Upgrading Storage Question & Intro


blueteq

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After years of supporting a major NAS brand and having 5 fail just in the last 5 months its time for a change. If one cannot rely on hardware there is no point in buying manufactured and can just build a good quality system oneself. Thanks to Linus Tech Tips I think I have seen the light with unRAID.

 

My first project is to move 5 Bay NAS currently with all my company / personal data on it.  (Plex, Download Manager, DLNA Server and File Server)

1 X 128GB SSD

4 X 6TB Ironwolfs

Actual data used is around 3.5tb and the rest surveillance data that can be wiped.  

 

I would like to know if this plan will work. 

  1. Build unRAID Server using a couple of 4TB Drives I have 
  2. Move my data from existing NAS
  3. Then add the 4 X 6TB  and SSD cache Drives to unRAID
  4. Finally, remove the 4TB drives from the unRAID system?

 

There might be a simpler way, but any suggestions welcome. 

 

EDIT: Fix spelling

 

Edited by blueteq
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1. Do you have a comprehensive backup strategy in place? Given your opening statement, I would hope so.

 

2. The parity drive(s) in unraid must be the largest or equal to the other drives in the system. You can't set up a parity protected system with your 2 4TB drives and add the 6TB drives later without rebuilding parity.

 

Given the totality of what you outlined and assuming nothing else, here's how I would do it.

Use your 2 4TB drives differently. Set up one as a data drive in unraid, use one as a backup to your critical data independent of both your unraid test rig and your current NAS. Use whatever method you are comfortable with to ensure that your 3.5TB is safe offline and not involved in either the old NAS or your unraid setup.

 

If you can free up your SSD in your current NAS while maintaining functionality, move it to unraid, if not, source another SSD to use in unraid. Plex is a little particular and may not play well if you set it up without a cache on unraid and add one later.

 

Get unraid working to your satisfaction with just the single 4TB drive and a SSD cache drive. Live data, file server, all the duties you expect it to perform. Once that is up and running, break down your old NAS and use one of the 6TB drives as single parity, build and check parity, then replace the single 4TB data drive with another one of the 6TB units. After a parity check with zero errors, add the other 6TB drives one at a time.

 

Once you are completely settled with unraid, you can repurpose one of the 4TB drives. I'd hang on to the other one with your full backup. Probably keep the other one around to expand the backup set to it once your live data gets larger than 4TB.

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Hi,

 

Am a newbie on unRAID, just building my first system, so am a bit confused by the path you suggest - and hoping you can help me understand.

 

The parity drive(s) in unraid must be the largest or equal to the other drives in the system. You can't set up a parity protected system with your 2 4TB drives and add the 6TB drives later without rebuilding parity.

 

I guess what confused me is, given the existing data is 3.5TB, my path would be...

1) back the data up on a 4TB drive (archived offsite copy), then

2) copy it (a working copy of all the data) to the second 4TB drive, then

3) take the SSD to make unRAID cache,

4) use the 4x6TB drives to make

 4a)unRAID 1x parity (6TB) and

 4b) three data drives (3x 6TB) to make the build.

5) Then, migrate the data from the “working copy” (4TB) drive. Then once everything is conformed as “working” -

6) reformat the 4TB “working copy” drive and add it to the unRAID array

 

... making for a 22TB unRAID (3x6TB+4TB), 128 GB SSD as cache, and a 4TB drive as offsite backup... 

 

Or do I have a flawed concept of how to do it best/safely? (appreciate any direction/guidance... I’m still learning!)

 

-Rollie in Washington DC USA (age 57)

 

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My suggestions include the ability to continue to use your current NAS for as long as you need to feel comfortable getting things done with unraid. The only sticking point with that concept is the lack of a usable SSD for unraid since your current one is tied up with your NAS.

 

Since you only have 3.5TB of working data, you could easily set up unraid using a single 4TB drive and another smaller disk for cache. You don't HAVE to even use a cache drive initially, but due to some quirks in plex, it would make it a lot easier and faster. If you can source another 128 SSD for cheap, or even better a 256, it would make life easier.

 

Your second procedure takes your current working system down before you even get going with unraid, I'd rather see you have both systems running in tandem for a period of time.

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6 hours ago, jonathanm said:

Your second procedure takes your current working system down before you even get going with unraid, I'd rather see you have both systems running in tandem for a period of time.

Thanks for the reply, it makes sense and I will move SSD it can be taken offline without effecting the other NAS. 

 

Will confirm how it all goes. 

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On 7/5/2018 at 4:54 PM, jonathanm said:

My suggestions include the ability to continue to use your current NAS for as long as you need to...(snip)

 

Your second procedure takes your current working system down before you even get going with unraid, I'd rather see you have both systems running in tandem for a period of time.

 

Got it... thanks for sharing that perspective. I appreciate it better now... a lot! 

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