Wednesday, January 29, 2014

FreeNAS e-350 uptime

I just checked my FreeNAS RAID. This is a personal RAID I use to store backups, installers and VMs. Here is the original post : .

299 days uptime for a home box. Not bad. The last time it was rebooted, I needed to move it to a different location.


  1. Wouldn't a Celeron (SOC type) be better for a NAS as the AMD E-350 has a weak CPU but good GPU? I guess when you built yours AMD Fusion was the only thing available unless you wanted to use an Atom.

    I'm thinking of using one of these for a NAS:

    It replaces a similar board which used a Celeron 847.

    1. At the time, celerons didn't come with SIX, 6 sata ports in mini-itx. I don't know if the landscape has change since. Also, at the time, they didn't support more than 4GB RAM.

    2. I was thinking after I posted my comment that the reason that board was popular was the abundance of sata ports. There was also an AMD C60 board which had enough sata ports for a NAS without using a pci/pci-e card. I don't think the landscape has changed much as that board I posted only has three sata ports :(

      The HP microservers (AMD CPU)seem popular over here in the UK as they always seem to having cashback offers on them. I am tempted to try one. I could probably sell it for the amount I paid for it!

  2. The C60 and E-350 boards are very cheap; including processor. $80 on sale sometimes at NewEgg. All you need to do is add RAM and storage.

  3. @forty

    I am thinking about doing a similar NAS setup to move my vMWare lab to but was kind o put off by all the discussions about freenas/zfs and non-ECC RAM in the freenas forums.

    I just saw your post from 2012 and was going to follow up. What are your thoughts on the ECC/non-ECC RAM argument and loosing all your data? Obvisiouly your have been solid for 2 years.

    I got an iomega ix2-200 - 1 TB RAID1 I use this for streaming, NFS, iSCSI (at one point) and it cannot keep up running VCSA and my VMs. It screams.

    I have 2x Asrock E350 motherboard from my old lab that I want to use for the NAS only 4 SATA but I am ok with that.

    Here is my current setup:

    2x Zotac A55-itx $90ea ($180)
    2x amd a8-6500 $100ea ($200)
    2x8 (2x4gb) DDR3 GB RAM - $40ea ($80) bought when RAM was dirt cheap. will be upgrading to 16GB in each host
    2x8 GB cruizer small profile - $8ec ($16)
    2x broadcom/hp 380nt dual port gLAN (from old setup)
    1 x iomega ix2-200 - 1 TB RAID1 I use this for streaming, NFS, iSCSI (at one point) and it cannot keep up running VCSA and my VMs. It screams.

    1. You have to take the ECC, Non-ECC RAM into context.
      This is not an enterprise build for production. It doesn't have dual power supplies. It is not server grade.
      Moreover, I am not providing SAN/iDISK services to live production servers.

      This is also not a final definitive backup system. Rather, I use it as a shuttle pool in the event one of my other three backups crash.
      I have four backups of everything. I learn that lesson a long time ago.

      Having said that, I've had zero problems with my set-up except for the first bad disk a while back.

      We have over 60TB of storage running on IBM DS3400/DS3500. Each brick cost around $15,000 and have about 9-14TB RAID6 depending on when we got them.
      Each firmware locked 1-2TB Enterprise 7200 rpm drives cost $800-900 each. One drive cost more than my entire FreeNAS box.
      "Those" are production level RAIDS with 24/7 365 days a year on-site support. A drive failed on Thanksgiving or Christmas and IBM sends out a replacement in 2 hours.
      That is what you call production, enterprise level storage. As a home user, I can't afford a $15-30K RAID system. FreeNAS has allowed me to explore and experiment.
      I've installed FreeNAS on production Dell 1U and 2U R4,5 and 700 series servers w/ ECC RAM. With those, I still use 4 way backups.

      Would I use this for my home lab? Definitely. I run iSCSI on my test ESXI server all the time. I also happen to have multiple backups of my VM images and never experience any corruption.

      If you want ECC. Lenovo sells an i3 ThinkServer that takes ECC pretty cheap ($220). The Fuji MX130S2 servers I got year have 4 sata and takes ECC. They're pretty cheap as well.

    2. @forty, Thanks for the input. Much appreciated. Sadly I am not looking for any protection beyond RAIDZ1/Z2 right now. No plans for multiple backups. Going Cheapo but the ECC argument is making me re-think my build plan.

      Yeah I don't expect it to be enterprise. Over my career I have managed several NetApp FAS 2040/3140 and EMC VNX5000 series SAN. Enterprise is hundreds of thousands and millions of dollars. After 4-5 years when support expires it starts all over again because its cheaper to do a hardware refresh with including support than pay for support alone.

      I'll check out the Lenovo/Fujitsu. Right now Synology/QNap are way too pricey.

      Keep up the good work with this blog.