After arsing about for an eternity I think I’ve finally chosen a server… introducing the HP Proliant Microserver:

Ideally I was looking for a rackmount chassis but this ticks a lot more boxes than any other server I’ve found- namely: extremely low power consumption, almost silent and bloody cheap (HP were offering £100 cashback).

I’ve loaded it with 4x 1.5TB SATA disks but will probably add another one (or two?). The server comes with a mere 1GB of DDR3 ram so I’ve ordered 2x 4GB DDR3 (for close to peanuts from Crucial- also offering 7% off with coupon code and a further 7% cashback through quidco/topcashback) to bring it up to 8GB.

After a lot of experimenting with different operating systems i’m 99% sure i’m going to go with Windows Home Server 2011 (WHS2011). I will be installing the o/s on either a USB stick or SD card (once It’s released). Everyone seems to be getting their knickers in a twist about Microsoft’s decisions to drop Drive Extender but if I decide to go down that route there’s already an add-in being worked on by Covecube; StableBit Drive Pool

Expect an update once the remaining parts arrive and WHS2011 is released.