I was thinking of building a small private cloudserver almost like Dropbox or Google Drive. I'm not expecting a very fast server, it will more be like just a home server for so i can send files easily to my computers. Now my questions is,

Can i add/install a low watt (300 to 400watt) PSU and small 500Gb sata drives for storage? Then i want to add some fans if possible for future drives so they wont overheat.

Then my last question is can i build a lego case for it, the reason i'm asking is because the heat so the plastic wont melt.

  • Since you're looking for a fileserver, the Raspberry Pi with its rather slow Ethernet (due to it being connected via USB) might not be the best choice. It also doesn't have a SATA interface, so you would need an external USB-to-SATA adapter. There's a huge variety of single-board computers out there to choose from — something like the various OLinuXino or Cubieboard models will probably be closer to your requirements, but it will be difficult to find a board with more than one SATA connector.
    – n.st
    Jun 30, 2015 at 10:16
  • That is a fair point, but it may or may not be relevant to your situation. If you do a lot of torrenting or are expecting a half dozen people to be streaming video simultaneously, you will be hitting a limit with bandwidth. But if you just want it to do dropbox-y things, transfer files normally in the megabyte (as opposed to gigabyte) range, and run a stream or two sometimes the pi is perfect. Short story: It can sustain 3-4 MB/s (25-30 Mbps) over ethernet while using USB storage.
    – goldilocks
    Jun 30, 2015 at 12:45

2 Answers 2


Yes, you can do this. There are many guides on configuring various servers that you can locate with a bit of googling. You'll need SATA-USB adapters for the drives and likely a powered USB hub. Fans are probably not required, and a lego case should be fine, so long as there is adequate ventilation. If you can be more specific about what you are trying to do, we can probably provide better answers.

  • actually that pretty much answered my question, if i dont need the fans then i wont acually need the PSU either?
    – Liam Rabe
    Jun 30, 2015 at 1:21
  • 1
    @LiamRabe: No, a PSU would be way overpowered. A standard micro usb power supply is fine. Just make sure you're getting at least 1 mAh of power. 2 is better.
    – Jacobm001
    Jun 30, 2015 at 3:40
  • 1
    @Jacobm001 I assume you meant to say "1 A of current" instead of "1 mAh of power"?
    – n.st
    Jun 30, 2015 at 10:18
  • 1
    Note this means a USB drive, not a SATA. The latter will just be awkward with the pi and provide no advantage without an expansion board because you will need some kind of SATA -> USB adapter.
    – goldilocks
    Jun 30, 2015 at 12:43
  • @n.st yes you are correct, good catch.
    – Jacobm001
    Jun 30, 2015 at 13:15

I'm doing something similar but using the Pi 2 to rsync a number of computers over the Internet. I've got a powered USB hub to which both the Pi and a 1TB 2.5" drive/USB<>SATA adapter are hooked up to and there's no problem with power or overheating. Neither are in cases, though, if that makes a difference. They're just sitting on a wooden shelf in an open hall closet.

If you like numbers, the largest rsync is about 16G and takes around 22 minutes on average each night.

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