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Unraid/VM setup for Design and 3D work

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Hi guys!

 

I am about to get a new PC (parts down below already purchased and optimized for my design 3D workflow) and finally switching from macos to Win10. After following Linus Tech Tips and Morgonaut on Youtube I decided to give Unraid a try for a NAS/Win10 VM setup.

 

Usage:

My main usage is some dockers (Plex/maybe Piehole), storage AND a Windows 10 VM to work as a motion designer/3D artist with applications like the Adobe Suite (After Effects, Photoshop) and 3D applications like Cinema4D and Blender etc.

 

My workflow is quite CPU and GPU heavy.

I would need lightning-fast SSDs to work off but that does not need to crazy big. (passthrough nvme?).

My thinking behind this build is to have an almost bare metal Win10 VW with my 2 GPU passthrough. Probably 10 cores for Win10 and leaving 2 cores for Unraid.

 

Unraid would serve as long term storage and files I can access (even its slower) and copy over to a working partition (nvme/SSD) if I need these for a project.

I am the only person who needs good perfomance and speed out fo this box.

Other workload would be backups, Plex and the usual NAS task.

I am currently using SSDs as my boot drive and spinning HDD (WD Black 7200rpm) for my projects.

I probably would buy another Seagate Drive for parity and some 1TB ssds for cache?!

 

Summery of my needs:

Fast CPU and (multiple) GPU performance (using GPU render engines mostly)

Fast as possible storage (passthrough nvme) as a work directory, this does not need to be huge (not referring to the array)

Win10 to be almost bare metal performance

Array as storage that can keep growing over the years

 

Reading up on forums and watching a lot of SpaveInvadors one videos I came across a couple of questions I would love to throw out there before I will get the actual hardware later this week.

 

QUESTIONS:

 

  1. It is unclear to me whats speeds I can expect from the Array while sitting in front of the VM. I don't have to go through network cables as it can access it through SATA. I tried to read up on it and someone mentioned I have to emulate a virtual NIC to access the storage in the Array. If so, can I emulate a 10 Gbe even though I don't have the hardware?.
  2. Would it be best to pass through the NVME for my Win10 VM and just run this compared to having the VM on the cache drive? Will have other PCI passthrough devices (a second nvme) bare-metal speeds? (thinking about PCI 4 nvme as live storage for projects)
  3. Living in Australia energy prices are quite high. Is there any disadvantage to get the server to sleep during the night or weekend if I don't need it. I am not fussed about having to turn it on and wait a few seconds.

 

 

Hardware:

CPU AMD Ryzen 9 3900X (12-core)

Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black CPU Cooler

Motherboard

Gigabyte GA-X570 Aorus Pro WiFi Motherboard

RAM

2x Corsair Vengeance LPX CMK32GX4M2B3200C16 32GB (2x16GB) 3200MHz DDR4

GPU

MSI GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER Gaming X Trio, 8GB

MSI 1070ti

Storage:

1x Samsung 970 EVO Plus 1TB M.2 NVMe SSD

2x Seasgate 4TB Ironwolf Pro

Various older HDD and SSDs

2x 120 GB SSD

1x 256 GB SSD

1 2TB WD Black HDD

PSU

850watts Corsair from my old build

 

Thanks for any advice!

Grischa

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