too many options....

mcveigh

Diamond Member
Dec 20, 2000
6,468
6
81
It's time to get my HTPC working again. my motherboard is dying and doesn't want to boot from any HDD. I'm booting linux off a USB drive.

I would like some storage space available to all computers on the network.
I'd like to play back blu-ray discs but it might be acceptable to rip them first.

Right now I use a FireTV stick to watch amazon and netflix. I switch inputs to watch ripped movies from my old HTPC.

I was thinking of getting a NAS and Nvidia shield. Then ripping discs with another computer.

My other thought is using unraid and virtualized windows host for blu-ray playback. This one sounds like the most fun and I could reuse my old HTPC case.

anyone have some input?
 

BonzaiDuck

Lifer
Jun 30, 2004
14,389
905
126
It's time to get my HTPC working again. my motherboard is dying and doesn't want to boot from any HDD. I'm booting linux off a USB drive.

I would like some storage space available to all computers on the network.
I'd like to play back blu-ray discs but it might be acceptable to rip them first.

Right now I use a FireTV stick to watch amazon and netflix. I switch inputs to watch ripped movies from my old HTPC.

I was thinking of getting a NAS and Nvidia shield. Then ripping discs with another computer.

My other thought is using unraid and virtualized windows host for blu-ray playback. This one sounds like the most fun and I could reuse my old HTPC case.

anyone have some input?
I can't really say that I have some innovative idea for you. My strategy for dealing with desktop PCs in the household has been an evolution. Sometimes, I buy spare motherboards or other parts as I refine my fast workstations. While those workstations are a bit dated -- Sandy Bridge i7-K processors -- they're giving me quite a bit of performance for their age. I'm sure I'd see great enhancements with a Skylake-K processor and PCIe SSD speeds, but I still marvel at these old Gen 2 systems.

So that leads to a discussion of my servers and their history -- one at a time so far. I put together the old parts to upgrade my server. The next iteration will have an Ivy Bridge i5-3470 processor. I don't use RAID, although I'd done so in the past: I configure all the HDDs under AHCI and use Stablebit DRive-pool. I'm eager to get my controllers into PCI-E 3.0 slots, or just to have PCI-E 2.0 speed possibilities.

So you could buy or build a NAS. I'm going to count my pennies just to think about doing that. But I probably spend more money doing it this way. Maybe I should build a NAS just to satisfy my curiosity.

I guess the hurdle for someone to build a server is the OS expense. If you could once have WHS-2011 for $50, you can only get something like Win Server 2012 R2 Essentials now for between $275 and $400. But there are things I can do with a small server that I might not be able to do with a NAS.
 
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Kartajan

Golden Member
Feb 26, 2001
1,264
38
91
A NAS is just an "appliance style" server. I run a Synology DS-412+ NAS, but I had previously run a Server Essentials 2012 box (that had previous been each iteration of WHS).
As such, a NAS is NOT cheaper than rolling your own server (especially considering most flavors of Linux). The big difference is in maintenance- I might look at my NAS maybe once a quarter, where as I needed to look at my server to do some flavor of maintenance at least monthly.

As far as multimedia sharing- look at Plex/ Emby. I personally run Plex and love it on my Shield/ Phone/ Etc...
 

BonzaiDuck

Lifer
Jun 30, 2004
14,389
905
126
A NAS is just an "appliance style" server. I run a Synology DS-412+ NAS, but I had previously run a Server Essentials 2012 box (that had previous been each iteration of WHS).
As such, a NAS is NOT cheaper than rolling your own server (especially considering most flavors of Linux). The big difference is in maintenance- I might look at my NAS maybe once a quarter, where as I needed to look at my server to do some flavor of maintenance at least monthly.

As far as multimedia sharing- look at Plex/ Emby. I personally run Plex and love it on my Shield/ Phone/ Etc...
Well, Kartajan, you're the man.

I've contemplated either building an external e-SATA box of shared drives through my server, or buying a NAS. The only problem with building a server is the software cost, after we lost access to those OEM WHS-2011 installs/licenses for $50. I was able to get a 2012 R2 Essentials "Academic Edition" for about $250. Meanwhile, my WHS-2011 box using an old Q6600 system keeps on ticking and takes a licking.

And as opposed to some who want to build a "real" server with "server" motherboards and Xeons, I just use "old hardware" -- obvious from what I already said. The new server will be "X-perimental" until I'm clear as to what I can do with it. I had a spare Z68-Pro/Gen3 motherboard with spare DDR3 RAM, and picked up a non-K Ivy-Bridge quad-core processor for it.

I need to create my own web-server, while assuring that the rest of the household LAN and files are "safe." I can't say precisely where this will all lead. Even so, I need to re-think how I implement HTPC, and this is precisely the thread topic which helps in some little way to do that.
 

Kartajan

Golden Member
Feb 26, 2001
1,264
38
91
Consider FreeNAS.
You can have it as your NAS, as well as run other things in their own "jail"
I would expect a good pile of getting yourself up to speed, but the cost is mostly your time.
 

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