Can/should I recycle my old PC and turn it into a NAS / Plex Server

    This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site, you are agreeing to our Cookie Policy.

    • Can/should I recycle my old PC and turn it into a NAS / Plex Server

      Hey guys,

      I’m looking for some advice. I'm very new to all this!

      We currently use plex on my desktop gaming pc as aplex server but that machine is quite old (2012) and due for an upgrade.

      I’m also going to be upgrading my tv to a 65inch Samsung Series 8 4k TV in the near future.

      Given that I’m going to get a new PC, I’m wondering whether I can use the old PC’s parts and turn it into a NAS server (using OMV) to run Plex (maybe use an Nvida Sheild or the Sumsungs app).

      Please see the old PC's specs below (using Speccy as I couldn't find my receipt):

      Operating System - Windows 10 Pro 64-bit CPU - Intel Core i7 3770 @ 3.40GHz 55 °C Ivy Bridge 22nm Technology
      RAM - 16.0GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz (11-11-11-28)
      Motherboard - Gigabyte Technology Co. Ltd. Z77X-D3H (Intel Core i7-3770 CPU @ 3.40GHz) 48 °C
      Graphics - Acer X233H (1920x1080@60Hz) 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 (Gigabyte) 43 °C
      Storage - 111GB INTEL SSDSC2CW120A3 (SATA (SSD)) & 1863GB Western Digital WDC WD20EARX-00MMMB0 (SATA ) 38 °C
      Optical Drives - No optical disk drives detected Audio - NVIDIA High Definition Audio
      PC Case - Some HUGE Thermaltake one...

      Is it worth converting this straight for usage in OMV (ideally i'd like to be able to perform backups and maybe transcode to 4k? but not too stressed if 1080p works...).

      Are there parts that I should keep and buy new parts (i.e. case is huge, need another HDD etc.) - all advice is welcome also conscious of power usage as it would always be on...

      Cheers
    • KM0201 wrote:

      How many sata ports do you have?
      He wrote it: Z77X-D3H. Not sure why you mentioned transcoding (I always thought Plex and PMS -- Plex Media Server -- are two different things)? Anyway: It's Ivy Bridge and as such the Intel QuickSync implementation (allowing to do transcoding efficiently inside the Video Engine and not on the CPU cores) is quite old and incapable.

      @Stalukes: your CPU is total overkill for a NAS and as such able to do even any transcoding jobs energy inefficiently on the CPU cores. Idle consumption (not related to TDP -- thermal design power) will be rather high especially with an oversized PSU (they are all very inefficient at low load scenarios which pretty much describes NAS operation then). From an environmental point of view keeping old hardware for a few years instead of buying new one is reasonable.

      The most annoying thing with a NAS is unreliable operation and (silent) data corruption so I would run a burn-in memtest for 72 hours and if your box shows no errors use it as a base for an OMV box.

      Also check your storage now (especially SMART attribute 233 of your Intel SSD and with your WD20EARX you might run into the wd lcc issue).
    • Honestly, I didn't even think to look up the motherboard model.

      Transcoding is discussed ad nauseum here on this forum by those using Plex and Emby.. I don't use either.. but it seems important to it's user base so it seems a prudent thing to consider.
      Air Conditioners are a lot like PC's... They work great until you open Windows.

    • Stalukes wrote:

      transcode to 4k?
      This makes no sense for media consumption. Usually you transcode your contents available in high resolutions/bitrates for clients that do not match bandwidth, resolution or bitrate requirements (smartphones, tables, old PCs). Why would you want to do this in your install with a new 4k TV? If it's about upscaling I would believe the TV does a better job (and can also do this HW accelerated and as such efficiently unlike an old Ive Bridge CPU).
    • Stalukes wrote:

      Hey guys,

      I’m looking for some advice. I'm very new to all this!

      We currently use plex on my desktop gaming pc as aplex server but that machine is quite old (2012) and due for an upgrade.

      I’m also going to be upgrading my tv to a 65inch Samsung Series 8 4k TV in the near future.

      Given that I’m going to get a new PC, I’m wondering whether I can use the old PC’s parts and turn it into a NAS server (using OMV) to run Plex (maybe use an Nvida Sheild or the Sumsungs app).

      Please see the old PC's specs below (using Speccy as I couldn't find my receipt):

      Operating System - Windows 10 Pro 64-bit CPU - Intel Core i7 3770 @ 3.40GHz 55 °C Ivy Bridge 22nm Technology
      RAM - 16.0GB Dual-Channel DDR3 @ 798MHz (11-11-11-28)
      Motherboard - Gigabyte Technology Co. Ltd. Z77X-D3H (Intel Core i7-3770 CPU @ 3.40GHz) 48 °C
      Graphics - Acer X233H (1920x1080@60Hz) 2047MB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 (Gigabyte) 43 °C
      Storage - 111GB INTEL SSDSC2CW120A3 (SATA (SSD)) & 1863GB Western Digital WDC WD20EARX-00MMMB0 (SATA ) 38 °C
      Optical Drives - No optical disk drives detected Audio - NVIDIA High Definition Audio
      PC Case - Some HUGE Thermaltake one...

      Is it worth converting this straight for usage in OMV (ideally i'd like to be able to perform backups and maybe transcode to 4k? but not too stressed if 1080p works...).

      Are there parts that I should keep and buy new parts (i.e. case is huge, need another HDD etc.) - all advice is welcome also conscious of power usage as it would always be on...

      Cheers
      The short answer is, you are good. You don't have anything to worry about.
      Build, Learn, Create.

      How to Videos for OMV

      Post any questions to the forum, so others can benefit from your curiosity. :thumbsup:
      No private support.
    • tkaiser wrote:

      TechnoDadLife wrote:

      You don't have anything to worry about
      Interesting. So you personally checked his DRAM for him and also the SMART health data of his (really old) SSD and WD HDD?
      I would think he means the short answer.. being if all the hardware is in proper working order... it's plenty enough to run OMV.

      At least that's how I took it. You could probably spend a week coming up with variables on why particular hardware *might* not work due to some obscure issue and just as long running some test to check it.. From what the OP has said.. this is all spare hardware. Me personally, as long as I had backups of my data (I do)... I'd just wing it and if I ran into an issue.. I'd deal with it.
      Air Conditioners are a lot like PC's... They work great until you open Windows.

    • KM0201 wrote:

      You could probably spend a week coming up with variables on why particular hardware *might* not work due to some obscure issue
      Or you could focus on exactly the stuff that can go wrong (as I tried above).

      • DRAM integrity issues are hard to spot since you if you get them while running a complex system like OMV (or any server appliance) you run into 'mysterious bugs' you're wasting days or weeks with to nail them down while in reality those 'bugs' might be simply related to a faulty DIMM throwing a bit flip every 48 hours
      • Intel 520 SSDs are old ones but fortunately already support a 'wear out indicator' that can be queried via SMART. How much sense does it make to install OMV on a dying SSD?
      • the WD20EARX (WD Green) is most probably rather old and definitely prone to the 'wd lcc issue' (parking the drive heads to death). How much sense does it make to put data on a dying HDD?



      That's why I thought a recommendation to check for these 3 well known issues would be a good idea:

      tkaiser wrote:

      I would run a burn-in memtest for 72 hours and if your box shows no errors use it as a base for an OMV box.

      Also check your storage now (especially SMART attribute 233 of your Intel SSD and with your WD20EARX you might run into the wd lcc issue).

      Telling a NAS newbie 'everything is fine with your hardware' when there are three simple things to check is IMO weird.

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

    • tkaiser wrote:

      KM0201 wrote:

      You could probably spend a week coming up with variables on why particular hardware *might* not work due to some obscure issue
      Or you could focus on exactly the stuff that can go wrong (as I tried above).
      • DRAM integrity issues are hard to spot since you if you get them while running a complex system like OMV (or any server appliance) you run into 'mysterious bugs' you're wasting days or weeks with to nail them down while in reality those 'bugs' might be simply related to a faulty DIMM throwing a bit flip every 48 hours
      • Intel 520 SSDs are old ones but fortunately already support a 'wear out indicator' that can be queried via SMART. How much sense does it make to install OMV on a dying SSD?
      • the WD20EARX (WD Green) is most probably rather old and definitely prone to the 'wd lcc issue' (parking the drive heads to death). How much sense does it make to put data on a dying HDD?



      That's why I thought a recommendation to check for these 3 well known issues would be a good idea:

      tkaiser wrote:

      I would run a burn-in memtest for 72 hours and if your box shows no errors use it as a base for an OMV box.

      Also check your storage now (especially SMART attribute 233 of your Intel SSD and with your WD20EARX you might run into the wd lcc issue).
      Telling a NAS newbie 'everything is fine with your hardware' when there are three simple things to check is IMO weird.
      i THINK you had pretty well covered the variables the OP needed to know about. I understand what you're saying.. but as someone who typically just wings it, I also see TDL's side (because frankly, that is what exactly I would do). I say that knowing my backups are always within a few hours of being current... and if I was going to undertake something like the OP is suggesting, I'd make sure they were 100% current. Most likely any significant issues, you're going to recognize fairly quickly.. so if something is wrong, the only real time lost, is installation and whatever configuring you've done up to that point.
      Air Conditioners are a lot like PC's... They work great until you open Windows.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by KM0201 ().

    • tkaiser wrote:

      KM0201 wrote:

      You could probably spend a week coming up with variables on why particular hardware *might* not work due to some obscure issue
      Or you could focus on exactly the stuff that can go wrong (as I tried above).
      • DRAM integrity issues are hard to spot since you if you get them while running a complex system like OMV (or any server appliance) you run into 'mysterious bugs' you're wasting days or weeks with to nail them down while in reality those 'bugs' might be simply related to a faulty DIMM throwing a bit flip every 48 hours
      • Intel 520 SSDs are old ones but fortunately already support a 'wear out indicator' that can be queried via SMART. How much sense does it make to install OMV on a dying SSD?
      • the WD20EARX (WD Green) is most probably rather old and definitely prone to the 'wd lcc issue' (parking the drive heads to death). How much sense does it make to put data on a dying HDD?



      That's why I thought a recommendation to check for these 3 well known issues would be a good idea:

      tkaiser wrote:

      I would run a burn-in memtest for 72 hours and if your box shows no errors use it as a base for an OMV box.

      Also check your storage now (especially SMART attribute 233 of your Intel SSD and with your WD20EARX you might run into the wd lcc issue).
      Telling a NAS newbie 'everything is fine with your hardware' when there are three simple things to check is IMO weird.
      You having a rough day?
      Build, Learn, Create.

      How to Videos for OMV

      Post any questions to the forum, so others can benefit from your curiosity. :thumbsup:
      No private support.
    • KM0201 wrote:

      I also see TDL's side (because frankly, that is what exactly I would do)
      Well, I personally don't deal that good with ignorance. And I really call it ignorant/irresponsible behavior to tell a newbie who actually made the efforts to list the hardware he tries to reuse with OMV 'everything is fine' when it's most probably not.

      Memtest86 and smartmontools exist for Windows and are free. Where's the point in not using them to quickly evaluate the hardware for the 3 well known problem that regularly occur (I won't repeat the details again one more time)
    • tkaiser wrote:

      KM0201 wrote:

      I also see TDL's side (because frankly, that is what exactly I would do)
      Well, I personally don't deal that good with ignorance. And I really call it ignorant/irresponsible behavior to tell a newbie who actually made the efforts to list the hardware he tries to reuse with OMV 'everything is fine' when it's most probably not.
      Memtest86 and smartmontools exist for Windows and are free. Where's the point in not using them to quickly evaluate the hardware for the 3 well known problem that regularly occur (I won't repeat the details again one more time)
      I get it... but your response was a bit over the top. Hell you were attacking me earlier for mentioning transcoding earlier, when the OP specifically asked about it in his OP.

      Just take a chill pill and enjoy the drink of your choice for a moment... it is not that deep. :)

      Have a great day.
      Air Conditioners are a lot like PC's... They work great until you open Windows.

    • KM0201 wrote:

      tkaiser wrote:

      KM0201 wrote:

      I also see TDL's side (because frankly, that is what exactly I would do)
      Well, I personally don't deal that good with ignorance. And I really call it ignorant/irresponsible behavior to tell a newbie who actually made the efforts to list the hardware he tries to reuse with OMV 'everything is fine' when it's most probably not.Memtest86 and smartmontools exist for Windows and are free. Where's the point in not using them to quickly evaluate the hardware for the 3 well known problem that regularly occur (I won't repeat the details again one more time)
      I get it... but your response was a bit over the top. Hell you were attacking me earlier for mentioning transcoding earlier, when the OP specifically asked about it in his OP.
      Just take a chill pill and enjoy the drink of your choice for a moment... it is not that deep. :)

      Have a great day.
      I think we are answering two different questions.

      Will it run OMV? Yes

      Will it run OMV without errors? You have to check.
      Build, Learn, Create.

      How to Videos for OMV

      Post any questions to the forum, so others can benefit from your curiosity. :thumbsup:
      No private support.