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Looking for best storage option, complete revamp of current system

petersenrjpetersenrj Posts: 15Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

I have about 7TB's across 2 drives but i am looking for a better way to store more with more reliability and redundancy. What would you guys recommend? Would raid be the best solution? If so which Raid. I am not very savvy at this so I ask for some simple explanation for any solution presented.

I have a windows htpc with a 6 core intel broadwell processor and 32gb ram, so i don't need to process on a NAS or anything like that. I also have like 15 users that access my plex most at one time is like 6 but usually 3-4 at any given time.

I will be buying like 4-6 drives, but just don't know which drives exactly should i buy, and should i still get NAS or just an enclosure. My motherboard has usb 3.0 or ethernet connections.

Thanks for your help in advance

Best Answer

Answers

  • cyris69cyris69 Posts: 21Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass
    edited October 7

    The best end game setup in my opinion is grabbing a real server like a Dell R710 LFF (large form factor aka 3.5" drives not notebook drives) Install ESXi, run a windows or linux VM and install plex to it. That's how I have my gear setup. I personally recommend HGST Deskstar NAS drives, but they are expensive, I have 6 filling my server and it put me back like $800 for 3tb drives. However, if I was to do it again or upgrade to larger drives I'd just buy the cheapest drives of the size I want and call it a day. Since these drives will be storage 90% of the time and not heavy read/write failure shoudn't be a big issue. you can even shuck external hard drives and use the drives they contain which is sometimes much cheaper than the sole drive itself. I setup raid 6 so out of 16tb worth of drives I get ~11tb of space.

    I like to share so at this very moment I'm transcoding and streaming 6 movies right now to friends and server doesn't even stutter. Running dual L5640 6 core xeons (like 80$) for a total of 24 cores, 96gb ddr3, h700 raid controller (not using zfs or unraid) then a ssd for the VM to be installed on and a flash drive for the esxi OS, and only paid 200$ for the entire thing plus the cpu upgrade. I average 220 watts usage 24/7.


  • spikemixturespikemixture Posts: 1,332Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Yes you can build like above - if your can?

    But really - the simplest (not cheapest) is a NAS

    As your PC is doing the serving the NAS can be cheap (ish)

    Get a name brand 4 bay - put it in a corner ( with some airflow) and forget it!

    Hard drives cost more than the NAS - work on $30-40 per TB
    and get WD Red or Seagate Ironwolf!

    Plex related : NAS Synology 1817+ & 1815+, 3x NUC (Skull i7, i5 & i3), Drobo 5N and 2 Nvidia Shields - 2017 and 2015 Pros
    Client hardware used or using - Shield 2015 (pro and 16gb) and 2017 pro, ATV4, Xbox 360 and one, Fire stick and TV, windows PMP, Raspberry PI, Roku Stick and 3 and 4 plus several Android Phones and Tablets.

    I give MY opinion from MY experience!

    So much importance is put on the processing power of your PMS box.
    I say equal or more should be put on correctly formatting and optimizing your media !

  • petersenrjpetersenrj Posts: 15Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    @spikemixture said:
    Yes you can build like above - if your can?

    But really - the simplest (not cheapest) is a NAS

    As your PC is doing the serving the NAS can be cheap (ish)

    Get a name brand 4 bay - put it in a corner ( with some airflow) and forget it!

    Hard drives cost more than the NAS - work on $30-40 per TB
    and get WD Red or Seagate Ironwolf!

    Any recommendations on the enclosure? I was really thinking of getting like an 8 bay so that i could upgrade later, but kind of fuzzy on the brands to look at?

  • cyris69cyris69 Posts: 21Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    A turnkey route would be Synology/qnap, however you will for sure be paying out for the convenience and no drives. That route is also not saving you resources by hosting the plex server reliably as well. For a decent deal on a well spec'd R710 you're looking at maybe 200-300 bucks + hard drives and that's about it and you get 6 bays + a internal ssd bay, 2 if you feel frisky ;)

    Granted this way there will be a learning curve but in the end you will have some new valuable skills. There is also a huge community home lab help. Just jump over to https://www.reddit.com/r/homelab/ and ask around they also have a discord channel, or here for some things to buy https://www.reddit.com/r/homelabsales

  • petersenrjpetersenrj Posts: 15Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    @cyris69 said:
    A turnkey route would be Synology/qnap, however you will for sure be paying out for the convenience and no drives. That route is also not saving you resources by hosting the plex server reliably as well. For a decent deal on a well spec'd R710 you're looking at maybe 200-300 bucks + hard drives and that's about it and you get 6 bays + a internal ssd bay, 2 if you feel frisky ;)

    Granted this way there will be a learning curve but in the end you will have some new valuable skills. There is also a huge community home lab help. Just jump over to https://www.reddit.com/r/homelab/ and ask around they also have a discord channel, or here for some things to buy https://www.reddit.com/r/homelabsales

    Thanks, Where did you buy yours?

  • BillBlueBillBlue Posts: 7Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    My system, which is not built for a small space, is an i7 (4770) with 16GB RAM, a 960GB SSD, three 3TB WD Blue drives in the case, and then an 8-bay Mediasonic H82-SU3S2 drive enclosure filled with eight 4TB WD Blues and they are connected via USB 3.0 to my server. So I have a total of about 42TB of storage. I have never had any issues with transcoding or buffering.

    I hope that is helpful to you.

  • spikemixturespikemixture Posts: 1,332Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    @BillBlue said:
    My system, which is not built for a small space, is an i7 (4770) with 16GB RAM, a 960GB SSD, three 3TB WD Blue drives in the case, and then an 8-bay Mediasonic H82-SU3S2 drive enclosure filled with eight 4TB WD Blues and they are connected via USB 3.0 to my server. So I have a total of about 42TB of storage. I have never had any issues with transcoding or buffering.

    I hope that is helpful to you.

    " I have never had any issues with transcoding or buffering."
    Come on Bill !
    What sorta statement is that?
    Are your clients all Local?
    What are your Clients?
    What format is your media?
    Do you use subTitles ?

    Then your statement means something! :p

    Plex related : NAS Synology 1817+ & 1815+, 3x NUC (Skull i7, i5 & i3), Drobo 5N and 2 Nvidia Shields - 2017 and 2015 Pros
    Client hardware used or using - Shield 2015 (pro and 16gb) and 2017 pro, ATV4, Xbox 360 and one, Fire stick and TV, windows PMP, Raspberry PI, Roku Stick and 3 and 4 plus several Android Phones and Tablets.

    I give MY opinion from MY experience!

    So much importance is put on the processing power of your PMS box.
    I say equal or more should be put on correctly formatting and optimizing your media !

  • cyris69cyris69 Posts: 21Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    I grabbed mine from a guy on the homelabsales subreddit. It was through his eBay page. I got a pretty steal of a deal. You can search ebay as well. I'll look around a bit as well today, you want to make sure it comes with all hard drive trays though.

  • HitsVilleHitsVille Posts: 404Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass
    edited October 8

    Never mind.

    HitsVille

  • BillBlueBillBlue Posts: 7Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Sorry for not stating things the way you thought I should, spikemixture, but to answer your questions:
    1. My clients are NOT all local. I have one in Dallas, one in Denver, and one here in Fort Wayne, IN.
    2. As far as I know, they all run the Plex channel on Roku units.
    3. I make all my videos .mp4...but, some might be .mkv.
    4. Yes, I use subtitles if the movie is in a foreign language (I understand and speak English).
    I hope this satisfies you. I only try to help if my "experience" has resolved some issue.
    Have a great day!!!

  • spikemixturespikemixture Posts: 1,332Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    @BillBlue said:
    Sorry for not stating things the way you thought I should, spikemixture, but to answer your questions:
    1. My clients are NOT all local. I have one in Dallas, one in Denver, and one here in Fort Wayne, IN.
    2. As far as I know, they all run the Plex channel on Roku units.
    3. I make all my videos .mp4...but, some might be .mkv.
    4. Yes, I use subtitles if the movie is in a foreign language (I understand and speak English).
    I hope this satisfies you. I only try to help if my "experience" has resolved some issue.
    Have a great day!!!

    Now add your internet speeds and your clients' speeds and then your statement has some meaning and may actually help someone!

    Plex related : NAS Synology 1817+ & 1815+, 3x NUC (Skull i7, i5 & i3), Drobo 5N and 2 Nvidia Shields - 2017 and 2015 Pros
    Client hardware used or using - Shield 2015 (pro and 16gb) and 2017 pro, ATV4, Xbox 360 and one, Fire stick and TV, windows PMP, Raspberry PI, Roku Stick and 3 and 4 plus several Android Phones and Tablets.

    I give MY opinion from MY experience!

    So much importance is put on the processing power of your PMS box.
    I say equal or more should be put on correctly formatting and optimizing your media !

  • BillBlueBillBlue Posts: 7Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Okay, I have Frontier FIOS internet (100mbps up and down) and each of the clients has, at least 25mbps down.

    Sorry, again, for the incomplete information. It would be GREAT if what is "required" was written down for everyone.

    Until next time.

  • spikemixturespikemixture Posts: 1,332Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    Good onya Bill .
    When it comes to finding an answer to a problem or giving your own view - too much information is not enough :D

    Plex related : NAS Synology 1817+ & 1815+, 3x NUC (Skull i7, i5 & i3), Drobo 5N and 2 Nvidia Shields - 2017 and 2015 Pros
    Client hardware used or using - Shield 2015 (pro and 16gb) and 2017 pro, ATV4, Xbox 360 and one, Fire stick and TV, windows PMP, Raspberry PI, Roku Stick and 3 and 4 plus several Android Phones and Tablets.

    I give MY opinion from MY experience!

    So much importance is put on the processing power of your PMS box.
    I say equal or more should be put on correctly formatting and optimizing your media !

  • petersenrjpetersenrj Posts: 15Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    I decided I was going to do 2 things. I bought the Synology 1817+ and 6 x 4Tb WD red, I will run that in Raid 10. And than I had a i7 4771 16GB Ram desktop laying around that I am going to run FreeNas on it with 4 x 4TB as a test to understand the FreeNas

  • spikemixturespikemixture Posts: 1,332Members, Plex Pass Plex Pass

    @petersenrj said:
    I decided I was going to do 2 things. I bought the Synology 1817+ and 6 x 4Tb WD red, I will run that in Raid 10. And than I had a i7 4771 16GB Ram desktop laying around that I am going to run FreeNas on it with 4 x 4TB as a test to understand the FreeNas

    Good start.

    Keep this post updated to where you are, been and going!!

    Plex related : NAS Synology 1817+ & 1815+, 3x NUC (Skull i7, i5 & i3), Drobo 5N and 2 Nvidia Shields - 2017 and 2015 Pros
    Client hardware used or using - Shield 2015 (pro and 16gb) and 2017 pro, ATV4, Xbox 360 and one, Fire stick and TV, windows PMP, Raspberry PI, Roku Stick and 3 and 4 plus several Android Phones and Tablets.

    I give MY opinion from MY experience!

    So much importance is put on the processing power of your PMS box.
    I say equal or more should be put on correctly formatting and optimizing your media !

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