Build Storage Server with 15 extra Hard Drives

OK this is what I want to do build a Samba storage server from about 15 to 20 extra hard drives. FYI I want to leave room for the addition of more hard drives.

They are mixed mostly SATA some EIDE.

I have a Dell System with DUO Core Proc.

I was going to use Linux in a command prompt mode (init 3), as I always do for my standalone servers. I was going to upgrade the RAM to 4gb.

What size power supply should I get? How and where can I store the actual drives since they will not fit in the existing case? What type of cards will I need to support so many hard drives (also since they are mixed)? I was going setup in a RAID 0 in software mode?
Also I stumble across a lot of hard drives from old systems so I would like to leave room for Future upgrade!

I have not sorted the drives to see how many of each I have yet (But mostly SATA).

I know I can just buy 3TB drives cheap and build a server (I already have a full Linux server) I am doing this just to play around a bit with some new hardware.

Please give me some other suggestions also!
Thanks
georgopanosAsked:
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Robert SaylorSenior DeveloperCommented:
If there are SATA look for an external enclosure. Drobo has a few different options.

I use one of these connected to my Mac server using Thunderbolt. It services a 4 TB datastore.

http://www.drobo.com/products/professionals/drobo-5d/index.php

Also, please do not use RAID 0 unless you have backup. Use Raid 1 or 5.
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DavidPresidentCommented:
Buy an external SAS/SATA JBOD enclosure.  Plenty of units to choose from on bay.  Also, don't even think about RAID0, or cheap desktop/consumer disks.  If you don't have the budget for enterprise class drives and redundancy, then kiss your data goodbye.  

Also, 4GB isn't going to be enough, unless this  is very light use.









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DavidPresidentCommented:
P.S. if  you want to use a mix of old, mismatched, consumer drives .. then use solaris & ZFS.  This has extra data integrity and allows you to have multiple copies of critical files maintained automatically on additional drives for data integrity and redundancy.

Check out openindiana, napp-it.org, or nexenta.org.
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georgopanosAuthor Commented:
This is not exactly what I want I am looking for, I am looking for inexpensive. I was initially thinking to get PCI cards that supported EIDE and SATA drives install them into the system and upgrade the power supply. But I did not know what to do with the actual drives since they would not fit into the case. Does anyone have any ideas like that?
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DavidPresidentCommented:
If you want inexpensive, then you need to use Solaris & ZFS. That is the only file system that can handle lots of disk problems as well as mismatched drives and lost of vibration.  

Go RAIDZ2 if this data can't be ever be lost, or RAID10.   You can even build ZFS pools mixing and matching USB sticks with iDE and SATA drives, all in the same RAID if you want.
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georgopanosAuthor Commented:
I've requested that this question be deleted for the following reason:

I am not getting answers to the question that I specifically asked. I am getting partial alternatives to my main questions.

I asked for inexpensive and to reuse existing hardware.

This is supposed to be a fun project, not a large investment.
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DavidPresidentCommented:
You were given sound advice.  Solaris with ZFS is the most error tolerant raid mechanism out there, and it does NOT require purchase of a RAID controller.  This lets you use the disks you have.  

But over a dozen disks will vibrate. You just can't use them without placing them in a proper enclosure, you didn't post your budget, but I suggested in original answer to look for something used.

Either way, ZFS is least expensive way to build the raid engine & OS, and a used enclosure from ebay are least expensive ways to do the housing.  You received valid answers.
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