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#1 aresfiend

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 10:58 PM

I often find myself wanting something from my computer on another computer at school or on my phone and a thought popped into my head. I have a spare motherboard that would be perfect for building an NAS for around the house and for remote access. The motherboard is a GIGABYTE GA-G41M-ES2H and I already have that.

So here's what I was thinking:

Intel Celeron E3400 Wolfdale 2.6GHz Dual Core Processor
OCZ Onyx 32gb SSD
Western Digital Caviar Blue 250gb 6.0gbps
Mushkin Enhanced 2GB (2 x 1GB) DDR2 667 RAM
Corsair Builder Series CX430 V2 430w PSU
Apevia X-Dreamer ATX case W/420w PSU (Somebody gets a PSU for the price of shipping!)
Antec Performance Max CPU Heatsink

So, any changes I should make? This is NOT for gaming but it is going to be running for the better part of every month with one day a week allocated for downtime.

#2 blckninja

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 12:12 PM

  • What are you going to be using this for anyway? Just for storage or will you be using this all day to store programs on?
  • Why would you need a SSD? I'm just curious because you don't see them in many builds so far, or at least I dont.
  • Might have to find a different tower though since it looks like newegg won't be stocking that one anymore. At least I'm doubtful that they would.
  • Also I doubt you would need a new heatsink, don't see the point in getting one.
Thats my two cents.


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#3 Stix

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 12:50 PM

What Ninja said. I would drop the SSD's, for more high capacity storage. Also, any reason you're building a whole desktop to run FreeNAS or whatever, instead of say, getting one of these: http://www.newegg.co...N82E16822319006 ?
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#4 aresfiend

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 02:11 PM

  • What are you going to be using this for anyway? Just for storage or will you be using this all day to store programs on?
  • Why would you need a SSD? I'm just curious because you don't see them in many builds so far, or at least I dont.
  • Might have to find a different tower though since it looks like newegg won't be stocking that one anymore. At least I'm doubtful that they would.
  • Also I doubt you would need a new heatsink, don't see the point in getting one.
Thats my two cents.

File storage. The SSD is because I don't want the OS and storage on the same drive. The case was in stock when I put this thread up. Have you ever seen a stock celeron heatsink? It is freaking tiny with a low RPM fan, that's not good for a system that is going to have 7 hours of down time each month.

Stix, I don't want one of those all in ones because I cannot get remote access options and I want to stick to samba for my OS.

#5 blckninja

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 02:25 PM

Makes sense to me.  Guess the only thing you can do now is find a new tower.  Dunno how much storage you need though but that wouldn't be enough for me. :P

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#6 aresfiend

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 03:07 PM

Dunno how much storage you need though but that wouldn't be enough for me. :P

I have 1.25 TB on my main rig. This is just so I can access some of my stuff like music from my phone or another computer.

#7 blckninja

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 03:10 PM

Yea thats why I would do it too. Except everything I store is in flac so i would need a 1TB for my NAS. :P

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#8 Blade of grass

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 03:49 PM

Nice idea! Lucky that you can do it.

all my legos are stored at my parents hose... so that wont be happening....

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#9 Blade of grass

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 03:51 PM

That sounds awesome!
Can you please tell me how this works? Are you gonna install a VPN?

all my legos are stored at my parents hose... so that wont be happening....

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#10 aresfiend

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:02 PM

That sounds awesome!
Can you please tell me how this works? Are you gonna install a VPN?

I am going to use Samba to make the entire 250 gb harddrive work on a preset static IP so I just have to put the IP into my browser, enter a password, then copy what I want from the read only setting so I don't have to worry about somebody deleting my stuff.

#11 Stix

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:24 PM


That sounds awesome!
Can you please tell me how this works? Are you gonna install a VPN?

I am going to use Samba to make the entire 250 gb harddrive work on a preset static IP so I just have to put the IP into my browser, enter a password, then copy what I want from the read only setting so I don't have to worry about somebody deleting my stuff.


So an in-browser FTP type situation? That's pretty awesome actually. Do you have any links for what your doing? I'm interested myself actually. :P
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#12 aresfiend

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:28 PM

So an in-browser FTP type situation? That's pretty awesome actually. Do you have any links for what your doing? I'm interested myself actually. :P

No, sorry. I am actually getting help from somebody who used to do this for a living so I don't have any specific resources.

If I can I will essentially make a how to though.

#13 Stix

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 04:46 PM

That'd be swell. I'd love to use some of my spare hard drives.

Edited by Stix, 17 January 2012 - 04:47 PM.

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#14 blckninja

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 05:12 PM

That'd be swell. I'd love to use some of my spare hard drives.


Agreed. And I can get cheap computers at the surplus store that would be perfect for this type of thing.

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#15 Blade of grass

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 10:21 PM

Hmm, I too would like to do this. Too bad I can't afford it :(

all my legos are stored at my parents hose... so that wont be happening....

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#16 aresfiend

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 10:52 PM

Hmm, I too would like to do this. Too bad I can't afford it :(

Samba is free, find some old computers to cannibalize.

The only reason I am building a brand new computer is because when I can afford a true server set up in a couple of years I am going to retire this to running dedicated game servers.

#17 Sasquatch

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Posted 17 January 2012 - 11:20 PM

I'd like to throw my opinion in on this.

First, an SSD as the OS drive is fine, and a 250gb standard HDD will work fine for office work file storage. However, if you want this to be a dedicated file server with only a few hours of downtime in a month, I would highly recommend purchasing matching SSD's and matching HDD's in order to set up a mirrored RAID for failure recovery.

Second, a big thing you should be looking into is a quality UPS to avoid power outage failures. Get one that has the capability to remotely shut down the server when it's battery life reaches a critically low level, that way you don't get OS corruptions from a bad shut down if you aren't around the system when it happens.

EDIT: Third, for the price of the processor and high end CPU cooler, I would recommend getting a better processor that has a usable stock heatsink. For a file server, you won't need anything high end, but a Core 2 Duo would be a solid choice if you can find one. If you can't, or don't want to, definitely get a Pentium D instead of the Celeron. It is a lot faster, but will run hotter, so the aftermarket heatsink will be more useful for that application. Plus, you aren't paying for the OEM packaging and heatsink that you won't be using anyways, so it is cheaper.

Fourth, Get more than 2gb of ram. With a file server, ram is the lifeblood. Personally, I would aim for 8gb. That said, you also need to make sure you have a 64bit OS to use all of that ram.

Edited by Sasquatch, 17 January 2012 - 11:31 PM.

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#18 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 12:09 AM

I'd like to throw my opinion in on this.

First, an SSD as the OS drive is fine, and a 250gb standard HDD will work fine for office work file storage. However, if you want this to be a dedicated file server with only a few hours of downtime in a month, I would highly recommend purchasing matching SSD's and matching HDD's in order to set up a mirrored RAID for failure recovery.

Second, a big thing you should be looking into is a quality UPS to avoid power outage failures. Get one that has the capability to remotely shut down the server when it's battery life reaches a critically low level, that way you don't get OS corruptions from a bad shut down if you aren't around the system when it happens.

EDIT: Third, for the price of the processor and high end CPU cooler, I would recommend getting a better processor that has a usable stock heatsink. For a file server, you won't need anything high end, but a Core 2 Duo would be a solid choice if you can find one. If you can't, or don't want to, definitely get a Pentium D instead of the Celeron. It is a lot faster, but will run hotter, so the aftermarket heatsink will be more useful for that application. Plus, you aren't paying for the OEM packaging and heatsink that you won't be using anyways, so it is cheaper.

Fourth, Get more than 2gb of ram. With a file server, ram is the lifeblood. Personally, I would aim for 8gb. That said, you also need to make sure you have a 64bit OS to use all of that ram.

I was planning on raiding the harddrives but not SSDs seeing as I have encountered problems with that in the past, then again SSD tech has advanced over the last 2 years.

I am looking at a UPS that I can get locally through a computer store that specializes in servers that uses USB to the computer to trigger a shutdown but I'm still looking so I won't have links yet.

The Pentium D is NOT compatible with my motherboard being the D is Pentium 4 based and does not run with the Intel G41 chipset on my motherboard. I am not putting much at all into a processor as you can see below.

I though I put up a 4gb set of ram? I would do 8 but my motherboard maxes out at 4.

I am not looking to host massive files but more for me to host my homework, office style applications, drivers, and music so I don't want to go overboard on this just yet seeing as in roughly two years when I graduate I am going to invest in a true server system with quite a bit of bite.

EDIT: Damnit, I put the 2x1 set of ram that is going into my brother's computer. Let me find my link, anyway it's a 2x2 g.skill ram kit.

Edited by aresfiend, 18 January 2012 - 12:11 AM.


#19 Blade of grass

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 08:04 AM

I think 4 GBs of RAM is enought. I have a friend who works at dell as thier client server specialist or something, he said that most high end servers have like 8 GBs of ram. So, I think he could get away with 4 GBs the other thing, get a cheap case and take a dremel to it, :) if you get what I mean.

all my legos are stored at my parents hose... so that wont be happening....

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#20 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 08:11 AM

According to the MSI website you linked, here are the CPU compatibilities:
Support for an Intel® Core™ 2 Extreme processor/ Intel® Core™ 2 Quad processor/Intel® Core™ 2 Duo processor/ Intel® Pentium®processor /Intel® Celeron®processor in the LGA 775 package


And the ram compatibilities:
  • 2 x 1.8V DDR2 DIMM sockets supporting up to 8 GB of system memory (Note 1)
So, you should have no problem running a Pentium D, and a 2x4 set of ram. More expensive with the ram, but well worth it if you are going to be hosting drivers and music off of it.

Even after you buy the server stack you want, you can still convert this box into something usable.

Add a graphics card and install XP-64, and use it as a video and music editing station.
Add a graphics card, convert the RAID to a striped set up for faster access times, install 7-64, and use it as a lightweight gaming system
Install XP-64, keep everything else the same, and use it as a dedicated game server for stuff like Counterstrike or Team Fortress, if you play those.
Install 7-64, VMWare, and get a backup of your server stack to load into the virtual. If you want to try testing something, do it in the virtual, and if it fails, research the cause and fixes for it right there without messing up your live server.
Install a second NIC that connects to your switch, and connect the original to your network's modem. Run IP routing software, firewalls, packet sniffers, etc to serve as a router, hardware firewall, and intrusion detection on the network.
Etc
Etc

EDIT: And Blade of Grass, it depends on what those servers are being used for. Ignoring the fact that Dell always sells cheap, underpowered servers to people, something with 4gb of ram is most likely loaded to the brim with hard drives to be used strictly as a storage system. The way Aresfiend is making it sound, he wants to stream music to various network devices, and would like to have somewhere to install drivers and software from when he reformats or builds a new system. That takes a little more power and memory than people would use as ONLY file storage.

Then again, maybe I'm reading something wrong, and letting the network engineer side of me take over, which would rather have an overpowered machine not meeting capacity than and underpowered machine being overloaded. :rolleyes:

Edited by Sasquatch, 18 January 2012 - 08:21 AM.

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#21 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 11:54 AM

I never linked an MSI website...

You do know that the new pentium line on newegg and the pentium D use different architectures, right?

The pentium D is a chip with two pentium 4 dies on it and the new pentium tech is a multicore single die.

Also, the manual with the motherboard said a maximum of 4gb total DDR2 system memory.

I am rethinking converting it to a game server setup and just making it an HTPC for my parents.

I also cannot throw a new graphics card in there because it's only got 1/4 of the PCIe pins there by design.

I never linked an MSI website...

You do know that the new pentium line on newegg and the pentium D use different architectures, right?

The pentium D is a chip with two pentium 4 dies on it and the new pentium tech is a multicore single die.

Also, the manual with the motherboard said a maximum of 4gb total DDR2 system memory.

I am rethinking converting it to a game server setup and just making it an HTPC for my parents.

I also cannot throw a new graphics card in there because it's only got 1/4 of the PCIe pins there by design.

#22 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 01:20 PM

Sorry, I was thinking about my mobo, which is an MSI, when I typed that. Regardless, those specs are pulled from the GIGABYTE link you posted. :P

Here are some links for you to peruse. These motherboards ARE compatible with a Pentium D. I'm not about to sit here and argue architecture, chipsets, and compatibility with you, so you just click these links, read what is posted, and decide for yourself.


One of the first reviews, dude is talking about his Pentium D setup. Granted, it's the newest revision of that mobo, but it uses the same chipsets, which gives proof of concept.

Check out the compatible processors. It specifically states Pentium D chips, on your exact motherboard.

Old Ebay listing that pulled product info straight from their database. Check the processors.

Database full of random stuff, including your motherboard. Check the processors.

Database full of motherboards and compatible CPU's for each model and revision.
Notice that it even specifies the CPU I linked for you as compatible.

Wait, and let's not forget the ram. Page 10.Specifies compatibility up to 8gb of ram. Straight from their manual in PDF.

The only thing you may have shot down is the video card idea. I have a good feeling that you could get an older card, like an X850 or something similar, put it in, and it would just run on the x4 channel that is provided. It would be slower, but at lower graphics settings I would imagine it would work fine. This issue seems to be mixed from what little research I just did on it. If you have a spare card, it couldn't hurt to try. ;)

Edited by Sasquatch, 18 January 2012 - 01:21 PM.

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#23 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 05:16 PM

Straight from their manual in PDF.

I have a different manual... Page 10 has a motherboard diagram. I am going to note that my uncle bought this the day they released in a bundle deal with a case and power supply and gave me the motherboard.

I guess that 8gb of ram is the max but I still don't see where this is underpowered being that there is going to be no commonly active device other than my phone and that is only when I need to retrieve something so this computer is going to sit 95% of it's time idle while only being down for a few hours each month. Besides, being $135 for 8gb ram I want to get off with 4gb if it won't hamper me getting an assignment for school here or there or a song on my phone. I guess that I will be going with the pentium D now seeing as the conflicts I was informed of between P4 architecture processors and the G41 chipset were lies.

#24 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 05:56 PM

Being such a hardware enthusiast, I tend to think everything is underpowered, including my own systems. Then again, I also tend to think of servers in terms of Windows, not Samba, or whatever you were going to use. Considering you wont have to install 12gb of random software and services in order to get this server running how you would need, and you wont have 4gb of active ram from all that stuff, you can probably get away with going less.

Fair warning though, I was the administrator on a file server when I was in Korea. It had a single core P4 at around 3GHz, and 4gb of ram, running Server 2003, and it was slow as dirt. Both in configuration and general use, and file transfers. I don't know how much better having that second core will make things unless you are doing multiple file transfers at once. And I don't think streaming music would have been smooth at all, if I was able to do that. But like I said, you will be using a different OS and might have better results.

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#25 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 06:16 PM

Being such a hardware enthusiast, I tend to think everything is underpowered, including my own systems. Then again, I also tend to think of servers in terms of Windows, not Samba, or whatever you were going to use. Considering you wont have to install 12gb of random software and services in order to get this server running how you would need, and you wont have 4gb of active ram from all that stuff, you can probably get away with going less.

Fair warning though, I was the administrator on a file server when I was in Korea. It had a single core P4 at around 3GHz, and 4gb of ram, running Server 2003, and it was slow as dirt. Both in configuration and general use, and file transfers. I don't know how much better having that second core will make things unless you are doing multiple file transfers at once. And I don't think streaming music would have been smooth at all, if I was able to do that. But like I said, you will be using a different OS and might have better results.

I actually don't plan on streaming music as that would piss the living daylights out of my mom by doing so much to the bandwidth. I am just going to have access to music so I can download it from my server to my phone, nothing more.

#26 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 06:38 PM

Hopefully it works for you then. Have you already figured out how to link a phone into a computer network in order to access everything remotely? Do they have an app or something that allows it?

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#27 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 07:04 PM

Hopefully it works for you then. Have you already figured out how to link a phone into a computer network in order to access everything remotely? Do they have an app or something that allows it?

You did see what I plan to do, right? I have done this with my laptop, but I plan on setting the computer on a static IP that I would put into my browser of choice being phone or computer and after input of a password I use my file browser of choice to access the filesystem. It actually works similarly with a VPN like hamachi but without actually having to be on that VPN.

I have no idea on how it is going to be done but as far as I understand it that is what should be going on.

#28 Stix

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 07:58 PM


Hopefully it works for you then. Have you already figured out how to link a phone into a computer network in order to access everything remotely? Do they have an app or something that allows it?

You did see what I plan to do, right? I have done this with my laptop, but I plan on setting the computer on a static IP that I would put into my browser of choice being phone or computer and after input of a password I use my file browser of choice to access the filesystem. It actually works similarly with a VPN like hamachi but without actually having to be on that VPN.

I have no idea on how it is going to be done but as far as I understand it that is what should be going on.


Just a tidbit of a suggestion, try setting up a DynDNS web-address redirect to the network you'll be setting up on, that way you can just type in the address to access your files. Posted Image
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#29 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 08:31 PM

Just a tidbit of a suggestion, try setting up a DynDNS web-address redirect to the network you'll be setting up on, that way you can just type in the address to access your files. Posted Image

Memorizing an IP address is not that hard, plus if anybody does happen to be watching they won't have a chance to memorize my IP whereas a web address is comparatively easy to memorize.

#30 Stix

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 08:44 PM

Touche sir.
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#31 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 09:15 PM


Hopefully it works for you then. Have you already figured out how to link a phone into a computer network in order to access everything remotely? Do they have an app or something that allows it?

You did see what I plan to do, right? I have done this with my laptop, but I plan on setting the computer on a static IP that I would put into my browser of choice being phone or computer and after input of a password I use my file browser of choice to access the filesystem. It actually works similarly with a VPN like hamachi but without actually having to be on that VPN.

I have no idea on how it is going to be done but as far as I understand it that is what should be going on.


Well, by that nature, you would probably want to be setting up an FTP server using something like Filezilla or CuteFTP. Then you would just need to find an FTP app for your phone and laptop. Biggest hitch would be setting up the user accounts/permissions, and getting your server routed into the public domain. Your router should be able to set port forwarding to allow the FTP ports (21 and 22) to be continuously accessed as needed, and might have some basic address translation, that you can manually set to change the private side IP of the server to your public IP coming off your modem.

If you get all of that set up properly, it will literally be typing in your public IP to an FTP program, putting in your login credentials, and browsing through your directories to select a file.


EDIT: And just a quick search in my iPod app store, there is one called FTP On The Go Pro that looks like a solid choice for you, if you have an iPhone.



Just a tidbit of a suggestion, try setting up a DynDNS web-address redirect to the network you'll be setting up on, that way you can just type in the address to access your files. Posted Image


That would just be more work to do. Anyone can memorize an IP address. Hell, I have had an entire spreadsheet of about 150 IP's memorized at one time.

Edited by Sasquatch, 18 January 2012 - 09:20 PM.

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#32 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 10:12 PM

Well, by that nature, you would probably want to be setting up an FTP server using something like Filezilla or CuteFTP. Then you would just need to find an FTP app for your phone and laptop. Biggest hitch would be setting up the user accounts/permissions, and getting your server routed into the public domain. Your router should be able to set port forwarding to allow the FTP ports (21 and 22) to be continuously accessed as needed, and might have some basic address translation, that you can manually set to change the private side IP of the server to your public IP coming off your modem.

If you get all of that set up properly, it will literally be typing in your public IP to an FTP program, putting in your login credentials, and browsing through your directories to select a file.


EDIT: And just a quick search in my iPod app store, there is one called FTP On The Go Pro that looks like a solid choice for you, if you have an iPhone.

Yeah.... about that. I cannot just go around installing FTP software on the computers in my school because, unlike many colleges, my school does not allow laptops during class. That's why I need to do in browser, I also don't care too much for per-system profiles but more of a single password to gain entry into my files.

I don't think I am going to have anybody trying to breech my secret vault of homework and music ;)

#33 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 10:50 PM

Alright, now you are confusing me. Let me try and get this straight.. You can't use computers during class, where you would want to be accessing your homework, so instead, you want to access your homework via phone? :huh:

If that's right, I'm not sure where you are getting the browser based FTP requirement. Regardless, you should still be able to fix up an FTP server to do what you want for your phone:

Filezilla to set up an FTP directory.
Username and Password set up inside Filezilla to allow external connections
Router and modem settings to push FTP ports and dedicated private to public IP management
FTP app on your phone that has a file manager built in.


For computer use, you might be able to type in the IP (ie; ftp://192.168.1.1) in the browser, which would bring up a UN/PW prompt, and would let you access everything. I don't remember off the top of my head what needs to be done to accomplish this, though.

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#34 aresfiend

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 11:05 PM

Alright, now you are confusing me. Let me try and get this straight.. You can't use computers during class, where you would want to be accessing your homework, so instead, you want to access your homework via phone? :huh:

Okay, I cannot use my own computer in class but I can use school computers between class or in class depending on the class. Since I have to use the school computers I cannot install FTP software so I want to go with an FTP that I access with my browser to copy files instead of having FTP software to access the files.

Samba does work for this with little more software needed...

#35 Sasquatch

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 11:21 PM

Alright, that makes more sense.

My next question is this, though: Does your school's computers let you plug in a USB stick? If they do, you can actually put Filezilla on a USB stick as standalone software that doesn't need to be installed to be used. All you would have to do is load that software onto the stick, plug into your school computer, connect to your FTP server through the software, and transfer your files to your stick.

Then again, I keep forgetting you want to use Samba, and this is all Windows based as far as I know. So maybe I should shut up for now. :lol:

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#36 ChefTech

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Posted 18 January 2012 - 11:34 PM

Does your school network even allow ftp traffic?

This little project will actually be a very good learning experience.

Forgot to add, I run Windows Home Server and it is awesome, but does cost money. It has a secure webpage (meeting your browser log in requirement), remote access to PC's on your network, plug ins for streaming, etc. Again, this is all Windows based.

Edited by ChefTech, 18 January 2012 - 11:44 PM.


#37 aresfiend

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Posted 19 January 2012 - 12:03 AM

Alright, that makes more sense.

My next question is this, though: Does your school's computers let you plug in a USB stick? If they do, you can actually put Filezilla on a USB stick as standalone software that doesn't need to be installed to be used. All you would have to do is load that software onto the stick, plug into your school computer, connect to your FTP server through the software, and transfer your files to your stick.

Then again, I keep forgetting you want to use Samba, and this is all Windows based as far as I know. So maybe I should shut up for now. :lol:

They allow USB sticks but if I run any application from one I actually can potentially be expelled.

Does your school network even allow ftp traffic?

This little project will actually be a very good learning experience.

Forgot to add, I run Windows Home Server and it is awesome, but does cost money. It has a secure webpage (meeting your browser log in requirement), remote access to PC's on your network, plug ins for streaming, etc. Again, this is all Windows based.

My school does allow FTP traffic, although I am NOT going to go with windows server because I already know the basics of samba and I know it will work for free.

#38 CrazyLittle

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Posted 28 January 2012 - 03:32 PM

Honestly I think you're overthinking this problem. Take a loot at FreeNAS. It's NAS on a stick. http://www.freenas.org/

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#39 aresfiend

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 06:43 PM

I was hoping an Admin would read a thread....


I WANT TO STAY WITH SAMBA

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