AnandTech published a great overview of building your own file server, with overviews of current operating system and hardware options.
Whether your budget and storage needs are modest or extensive, we have you covered in the latest builder’s guide to file server systems.
Versia has a comprehensive guide to setting up Debian 5.0 on a VIA ARTiGO A2000 barebones storage server.
This post will explain how to set up a NAS server with Debian running essential services such as ssh, samba, nfs, cups, rdiff-backup and rtorrent with a web interface; and using two HDDs in RAID 1 mode with everything encrypted. It took me awhile to research all bits and pieces, hopefully it will save you time if you are going to do a similar set up.
SmallNetBuilder walks through building a 16 drive RAID5 NAS with FreeBSD 6.