A nas made especially for osmc

Hello,

I’m new in the community but i am an osmc lover since a couple of years, got a vero 4k which perfectly works, made many friends discover osmc…Your community helped me so much that i first wanted to thank you for sharing knowledge.

Then here is my top feature request :slightly_smiling_face:

Hi @sam_nazarko ,
Have you ever wanted to make a nas especially designed for the vero 4k+ ? I’d buy it for sure, and it would be a great project ! quiet, cheap, download station, remote access, managing library for the whole house, with a nice os and shell so that you can run any script you want…

Telle me your team works on it

Regards !

Why? Modern general purpose NAS devices are 100% compatible with OSMC and virtually any other general purpose use-case. There is no magic bullet NAS device that could be developed that would give you anything new or better specifically for use with OSMC. Who needs to reinvent the wheel when current wheels abundant and fit for purpose?! What you are asking for already exists, and from multiple manufacturers as long as you remove cheap from your wish list. I’m not sure why you have the notion that an OSMC NAS would be any cheaper than a comparable device from any number of manufacturers with a much larger footprint and a long history in the NAS market. OSMC does not operate outside of any long standing laws of economics.

Secondly, for OSMC to take on a completely new device that would be required to fulfill a list of completely different tasks that are outside of OSMC’s current focus, development and maintenance of OSMC’s current devices, software, and features would suffer. There are only 24hrs in a day to innovate, develop, and maintain. Despite what some may think, OSMC is not a $1b enterprise, not even a $1m enterprise. Resources are precious.

Unfortunately this isn’t something we are working on.
Those that want a NAS tend to have one already, which makes this an extremely niche market to target.

FreeNAS?

Any commercially available NAS?

@ActionA
I guess you must be right about the economical point and the osmc team. i don’t have the infos to tell.

by cheap i meant that general nas devices are like war machine, you can do so many things i don’t need for a media center. I was thinking about a more specific device. I was thinking about an Open Source Media Center WITH a storage device from wich you could manage your medias and assets from the download or copy to the streaming. But you’re right, i’ll make my own device, i’m already on it.

@386s
i didn’t know freenas i’ll have a serious look on it, thank you for sharing this.

@sam_nazarko
i understand very well that a storage device for a media center and the vero 4k could be a niche market for osmc, i was just curious to know if OSMC could have considered this project and how you would have imagined / designed it. thanks for the answer and for the vero, i love it, it’s such a great device and project.

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I have considered a NAS in the past.
But I don’t see how we can make this work at this time.

Out of curiosity: how many drives would you expect to use?

Sam

I guess 4 would be the right number
so that you can have the choice of a raid 5

You can do RAID 5 with three drives, I think.

Having said that, in a media player context, under what circumstances is it useful for NAS drive read/write speed to be faster than you can push data across a gigabit Ethernet connection?

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@angry.sardine
You are right

4 disks seemed OK to me so that if you want to go up to more than 8 to, you dont have to buy 8 to disks. If a 8to disk doesn’t work anymore, it’s very expansive to replace.

I think 4bays are OK so that you can do raid and increase your storage capacity without going to high in budget

Synology has many models - with 2/4/6+ disks and different prices:

On my network my Vero 4K is my NAS. I simply plugged a USB hard drive in and installed SMB Server from the App Store. Works well for my uses. I view my PC as the master copy of all my data and the data on the ‘NAS’ is my backup copy.

Pretty much the same here. But I don’t have TBs of media files.

Multiple simultaneous clients…even if you aren’t filling the network pipe, you don’t want seeking to different content to cause buffering. Likewise, if you use some auto-downloader, or other background task that writes to the disk that you don’t want to have to worry about when you are trying to watch a movie.

Strangely enough, one of the issues with a 4-bay NAS is that it can’t support RAID-5 well, either in terms of performance or value.

Optimum performance RAID-5 has a power of two for data disks plus parity, which means 3, 5, or 9 disks (let’s not think about 17). Three disks means you lose 33% of the disk space to parity, while five disks mean you only lose 20%, with nine losing 11%. Five ends up being the sweet spot in most cases, because the cost of a 9+ bay NAS offsets the disk savings.

Despite this, it’s easy to find 4- and 8-bay NAS, but 5-bay is not nearly as common. I’m not saying they aren’t out there, but Newegg (for example) sells 18 4-bay models and just two 5-bay.

Once you get to at least 8-bay, though, you’re usually better off buying a used 24-bay rack-mount chassis, putting hardware into it, and using something like FreeNAS. It will end up costing about 20-30% more than the 8-bay, but you never need to think about how to expand, unless you really need more than 120TB.

Historically, SBC throughput quickly became an issue. They had a single, shared, USB bus capped at 480Mbps, in theory. In reality, it was much less. Add in the network connection also shares that bus and we had a throughput nightmare.

The main reasons to go with an SBC solution are, tiny and low power. When we add storage, we’ve got cooling and power to consider, which defeats the reasons for SBCs. In addition, spinning disks make noise and have failures that noobs usually have difficulty resolving. Having noise in the viewing room is bad.
I’m active on Linux forums and we see people with very little technical skill asking for help from their commercial RAID boxes all-the-time. They come with all sorts of odd setups - like btrfs on an mdadm SW-RAID5 setup. Why? That makes little sense to me. Commercial storage setups often don’t use standard techniques for the storage design. BTRFS has so many caveats for safe use, I just don’t see the point. But I’m an old LVM2+ext4 guy. Keep storage simple, clean, but enterprise ready and flexible. A case can be made to use ZFS, but changing the way storage gets used can be really complex as more or different sized disks get added to a ZFS setup.

Then we see people using $35 CPUs from Intel trying to run 50 different “add-ons” provided by the NAS maker. Bad news. All those addons just make for a tightly coupled, often unpatched, security nightmare of a solution. Have you looked at the cost of those “cheap” 4-8 disk arrays? They want $400-$1200!

Using a $50 dual-core Pentium CPU (65W peak) + $50 MB w/intel iGPU, I built a “NAS” machine from parts for $126 (RAM was $26 for 8G at the time) that supports 6 SATA disks. Old PSU, old case, just added storage and connect the output to my KVM. It started with a single 4TB Hitachi HDD. That was around 2015. Now it has 10 HDDs connected of 4TB and 8TB sizes. Because it is mostly for media (video, audio, images, books), I don’t do RAID on it. RAID is for HA, nothing else. I do mirror (via rsync) the SATA connected storage to USB connected storage a few times a week for redundancy, but delayed so if there’s any user errors, recovery isn’t hard. USB storage protocols aren’t very robust compared to SATA, SAS, eSATA. I’d never use USB connected storage for RAID-anything, but people do.

RAID is only worth the hassles where HA is required. On other systems, I have 2 RAID1 arrays where a failed disk would be really bad for the running virtual machines, but not for media.

Anyway - $126 for a flexible NAS. Currently, that machine is running Ubuntu Server 16.04. It also runs plex media server primarily because plex can transcode on-the-fly for devices which cannot handle the codecs in the stored files. That $50, cheap, Pentium CPU from 5 yrs ago handles that easily. No ARM-based CPU can do it to my knowledge. It also runs Calibre and provides NFS to the network systems. It does OTA TV recording from 6 network tuners. Almost forgot about that. It also has the Nextcloud instance and Wallabag instance running inside a virtual machine (KVM+libvirt) … and a backup DNS server for the LAN running in an LXD container. What it doesn’t to is video playback. :wink: All the stuff running on it are services, headless, without any GPU necessary.

A rpi-v4 solved some of the throughput issues, but we are still left with a system NOT designed to handle lots of I/O in the same way that x86-64 systems are. I have seen 2 disk NAS systems built using ARM SBCs. But after the build, the youtube guys gave it away. They kept their 8 disk Intel-based NAS because of throughput and networking performance. Let me look for that NAS build. Can’t find it, but did find a 1 disk, 2.5inch NAS using Odroid HC1 as the SBC. https://shop.category5.tv/?product=odroid-hc1-soc-nas has a video w/ parts list. The HC1 has a SATA connector for that 2.5inch HDD to slide into and GigE NIC. The specs claim 110 MB/sec writes and over 900 Mbps networking. That SOC is US$72.
Ah - found the 2 disk thing. It was using a “2x M.2 RAID Enclosure USB 3.1” - Basically, what someone doing 8K video editing wants. For playing videos, we don’t need that expensive storage. A slow, cheap, 4TB-12TB HDD is fine for our needs, provided it has external power.