Background: I have a media server that's been offline for a while. It has several disks between 1TB-3TB (JBOD) and room to add more. I built it to simply store all my CD, DVD and BrD rips. I played the files on an HTPC so transcoding wasn't an issue - but I retired the HTPC some time ago and I now use Roku for pretty much everything. I tried setting up Plex (more than once) but had a ton of problems with it so I gave up and I've just been playing my physical media discs on my Blu-ray player when I feel like watching them.
Recently, I started playing around with OpenMediaVault on a Raspberry Pi 3 and I'm intrigued/enthused about all the possibilities. I setup Emby Media Server on it and plugged in a 2TB external drive that's loaded with a bunch of my favorite movies and TV shows. In my tests so far, everything seems to play really well on my Roku (Ultra) using the Emby client. I setup port forwarding and tried watching some stuff outside the house on my iPhone (6). 480P content plays great. 720P stops and has to be restarted once in a while but it's functional enough. 1080P doesn't seem to work at all.
My next step is to get my old server back on line. I don't remember its specs but I built it for low-power consumption so I don't know if it will transcode any better than the Pi3 — I suspect I'll probably have to upgrade it — especially as I start to rip some UltraHD Blu-ray discs. Anyway, I'm definitely going to install OMV and SnapRaid along with Auto Ripping Machine so I can finally get the rest of my media ripped. (I'm about 50% done with DVDs/BDs and maybe 25% done with CDs.)
I may stop there and just use that server for media files. But I'm really interested in all the other functionality that I can implement with OMV... I definitely want to setup (using Docker containers for pretty much everything):
- NextCloud (and stop paying Dropbox $120/year for 1 TB of cloud storage).
- I think I'd like to move my Home Assistant server from an old Raspberry Pi 2 to a Docker container on this server
- My wife is interested in a Calibre ebook server
- Some sort of a photo server (Lychee? Pywigo? Other?)
- Radarr and Sonarr look pretty intriguing and I'd also want to setup transmission and a reverse proxy/VPN
- A personal git server (probably Gitea) for some development projects I'm working on -- including...
- A couple of websites I'd like to try to self-host using a reverse proxy.
- I want to implement Duplicati to backup everything to some cloud storage. (Except for the several terabytes of media files, of course, which I can always re-rip if SnapRaid fails to save my bacon.)
I'm currently doing some of that on the Raspberry Pi 3 and I'm pretty happy with the results. So... here's where I'd really appreciate some input...
Should I try to do all that on a single, powerful server? Or should I limit my “main” server to Emby/media storage (and Auto Ripping Machine and maybe Radarr/Sonarr) then use Raspberry Pis (I have 4 x Pi 2, 1 x Pi 3, and another old mini-ITX based server that’s sitting idle but was earmarked as a torrent server) as single-function servers? What would the pros/cons be each way? What would you do?