this point.

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #32 on: October 03, 2012, 05:12:41 PM »
^^That sounds like a reasonable assessment to me.  I've now searched for several hours for cases, I haven't seen anything better than Lian Li, so I think I have to go with that.  It shouldn't be nearly as loud as those racks.  From what I've seen online with the 140/120 fans (although I didn't see any with more than 10 drives) it should be fairly quiet with the bedroom door closed.

Now I have to piece the other parts together.  I'm still thinking a windows server OS, and running virtual machines on it for different things: freenas, owncloud.
I also plan on the three things below for drive pooling:
SnapRAID - Filesystem agnostic parity based data redundancy, (Linux/Windows).
Elucidate - A GUI for SnapRAID (Windows).
Liquesce - Drive pooling for Windows

So I'm getting close...one problem right now is nobody in the US seems to be selling the Lian Li pc-d8000.

f0dder

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #33 on: October 03, 2012, 05:46:43 PM »
Are you saying the Lian Li case is not thick enough?  What are my alternatives?
Haven't seen one of them IRL, so I don't know - but most cases, even high-end ones, I've seen have been "somewhat too thin" aluminium, like 40hz says. The Corsair Obsidian 550D I got for my new server is pretty decent, but still - I would rather have it be made of steel than alu, and a few mm thicker. Dunno what that would have done to it's cost, though, and I would've been wrecked from carrying it home from the store :)

And, again: you can probably get the cooling system quiet enough, but vibration, man... vibration.
- carpe noctem

40hz

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #34 on: October 03, 2012, 06:26:03 PM »
but vibration, man... vibration.

Definitely. Review what the people that did the Backblaze storage server did about vibration (nylon standoffs, foam anchor across the tops of the drives, rubber band 'sleeves') since that seemed to work the trick for them. Adapt as needed. Old trick: passing the anchoring screws through grommets or soft hi-temp washers between the drives and the tray they're mounted to cuts down on vibes as well. Dampens noise too. (Obviously won't work with some tool-less and rail mounting systems.)

Note: In a room with the door shut should be quiet enough as long as it's not a rack case.

You can also always turn it off at night or when company is over if it does get annoying. 8)

right now is nobody in the US seems to be selling the Lian Li pc-d8000.

That can be a problem with Lian Li. Some of their most interesting products never seem to be available from US sources. Guess US distributors prefer to stick with the best sellers. :(


superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #35 on: October 03, 2012, 07:11:40 PM »
I wish granite digital made a 20-bay enclosure.

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #36 on: October 04, 2012, 09:43:46 AM »
The Lian Li pc-d8000 has rubber washers around the screws holding the hard drives in place.  It's a good design, I like this company.
Clipboard Image (8).jpgBarebone server: what else do I need to complete it?

40hz

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #37 on: October 04, 2012, 12:01:12 PM »
Addonics makes some pretty interesting large storage tower enclosures. Don't know much about them other than what I've read however.

stxiii_internaldiagram.jpg

Quote

Built on the same storage design concept from the original Storage Tower, the Storage Tower V, IX and XIII feature more drive bays, bigger power supply and more rooms for mounting more Port Multipliers (PM) or connectors. All these translates into more flexibility and more drives for larger storage capacity to meet your storage requirement.

With the combination of various Disk Arrays, as many as eight 3.5" drives, fifteen and twenty one 3.5" drives can be installed into the Storage Tower V, IX or XIII respectively. By connecting the drives to multiple Port Multipliers, as many as 20 hard drives drives can be connected to the system with a single mini SAS cable, or 4 eSATA cables using the Storage Tower XIII. This is just one of the configuration examples. There are practically endless customization possibilities in combining 3.5" or 2.5" SATA or IDE hard drives with various RAID capability. You can actually consolidate all the storage into one Storage Tower and let it serves multiple systems.


stxiii_front.jpg
                                  (Oh yeah! Oh yeah!! Oh yeah!!! Who's yo' Daddy???)

The XIII looks quite svelte too. Measures approx 8x16x25 - which is pretty compact for housing all those drives. And it weighs 43 LBS so you know it's sturdy! Be interesting to find out how quiet something like this might be when fully loaded. I think 4wd had done a post about Addonics somewhere. Maybe he knows?
« Last Edit: October 04, 2012, 12:20:32 PM by 40hz »

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #38 on: October 04, 2012, 07:11:42 PM »
I was initially going to go for the XIII before I started this thread, since Addonics seemed to be the only company with any options along these lines.  I still like it, especially that it's narrow.  I'm guessing the Lian Li is better for airflow, so if that's available...I don't know.  Choices...

If I go for the modular approach, which I normally prefer...I can get a normal tower to hold the mobo, and one of these Addonics for just the drives.  I like that setup.  But you guys freaked me out about noise and heat!

So now I'm debating:
big fat Lian Li all-in-one
vs
Addonics XIII with 20-disk array, and separate tower

I'm leaning towards the latter.  I first want to check the fan setup on that tower, see how many, what size, etc.  More portable also.  You know, I'll call them about the noise issue.

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #39 on: October 04, 2012, 07:18:30 PM »
(A couple of cool pictures for myself), this is turning into my personal research thread!
5sa_diagram_large.gif
url2.jpg

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #40 on: October 05, 2012, 08:17:09 PM »
Well, iStardock has perhaps another model to consider:
http://www.istarusa....&sub=SATA/%20SAS

What interests me is the trayless design.  I know I won't be swapping out too much, but why not get the feature if it is easier?  This particular model is made of aluminum which is better than plastic for the Addonics.  Any opinions?
BPN-DE350SS_01.jpg

Link to in-depth review
Note: this review is for another similar model, but I don't know if it's the better model.  I think it may be the more updated model, but the picture above is the all metal model, which I probably prefer.

regarding noise:
Quote
On powering up, the noise from the fans in the top cage was very noticeable - not unpleasant, but definitely there.  Whereas I normally have to be within three feet of the machine in order to hear any noise, I can now hear it from 15 feet away.  Once a movie is playing, I doubt that I would be troubled by the noise but the perfectionist in me wants to eliminate it.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2012, 08:22:51 PM by superboyac »

superboyac

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Re: Barebone server: what else do I need to complete it?
« Reply #41 on: October 09, 2012, 01:30:16 PM »
Here's what I have so far:

Tower:
Addonics RAID Tower XIII
  • Only pure hard drive tower available in the US market from what I could tell.
  • Need to find out if I can buy it WITHOUT their drive bays; just the tower
stxiii_internaldiagram.jpgBarebone server: what else do I need to complete it?

3-to-5 drive bay conversion:
iStarUSA BPN-DE350SS
  • Only all-metal option out there.
  • 80mm fan vs. 60mm fan for cheaper alternatives.  However, one (plastic) model from SuperMicro supposedly has 90mm that are extremely easy to replace.  Still, I think I prefer all-metal construction over a slightly larger fan.
BPN-DE350SS_01.jpgBarebone server: what else do I need to complete it?

Still need to choose:
  • SAS/SATA expander cards
  • Operating system (decide on this first because it affects everything else you use)
  • RAM sufficient for whatever you plan on doing (rule of thumb: as much as you can afford/will fit)
  • CPU - 64bit. Period. Speed and cores (or dual-CPUs) dependent on what it's for plus what OS you've selected.
  • Power Supply - calc power requirements based on what's going in box and add about +20% over.
  • DVD drive - to load OS and software. Cheap or recycled is ok here.
  • Additional Cooling - the more in the box, the more air you'll need to move to keep everything happy. (Don't skip this.)
  • NIC - two quality Gb-speed NICs minimum. Ideally with wake-on-lan features.
  • Mobo - mostly determined by CPU selected. Get a server mobo - not one designed for desktops
  • Backup power unit
« Last Edit: October 09, 2012, 04:58:57 PM by superboyac »