A couple years ago I had purchased the D-Link DNS-321 Network Attached Storage device to centralize my files and backup to two separate HDDs (Raid 1) to help prevent data loss. This worked great, until I needed additional storage capacity and support for making Time Machine backups on my MacBook Pro. I have heard tons of great feedback on FreeNAS and decided to give it a try.
Since I have an old AMD Athlon XP 2000+ PC sitting around (hosting websites and various other services), I decided to move all its previous roles to Amazon EC2 and re-purpose it as my new NAS. Since I have the additional storage, I also plan on ripping my movie collection for easy playback on my Dell Studio Hybrid running Boxee. Given that this will likely be the final role of this machine, I am opting to get a better case and one or two hot-swap drive bays for easy upgrades (when needed). The case and backplane I am currently interested in are the following:
Since this system will be running 24/7 and disk performance is not too important, “Green” drives are the logical choice to save power.
Additionally, I am thinking about purchasing an LCD display from CrystalFontz for quick system monitoring (and the cool factor, I have to admit). FreeNAS is able to use the LCDProc display driver to run the LCD panel.
More details to come, along with pictures once I am able to start purchasing parts for the project.