I recently took delivery of the rather splendid Thecus N5500 which I love; it’s the perfect mix between “it just works” and “oh, let’s stick SSH on there and poke around”. With 5 hot swap disk shelves, and 2TB hard drives you’ve got a serious amount of storage.
For your money you get a very nice little piece of hardware in a pretty nice shell (it strikes me as a touch tacky in places but then again it’s hardly going on show) with software that gets the job done. NFS, AFP, Samba, iSCSI, iTunes DAAP support, and plenty of modules to tickle your fancy (Logitech Squeezecenter, for instance).
But who am I kidding, I’m a sysadmin. 10 minutes after powering the thing on I was dying to log in using SSH so I could watch
/proc/mdstat to see the RAID build. Luckily, the modules from the Thecus N5200 work fine; which means you’re a couple of clicks away from a root terminal.
- Grab the SSH and SYSUSER N5200 modules, and unzip them (a mistake I made.. How embarrassing.)
- Upload them using the webinterface, and enable them.
- SSH to the NAS box using the user “sys” and the password “sys”
- Enjoy your shell, and remember to run
`passwd sys`to change the password to something else.
Now, you’ve got yourself a pretty handy, albeit it BusyBox-ridden install of Linux. The whole point of this post, is so I can pimp a few statically compiled binaries that might come in useful to you; they did to me anyway.
(You may wish to install the UTILITIES module, which gives you a proper version of
ps, amongst other things, available here)
You can simply untar and drop the binaries into /raid/data/modules/bin folder so that they’re in your path, and stored on your disks rather than the flash units which are rather limited in space. By the way, these modules should also work fine on the Thecus N5200 NAS boxes too.
The binaries are available here: http://denness.net/thecus/binaries/
The list includes (all the latest versions as of the date of this blog post):
- ethtool, handy for network interface prodding
- iftop, a very useful “GUI” app that shows incoming/outgoing network bandwidth (let’s face it, this is fun on a NAS. NOTE: you may need to execute this one using
- iostat, for hard core disk stats porn. Run it with
`iostat -mx 1`and watch the megabytes fly
- rsync, particularly handy if you want to synchronise/backup data from one place to another, so particularly handy on a NAS.
- vim, just in case you were planning on writing a lot of code on the Thecus 🙂
- GNU screen, a nice place to store your terminals and detach and come back later. (NOTE: you may need to execute this one using
- The command line version of PHP, in case you were planning on writing any scripts in PHP to run on the Thecus.
Any suggestions/comments, let me know.