1.    24 Oct 2016 #1

    Bonkers idea or not -convert broken i7 laptop into NAS server ??


    Hi folks

    I've got a broken i7 laptop that someone was chucking out - 2 X USb 3 ports too -. The connection to the screen is broken and the lid ripped off --rest of Mobo works fine.

    Was thinking of removing the Mobo and installing in a small form factor box to create a NAS server for an old friend of mine (i7 a bit overkill - but why not - won't have any transcoding problems when using PLEX etc !!!!).

    The Video still works fine from the mobo via mini-HDMI and for external HDD just use an external 2 BAY USB 3 enclosure. Internal OS can run on an SSD - that connection still fine and working as is the power supply - but I could disconnect that and use a proper one on the CUBE form factor box. I7 running 24/7 is going to need better cooling than the typical laptop gives.

    Since in any case this thing will run headless we don't really need a video out at all anyway.

    Seems a real cheap way of doing this -- Small form factor box with power supply around 50 EUR, 2 X say 3 TB HDD's and a USB 3 2 port HDD bay, plus a couple of extra fans for cooling.

    I love playing around with this sort of gear -- people often throw away quite salvageable material if you can devise uses for it.

    Saves HUGELY on paying for brand new stuff which probably won't perform as good.

    Am I being really Bonkers here -- probably but I'm interested in trying it. !!!

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  2. Joined : Aug 2014
    Forever West
    Posts : 2,373
    Win10 Home and Pro, Win7 Home, Linux Mint
       24 Oct 2016 #2

    You'll find that the motherboards in Notebooks/Laptops are designed to work/fit with the housing they are in, difficult to put in a different case. I've had occasion to use a display-less Notebook with an external monitor when the display panel was broken. One could even park the Notebook out of the way and use an external keyboard and mouse.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3.    24 Oct 2016 #3

    Berton said: View Post
    You'll find that the motherboards in Notebooks/Laptops are designed to work/fit with the housing they are in, difficult to put in a different case. I've had occasion to use a display-less Notebook with an external monitor when the display panel was broken. One could even park the Notebook out of the way and use an external keyboard and mouse.
    Hi there
    @Berton

    I'm quite good with old fashioned Carpentry and "Tin Bashing" -- can easily glue some plastic spacers to fit Laptop Mobo into the case above the "Floor" and create plenty of space in the case. I think the main problem is cooling the i7 when it's going to be running 24 hrs a day and changing the power supplies -- at a pinch I can still use the old laptop PSU but I'd rather a "Proper one" - especially when adding CPU fans etc.

    Anyway if it's too hard -- i'll just chuck it - but seems an interesting project --here weather is getting a bit horrible and cold so something to do !!!!!

    BTW there's 4 DIMM slots so plenty of memory possible --16 GB should be MORE than enough for this project --DDR 3 is cheap enough -- 8 GB installed already --I might not even need any more especially for running basically as NAS rather than a full blown PC.

    I'm going to run a LINUX OS on it with PLEX as the media server --I've experience with that sort of stuff and it can easily be controlled from Windows clients (XRDP for example on the server allows Windows RDP to connect exactly like connection between two Windows machines).

    The Bios indicates that max of 32GB is supported --more than enough --especially given the i7 CPU.

    If I get this working I might even give my friend one of My less powerful (by far) NAS servers and use this myself !!!!. No more "Transcoding" pauses etc etc !!!

    I'll try and post later when this is either working or not !!.

    Note to any youngsters trying this type of stuff --get a Soldering Iron GUN rather than a bog standard soldering iron --the gun applies heat quickly over a small area so you can avoid damaging components -- and use MULTI-CORE solder --no need for "tinning" --but keep joints CLEAN !!!!.

    Also for delicate connections use a "Heat Shunt" -- simply have a piece of heat conducting material attached to the component you want to send heat around the component (crocodile clips are good) while soldering the connections.

    Shame these days but a lot of Basic Engineering doesn't seem to be taught any more. !!

    Cheers
    jimbo
    Last edited by jimbo45; 24 Oct 2016 at 09:44. Reason: added info about using a Heat Shunt
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


  4. Joined : Jul 2014
    Serbia
    Posts : 7,162
    All kinds
       25 Oct 2016 #4

    If you manage to get it working MikroTik Router OS is ideal for a server like that.
    MikroTik Routers and Wireless: Downloads
      My System SpecsSystem Spec


 


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