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I want to create a NAS by myself, for about 4-12 TB of space, depending on what it will cost. I see that I can buy hdds for 3TB now, but how can I know if the motherboard will work with it, and how many of them it will be able to work with.

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migrated from serverfault.com Jan 14 '12 at 5:33

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You can usually lookup the board on the manufacturers website and it will specify the maximum size. Generally, if it doesn't specifically say it's compatible with drives larger than 2.2TB then it isn't.

Other than that, the only motherboard limit would be the number of drives you can connect to it.

There may be logical limits imposed as well (depending on your OS, file system, etc).

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Wait... what? What motherboard that has been made in the last 5 years doesn't support > 2gb disks? –  TheCompWiz Jan 6 '12 at 17:55
    
Yeah yeah.. obvious typo. Thank you for pointing it out. –  Chris S Jan 6 '12 at 18:01
    
You can easily overcome 2.2tb issues by simply adding a raid controller of some sort that does support > 2tb... which is HIGHLY recommended if you want any level of reliability. Software RAIDs tend to randomly fail... or suffer from poor performance. Additionally... keep one foot-note in mind. Your primary boot volume cannot be larger than 2tb... in any OS. (that I know of) It's better anyway to have a small OS volume... and a dedicated data-volume anyway. –  TheCompWiz Jan 6 '12 at 18:07
    
@TheCompWiz I disagree with the multipartition approach (at least on windows) these days it causes more headaches than it's worth. –  Jim B Jan 6 '12 at 19:54
    
@JimB: As this is a NAS... it makes more sense to keep the data separate from the OS... You save yourself a lot of headaches from this is when you need to make changes to the volume (extend them) which you can't do to the boot volume... without a reboot. Additionally... it's not until recently that you could boot from GPT disks (required for >2tb volumes) and even still... you can only do that in x64 environments. –  TheCompWiz Jan 6 '12 at 20:04

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