NAS vs File Server

Discussion in 'Game Development (Technical)' started by Pogacha, Feb 13, 2011.

  1. Pogacha

    Original Member

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    This question is for you engineer!

    I don't know what I really need and what I will need in the future ...

    Current problem is I want to share files (250mb x 200 of them) with many computers (5 at least).

    I have a 10/100/1000 local area network, some computers are 100 Mbits/s though.

    We use SVN for version control of source code and we use a WAN shared hosting server and it is just great for that, but for the 250mb files it won't work because of bandwidth limit.

    Peer to peer sharing is giving us troubles because the computer where the files are located cannot be used for something else and it wasn't designed to be used as a server and would be too expensive to have a whole computer just for that.

    We thought about using a non centralized version control system like mercurial but it would be too complex for the users that need to use the files and also we will need the double of disk space on every machine.

    The idea is to have a server that works like a big shared Hard Disk, there won't be conflicts because the way we work so basically what we want is file sharing only.

    I found two solutions so far:
    1 - Buy a NAS like this one:
    http://www.encore-usa.com/us/product/ENNHD-1GS
    Which will cost like 250 U$S plus the hard disk.
    The pros: Easy setup, cheap, low power consumption.
    Cons: Not scalable, cannot install an SVN/Mercurial/Git server there ... it will only work as a file server.

    2 - Build a File Server by myself.
    Pros: I will be able to scale (add more disks), I will be able to install SVN, Mercurial/GIT, I will be able to run automatically scheduled tasks like backups and things like that ...
    If it can become a printer server as well it would be good too :)
    Cons: Cost will be higher don't know how much but higher, what I don't want to reach is the cost of a full new PC (U$S 1000) something in the lines of $500 would be fine.
    Not an easy setup at all, I have no idea which OS to use (I'm almost sure it should be a Linux distribution because of the cost, but I don't know which)
    I never used Linux in my life so it would be problematic to setup properly, and I have less idea what kind of hardware it will be better to use.

    Of course 2 would be better than 1 if price is under the line and it would be not as hard to setup (1 or 2 days of work max) and maintain (almost none).

    Also I think I will need either a RAID system or an external Drive with incremental backup (I'm almost decided about this).


    The question in particular is:

    Do you think I can setup a file server with more or less $400 which does all what I want?

    Thanks in advance
     
  2. Four

    Four New Member

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    A server is really just a computer. You can take any computer (even laptops) and turn them into a "ENNHD-1GS" like machine. From my understanding stuff like the ENNHD-1GS is really just a computer (sometimes a varient of linux installed) and they dont always have a video card, and some other things standard computers have.

    With 400$ you can buy a computer and turn it into the kind of server you want. For the server to work well you have to deal without any graphics while its running. If you can get someone with linux experience that wlll help. But now its very easy to setup servers.


    Yes. I called once a place to buy a server, and they were laughing at me saying I need 2-3K to get a decent server. That may be true, but for <100 people I think 400$ is enough.

    I would say buy a computer for 400$ (atleast 512MBram, any processor will do, cheapest video card, good network interface)[almost any desktop PC will do) and it will be good for <100 people. Borrow a monitor, install Ubuntu, and then setup ssh server

    Get an sftp client (Alot of ftp clients now support sftp like FileZila) and try to login and exchange files.

    Once setup you can disable the GUI and dont need a monitor for it. You can login via ssh and update the server that way. As you'll learn you can setup a printserver, webserver, SVN server and anything you like.

    If it feels to hard. Maby try and get a "Ginny pig" computer (Maybe someone wants windows to be reinstalled) try and setup Ubuntu, if that works get a 400$ server.

    this Looks good but doesn't say the specs of Ethernet.

    And a good power supply is a must. Since its going to be running 24/7 most likely.

    From my perspective I would go with the 250$ machine, if the business generates revenue buy 500$ server, as it grows get better servers with more features essentially.
     
  3. Pogacha

    Original Member

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    Thanks so much!
    A couple of questions ... should I install Ubuntu or Ubuntu Server Edition?

    Maybe the Server Edition is for bigger computers ?

    A friend of mine knows how to install Debian ... is there any advantage on using it instead of Ubuntu? (I guess Ubuntu is the easy way)

    Thanks so much again :)
     
  4. Four

    Four New Member

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    You'll have to experiment yourself to decide whats better debian or ubuntu for you. I have set up mainly Debian servers. Yes Ubuntu is easier, and there is more resources as its more popular.

    I would expect the server edition be smaller and contain more of the core programs for running a server. And make it easier for this purpose. Ubuntu Desktop does not come with any server programs. But there is a gui allowing you to install & set them up.

    Source

    It seems Ubuntu server does not come with a GUI. GUI make it easier to add users, install & search for programs & etc...

    What ever you choose learn your way to do everything without a GUI.

    Go with Ubuntu desktop. Learn to do things through command line. Then you can disable the GUI. And enable it when unsure how to do something from command line. One day when you feel comfortable (Or can hire an expert here) you can always switch to Ubuntu server without reinstalling.
     
  5. Pogacha

    Original Member

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    Thanks so much!
     

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