My NAS experience is based on the last 5 years using 2 different Synology NAS, but it’s been a while I wanted something DIY.
I optioned OMV two years ago but my Linux knowledge wasn’t there yet, so I bought my 2nd Synology, the DS918+ - the high-end home NAS from Synology.
Today I’ve finally decommissioned this little guy, which was/is pretty expensive. I’ve paid a hefty 550€ at the time and the price hasn’t changed much since then, so my goal was to replace it with something cheaper.
This project would have not been possible without my friend Lorenzo who helped me a lot especially with SnapRAID concepts and the build itself.
The goal I set was fairly easy: better hardware at a lower cost (DS918+ Specs are here). I added some caveats: no server parts (unlike other “NAS killers” out there), low power consumption when idle, recent hardware and reasonable silence.
To add some context, my server is mainly used for backup, downloads and storing my data. There’s only me using it for the most time, and a couple of friends use it for streaming over Plex.
These are the parts, with a little justification.
- CPU:Intel Core i3-8300 3.7 GHz Quad-Core Processor(Purchased For €63.00) – The only used component of the build. i3-8xxx series is basically i3-9xxx series and the price was great, so I went for it.
- CPU Cooler:ARCTIC Alpine 12 CPU Cooler(Purchased For €7.73) Cheap & silent, I also do not allow Intel stock coolers, anyone who does should be punished.
- Motherboard:ASRock H370M-ITX/ac Mini ITX LGA1151 Motherboard(Purchased For €98.50) - ITX but 6 SATA ports, no stupid RGB stuff, 2 onboard LANs, many USB. Approved
- Memory:Crucial Ballistix Sport LT 8 GB (1 x 8 GB) DDR4-3000 Memory(Purchased For €38.03) - The cheapest and low latency RAM I could find at the time of purchase: CL15 15-16-16. Running @2400 to save power.
- Storage:Silicon Power A80 256 GB M.2-2280 NVME Solid State Drive(Purchased For €45.00) - One of the few cheap NVMe SSD that has been reviewed by reputable websites and has great performance.
- Case:Fractal Design Node 304 Mini ITX Tower Case(Purchased For €84.03) Do I have to say something about this wonderful little case?
- Power Supply: be quiet! Pure Power 11 350 W 80+ Bronze Certified ATX Power Supply(Purchased For €49.10) Many SATA ports, reputable brand, silent.
Total: €385.39 -Prices include shipping
Add 11€ for a Sandisk Ultra Flair 32GB – PCPartPicker doesn’t allow for such parts.
All things considered, I made it under 400€ and this is great in my opinion.
I’ve configured the system as follows:
- Sandisk USB drive – OMV boot device
- NVMe SSD drive – Docker and downloads storage
- 3x4TB 3.5’’ HDD drives – SnapRAID
Drives are coming from the previous NAS, and yes I know I have very little storage: I have a long way to become a data hoarder!
I’ve been testing OMV to become familiar with its concepts for a few months in VMs (only OMV 5), writing in this forum and digging a lot to document everything I could. This work turned out in an 8-page manual that has become my little treasure. For the record, the majority of the most useful things have been written by ryecoaaron, lol.
It’s been tough, I also reported some bugs during this period of testing, but after some hiccups I finally made it.
I use SMB for mounting shares to my 2 Windows computers. This one is the only integrated service I use; all the rest are plugins from omv-extras and dockers.
The system is very silent even though I have a discrete number of fans (3 case fans, CPU fan and PSU fan). It consumes 19W when idling with all disks in spindown (I hope somebody isn’t screaming for this).
Plugins I use: openmediavault-flashmemory, openmediavault-snapraid, openmediavault-unionfilesystems, openmediavault-backup, openmediavault-diskstats, openmediavault-resetperms, openmediavault-wakealarm, openmediavault-usbbackup.
I still have to configure NextCloud (the docker compose it’s ready though) which I will use for accessing data from the web and for WebDAV features.
I can’t consider myself an OMV expert but I think I’ve accomplished a great setup for my needs and rounded a lot of rough edges. I am experienced at Docker, though. Don’t hesitate to ask questions about OMV or Docker configurations!
I have learnt a lot from this experience. I’ll try to publish the guide/KB I’ve written (it’s not in English and is rough in many aspects). I wanted to thank again the forum in general, there is a lot of knowledge here!
As a bonus pic, here’s my NAS killer next to his victim, for one last time. I won’t show you the internals: it’s messy.