Networking & Wireless forum


What Home Server is right for me?

by Titus Black / February 14, 2013 12:06 AM PST

Okay, I have an interesting series questions. Over 2 years ago, I received a HP Mediasmart 485 has a home server for storing movies, photos, music and data we could access on our PS3, computers, Android and iPad tablets and phones. I have come to the point, with the canceling of the support for this server and soon purchasing new computers for the kids and myself, where I need to upgrade my server as well. I have tried to find information on the web, cnet, computer mags, and other resources and I cannot find anything that can help me make an informed decision. I am pretty knowledgeable of computers, but when it comes down to a home server I am a bit out of my league. I feel like I need to go back to school to understand what each of these new servers do. I don't need a camera storage system, or have access to it via the internet. I just need it to work with the movies I have currently on my server, to work with my PS3 so my kids can watch them, to be a home iTunes server for all of our music, a place to store our photos, and keep software backups for each of our computers. I currently have about 4TB of storage on my server, and that's only with 3 drives in the bays (it can hold up to 4 drives at 2TB each, but it recognizes the drives as physical space for 8TB total). So I need at least 8TB but more would be great. I don't have the server set up for computer backups because I'm not sure it could handle the strain! Either way, it would be nice to have a backup for our systems since we have had a few scares! So where do I start? What do I need? What features do I need to look for? If I can swap out hard drives for specific data storage for computer backups and have drives for media, is that a good idea? So I need a crash course in a home server! Any suggestions on where to start?

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All Answers

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Support ends in just a few years on most things.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 14, 2013 12:08 AM PST

Why not keep what you have and add some external or internal drives?

As to the course work, yes, many folk need such and we hope the local community colleges offer these.

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RE:Support ends in just a few years on most things.
by Titus Black / February 14, 2013 12:25 AM PST

The problem is, my current server won't talk to a Window's 8 machine! Before my Win7 Laptop broke, it barely talked to it! Plus, I don't think that this server is going to handle all the strain! Adding external drives is an option, but it will only support 3 drives, 1 SATA and 2 USB 2.0 drives, and even then only at 2TB per drive! Still there comes the amount of power required to run all those external drives and the outlet/powerbar is already at it's limit! I cannot stress it out any further.

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I wish that was up front.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 14, 2013 12:36 AM PST

Let's talk about power. You claim the power bar is at its limit. Most are 15 amperes so let's guess it's at 10 amperes right now.

At 10 amperes, 24x7 operation I get 864 KiloWatt hours. In my city that puts you at 17 cents per KWH or $146.88 per month to run this server.

In my opinion I'd be looking at something cheaper to operate. Have you considered a pair of Drobo units on the network?

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