Posts by Kevin Castro

    Yes, I really went wrong with my (now deleted) post.

    I don't drink very often; but on this occasion, I had been boozing up and then I went online. What could go wrong?


    Regardless of what I thought of Adoby's post (and it turns out I wasn't thinking at all), I should have known better than to challenge a Moderator.


    I apologize for my lack of judgement. And I learned a lesson about mixing alcohol and the internet.

    You're quite right. This little project was more expensive than the cheapest bolt-together rack. But with only 25¼ inches of space to work with, I couldn't find anything compact enough.

    I'm glad you like it. Greetings from Australia.

    My timber rack-shelf-thing, with no cutting.


    600×250mm floating shelf 16mm, 3 of

    1200×250mm floating shelf 16mm, 2 of

    1200×30×18mm pine, 1 of


    60mm 8g countersunk wood screws

    20×25mm corner brackets with 5/8" 8g panhead screws for weight-bearing assistance


    Top: BELLBIRD—offline XP (now semi-retired) former pseudo NAS, with AVerMedia hi-def capture card

    Middle: KREEANNE—4TB (RAID10)

    Bottom: KRINNAYE—4TB (mirror)

    Floor: UPS (power for KREEANNE and burglar alarm)

    TANENA: A Brief History.


    Mobo: ASRock A55M-HVS (AMD FM1) purchased in September 2013

    APU: AMD A4 3400 dual-core at 2.7GHz purchased in September 2013

    Mem: 2× 2GB

    PSU: Antec 380W (by Seasonic) in Antec towercase purchased in 2013


    In late 2013, I built WOMBAT and installed Win-7, 32-bit. The original towercase, whilst having a side duct (and I fitted an 80mm fan), was quite small and I worried that the chip might run hot. Since I had recently bought three enormous Arctic 64 chip coolers, it seemed to make sense to install one. In March 2014, I transferred the Win-7 license, as 64-bit, to SILVERFOX (now known, in a different towercase, as KATHENA).


    In June 2014, I installed XP into WOMBAT. Initially, the mobo and the SSD (Crucial M4 64GB) didn't get along so I replaced the mobo (the cheaper of the two components) with the Gigabyte equivalent. Her boot-to-desktop was a consistent 21 seconds.


    In September 2016, the Gigabyte mobo was showing signs that something might be going wrong with it, so I reinstated the ASRock unit and installed a Samsung 850 EVO 120GB. Her boot time remained 21 seconds.


    In June 2018, WOMBAT was relegated to the status of "spare"' PC and put away.


    At the end of 2019, I replaced her difficult-to-work-on towercase with a larger, low-quality 'freebie'. I renamed her TANENA and her status remained "spare".


    In August 2020, she did a week of service in my library as 'companion PC' while KRISTA (Vista 32-bit) was being partly disassembled for the building of two fresh PCs (KRAEGA and KATRORA). In October 2020, she did a week of service in the lounge room as 'companion PC' and 'morning streamer' when WALLABY (XP quad) needed a replacement PSU. (Even though I keep a stock of PSUs, I couldn't be bothered replacing it right away.)


    In August 2021, I hooked up TANENA for a quick run and an avast update. I discovered that one memory slot was non-functional and her boot time had stretched to 27 seconds. I replaced the 2× 2GB Unifosa 1333 with a single stick of 4GB Kingston 1600. I put TANENA through some paces; obviously, the loading of web pages was not as quick as with WALLABY, but she could stream MSNBC from the US with the chip usage fluctuating between 40 and 60%.


    At this time, I made the decision to change TANENA into KRINNAYE—a NASette. Being just for my music library and concert videos, her read/write speed wouldn't need to be as fast as that of KREEANNE—my primary NAS.

    Storage: 4TB (2× WD Red Plus 4TB, 128MB; in mirror)

    As with KREEANNE's installing, I had to leave the network cable disconnected until the DHCP began configuring; and even then, it took two attempts to get beyond this point.


    Here we see KRINNAYE building the RAID. Boot SSD in the top of the tower (behind the USB ports), spinners in the bottom—widely spaced because there is no ready-made facility for a front fan. Rean fan (Evercool 90mm) runs at 5V, side fan (Arctic F8) runs at 7V (+12 for pos, +5 for neg).


    Once again, openmediavault created the RAID flawlessly, everything clicked into place perfectly, KRINNAYE responds faster than I thought she would, and I was happy to make another financial contribution.

    Here we see KRINNAYE and KREEANNE together. They both run 24/7, but only KREEANNE is powered through a UPS (Tripp Lite 850VA).

    KREEANNE, one week on.

    Whether I'm in the lounge room (Win-7 browsing PC is KARETTA; XP companion PC for GMX, gmail, and streaming MSNBC is WALLABY) or in my 'Library' (KATHENA and KRAEGA, both Win-7), I now access a single source of files. I no longer need my 'U-drive' (Samsung 860 EVO 500GB hanging off a USB SATA tail) to keep my most up-to-date version of daily-use spreadsheets and documents handy for use in any PC. I no longer have a disjointed mix of out-of-date files and folders in the D-drives of various PCs—including KATRORA (spare Win-7 browsing PC) and TANENA (spare XP companion PC).

    Here is KATHENA (top) and KRAEGA resting throughout the hot January of 2021 (this room is cheap to heat but has no A/C).


    If I wish to burn a YouTube to CD for the car, I no longer need to U-drive it into WALLABY (I'll talk more on that later). Also, I no longer need to use my rotary-switch clunk-o-matic data switchbox to cut KARETTA/WALLABY's access to the modem and connect them to BELLBIRD (offline XP) to access her shared folders—my now-redundant pseudo NAS.


    Yes, I still need to do my clunky backing-up routine without the benefit of differential file-copying (not image) software, but it is now taking about a tenth the time. I used to spend hours shuffling folders and files but now it has already happened in real time. And once I start a backup running (using KARETTA'S outboard SATA facility), I can then get on with whatever else I was doing.


    In no particular hurry, I am still exploring file-copying options (similar to Vice Versa Pro) but they must accept PayPal.


    In the SMB/CIFS, I have allowed Guests in the "Public" folder (login to KREEANNE is still required obviously), but I have not allowed Guests in the "Private" folder. The reason I have set a two-tiered system is so when I have a friend over, they can log in as "user" and look around the "Public" folder; but only "kevin" can access my sensitive files.


    For reasons I don't understand, the Guest setting means that XP is unable to access the "Private" folder no matter what I try. This means I can't use WALLABY to do the backing-up, but that's not important—I will fit KATHENA with a 'tower-top' outboard SATA facility. This will ensure I always have at least two PCs available to perform the weekly backup to a SAMSUNG 860 EVO 1TB and a WD Black 500 (I currently have only 155GB of data).

    This is an old picture of KATRELL with a 'tower-top' outboard SATA facility (in this instance, for interchangeable boot drives).


    Access from WALLABY is generally to facilitate burning a downloaded YouTube (.mp4) of less than eighty minutes to a CD (as a .cda) using Nero 6, which supports only XP. My car supports only CD (remember them?). The fifty-minute drive down the freeway is more relaxing when I'm listening to a lecture or a stand-up or a short concert. The "Vids" folder is in the "Public" tree so it all works perfectly. Nero 6 can't browse the network but it does allow for files to be 'dropped in' to its timeline from Windows Explorer; and even with the burn speed dialed down to 32× for safety, Nero 6 seems to be the fastest way to do this job. Just today, I used this procedure to burn a Morrissey concert from KREEANNE to CD for my drive to work next Monday morning.


    These are all simple freedoms that I never experienced until now. For nearly ten years, I have wanted a NAS or a server but always regarded them as either too expensive or beyond my technical ability to build, configure, and service. openmediavault has been developed to such a stage that even a dummy like me can bang some bits and bobs together, click the mouse a few times, and it's running like a Swiss watch.

    I think openmediavault is sensational.

    With my Win-7 PCs, I log in to KREEANNE using "kevin" and [password]. With WALLABY (XP), I have to use "kevin@kreeanne" and [password]. That gets me as far as the "Public" folder. If I wish to access the "Private" (password-protected) folder, I am greeted by another login request and nothing seems to work. From what I've read online, that's roughly what I should expect. Typically, I will be accessing KREEANNE only from KARETTA (Win-7 hex-core at 3.5GHz) and KATHENA.


    In the meantime, here is WALLABY shortly after she copied most of my folders and files into the "Public" folder from an outboard SSD.

    Here we see KREEANNE's hardware laid out. The Wraith Prism chip cooler might seem like overkill for an Athlon II, but it will run near-silently. For better or for worse, its cute little light-show will be wasted. The motherboard was a bargain purchase even though the four sticks of mish-mash RAM it came with (totalling 6GB) didn't run. I subsequently installed two sticks of 4GB Patriot that I bought second-hand several years ago.


    The F8 will be the side fan but the duct in this photo was subsequently replaced with a shorter unit. Arctic F8s and F12s run quietly at 7V (+12 for pos, +5 for neg). F12s move a surprising amount of air at this voltage, and the F8 moves just enough air to softly bathe the chip cooler with 'outside' air. At 5V, F9s are virtually inaudible and they will be moving just enough air to keep the spinners cool.


    The new Samsung 850 EVO 120GB drive has been mounted onto a 'mongrel' mount for a big bay. this is because the tower case I bought second-hand in 2014 has only four HDD slidey-things.


    Video comes courtesy of the Gigabyte GT 610. I've owned it since new and I am always thrilled to give an old piece of hardware a new job. The PATA DVD is one I bought, new, some years ago. This is its first job.


    Here we see the fans, SSD boot, and IO plate installed. In the background, we see WALLABY (XP quad-core at 3.5GHz)


    Here are the kids—ready for fitment. (And one spare.)


    The excitement of logging in for the first time.

    During the install, I had to leave the network cable unplugged until part-way through the DCHP configuration (as per Erwego's suggestion of February, 2020).


    It's hardly Cable-Management-R-Us, but it's rock-solid. The uppermost spinner softly 'kisses' the chip cooler during slip-in and slip-out.


    Using an empty Foxconn tower as a pedestal. Pleasingly, KREEANNE is no louder than a quiet desktop computer.


    The view from KATHENA (Win-7 quad-core at 3.9GHz) as openmediavault creates the RAID10.