New build advice - UK Budget Box

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After lurking for a while, I'm going to jump in and build my first unRaid server. I'm going to base it on the UK Budget Box but with some changes because some of the recommended components aren't available. I wanted to run the build past you experts to see if you had any helpful comments for a noob...


The primary use for the box will be to hold MP3s which I can then stream across my home network (hopefully to a Raspberry Pi running Raspbmc). Secondary use would be for networked file storage. Initial storage requirements are very low (<100GB) but I'm sure that will ramp up soon enough. I'm not expecting to put any video on it any time soon though. Want to start with just 2 drives (data+parity) but would want to be able to go up to 6 drives with minimal fuss. I want to keep set-up costs low, while allowing for possible later expansion. I expect this to be always-on, so I also want to keep running costs down and it does need to be quiet. It will be in the same room as the TV so I don't want the fans active when they don't need to be.


Motherboard: Couldn't find the recommended Biostar TA785GE or Asus M4A78L-M. Dabs have the Asus M5A78L-M pretty cheap. There's three versions, M5A78L-M LX, M5A78L-M LX V2 and M5A78L-M/USB3. Other than support for more memory and faster USB, I don't think there's any difference so will go with the cheaper £36 LX model. They all use the Realtek RTL8111E network controller, but I understand this is ok with v5.0?


CPU: 2.8 GHz AMD Sempron 145 (SDX145HBGMBOX), £29.


Memory: 2 x Kingston ValueRAM 1GB DDR3 1333MHz / PC3-10600 Non-ECC CL9 DIMM (KVR1333D3N9/1G), £12


Power Supply: Corsair 430 Watt CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2UK), £35


Case: Antec Three Hundred (0761345-08300-3), £45


Total cost before drives: £157


Drives: I have a couple of Seagate Barracuda 7200 500GB (ST3500630A) drives that I was hoping to use initially. These are UATA/IDE drives and I have now realised that the M5A78L-M doesn't have IDE ports. So I have three options (a) bite the bullett and buy new SATA drives straight away (£200-£250), (b) use a add-on card like the 1 Port PCIe IDE Adapter Card (PEX2IDE) (£17), © Pick a different motherboard that supports IDE natively (£??). Any thoughts on this?


Cooling: Ok, total noob question: Do I need anything else for cooling? I've never built a system before so I don't know what's needed. Does the processor come with the required heatsink etc or do I need to get that separately?


Thanks in advance for any advice...


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RAM is so cheap today, I'd max it out as if you keep the server long enough, the price will go too high to make it worth upgrading the RAM in future -- I speak from experience.

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You've managed to get a Raspberry Pi?  >:(

Build looks good, I'd agree with neilt0 about the ram, a 4 GB kit cost around £18 at Scan.  I wouldnt worry about getting an IDE compatable motherboard, just buy the add on card and then get rid once your drives give out or you upgrade to sata drives.

You shouldnt need any additional cooling as long as the ambient room temp isnt too high.  I kept my first sempron unraid in my bedroom at uni and it only needed the fans on while doing the parity check on warm days, was quiet too.


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Good point about the memory. Now looking at a bundle deal with 4GB that I saw on this thread.


No, I don't have my RPi yet. I've not even managed to place an order - I'm still at "Thank you for registering your interest" :'(

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Updated shopping list. The EBuyer bundle deal works out a bit cheaper, plus it also includes a cooler which is something I was unsure about. It then makes sense to get everything from EBuyer instead of Dabs, especially as they do free delivery.


Changed my mind on the case. Now looking at the Fractal Design Core 3000. The rubber mounts for the HDDs and the sideways trays look like a good idea. Has anyone got any experience with this case?


I am going to go with the IDE card as suggested. I also looked at the Xenta SATA to IDE Dongle, but I think this just plugs directly into the rear of the IDE HDD to convert it to SATA and I'm not sure about that as a solution. This would also raise questions about fitting it in with the sideways HDD trays. Anyone used these before?


I've also added a USB header cable so I can mount the USB flash drive internally. Hmm, that reminds me - I must check that the flash drive I have laying around is ok...


So, shopping list is now:



Motherboard: Asus M5A78L-M LX V2

CPU: 2.8 GHz AMD Sempron 145 (SDX145HBK13GM)

Memory: Patriot Signature 4GB DDR3 (PSD34G13332)

Cooler: Processor Cooler for AMD Sempron

Bundle Deal: £75.99


Power Supply: Corsair 430 Watt CX430 V2 (CMPSU-430CXV2UK), £36.14


Case: Fractal Design Core 3000 (FD-CA-CORE-3000-BL), £50.92


Add-in Card: Startech 1 Port PCI-Express IDE Adapter Card Storage controller IDE 133 MBps PCI Express x1, £16.68


USB Cable: Startech USB A Female to USB Motherboard 4 Pin Header cable (USBMBADAPT), £1.74


Total cost before drives: £181.47


Before I click on the checkout button, is there anything anyone would tweak with that build?


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