Follow-up post after putting together the Xpenology
Hardware + build
I purchased almost all the parts mentioned above, but decided to make some small changes:
- I did not get the CPU fan, since the i3-7100 already came with one.
- Changed the chassi to a Fractal Design Node 304. Reason for the last one is that the Thermaltake is a "HUGE" chassi for the amount of HDD that can fit on the inside. 3 slots for 2,5 or 3,5 and 3 other slots for 2,5.
- I bought from a computer store a full modular ATX EVGA Supernova 550w gold certified.
- I decided to use only 4 HDD`s. 3x 8TB WD RED, with 256gb cache and 1x 3TB WD RED with 64gb cache.
Putting together the motherboard, CPU, CPU fan, RAM, PSU and HDDS were very easy. The part that was very difficult in my opinion was the cable management, to the point of almost being pointless. The reason I mention almost is that I had two "empty slots" since I was not using all 6 HDD`s bays. If I were using all of them, I think it would be really hard to do a decent cable management.
- Before attaching the USB with the loader, I connected the computer to a monitor and updated the BIOS and changed some settings: Activated WOL, updated time, changed the BIOS waiting time and set the default boot drive. Nothing hard over there and updating it was really easy. Just connected a network cable and the MOBO did the rest. Worth mentioning that I changed the PSU fan profile to performance, so the temperature threshold to run at faster speeds is lower, but I doubt that it will get hot frequently. The jumper position on the chassi that control the fans is set to low speed.
Install and First Run
After setting up and updating the BIOS and plugged the thumb drive and rebooted the computer. I didn't change the PID and VID beforehand, so I pressed C before the loader auto selected and updated the info over there.
Since 2 of those HDD`s were already being used in a test XPEnology, the Synology Assistant detected that I was moving from one Synology to another and just prompted me to repair (or something like this). In a matter of some minutes, I was ready to use the system with almost all the settings from before. Somethings were messed up, because it was dependent on the hardware itself, so the firewall i.e I had to change configure again. Its worth mentioning that I installed the DSM by just letting the system handle it. I did not manually downloaded and installed and it worked like a charm.
- What took a long time, was adding the other 2 HDD`s and change a RAID 1 to RAID 5. This process took almost 3 full days, but without any issues. After the creation the scrubbing took another day and a half, but this was almost more than expected.
I created my domain at Namecheap and it was using already on the test XPEnology, It took my some time to find the best setup, but I followed the guide bellow and it is working for some weeks now like a charm.
I guess similar to everybody in here, I'm running XPEnology on Jun`s most recent loader, baremetal. I installed Plex, Moments, Drive, Cloud Sync (I have unlimited Box account from my job), Download Station and Virtual Machine. Almost everything worked like a charm, expect the Virtual Machine that required me to select the beta option and than select CPU compatibility. Before doing that, when trying to install a Windows 10 copy, the virtual machine was just running in a loop, getting an error when opening the Windows installation. I selected 2 cores and 4gb of RAM for it and allocated 500gb of space.
- The reason on why I decided to install Windows on the virtual machine is ONLY related to iPhone backups. At first I installed iTunes and chose the option to do Wifi backups. Despite the time it would tike for every backup, it was working like a charm. The VM would detect the iPhones being on the same network and automatic start the backups. I decided to move to a different solution that is called Imazing (I have no relation to them whatsoever). This tool for Mac and Windows allow you to perform schedule backups to the IOS devices in addition to be incremental backups. So it will take only a few minutes everyday to perform the backup. The disappoint part is that the option to schedule the backups and be incremental, will be implemented this month may/2018 (according to the tech support guy that I talked).
- I want to implement WOL (if I manage to do that) so in case I need to turn the NAS on, it will be easy. Reason for that is that I don't want to run the NAS 24/7 due to power consumption and not having the necessity. That way I would prevent some sort of electric damage, hacking and etc.
- I enable a turn on/turn off schedule and it "seams" to be working. Reason that I mean seams is that the NAS did not turn off automatically, since the VM machine was running. Most probably I`ll have to create a schedule on the VM to shut off a few minutes before the NAS and I guess everything will work fine.
The part that I was really impressed is how much power the system uses. I plugged it on a APS and showed around 40w to turn on and stayed at around 32w when using it, going till 55w when streaming to one device. After I plugged the TV, router, Mi Box, modem and the Synology, the system was using around 38w for everything. I was running the Windows 10 virtual machine and doing the iPhone backups at that time.
I`m not an IT expert or anything close to it. I am a physician from Brazil that now lives and work at Cleveland - OH. So my apologies before hand if I misused any term.