Multiple Servers or Single NK 6.0?

Hello SB, as the title suggests I’m currently struggling to decide on which approach would be best, a single system (NK 6.0) vs multiple. I have quite a bit of hardware laying around, some from old desktops, some my current plex server, some from work. I’m also still relatively inexperienced with the whole home server setup and approach, just trying to learn.

Mainly trying to figure out a two things:

  1. Should I try to put everything in a single server (using the NK 6.0 outline) or should I split the NAS from the services?
  2. Which OS should I use? Whether I go single or multiple servers, would that change? (was currently leaning towards Unraid)

What I would like to use the servers for:

  • NAS
  • Plex
  • HomeAssistant
  • PiHole
  • Homebox
  • Nextcloud
  • Paperless
  • NextCloud
  • Foundry
  • various others that I may find useful

Hardware I currently have:

  • Retired Lenovo Tower w/i5-7400, 32GB RAM, 16TB Storage (currently running TrueNAS Scale with an SMB, Plex, Qbittorrent, a bunch of the *arr apps, and homebox) Not enjoying TrueNAS very much, been using it since Scale released.
  • Old Desktop w/i5-8500T, 32GB RAM (I have a bunch of the parts outlined in the NK6.0 like the HBA, breakout, etc and was going to build myself something using it as a guide)
  • HP Proliant DL180 G6 (can boot up for specs if needed)
  • Dell PowerEdge R720xd (E5-2650 @2GHz, 96GB ECC RAM)
  • 3x4TB WD Red I have in my current stream PC that houses a lot of my YouTube media
  • 8x6TB refurb enterprise drives I grabbed from Rhino plus a bunch of other drives and some externals I plan to shuck once I move the data off of them.

I believe I have the below drives with data on them, would like to shuck and move them into the servers

  • 14TB Seagate Backup
  • 14TB WD Backup
  • 8TB Seagate Backup
  • 12TB WD Backup

I posted a similar question in the selfhosted community on Reddit and many of them were suggesting I use TrueNAS on the Dell and set it up as my NAS, splitting the array into two pools (one RAID5 for fast accessing and SMB shares, TEMP backups, Media Library, etc and the other RAID0 which will hold backups of the first pool). Then on the other server (NK6 build) they suggested I use Proxmox and split everything into containers (1. debian container 2. dns container 3. ubuntu container 4. home assistant 5. plex 6. nextcloud)

Any and all advice is welcome.

You can probably fit all of your intents into one NK6 based on the hardware of the 8500T if it can be placed in a case with enough room for drives.
Since you already own the hardware, you could spin out the storage to its own lone machine.
Would recommend Unraid for the one machine, or really for both considering the drives are not all the same but I can understand not wanting to buy two Unraid licenses…
We never recommend Scale. Could use Core for storage if you wanted.

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Yeah I have a Node 804 case for the NK6 build, plenty of drive space. I’ve just had so many annoying issues with network storage as it is so I was hesitant to add additional complexity with separating the NAS and utility server.

Was also thinking about it all from a power usage standpoint.

Maybe for now I just stick to doing the NK6, and then if I feel I need it I can use the E5-2650 server to spin up a backup down the line.

Node 804 is small. But it works for many. Something like Unraid is almost guaranteed to make your life easier as far as complexities go like you might find when trying TrueNAS.
Power usage of an NK6 such as one based on an 8500T is about as low as you can practically go, so not much worry there.

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Yeah I think it has enough space for what I need.
Thanks for the suggestions! :slight_smile: