Cheapo NAS Plan

I’ve just recently (I’m very blur when it comes to certain things) noticed a pricing issue that makes it possible to build a 2TB NAS at under RM1000 (£190). The thing is, the price of a 1TB drive is actually cheaper than that of two 500GB drives. So, it would be possible to only use 2x1TB drives instead of 4x500GB drives!

This would make it possible to install the drives in a small ATOM based system, which only has two SATA ports. In addition, the system would only need a 1GB memory module. I’ve already got everything else necessary.

I have recently salvaged two 125W ATX power supplies from two older mini-itx systems (along with the chasis). I also have a dozen Compact Flash cards and half a dozen CF-IDE converters. So, I can easily install the OS on the CF card, attached to the single IDE drive on the D945GCLF board. The whole system will definitely fall within the power envelope of the supply.

The only mod that I would need to make is to the power supply. These 125W ones do not come with the required P4 connectors on newer supplies. However, they do come with enough drive power connectors to fashion my own hack. All it needs is a plastic connector connected to the right wires anyway – trivial.

In fact, I’m currently playing around with a bunch of old VIA systems that I used to sell. The systems come with a 36W peak power demand. I’m planning to turn a Eden based system into a machine for doing hardware debugging and possibly another one into a home development server.

I’ve also got two other systems with TV outputs a 800MHz and 1GHz C3 system. However, they can only output standard-def NTSC/PAL signals. So, they would not be suitable for the new LCD-TV that I plan to get for my HTPC system and I won’t be using them.

So, looks like my plan to set up a wicked development environment for my self is on-track. All I need now are some killer screens. Besides the TV that I plan to get, I also plan to get some 23″ monitors for my development machine. Small screens are making me hunch at the desk a lot.

Published by

Shawn Tan

Chip Doctor, Chartered/Professional Engineer, Entrepreneur, Law Graduate.

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