Pinned Which energy efficient ARM platform to choose?

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    • tkaiser wrote:

      Wrt amount of DRAM I already tried to explain. If your NAS does not do also other 'foreign jobs' (like being used as Docker container host) 512GB or even 256GB are just fine for home usage and the only situation where more DRAM results in higher performance is when the following criteria are met


      storage slower than network (eg. USB2 disk and Gigabit Ethernet)

      amount of data a client writes to the NAS less than amount of physical memory
      Only in this situation more DRAM allows for faster copies from client to server (it's only in this direction!). All the DRAM in your NAS box will end up being used for filesystem buffer/caches anyway but in home situations this is pretty much irrelevant unlike professional servers with hundreds of users or applications that need as much RAM as possible.
      Thank you. I understood it that time! I appreciate all the great insights here.
      Working with computers since the days when unboxing and set-up required 3 weeks with a soldering iron!
    • tkaiser wrote:

      tornadox wrote:

      linux-sunxi.org/LinkSprite_pcDuino3_Nano is a good option if you intend to use sata instead of poor USB 2.0 speeds.
      No, it's not since Allwinner A20 SATA is slow SATA: forum.armbian.com/topic/1925-s…findComment&comment=34192

      And especially in OMV context NAS performance of A20 devices like pcDuino or Banana Pi is more or less at the same level as those USB2/UAS equipped boards since A20's Gigabit Ethernet implementation is also limited and you end up with similar performance numbers than more recent quad core ARM boards with USB2 only.

      And all the many USB3-SATA NAS boards that are now spreading easily outperform any A20 board out there. If A20 today then only from Olimex since there you have full UPS functionality if you add a cheap LiPo battery and can power on/off USB ports individually (useful to switch on/off a backup disk connected to USB2 ports)
      I agree, basically it's price per performance scale. I prefer SATA. UAS is something not very common I would say. The main cons of USB is that the device can fail or disconnect quite often (maybe it's mine bad usb-sata adaptors).
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    • tkaiser wrote:

      1) Around 1W:

      NanoPi NEO2 or Orange Pi Zero Plus: pretty inexpensive, both based on Allwinner H5 SoC, both with 4 real USB2 ports (no internal USB hub used, no bandwidth shared, 2 ports on pin headers), both with Gigabit Ethernet, both able to be combined with useful, inexpensive and performant NAS add-ons (NAS Kit v1.2 for NEO2, NAS Expansion board for Orange Pis). 'NAS performance' 4 times better than Raspberry Pi, when playing USB RAID (never recommended!) it's even 7-8 times better. Since storage here means USB2 the problem is consumption of the used USB-to-SATA bridge (which needs some juice even if the disk behind is sleeping/standby). The trick to get at 1W is to switch Ethernet from GbE to Fast Ethernet (saves ~350mW) and to use the GPIO pins + a MOSFET to also switch off a connected USB-to-SATA bridge if device is not needed.
      Hi, i am interested in this low power class of SBC boards with Gigabit Ethernet.

      Has anyone measured both, and are there differences between the NanoPi NEO2 or Orange Pi Zero Plus regarding idle power consumption ?

      I have read a comment from tkaiser that the NEO2 with Gigabit Ethernet has a idle consumption of 0.95W (heise.de/forum/p-30122332/).

      Maybe i misunderstood it, because in the above quoted statement it seems that you have to switch to Fast Ethernet AND to physical disconnet (GPIO controlled MOSFET switching the 5v USB power line?) the USB drive to get ~1W idle.

      And are there experiences with the "bigger" H5 boards like Orange PI PC 2 or Orange Pi Prime regarding idle power consumption, when the have same settings e.g. for cpu/ram clock like the "small" boards ?

      Because of more Ram and more/different componentes on the board there might be higher consumption; but they offer also a more flexible CPU voltage regulator, that seems to get down to 1.04V (linux-sunxi.org/Xunlong_Orange_Pi_PC_2#CPU_clock_speed_limit) at idle vs. 1.1V for NanoPi NEO2 or Orange Pi Zero Plus.
    • And another few interesting boards based on RK3399 have just been released or are about to be demoed soon. RK3399 is one of the more capable ARM chips not targeted at NAS use cases but with 2 x USB3, PCIe 2.1 x4 and real Gigabit Ethernet most probably fast enough even for demanding NAS use cases.

      Orange Pi RK3399 obviously uses a PCIe attached ASMedia SATA controller to provide one SATA 3.0 port (with 5V/12V power headers for a 3.5" disk) and another mSATA port on the back that can be turned into a normal SATA port by using a cheap mechanical adapter.

      The RockPro64 starts at half the money, features a full sized x4 PCIe slot exposing all four PCIe 2.1 lanes and makes both USB3 ports available as one USB-C receptacle and one USB3-A port (and then there are two more USB2 ports for eg. backup disks)

      [IMG:https://www.cnx-software.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/RockPro64-Board-Large.jpg]
    • Just a question: it exist a board, or even a chip, with the power similar to snapdragon 835 and 4 to 6 sata ports?
      Since Windows is coming on arm, I actually understood that and 835 is comparable to an Intel pentium mobile, still enough power to run even Plex without a problem I think
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    • Blabla wrote:

      snapdragon 835 and 4 to 6 sata ports?
      I don't believe those patent trolls want to support any open initiatives (and once Broadcom aquired them it might get even worse -- see the horrible situation with Raspberry Pi). Currently all you could get is something following the 96boards 'standards' (the ones that dropped Ethernet as a basic requirement): github.com/96boards/documentat…etting-Started-With-Linux

      And since these are mobile SoCs of course there's neither SATA nor PCIe anyway...
    • I used the Snapdragon 835 merely as an example of a powerfull ARM CPU that can compete with Intel i3 mobile.
      What Imean is that I'm surprised that there isn't any ARM board like helios4 but with a more powerfull CPU for a cheap home made NAS.
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    • Blabla wrote:

      I used the Snapdragon 835 merely as an example of a powerfull ARM CPU that can compete with Intel i3 mobile.
      It can't be compared since Snapdragon is a mobile SoC lacking everything that's needed for a NAS. Quite the opposite would be something like Marvell Armada 8040 which unlike Snapdragons has also a quite good Open Source support: solid-run.com/marvell-armada-family/macchiatobin/

      But these powerful SoCs can become quite expensive especially when paired with stuff like 10GbE PHYs and often these NAS/router SoCs then lack the video engine mobile SoCs are equipped with (and these hardware blocks when drivers are available could be used to do all the encoding/decoding/transcoding work freeing up the CPU cores just like with Intel's QuickSync technology).

      With this in mind choosing somewhat universal SoCs (for TV boxes and tablets/Chromebooks) like Rockchip's RK3328 as on ROCK64 or RK3399 as on RockPro64 soon could be the best idea. Since they have a bunch of 'fast enough' interfaces, native Gigabit Ethernet and once drivers are ready can do also the transcoding work inside their video engine on the fly. I've lost track somehow but AFAIK Rockchip released gstreamer-Patches that should be useable with Linux already for this job...
    • I've been using a Pogoplug Series 4 (two of them, actually) for a couple of years, but even though everything lights up (including the USB hard drive when plugged in), I can't get them to access my drives over the network anymore. It used to work. The drives are just fine when plugged directly into my laptop, but the Pogoplugs don't work for some reason.

      So I bought a Raspberry Pi 3 thinking this was the way to make everything work. Alas, I still can't access my drives over the network.
    • tkaiser wrote:

      Orange Pi RK3399 obviously uses a PCIe attached ASMedia SATA controller to provide one SATA 3.0 port (with 5V/12V power headers for a 3.5" disk) and another mSATA port on the back that can be turned into a normal SATA port by using a cheap mechanical adapter.
      What about the Orange Pi Lite 2? It costs about 25$ and has USB 3.0. It lacks gigabit ethernet but makes up in IEEE 802.11 AC/bb/g/n.
      I am considering to upgrade my Raspberry 3 OMV NAS to this device. I am just not sure if i can get the board to run OMV smoothly.

      I've also stumbled upon the Rock64 Media Board. But i've read somewhere that they are not that well supported. I guess the same goes for the freshly released Orange Pi Lite 2.
    • Larkin wrote:

      What about the Orange Pi Lite 2? It costs about 25$ and has USB 3.0. It lacks gigabit ethernet but makes up in IEEE 802.11 AC/bb/g/n.
      It's all about the SoC. Allwinner H6 is pretty new, all we had until two days ago was an outdated "Allwinner BSP" (sort of an SDK) based on kernel 3.10.65, now they released a kernel 4.9 based BSP but it seems this is just a 4.9 checked out from Google's AOSP with drivers forward ported :(

      The OS images for the H6 Orange Pi boards are crap as usual (see tests here) and I would assume we see H6 early development efforts being focused on another H6 board available since yesterday: cnx-software.com/2018/01/31/pi…0-and-pcie-for-26-and-up/

      So if you're neither early adopter nor developer stay away from H6 now but once we get either something useable based on Allwinner's 4.9 BSP or mainline kernel (two developers are already at it with early prototypes in their hands) and if Allwinner's PCIe implementation performs nicely then H6 will be the other interesting new arrival in 2018 (the other will be RK3399).

      Once you see something with H64 in the name here jenkins.ayufan.eu at least something will work but then it's time to check and improve settings. That being said ayufan (who more or less coordinates all software development efforts around Pine64 and Rock64 boards in a similar fashion like Armbian --> everything coming out of repositories and all builds fully scripted and able to be updated from public repositories later) also provides the OMV images for ROCK64 (check for latest stable release github.com/ayufan-rock64/linux-build/releases and avoid everything tagged as 'Pre-release'). And he recently did some fully automated testing to improve network settings (and overall NAS performance) on ROCK64 a lot (10-20 MB/s per direction better now).

      RK3328 boards are already covered by a separate thread BTW: OMV for ROCK64 (and other RK3328 devices soon) (and there's another nice RK3328 NAS board just around the corner)
    • Additional info: Allwinner's H6 seems to be able to be clocked at up to 1.8 GHz with single threaded loads but seems to implement some sort of 'Turbo Boost' so when all CPU cores are active the maximum clockspeed gets reduced (Amlogic does the same on their recent quad- and octa-core ARM SoCs).

      Just as a very generic and partially misleading baseline Geekbench performance results for RK3328, H6 and RK3399 (and Allwinner's old A64) summarized: (please not that in those 'total scores' also GPU/3D performance is included but for OMV this is more or less irrelevant. Besides IO and network interfaces the only other SoC part of interest is the video engine which could be used for HW accelerated transcoding like it's done on x64 system using Intel's QuickSync for example. AFAIK this looks promising with the two Rockchip SoCs, wrt H6 nothing known yet)
    • Finally a board with two sata ports (without needing pci-e adapters) - odroid-n1 linuxgizmos.com/rk3399-based-o…c-doubles-up-on-sata-iii/
      Price seems a bit high though.
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    • ryecoaaron wrote:

      Finally a board with two sata ports (without needing pci-e adapters) - odroid-n1
      Well, the PCIe adapter is onboard since the RK3399 is not SATA capable. And better always use CNX links since same or better information but after 1 to 3 days a lot of interesting babbling happened garnished with loads of interesting links in the comments section: cnx-software.com/2018/02/06/ha…b-ram-dual-sata-and-more/

      Justin from Hardkernel already said that they might replace the onboard PCIe SATA adapter with a slightly better model for a test (ASM1061 vs. ASM1062). But until then the RockPro64 crowd (me included ;) ) might already explored all PCIe specialities with RK3399 and if switching from a single PCIe lane to two means downgrading link rate from 5GT/s to 2.5GT/s Hardkernel can stay with the slightly cheaper ASM1061 :)

      Definitely an interesting board but due to insanely high DRAM prices and the SoC alone being at $20 the retail price will be a problem especially if the DRAM price madness continues.
    • Hi,

      have ordered last week following parts:

      ODROID-HC1 : Home Cloud One
      plus 6A powersupply and other parts from Hardkernel for having a complete home Server. Additionally 1TB Seagate BarraCuda 2,5''

      So I'm looking forward to see the improvement to my Raspberry 3....

      Regards

      Rudi
    • Hi! I need some advice
      I have banana pi m1 arm board with 2 x 2.5 hdd attached, main hdd connected to sata port and 2nd to usb2.0 with cheap usb2sata adapter to backup once a week some data from main hdd. HDDs and banana powered by 5.2v MeanWell 5A AC.
      All these staff live in metal case from dead D-link ethernet 16p switch.
      I use one of the first OMV3 build from tkaiser, besides I use ENCFS to auto backup photos and videos to cloud, TRUECRYPT to mount file container with some files, PLEX media server to tranfer media files without transcoding to my home clients, and I plan to use MOTION or XEOMA for 2 IP cam with H264 in future.
      I'm satisfied my NAS, but I need some more juice especcialy for PLEX and want to have 50-60MB/s transfer speed with SMB (now I have 20-35), so I always read with intresting tkaiser's posts, because he is the person who gives the most complete information about using arm board as a NAS. I see that rock64 meets my needs, but I still wait for some more powerful board to transcode video in PLEX, and as I see RockPro64 may be the best choice, but it is not so energy efficient as rock64 and its much bigger. Besides I want to see small case for board and 2 hdds, but there is no such case for rock64 (yes I see post about stackable rock64 transformer, but I don't need 2 board)
      I can't decide whether I should wait further or order rock64 board and make own case to it.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by isegals ().

    • isegals wrote:

      I can't decide whether I should wait further or order rock64 board and make own case to it
      Well, there will always be something better available immediately after purchase so you need to wait indefinitely anyway ;)

      I use old discarded SCSI drive enclosures usually or build my 'NAS enclosures' from few pieces of wood / MDF / acrylic sheets (ugly as hell but doesn't matter since I hide all electronics stuff in cabinets anyway) and for a 2 HDD scenario I would most probably choose this thing today to be combined with one USB3 port: ebay.ca/itm/HD622-PCBA-Board-U…inch-HDD-SSD/122211050288

      Same thing as Hardkernel's 'Cloudshell 2' since also using the JMS561 controller (USB-to-SATA bridge and 2 port SATA port multiplier). The Cloudshell 2 units had some firmware related issues in the beginning, according to one Rock64 user who bought 4 of those units the 'HD622' board doesn't suffer from this problem.

      Wrt transcoding: it should be possible to run this stuff HW accelerated on the SoC's video engine of Rockchip boards or Exynos 5422 ODROIDs but I lost track about the progress being made there...
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