Installing HDA on HP Mediasmart Server

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NOTE: This Ubuntu-based systems ONLY. Guidance may not work for Amahi 7 or other Fedora-based releases.



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Installing your HDA on an old HP MediaSmart server, previously used for Windows Home Server, will bring all the benefits of Amahi to the small device. This is only recommended for users who are comfortable with the terminal, or are willing to set up a headless server with VNC. Experienced users may also migrate from a PC server to the MediaSmart server, avoiding installation of a new HDA and all the hassle of backing-up files that occurs with it.

The steps for this tutorial are from here. To continue you will require:

  • An HP MediaSmart server. This page provides hardware specifications to compare with any preexisting PC setup.
  • An extra PC
  • A spare hard drive
  • An existing network
  • An SSH solution, like Putty
  • Ubuntu Server 12.04 LTS, not the desktop version

Starting From Scratch

Installing Ubuntu

1. Connect the hard drive into the spare PC.

2. Install Ubuntu 12.04, the server version. I was not able to get the GUI version of Ubuntu working on the MediaSmart server. The GUI version is also not recommended since there is no VGA or DVI ports for a monitor, only USB.

3. Do NOT install Amahi yet.

4. Install an ssh server:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo apt-get install openssh-server​


5. Verify that the SSH is working by connecting with Putty. If the SSH is not enabled, enable it:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo update-rc.d ssh defaults​


6. Change the interfaces file to reflect eth1, not eth0:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces​


           auto eth1
           iface eth1 inet dhcp

7. Save using ctrl+x, and hitting "y" to confirm

8. Note the hardware address of the network card:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​ifconfig​


9. Shutdown the PC:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo shutdown now -h​


Installing Amahi

1. Move the hard drive to the MediaSmart server's slot 1, turn on the server.

2. Check your router for the server's IP address, use Putty to SSH into that IP address.

3. Install Amahi

Modifying Ubuntu for Amahi

1. After rebooting and SSHing into the server, change the network card to eth0 from our previous eth1. After opening the 70-persistent-net.rules file below, look for the PC network card hardware address and delete that whole line. Change the remaining hardware address to come up as eth0 (it is currently eth1 at the end of the line).

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules​


           SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*", ATTR{address}=="00:1d:60:b5:43:66", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth*", NAME="eth0"
           SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*", ATTR{address}=="5c:d9:98:af:21:43", ATTR{dev_id}=="0x0", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth1"

So above, we would delete the first line and change "eth1" to "eth0" on the second line. The reason is that Amahi is configured by default to recognize eth0, so all apps would go to that. However our eth0 was taken by the host-PC's network card. Again, ctrl+x and y to save.

2. Change all eth1's to eth0's in the interfaces file. Ctrl+x and y to save.

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces​


3. Finally, reboot your HDA:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo reboot now -h​


You should now be able to access your HDA as a share and as the http://hda link. You can install a VNC server to connect to the HDA using a graphical interface.

Transplanting an existing Amahi server

Here I will present how I transplanted my current (headless) Amahi server, installed on Ubuntu 12.04, the server version, from a PC to the MediaSmart server. The steps below are mainly a reorganization of the steps above.

Preparing the HDA

1. Change the interfaces file to reflect eth1, not eth0:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces​


           auto eth1
           iface eth1 inet dhcp

2. Save using ctrl+x, and hitting "y" to confirm

3. Note the hardware address of the network card:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​ifconfig​


4. Note the IP address of your HDA. This can typically be found by connecting to the router and seeing what IP is assigned, or checking your Amahi Control Panel.

5. Shutdown the server:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo shutdown now -h​


Moving the Hardrive

1. Move the OS hardrive to the MediaSmart server, slot 1. If you are using Greyhole, make sure to move the rest of your data drives as well, and plug these into any slot other than slot 1. Turn on the MediaSmart server.

2. Use Putty to SSH into the previously noted IP address.

3. After opening the 70-persistent-net.rules file below, look for the PC network card hardware address and comment out that whole line. Do not delete incase the server needs to be put back into the old case. Change the remaining hardware address to come up as eth0 (it is currently eth1 at the end of the line).

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules​


           # SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*", ATTR{address}=="00:1d:60:b5:43:66", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth*", NAME="eth0"
           SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*", ATTR{address}=="5c:d9:98:af:21:43", ATTR{dev_id}=="0x0", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth0"

So above, we commented out the first line and change "eth1" to "eth0" on the second line. The reason is that Amahi is configured by default to recognize eth0, so all apps would go to that. However our eth0 was taken by the host-PC's network card. Again, ctrl+x and y to save.

4. Change all eth1's to eth0's in the interfaces file. Ctrl+x and y to save.

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/network/interfaces​


5. Finally, reboot your HDA:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo reboot now -h​


Troubleshooting

Q: Only one line shows up in step 3, and the MAC address is that of my old PC.

A: If there is no second hardware address, we will have to add the MediaSmart server's network drive to eth0. Do the following:

Check what eth1's HWaddr is set to. Copy this information.

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​ifconfig C​


​Edit the 70-persistent-net.rules file:

bash code
sh: warning: setlocale: LC_ALL: cannot change locale (C.UTF-8) ​sudo nano /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules​​


Comment out the line with the mac address that was copied down in the previous step, and add the following line (repacing "55:55:55:55:55:55" with the MediaSmart server's address):

         # SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*", ATTR{address}=="00:1d:60:b5:43:66", ATTR{dev_id}=="0x0", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth1"
          SUBSYSTEM=="net", ACTION=="add", DRIVERS=="?*", ATTR{address}=="55:55:55:55:55:55", ATTR{dev_id}=="0x0", ATTR{type}=="1", KERNEL=="eth0"

Reconnect the Storage Drives

Plug the remaining data drives into the MediaSmart server. If you have Greyhole and are having trouble, check out the Reconnect existing Greyhole storage pool page. Otherwise, the Adding a second hard drive to your HDA page may be of service.

General Troubleshooting

Q: The MediaSmart server's health light is flashing, it is a bluish color

A: This is normal if using the guide above. After experimenting, it seems that the health light indicates that the MediaSmart server cannot detect a valid Windows Home Server installation. I came to the conclusion after using the Recovery Disk (comes with the HP WHS server) to reinstall Windows Home Server onto the hard drive. The blinking stopped after a reboot with Windows, but it came back after I reinstalled Ubuntu onto the same hard drive.

Q: The MediaSmart server is falshing red and blue when booting

A: I have not found this to be of any consequence, once fully booted the server will just flash the blue health sign indicating that Windows Home Server is not installed.