Step by Step


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Can any of you recommend the best site to get a step by step instruction or video of how to put the unraid server together. I have all my parts, but i need help from connecting to turning it on and setting it up. Im not very computer savvy so i want to make sure i get this right without screwing up.


THanks in advance

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bjp999 has put together some links to help new users


At the bottom of the post, you will find a step by step unRAID Configuration Guide.

It states it is written for version 4.5.6 and is valid for 4.6 & 4.7 but I think you will still find useful information there.


The UnRAID 5 manual is here

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It's no where near as complicated as it seems. General rule of thumb, everything just fits, with the exception of USB and front panel connectors everything else will only fit where they are suppose to go.


Take your time, be able to focus. Don't try building your first pc with kids running around you. Pay attention and you'll do fine.

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would any of you gentlemen care to give me your opinion on my parts before i put them in?


    ECS A885GM-A2 (V1.1) AM3 AMD 880G SATA 6Gb/s ATX AMD Motherboard

    Model #:A885GM-A2 (V1.1)

    Item #:N82E16813135272

    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy


    NORCO SS-500 5-Bay SATA / SAS Hot Swap Rack Module

    Model #:SS-500

    Item #:N82E16816133030

    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy


    CORSAIR Enthusiast Series TX650 V2 650W ATX12V v2.31/ EPS12V v2.92 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC High Performance Power ...

    Model #:CP-9020038-NA

    Item #:N82E16817139020

    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy

    In Stock

    Mail in Rebate Card


    COOLER MASTER STB-3T4-E3-GP 4-in-3 Device Module Hardisk Cage

    Model #:STB-3T4-E3-GP

    Item #:N82E16817993002

    Return Policy:Standard Return Policy

    In Stock



    Intel Core i3-540 Clarkdale 3.06GHz LGA 1156 73W Dual-Core Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics BX80616I3540

    Model #:BX80616I3540

    Item #:N82E16819115221

    Out Of Stock


    Kingston 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600) ECC Unbuffered Server Memory Model KVR1333D3E9SK2/8G

    Model #:KVR1333D3E9SK2/8G

    Item #:N82E16820139262

    Return Policy:Memory Standard Return Policy

    In Stock

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Both the board and processor are pretty outdated.  It's probably a toss-up as to which one to keep, but I notice the mobo has pretty abysmal ratings on Newegg.  But there are few motherboard for the LGA 1156 socket currently being sold (only 2 listed at Newegg).  If it were me and I had the financial means I'd ditch both processor and motherboard and get something that has a little more punch and/or draws less power.



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Influencer has it right, most things just fit together.  But you've discovered one of the incompatibilities in building a PC and that is there are several different chip socket standards.  None of the processors manufactured by Intel fit any of the sockets designed for AMD processors, and vice versa.  Even within a single manufacturer there are competing incompatible socket designs.  If you go to Newegg and look up Intel motherboards, you'll find that there are currently seven different socket form factors on the market.  Things on the AMD side are only slightly improved -  motherboards with five different socket designs are available.


Provided you have a motherboard with a socket designed for the processor, things will just fit.  The trick is making sure you have compatible parts.  The ECS motherboard employs an AM3 socket.  To use that motherboard you need an AMD processor with the AM3 form factor.  There are plenty of those available starting at the low end with the Sempron 145.  The Clarkdale i3-540 processor you have is made for an LGA 1156 socket.  To use it you must have a motherboard with an LGA 1156 socket.  Newegg has two such Biostar boards.


* Edit to add ... *

One more thing, the RAM you have identified is ECC, which stands for error correcting code, designed for use in servers.  It may or may not be compatible with whichever motherboard you end up with.


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Take your time and ask questions.  If you're in a position to return some gear you might take a look at the recommended builds on the XBMC forum:


The components listed for the 10 HDD server have become outdated but it shows you what parts can fit together.


Replace the AsRock motherboard with the newer 880GM-LE FX board and you're good to go.


By the way, most manufacturers have data sheets that show what processors and memory modules have been tested in their systems.  If you're in doubt try to purchase those products.  Otherwise if you can match the specs you should be OK.  The trick is matching the specs.


The web page for that AsRock board is at:


They have a couple links on that page to CPUs and Memory that are known to be compatible with the board.  The user manual shows that it takes non-ECC non-buffered RAM.  So if you find a board that looks good for your needs you can check the manufacturer web site and ferret out what CPUs and RAM work well.


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Thanks everyone I was able to return the motherboards, etc... so im working from scratch now. I have my antec 1200, 4 coolmaster drive cages, and 8gb of ram. so now just need to pick power supply, motherboard and cpu.


i been looking on a lot of forums with suggested parts, but like you mentioned some or most of these list are outdated.

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If your 8 GB of RAM is the Kingston ECC unbuffered you listed above, you want to pick a motherboard and CPU combo that supports it.  Or else ditch that RAM and get non-ECC RAM and more consumer-oriented motherboard and processor. 


If you stick with the ECC RAM, it looks like an Ivy Bridge Xeon like the E3-1220 and a Supermicro X9SCM will work well.  Seems to be a viable setup on the forums.  More money than I'd spend but sounds like a very reliable and capable rig.



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forgive my ignorance, but if you were just starting with the case i have (antec 1200) and the coolmaster drive cages, which direction would you go for the other parts. I plan on filling it with 16 drives eventually. I want to get parts that are capable but not too expensive. this my first system so i dont want to break the bank.


thanks again. this forum is awesome.

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It's hard to give you helpful advice because your needs, wants, and experience are unique to you.  I'll tell you what I'm in the middle of building for my first unRAID server.  I've put together plenty of computers, in fact other than laptops every computer I've owned since 1988 I've built from components.  Other than a couple of stumbling blocks which you're now aware of it's no big deal. 


[ignore this paragraph unless you want to go down memory lane.  Anyone like me remember the JDR Microdevices catalog?  In the early 1990s they were a great US source of computer parts as well as electronics.  I got my first digital multimeter from them.  Ah, the carefree days of mail order before the advent of the web...]


Aaaanyways, I'm a cheap SOB so I'm looking to put together the minimal server that suits my current needs.  Here's my kit, still waiting on the motherboard to arrive:


NZXT Source 220 CA-SO220-01 Black Steel / Aluminum-like finish ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

PC Power and Cooling Silencer MK III 500W

ASRock 880GM-LE FX AM3+ AMD 880G Micro ATX AMD Motherboard

AMD Sempron 145 Sargas 2.8GHz Socket AM3 45W Single-Core Desktop Processor SDX145HBGMBOX

Kingston HyperX 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600


[EDIT: Heh, borked my html code and forum doesn't take it anyhow.  Links look much better]


That's a total of $279.95 at Newegg, sans shipping.  These are consumer grade products, not particularly designed for the application I intend.  Also, I may outgrow what this system can provide.  I don't mind repurposing some parts into a different computer, that's pretty much a hobby of mine.  If you want to build something and not have to mess with it later, you may want to spend more green and get the bigger PSU, lots of RAM, and a processor you won't outgrow no matter what uses you put it to.



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You guys are a blessing man.

@mrow Im looking to spend no more than $400 on parts not including the hard drives. Im not cheap but due to holidays and my wedding anniversary coming up I cant splurge but I really want to get this going so i can back up all my movies and feel safe.


@Chugiak, thanks for the story lol and the recommendation man. Ive got something to research and begin with now.



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Another good tool for picking parts is PCPartPicker. Might seem a little overwhelming at first, and it doesn't specifically address unRAID compatibility, but it will help you check whether your selected CPU, mobo, memory are compatible, let you compare specs and prices between components and also check prices from different sources.

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A neat feature of PartPicker is that it gives you a running total of how much power your system will draw.  I hope this link is accessible to all:


I put in my items and added 7 of the Western Digital Red 3 TB drives.  In the upper right hand corner it tells me I can expect it to draw 220 watts.  At the bottom of the page it tells me that my motherboard doesn't have enough SATA ports for all 7 drives.  How cool is that?  Way useful tool to help you piece together a system.

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Ya, I would expect the actual power requirements would be much less.  It wouldn't surprise me if the power is estimated very conservatively.


Just checked the WD page for the 3 TB Red and the power dissipation is 4.4 W read/write, 4.1 W when idle.  PCPartPicker uses 15 W per drive.  Must be a simple-minded formula and not based on individual product specs.

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Everyone i have another decision that i need to work out. How does everyone get there internet to their server, wirelessly or ethernet? I would love wireless but I have a very weak signal in my home, so Im considering ethernet although i dont have a drop near my tv where the server will be located. any pros or cons for ethernet vs wireless?

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