I have my HL15, and am happy to answer any questions I can!

Hey folks,

I was very fortunately greeted by a large box with “45Drives” branded tape sealing it sitting in my kitchen after returning from some work errands. Now that I’m home and unboxing it, I’m happy to answer questions, where I can, that may not have been covered.

I ordered the full build, and will be operating in a “controlled” state for the next couple weeks before upgrading anything. Mainly to keep a sort of baseline reference. So I won’t be doing any serious disassembly right now or changes from the Rocky Linux pre-install.

I’ll be assisted in tonight’s installation by my aptly named goodest boy, Rocky!
(Pure coincidence, he was a rescue and we didn’t have the heart to change his name)

His brother Loki (also an ironic name in a homelab) was not as interested.


What’s the cute doggo’s name?

Helps if I read… Sorry! Congratz on your new noisy hotbox, Rocky!

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Bit buried in the post, but ironically, Rocky!

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I have a half size full depth Dell rack downstairs, Cisco and Brocade switches, DL20’s and R340’s. It’s not particularly noisy to be honest, nor do I expect this to be (once I swap to PWM fans).

He does not mind, and honestly LOVES when I’m downstairs working in the rack as he thinks he’s helping!

14/10. Would see unboxing photos with Rocky again.


Rocky requires treats to sit still, as he likes to bark at the camera. He also does not need more treats as it gets dark early now and we can’t work them all off!

But, he will for sure be included in more pictures over time!

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@orix I agree. More pictures of Rocky, please. :slightly_smiling_face:

…and perhaps your HL15 haha. Excited to see yours arrived! Even more excited to see more posts from you about it all set up.

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Will do! It’s in the rack as of last night, but the boys were ready for bed.

So until more HL15 shots….


@orix Those are some beautiful pups! Thank you for sharing them with us.


The main question I have pertains to the CPU cooler. I was looking at building a new server for my homelab and I want to put a nice cooler in it for maximum airflow.

Looking at other posts, it seems as if the max height is 160mm. Can I get away with a cooler at 158mm?
Link: https://www.newegg.com/noctua-nh-u12a-chromax-black/p/13C-0005-001S0

What cooler are you using in your HL15?

That’s a tough one, I’m using the passive preinstalled cooler. So I’m not certain without yanking that off, which I’d rather not do just yet… lol.

TechnoTim did make a post regarding here

A few replies up in that post was Hutch confirming the 160mm, though that does say from the motherboard itself, so you might have to add socket height to that.

Hi @krollja313,

The included dynatron in the full build is rated to 205W passive cooling. So I’m feeling confident 45Drives thinks the 6 case fans are effective at removing the heat with only a passive cooler on the cpu. (although the included Xeon Bronze is only 85W TDP). What CPU are you going to run?

I got the full build and will try the included passive cooler for my cpu upgrade. If it gets too hot or has CPU throttling I’ll go with a Noctua NH-D9 DX-3647

For my needs, I am going with a an i5-13500. I am aiming for an efficient server for what I do, hence why I was going for that cooler. I can go for a lower cooler.

I could lean towards this cooler too.

I like to run things as cool as possible, without liquid cooling :wink:


I wouldn’t stress tbh, mine has been more than fine with temps. The 13th gen are already very efficient, and the i5 should be easy to cool. The fans included in the chassis are quite capable, I felt a really strong current when behind the rack earlier!

If you have been a TrueNAS user in the past and you got to tinker a little with their management gui: How is the software itself. I’ve bee a longtime TrueNAS user and take full advantage of most of the features they provide (except for maybe de-duplication, I don’t have nor am ever planning to buy the amount of RAM needed for that!). I know they use Rocky Linux with ZFS plus their own flavored Cockpit for management. How does their soup of software compare to TrueNAS/Scale?

How do those E and P cores fare in Linux nowadays? I remember there was some kind of issue with I think the E cores.

Would you be so kind as to provide data on how the default PSU>PDB is wired?

Counting ports left to right, and top to bottom;
Do the cables to the mid-board power distribution come from ports 5-8, 3-4+10-11, or a combination?

I’m still unsure of what and how the use it.
Looking at the Toughpower PF3 1050W in hopes of running the HL15 as designed + 4-8 SSD cache (with a little efficiency boots via Platinum)

Other than the “20A/5v rail” comment nobody has shared documentation on how exactly it’s configured (that I can find) so I have no idea what to look for.


The PSU mid-board that delivers power to the backplane takes 4 Molex connectors and adapts them to a harness that runs up to the backplane. As long as you use the Molex cables supplied with your PSU you shouldn’t have any issues because the 4-pin Molex connector on the midboard is a universal connection.

the only time you need to worry about repinning the connector the the pinout of a PSU is if you are trying to use a harness that plugs directly into your PSU that was not supplied with it. This would only happen if you buy a full build and try to swap just the PSU out and not change any other wires

If you do plan to buy a full build and change the PSU make sure you either check the pinout on the 2 PSU to make sure they are the same for the harnesses or change out the harnesses with the ones that come with your new PSU that way you know that the correct power is being sent to the correct output on the other end of these cables

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I’ve had quite a struggle with both TrueNAS Core and Scale. It’s a VERY heavy learning curve. The UI is the primary means of interaction, and it’s rarely recommended to touch the CLI. My largest issues have been with ACL’s, Permissions, and Shares (mainly SMB). There’s some attempts at making a more Windows based ACL editor that does some POSIX permissions on the backend. But honestly I always ended up with a headache and more frustrated at the end.

So far, Rocky + Houston/cockpit has been great! It offers fixes for SELinux, logs for services, etc. It feels like a pane of glass and overview of your Linux box, which in comparison TrueNAS feels more like an appliance “based” on linux/BSD. I’m actually rather happy and may convert my original TrueNAS box as well.

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See Hutch’s answer. You can also always find a Corsair PSU that is platinum and the correct wattage, they list cable compatibility on their site.

Of the dozen or more Corsair PSU’s I’ve used over the years in mine and other’s builds, I’ve always been pleased.