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Thread: What motherboard and cpu for a NAS / HTPC ?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
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    Default What motherboard and cpu for a NAS / HTPC ?

    I want to build a new PC that will serve as a little NAS and as an HTPC
    My plan is to run on this pc freenas in a virtualbox, excellent XBMC as the media player and some little services like the logitech media server.
    Power consumption is also a concern of course.

    I found this nice case from chembro, a bit expensive but small and perfect for a NAS :
    Chenbro ES34169 120W

    But for the mother-board / cpu I don't know what to choose. I was in interested by this MB with AMD APU :
    Asus E45M1-I DELUXE , 170 euros
    not expensive, good graphics, low power consumption, but apparently not good for video with linux :
    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...vba_xbmc&num=1

    Then, if I go to Intel, what should I use ? a board whith Ivy bridge seems the best, but it's quite expensive, and I'm lost with all their chipset.

    MSI Z77IA-E53, with Z77 chipset 157 euros, a good price as it looks like
    or this one :
    Asus P8H77-I, with H77 chipset, 105 euros, better price, but not the same chipset. What is the difference ?
    if the mother board as a UEFI Bios, will I have a problem ? I'm using mageia 2 and not planning to change to ubuntu (sorry)

    And then what CPU should I choose ? I was thinking about Intel Core i3 3220T, still 120 euros, and is it good and powerful enough ?

    Thanks a lot for your help

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    Default

    Mageia 2, very good choice my desktop and soon to be nas run it, very happy with it.

    Should not have any problems with a normal retail board with UEFI, as its the OEM that ship with windows 8 that will have SecureBoot

  3. #3
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    Sep 2012
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    Default

    Good to know, thanks !

  4. #4
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    Apr 2010
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    Default

    Use OpenMediaVault instead of outdated Freenas, and you have extensible Debian at your feet for further modifications.

  5. #5
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    Sep 2012
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    I didn't know OpenMediaVault, looks good ! I'll have a look at it.
    Many thanks
    About the motherboard / cpu , I think I'll go to intel, they're the only one with open source drivers. there's a new ivy bridge low consumption cpu : Intel Core i3 3220T, around 120 euros too.
    There is also the pentium G620 cheaper (about 60 euros), very good for the price, but it has no video hardware acceleration.
    about the chipset h77 or z77, it seems that there is very little difference : Z77 allows more usb/drives, but H77 is ok for me so I'll probably choose a board with h77 like the Asus P8H77-I.
    Any advice ?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond View Post
    I didn't know OpenMediaVault, looks good ! I'll have a look at it.
    Many thanks
    About the motherboard / cpu , I think I'll go to intel, they're the only one with open source drivers. there's a new ivy bridge low consumption cpu : Intel Core i3 3220T, around 120 euros too.
    There is also the pentium G620 cheaper (about 60 euros), very good for the price, but it has no video hardware acceleration.
    about the chipset h77 or z77, it seems that there is very little difference : Z77 allows more usb/drives, but H77 is ok for me so I'll probably choose a board with h77 like the Asus P8H77-I.
    Any advice ?
    In one of the companies, I have saved an old P3 with 512Mb by installing OMV and further tunin it. Now it serves as RAID fileserver and printer server.
    For video, you need at least 2.5 Ghz p4 cpu. I would recommend going further and using either recent nvidia card with at least entry core2duo if you want media center AND file server at same time.
    Or if you want to decode video in software (and hence go for opensource solution) together with file server, I would recommend you quad core or highly clocked core i.
    Then, there is issue with DRM which you should solve by yourself and you are set.

    Yes, you could take even G620 with nvidia 620 or similar (don't know exact model), they should be able to decode. However, I think, arguably software-only solution is better, because you won't be limited by video codec type. This is your decision.
    I don't think G620 would be sufficient alone. At least not for high bitrates. However, a mentioned p4 2.5 Ghz can play simple HD, fileserve and run internet browsing - sometimes topping at 100%.
    Also, I think there is UEFI issue with Z77, haven't experimented with them.

    Forgot to add, if you end up using OMV, please donate 10$ to developer.
    Last edited by crazycheese; 09-17-2012 at 03:34 PM.

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