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2020-07-03: XigmaNAS 11.4.0.4.7633 - released!

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2020-04-17: XigmaNAS 12.1.0.4.7542 - released


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WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

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armandh
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WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#1

Post by armandh »

Drives fail, hardware lets the magic smoke out. It quit
woe is me, what am I to do, bla bla bla.

been there done that and know better now.

first of all
a failed drive is only a disaster if you have no other copy
and the drive array has no redundancy.
life is better with both redundant drives and other copies.
I expand: putting all of the eggs [data] in one basket [pool], not a good idea!
to what ever degree possible, spread the risk. you will note I divided my risk by 3
moving one off prem. would be better, for now it is a removable drive and a fire proof filing cabinet
a word to the wise should be sufficient spur to plan ahead.

second of all
hardware raid is like painting ones self into a corner; for a non drive raid hardware failure
you will need the exact same raid expansion card, SATA splitter, or MOBO.
a soft raid and OS can be quickly moved to other computer hardware
assuming one has saved copies of the OS and configuration.
please do so right now and...
DO NOT STORE THESE ITEMS, NEEDED FOR FIXING IT, ON THE NAS4Free
[because they will not be available when needed....DUH]
my brother in-law is old school preferring a commonly available hardware raid card
if you are going for exotic hardware raid, a spare card is not a bad idea.

two B port multipliers, a disaster waiting to happen [IMHO]
one more item between you and your data recovery; use at your own risk.
[IMHO] one is better off with a SATA expansion card where the OS can deal with the drives directly.
with port multiplier hardware, actions such as in #4,5 below, do not end well !!!!

third
get a UPS, NAS is subject to power troubles
100% reliability requires 100% reliable power.
lots of posted problems begin this way.
usually recoverable [but not always]

I add a fourth
you may wish to move to faster hardware
you may wish to add drives
you may wish to upgrade OS versions
trying to do it all at once may work
and you may win the next power ball lottery that you play.
Lucky you [ya gotta ask your self...Do I feel lucky?]

and a fifth
the needless upgrade.
if it ain't broke Don't fix it
if you start to monkey with a well running N4F
that contains real backups and data
without first backing up the data
and you break it.... sorry; but what were you thinking?

number six
since NAS4Free will run on most any old hardware
ones first N4F is often built from old spares.
if they were retired due to a need for speed OK,
if they were the source of crashes for unknown reasons NOT OK.
at least until the reason is known and fixed or avoided.
for example
one of my curb side found computer give aways, then Puppy Linux, is now a 800 P-III N4F.
two of the PCI slots I epoxied over.
I assume they held the modem and nic during a lightning hit.
the slot's interrupts no longer did so
the mobo was otherwise functional and seemed reliable with Puppy Linux
the 1.7 Gb fujitsu Hdd that held Puppy Linux now has embedded N4F
it works with a single USF storage drive. still I would not have used it for N4F.
ok to play with BUT....
to store valued data please select only fully reliable spare hardware,
in which you have the most complete confidence. Because.....
my experience to date is, if there is trouble it is the hardware.

seven: what is an embedded OS?
the N4F embedded OS, no matter how stored, first creates a RAM drive.
a RAM drive is what appears to be a hard drive but is in the system RAM
the OS and configuration are then loaded into the RAM drive.
given the band width accorded RAM [in most hardware] it is very very fast.
it is not persistent, a shutdown looses all the data. [see 3 above] BUT...
it is just rebuilt with the next boot. if the goal is speed, it is hard to beat.

eight
take this moment to back up your configuration file once again.
you won't need it until you do, and then it is too late.

lastly;
the fate of your data is in your hands
plan well and a broken NAS need not be a disaster!
no end game strategy and you loose
when I noticed my [then FreeNAS] pool was degraded
I off loaded the data and rebuilt as a NAS4Free
then reloaded the data [none lost]

please add what you think others should know
Last edited by armandh on 04 Jun 2013 09:28, edited 45 times in total.
4 thread 3300 Mhz Intel i3, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 7.823 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free 9.1.0.1 rev 573 [88 watts, 48 Mbps]
2 thread 1600 Mhz atom/ion, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 3.083 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free-9.1.0.1 rev 573 [27 watts, 35 Mbps]
2 thread 3900 Mhz AMD A6-6400K, 2 TB ZFS Mirror, available RAM 7.557 Gb, 64 bit Nas4Free 9.3.0.2.1771 [89 watts, 68 Mbps]

alexplatform
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Re: WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#2

Post by alexplatform »

Fault tolerance is not a substitute for backup. Visit http://www.taobackup.com and commit the lessons to heart as gospel.

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crowi
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Re: WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#3

Post by crowi »

please add what you think others should know
great thoughts, great summary(!!!), I feel free to add my points :)

Try before you cry:

- before putting valuable data to your newly built NAS, test the most important emergency cases and learn what to do in case of a disk failure
- set up your NAS and a share, copy a bunch of testfiles on it
- unplug a drive, reboot, check the error messages, replug a drive, restore the data
- unplug a drive, format it, replug and try to resilver / rebuild your data
- unplug your drives, shuffle the sata ports :) reboot, see what happened
- install N4F configure it and then do a factory default or new install, try to get your data back
this little homework consumes probably a few hours or a day, but it keeps you quite relaxed, when you know what will happen in the worst case
and the good news is, everything just works fine (at least it did for me) :)
NAS 1: Milchkuh: Asrock C2550D4I, Intel Avoton C2550 Quad-Core, 16GB DDR3 ECC, 5x3TB WD Red RaidZ1 +60 GB SSD for ZIL/L2ARC, APC-Back UPS 350 CS, NAS4Free 11.0.0.4.3460 embedded
NAS 2: Backup: HP N54L, 8 GB ECC RAM, 4x4 TB WD Red, RaidZ1, NAS4Free 11.0.0.4.3460 embedded
NAS 3: Office: HP N54L, 8 GB ECC RAM, 2x3 TB WD Red, ZFS Mirror, APC-Back UPS 350 CS NAS4Free 11.0.0.4.3460 embedded

armandh
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Re: WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#4

Post by armandh »

crowi wrote: Try before you cry:
sehr gut

13.04.2013
I had a bad drive happen but the data was all recovered from half the mirror
24.04.2013
drive replaced under warranty
Last edited by armandh on 31 May 2013 12:43, edited 1 time in total.
4 thread 3300 Mhz Intel i3, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 7.823 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free 9.1.0.1 rev 573 [88 watts, 48 Mbps]
2 thread 1600 Mhz atom/ion, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 3.083 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free-9.1.0.1 rev 573 [27 watts, 35 Mbps]
2 thread 3900 Mhz AMD A6-6400K, 2 TB ZFS Mirror, available RAM 7.557 Gb, 64 bit Nas4Free 9.3.0.2.1771 [89 watts, 68 Mbps]

armandh
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Location: St Louis County Missouri USA
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Re: WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#5

Post by armandh »

Here is why one should always get the Live CD [IMHO]

even if your N4F box has no CD
an emergency recovery from [non drive] hardware failure
is much more flexible with the CD
you can boot from the cd
most anything that can be booted can be loaded from the CD
and what hardware one can grab in an emergency is unpredictable
if speed of the recovery is important why limit ones self
the live USB is almost as flexible save only one must have usb booting hardware

so much for recovery, it is [IMHO] the easiest way to get started
there are 3 parts to getting a NAS from computer hardware
1) the boot [embedded]
the hardware has to boot the OS
32 bit may work on 64 bit hardware, but not 64 on 32 hardware
use the right stuff or you may not be getting all the ram installed.
boot just from the CD, or then transfer to any medium that will boot
this can be USB, PATA, or SATA flash; small HDDs; SSD;
or most anything 512 Mb or larger that one can boot from.
with just the CD alone one needs a floppy or flash to store the configuration file
there are lots of choices, whatever works with the hardware will do.
thr whole thing is under 512 Mb. a big drive is a waste of hardware
2) NIC and IP
One has to set the NIC and IP
these are steps 1 and 2 on the default final console prompt
most cards work, I have a few that do not
some cards that do work are better than others
as far as setting the IP I like DHCP, but if one must have a static IP
I suggest first doing DHCP and then using the returned address at the static address.
3) setting up drives and services
this is done via the web GUI at another computer on the same LAN
just type in the IP address and the password is NAS4Free
there is a wide choice of drive arrangement and services
here a little planning and experimenting gains valuable experience.
Last edited by armandh on 04 Jun 2013 09:35, edited 10 times in total.
4 thread 3300 Mhz Intel i3, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 7.823 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free 9.1.0.1 rev 573 [88 watts, 48 Mbps]
2 thread 1600 Mhz atom/ion, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 3.083 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free-9.1.0.1 rev 573 [27 watts, 35 Mbps]
2 thread 3900 Mhz AMD A6-6400K, 2 TB ZFS Mirror, available RAM 7.557 Gb, 64 bit Nas4Free 9.3.0.2.1771 [89 watts, 68 Mbps]

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Lee Sharp
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Re: WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#6

Post by Lee Sharp »

The best hardware / RAID / nearline backup in the world will not help you when the roof leaks. Off site backups of any data you need...

armandh
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Re: WHAT EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW

#7

Post by armandh »

Lee Sharp wrote:The best hardware / RAID / nearline backup in the world will not help you when the roof leaks. Off site backups of any data you need...
or when lightning hits
you can take some steps to isolate your N4F from the lightning
there is only 2 connections to the N4F box, power and lan
my network hardware is on the same double conversion UPS as the N4Fs
so far the limited and isolated connection has helped the also powered phone system.
previously I would loose "sneak current" phone line fuzes at the slightest crackle
at one time when I went off prem with the lan it had gas discharge protection and its own switch for isolation.
4 thread 3300 Mhz Intel i3, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 7.823 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free 9.1.0.1 rev 573 [88 watts, 48 Mbps]
2 thread 1600 Mhz atom/ion, 1 TB ZFS mirror, available RAM 3.083 Gb, 64 bit NAS4Free-9.1.0.1 rev 573 [27 watts, 35 Mbps]
2 thread 3900 Mhz AMD A6-6400K, 2 TB ZFS Mirror, available RAM 7.557 Gb, 64 bit Nas4Free 9.3.0.2.1771 [89 watts, 68 Mbps]

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