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Hoping to repurpose Hackintosh as a server, but "File Sharing" greyed out

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Correct.


The issue here is that AFP is deprecated and abandoned by Apple. :(


Fair point, but a 10G switch is a first step in generally updating the home network.
As I understand, it is a very basic setting and the drives are just shared individually. It is possible to set up RAID 0, RAID 1 or even RAID 10 with DiskUtility for performance and/or security; parity arrays would require OMV (or alternatives). Any drive array, of course, implies formatting the drives anew and restoring.

Ah, thank you for the clarifications.

I mistook your initial comment ("Moving up, SMB itself is likely to become another bottleneck. It's single threaded, and not very good at scaling up.") to mean I should use AFP instead of SMB. After your comment that AFP was dropped by Apple, I switched over to SMB. Now my network speeds are closer to the 1G limits (as above). Thank you very much for that!

Could you clarify what you meant by SMB is likely to become another bottleneck? Is that likely to limit the benefits of upgrading to a 10GBase-T card? Or something else, perhaps more advanced than my simple setup?
 

pastrychef

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Thank you for the suggestion and input. Turning off Wifi helped clarify a few things (including some unrelated weirdness*), as did dropping the AFP in favor of just SMB.

I'm not get close to max 1G speeds now!

Network speeds:
Server HDD to MacStudio 10GBs in 1:33 (93s) = 107 MBs /second
Server SSD to MacStudio 10GBs in 1:28 (83s) = 120 MBs /second

For comparison, same server drives copying to server boot drive:
Server HDD to Server 10GBs in 1:09 (69s) = 144 MBs /second
Server SSD to Server 10GBs in 0:35s (35s) = 285 MBs /second

Your point is well taken: a 10GBase-T card only makes sense if I set up a RAID.

I have a couple of pairs of smaller drives** that I could combine to boost speeds and simplify the network. (I could then back up the content to my larger, slower drives and retain similar levels of redundancy).

What's your RAID setup (and how many disks)? From your earlier example (12 GBs in 52 seconds), your transfer rate was about 230 MBs/second.

I'll re-try a direct connection between the Server and Mac Studio later, to see if the bottlenecks return. If not, I'll consider the 10GBase-T card, then set up a RAID.

——————————————————————————————
* 3 older HDDs were showing up in the network, even when not explicitly shared. They were all formatted Mac OS Extended (Journaled). This stopped when I dropped AFP. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

** I have two 2TB HDDs and two 1TB SSDs. (I also have a pair of 6TB drives that I would use for regular, non-RAID backups)

120MB/s is pretty close to the theoretical limit of 1GBase-T.

I run Synology DSM 6. My NAS has two volumes. One is an 8 drive array with dual disk redundancy (SHR2) and the other is a 4 drive array with single disk redundancy (SHR).

Here are some benchmark results from my 4 drive array (the 8 drive array is slightly faster).
Screen Shot 2022-06-28 at 10.37.00 PM.png

Screen Shot 2022-06-28 at 10.37.59 PM.png

Screen Shot 2022-06-28 at 10.42.50 PM.png

I still use AFP out of habit from having used it for many years and experiencing problems SMB early on. But I think most problems with SMB have been resolved now. As a matter of fact, Apple uses SMB by default nowadays...

My NAS is all of my external storage. I don't have any DAS, USB, or Thunderbolt drives connected to my Mac Studio.

I have one my old NVMe SSDs in an external USB enclosure that I want to try booting from and to test out UTM virtualization but that's just for playing around and I don't normally use it.
 
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120MB/s is pretty close to the theoretical limit of 1GBase-T.

I run Synology DSM 6. My NAS has two volumes. One is an 8 drive array with dual disk redundancy (SHR2) and the other is a 4 drive array with single disk redundancy (SHR).

Here are some benchmark results from my 4 drive array (the 8 drive array is slightly faster).


I still use AFP out of habit from having used it for many years and experiencing problems SMB early on. But I think most problems with SMB have been resolved now. As a matter of fact, Apple uses SMB by default nowadays...

My NAS is all of my external storage. I don't have any DAS, USB, or Thunderbolt drives connected to my Mac Studio.

I have one my old NVMe SSDs in an external USB enclosure that I want to try booting from and to test out UTM virtualization but that's just for playing around and I don't normally use it.

Thank you for taking the time and effort to share your impressive setup, and screenshot of benchmarks. I appreciate it greatly.

I've been looking for (and not finding) concrete examples of how RAID can improve speeds. Mostly what I've seen are either abstract equations or casual generic claims, with few real world examples. So this is very instructive.

Your read speeds are astonishing! And they help make the case for upgrading to 10Gbps and using RAID after all. That makes me more confident that's the right path forward. (I realize I won't achieve these speeds with just a couple of drives, but it helps to know what can be achieved down the road).

Thank you again.

——————————————————————————————

I was sidetracked trying to find other options that could replicate the speeds of the Mac Studio's internal SSD drives. Alas, it doesn't look like there are (m)any affordable options right now.

Although NVME M.2 SSDs can get speeds up to 3,000-5,000 MBs, and Thunderbolt 4 ports are theoretically capable of ~40Gbps (5,000 MBs), unfortunately most external enclosures are capped at 10Gbps. Well, the affordable ones ($20-$50) anyway.

There are a few "40Gbps" enclosures, but they're priced ~$120-$160, almost as much as a 2TB drive. And the best reported speeds I'm seeing are ~3100 MBs (not much over 20Gbps), with plenty achieving slower speeds. Still great speeds, to be sure, but still falling short of the advertised speeds.
 

pastrychef

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Thank you for taking the time and effort to share your impressive setup, and screenshot of benchmarks. I appreciate it greatly.

I've been looking for (and not finding) concrete examples of how RAID can improve speeds. Mostly what I've seen are either abstract equations or casual generic claims, with few real world examples. So this is very instructive.

Your read speeds are astonishing! And they help make the case for upgrading to 10Gbps and using RAID after all. That makes me more confident that's the right path forward. (I realize I won't achieve these speeds with just a couple of drives, but it helps to know what can be achieved down the road).

Thank you again.

——————————————————————————————

I was sidetracked trying to find other options that could replicate the speeds of the Mac Studio's internal SSD drives. Alas, it doesn't look like there are (m)any affordable options right now.

Although NVME M.2 SSDs can get speeds up to 3,000-5,000 MBs, and Thunderbolt 4 ports are theoretically capable of ~40Gbps (5,000 MBs), unfortunately most external enclosures are capped at 10Gbps. Well, the affordable ones ($20-$50) anyway.

There are a few "40Gbps" enclosures, but they're priced ~$120-$160, almost as much as a 2TB drive. And the best reported speeds I'm seeing are ~3100 MBs (not much over 20Gbps), with plenty achieving slower speeds. Still great speeds, to be sure, but still falling short of the advertised speeds.

Yes, you would need a Thunderbolt 4 enclosure to get the 40Gb/s.

I also didn't want to pay the prices for Thunderbolt 4 when shopping for an enclosure for my NVMe SSD. I just ended up with a USB 3 enclosure which maxes out at 10Gb/s.

I don't think there's any way to get external storage that's as fast as the internal storage of the Mac Studios without going to some complex/convoluted setup.
 
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Yes, you would need a Thunderbolt 4 enclosure to get the 40Gb/s.

I also didn't want to pay the prices for Thunderbolt 4 when shopping for an enclosure for my NVMe SSD. I just ended up with a USB 3 enclosure which maxes out at 10Gb/s.

I don't think there's any way to get external storage that's as fast as the internal storage of the Mac Studios without going to some complex/convoluted setup.

Hopefully there will be better options in the near future.

At present, this is the closest I found. It works out to $63 per SSD, which might make sense for those who have or need 3-4 SSD drives. Otherwise, it's a bit pricey and reviews are mixed (loud fan and complaints about build quality and OWC's RAID software).

Yet somehow this is much cheaper than paying Apple $600 for an extra 2TB. For ~$430, you can get 2TB and 3 expansion slots.

Screen Shot 2022-06-30 at 5.42.05 PM.png
 

pastrychef

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Hopefully there will be better options in the near future.

At present, this is the closest I found. It works out to $63 per SSD, which might make sense for those who have or need 3-4 SSD drives. Otherwise, it's a bit pricey and reviews are mixed (loud fan and complaints about build quality and OWC's RAID software).

Yet somehow this is much cheaper than paying Apple $600 for an extra 2TB. For ~$430, you can get 2TB and 3 expansion slots.

View attachment 550445

Yeah. I've seen that. At 2800MB/s, it's plenty fast for just about anything but the fact remains that it's still only about half the speed of the Mac Studio internal storage.
 
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