[BUILD GUIDE] HP ProLiant MicroServer with 5 Drives
#1
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Quote:The background to this build is as follows:
I am hoping to integrate as many of the different systems into my new house as possible: media, file storage/backup, security, heating, lighting and anything else I can think of along the way. At the centre of the system will be a modified HP ProLiant MicroServer.
The reason I have chosen this over other options is the price. At the time of writing it is possible to buy one in the UK for around £130 thanks to a £100 rebate from HP. I have modified mine slightly to include a 5th hard drive, it is even possible to add a 6th but I think 8TB of storage and 250GB for the OS will do for now

Having modified my box I subsequently found that it had been done already: AVForums (same as mine) and another option. Here's what I did:

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The aim is to add a 5th drive to the space where an optical disk drive (ODD) is designed to go. Since I intend to use my considerably more powerful desktop for any ripping/backup I didn't need an ODD.

So I bought a 5.25 to 3.5 drive tray caddy
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It has rubber mounts to reduce noise, allows easy installation and replacement of the HDD. I also managed to amuse myself with the door-HDD eject mechanism... there is a link between the door and the metal arm with the white wheel at the back which pushed the HDD out as you open the door. The wires on the left hand side are for an LED in the front panel (I didn't bother to connect it since the server will be stuck in the eaves and I'd never notice it!)
Additionally in the box there are 4 mounting screws, an instruction manual, a power cable converter and a set of keys to lock the door.

The first step was to remove the top casing and add a SATA cable:
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The SATA cable attaches to the spare connector on the motherboard...
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... and is fed through a channel on the left of the ODD space. If I were to do this again I would use a SATA cable with a 90 degree connector.
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The SATA and power cable are visible at the back.

Top casing before modification:
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and from the inside
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Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#2
The blanking panel needs to be removed so that the underlying metal can be removed. The plastic plate is held in place with push in fittings at either end:
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A little bit of persuasion and it is easily removed:
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The metal has spot attachments at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o'clock positions. Pushing carefully on these points while supporting the surrounding metal snaps the connections and allows removal:
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I chose to use the screws provided by HP to mount the caddy, they are located on the inside of the main case door along with the corresponding allen key:
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The four screws attach to the top of the two sets of holes in the caddy:
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Once all 4 screws were attached the caddy can be slid into the server's ODD space. The fit is very loose and it might seem like you've done it wrong (ooo-er missus). It is important that the retaining lever is pushed toward the middle. This will firm up the connection between the right hand side of the caddy and the server
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Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#3
The caddy requires the use of the included power cable adapter in order to connect everything up. This is a simple push fit on to the cable the back of the ODD space. After that is done the power and SATA cables can be hooked up to the caddy:
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It is important to make sure the connections in the space below the ODD space will not get in the way when you insert the HDD... so rearrange if necessary. You may also note that I have changed the routing of the SATA cable so that the bend radius at the connection isn't so severe:
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No simply put the top casing back on and insert your HDD of choice. I went with the 250GB Seagate 7200rpm drive supplied with the box since I have put 4x WD20EARS drives in the main case:
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Here's the final result!
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Now all I need is for Microsoft to release WHS 2011 and I can get on to BIOS and software setup! There are conflicting ideas over whether it is necessary to modify the BIOS (one exists online) or just use the latest HP one in order to get the SATA connection to work at full speed. For more details:
[H]ardforum - they say no need to change
AVForums - they say use the modded BIOS

I will update this as soon as I get my hands on a copy of WHS 2011...
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#4
***reserved***
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#5
+++Reserved+++
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#6
---reserved for BIOS and Software guide---
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#7
Nice guide so far.
I have build my Microserver and included the Remote Management Card. With this card it is easy to mount ISOS or the local DVD-device to the server to install whatever you like. Works like a charm, the web-port is freely attributable so there will be no conflict with other services.

The Server runs WHS2011 without any problems, though the install took around one hour. Shares are accessible via SMB to my Shuttle 35GT XBMC Box on openelec.

Drivers Used: AMD/ATI Windows Server 2008 R2 Oct. 2010

Additional Software installed as services: Teamspeak 3 Server, Squeezebox-Server 7.5.4 and Filezilla for quick Remote File Access on FTPS.

Realy nice box, totaly silent (for a server) and solidly build.
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#8
Just looking at one of these now! looks like a no brainer! £100 cash back... making it a £135 server that got 45 - five star reviews on ebuyer!

Can you use 3TB disks? - could I run the 5th drive as the system drive and the other 4 for storage?

Cant seem to find much info on it?
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#9
You could squeeze in another 6x 2.5" disks too I guess:

http://www.sharkoon.com/?q=en/node/1824
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#10
Geeba Wrote:Just looking at one of these now! looks like a no brainer! £100 cash back... making it a £135 server that got 45 - five star reviews on ebuyer!

Can you use 3TB disks? - could I run the 5th drive as the system drive and the other 4 for storage?

Cant seem to find much info on it?

as obama would say - yes you can. meanwhile i have one of these babies exactly running like you asked.


hazeh Wrote:You could squeeze in another 6x 2.5" disks too I guess:

http://www.sharkoon.com/?q=en/node/1824


yeah, we already discussed things like this here.

there are ppl out there who put 13 HDDs in one N36L Cool
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#11
Geeba Wrote:Just looking at one of these now! looks like a no brainer! £100 cash back... making it a £135 server that got 45 - five star reviews on ebuyer!

Can you use 3TB disks? - could I run the 5th drive as the system drive and the other 4 for storage?

Cant seem to find much info on it?

The 3TB depends on what OS you are planning to run... most notably only the most recent version of windows home server WHS2011 can use 3TB disks properly. I'm currently running WHS2011 from the '5th disk' with 4x2TB disks. Personally I'm against running XBMC on it and use it as a home/media server.

Either way it's an amazing bit of kit and does everything I need of it!
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
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#12
Thanks for the pointers fellas Wink

och29 - yep your setup sounds exactly what I want to do - it will be used for feeding my Zotac and Xbox XBMC network with media Big Grin

I'll be installing WHS 2011 but I'm just a little confused on the ODD SATA port - I've read various reports.. some say the latest HP BIOS will enable full speed on this and some say you have to load a hacked BIOS?

Also I was under the impression that I could leave it set as AHCI with WHS 2011 as its should support it?

Not sure wether to use the 250GB Seagate that came with it as the system disk or not too.... :S
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#13
Geeba Wrote:Also I was under the impression that I could leave it set as AHCI with WHS 2011 as its should support it?

Not sure wether to use the 250GB Seagate that came with it as the system disk or not too.... :S

There are so many differing opinions that I thought I'd just try it and see. I used the disk that came with it and did nothing to the BIOS settings and it all works well.
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
Reply
#14
Thanks och29 - did you flash the hacked BIOS for the internal SATA port?

Good grief! just looked at the prices of HDD's!!!! its gone through the ROOF! I guess we're paying the price of all the disasters around the world Sad 1TB drive was £39 last week... over a £100 this week... so I guess I'll be using the 250Gb as a system drive now! Big Grin
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#15
No, I didn't do anything... maybe i used the latest BIOS from HP but otherwise I just went straight to the WHS2011 install.
Server: HP ProLiant MicroServer with WHS2011 with 8.4TB
HTPC: Wesena ITX6B, ASUS E35M1-I Deluxe, picoPSU+Brick, BlackGold BGT3620, 64GB RealSSD C300, 4GB RAM
AV Setup: Denon AVR-1909, Denon DVD-1800BD, Panasonic TX-P50VT30B, Mordant-Short Alumni 7.1 Speakers
Reply
 
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[BUILD GUIDE] HP ProLiant MicroServer with 5 Drives00