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Author Topic: Home Network Attached Storage device  (Read 7277 times)

Rob Spence

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2013, 01:24:18 pm »

For backup of backup I use a drive dock and a robocopy script. That way I know where my backup is.

 What happens to your backups when the cloud company goes belly up or they screw up?

I also know the NSA isn't trolling my data.

Edit:
I was looking at an Apple Time Capsule and so asked the guys at the Apple Store how to back it up?  They were puzzled. It never occurred to them that the Time Capsule might fail :-(

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« Last Edit: December 16, 2013, 01:27:48 pm by Rob Spence »
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Tommy Peel

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2013, 01:36:13 pm »

For backup of backup I use a drive dock and a robocopy script. That way I know where my backup is.

 What happens to your backups when the cloud company goes belly up or they screw up?
Well the Synology itself(with 2 drives mirrored) would be the first be the first layer of backup, the Amazon(which I seriously doubt would ever have a problem or go "belly up") would be the off site backup in case something physically happened to the drive.

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« Last Edit: December 16, 2013, 01:48:59 pm by Tommy Peel »
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Nate Armstrong

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2013, 02:02:23 pm »

My Synology has faster transfers than our hp g6 server. I also have a Drobo ( probably 1st gen )  its slow as crap.

 I went with Enterprise drives. It will work with NAS drives and normal drives. if your doing cloud as well, i think you could save money and go with standard drives..

the nas has built in applications you can activate.

 CLOUD : There is a app called  Symform
description
"Symform is a cloud data backup service that gives free storage to those who contribute to the peer-to-peer network. Symform is intended for any synology device with 256 or more Ram"

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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2013, 01:16:14 am »

I'm looking at getting my parents a NAS device for Christmas.

I am thoroughly jaded toward any mass-market NAS device. Look at it this way: in order to create a NAS device, they essentially build a tiny PC (running some customized flavor of Linux). After considering the price of the hard drive, you have a PC that costs less than $100 to build. In order to achieve that price point, the components are going to be cheap garbage.

In my experience, they are wholly unreliable. One of my customers has a Buffalo device that I've pretty much given up on because the network interface comes and goes -- sometimes several times in a few minutes with no intervention on my part. Another customer's Netgear device will periodically hang for a few seconds to a minute or two when transferring files -- we just replaced it with a proper server. Another customer purchased a Buffalo device in which the network interface failed within a day of receipt. (To be fair, another customer has two Buffalo devices that have worked OK for several years.)

Don't use a mass-market NAS device to contain the only copy of critical data.

My suggestion is to either purchase an enterprise-grade NAS device (which will cost at least as much as an enterprise-grade server, because that's the hardware that will be used for it) or to build your own using the FreeNAS as the operating system. You'll be able to choose the hard drives and network interface, which in my opinion are the critical components. If you go with a RAID setup, don't use Western Digital Caviar drives -- even WD says don't use them for RAID. As for the network interface, I *really* like the Intel PRO/1000 series.

EDIT: You'll probably find a lot of debate about what hard drive brand is the best or the worst, and you'll find no consensus. My opinion backed by almost 15 years of experience in small-business IT support is that all manufacturers have good and bad product runs, so you should do your homework. If you're paranoid, build your RAID with drives from different manufacturers or product runs.

P.S. -- There are others on this forum with more experience in IT than I. Their opinion is to be respected.
« Last Edit: December 17, 2013, 01:30:07 am by Jonathan Johnson »
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2013, 01:32:57 am »

What happens to your backups when the cloud company goes belly up or they screw up?

There have been some high-profile cloud storage business failures lately. At least one supposedly gave a 30-day grace period, but for many of their customers that wasn't enough time to download all their data even if they could saturate their Internet connections.

Having backups of some form in more than one location isn't a bad idea, either.
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TJ (Tom) Cornish

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2013, 06:34:56 am »


Don't use a mass-market NAS device to contain the only copy of critical data.

My suggestion is to either purchase an enterprise-grade NAS device (which will cost at least as much as an enterprise-grade server, because that's the hardware that will be used for it) or to build your own using the FreeNAS as the operating system. You'll be able to choose the hard drives and network interface, which in my opinion are the critical components. If you go with a RAID setup, don't use Western Digital Caviar drives -- even WD says don't use them for RAID. As for the network interface, I *really* like the Intel PRO/1000 series.

Jonathan, this approach is totally unworkable for 99+% of the home user population, both for cost and complexity.  In my experience, hardware failures are the minor component of data loss.

I am an IT guy by day, and support a couple $xxx,xxx SANs.  They fail too.

I am on my second Netgear ReadyNAS pro (speed and capacity upgrades, not failures) at home, and I've been running them since 2006.  I've installed several others in consulting work.  I have found them to be well made, fast, and so far very reliable.  You do, of course, need to always have multiple copies of your data, but I have found the ReadyNAS boxes to be a good balance between cost, good build quality, and features.  They do cost significantly more than $100, if that makes you feel better.

Many discussions like these have a lot in common with mixer threads - some folks are thrilled to get an X32, others need a CL5.  What's right for most home users with 30GB of stolen MP3s and cell-phone pictures is very different than a professional content creator - both in quantity and value of the data.
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Jonathan Johnson

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2013, 11:29:22 am »

Jonathan, this approach is totally unworkable for 99+% of the home user population, both for cost and complexity.

That's true, but I wrote assuming that the OP and most reader here are not 99%ers. A FreeNAS system is certainly more complex, but can be built on a cheap repurposed box with reliable components and will in many cases perform better than most low-end NAS boxes.

Quote
In my experience, hardware failures are the minor component of data loss.

True -- accidental deletions, inadvertent modifications, malicious editing -- all more likely than hardware failure. But for hardware that's not built very well, the possibility of hardware failure is much higher, and in my experience hard drives and network interfaces are the most likely points of failure.

Quote
I am an IT guy by day, and support a couple $xxx,xxx SANs.  They fail too.

No argurments there, but the catastrophic failure rate is probably lower than a $1xx NAS.

Quote
I am on my second Netgear ReadyNAS pro (speed and capacity upgrades, not failures) at home, and I've been running them since 2006.  I've installed several others in consulting work.  I have found them to be well made, fast, and so far very reliable.  You do, of course, need to always have multiple copies of your data, but I have found the ReadyNAS boxes to be a good balance between cost, good build quality, and features.  They do cost significantly more than $100, if that makes you feel better.

Glad to hear about your good experience. There again, price may be an indication of quality.

Quote
Many discussions like these have a lot in common with mixer threads - some folks are thrilled to get an X32, others need a CL5.  What's right for most home users with 30GB of stolen MP3s and cell-phone pictures is very different than a professional content creator - both in quantity and value of the data.

All about risk assessment. What is the cost to you if there is a failure and your data become inaccessible? If that cost is high, you'll be interested in spending a lot of money for high reliability & availability. If that cost is minimal, you'll be OK with going cheaper. Same thing with consoles... many people here have determined that the benefit of an X32 is greater than the cost of an X32 failing; others have determined that the CL5 is a better fit.

I may have come across as pig-headed against NAS; what I was really trying to do was warn of the risk involved with consumer-grade NAS devices. I'll concede that for some people it will be the right fit, so long as they are aware of and understand the risks.
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Tommy Peel

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #17 on: December 17, 2013, 11:46:54 am »

I am thoroughly jaded toward any mass-market NAS device. Look at it this way: in order to create a NAS device, they essentially build a tiny PC (running some customized flavor of Linux). After considering the price of the hard drive, you have a PC that costs less than $100 to build. In order to achieve that price point, the components are going to be cheap garbage.
The Synology units I've been looking at are $199 w/o the drive(s) which isn't unreasonably cheap for a mini PC; not to mention it come with some nice software, probably much nicer and easier to use than FreeNAS(which I've tried and while it's good for free software I wasn't all that impressed with it).
Quote
In my experience, they are wholly unreliable. One of my customers has a Buffalo device that I've pretty much given up on because the network interface comes and goes -- sometimes several times in a few minutes with no intervention on my part. Another customer's Netgear device will periodically hang for a few seconds to a minute or two when transferring files -- we just replaced it with a proper server. Another customer purchased a Buffalo device in which the network interface failed within a day of receipt. (To be fair, another customer has two Buffalo devices that have worked OK for several years.)

Don't use a mass-market NAS device to contain the only copy of critical data.
I don't see how a RAID multi-drive NAS with NAS grade drives would be worse than a custom PC with the same setup, but critical data(for me that's family pictures and videos and some files) would be kept backed up to the cloud in any event. The NAS is more for convenient local storage and as a local backup to the data on our various laptops.
Quote
My suggestion is to either purchase an enterprise-grade NAS device (which will cost at least as much as an enterprise-grade server, because that's the hardware that will be used for it) or to build your own using the FreeNAS as the operating system. You'll be able to choose the hard drives and network interface, which in my opinion are the critical components. If you go with a RAID setup, don't use Western Digital Caviar drives -- even WD says don't use them for RAID. As for the network interface, I *really* like the Intel PRO/1000 series.

EDIT: You'll probably find a lot of debate about what hard drive brand is the best or the worst, and you'll find no consensus. My opinion backed by almost 15 years of experience in small-business IT support is that all manufacturers have good and bad product runs, so you should do your homework. If you're paranoid, build your RAID with drives from different manufacturers or product runs.

P.S. -- There are others on this forum with more experience in IT than I. Their opinion is to be respected.
For hard drives I'll probably go with either Seagate or WD NAS grade drives which I ASSume would be fine for a RAID config. I know WD NAS drives are in their RED product line, not the Caviar series. Personally the laptop drives I've bought to upgrade machines have all be Seagate(except for the Intel SSD in my MacBook) and I haven't had any problems with any of them.

That's true, but I wrote assuming that the OP and most reader here are not 99%ers. A FreeNAS system is certainly more complex, but can be built on a cheap repurposed box with reliable components and will in many cases perform better than most low-end NAS boxes.
I tried the DIY method once a few years ago with FreeNAS and an old PC I had laying around mainly as a proof of concept before building a newer, better DIY NAS box... I didn't like the results and never built a usable one. In the end I'm looking for a simple system that I can set my parents up with and not have to worry about tweaking all the time to keep it working. With some time and effort I could probably put together a FreeNAS or Linux based system that would work fine but I'd rather have a professionally designed system that works well out of the box.

Anyway has anyone used both the Synology and ReadyNAS products? Which do you prefer and why?
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Jason Lavoie

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2013, 12:00:20 am »

Unfortunately the only desktop in the house is about to be disposed of and it wouldn't be much use as it's a 10+ year old Dell. Everybody is on laptops now(4 total, 2 with a lot of stuff on them); we're trying to get everything(mainly pictures with some videos and music) in one place where everyone can easily access them and save new ones. I do agree that using Carbonite or Crashplan would be a good idea, does anyone know of a online solution that integrates with a NAS box?I'll concur with custom PCs being fussy, I tried it with an old desktop for a little while and it was a lot of trouble getting and keeping it working.
The Synology units do look very nice and have better reviews than the WD models. I may see about splurging on their 2-bay model(which would be around $400 after I bought a pair of NAS rated drives to load it with). Is there a way to connect it to a cloud backup service(not the included personal cloud) such as carbonite or crashplan?

I guess I could get a normal external drive and create a mirror of what's on the NAS once a week or so and store it off site somewhere, but that's not as "fool proof" as the online solution.
The USB over Ethernet looks interesting but one of the reasons I want a NAS is so we can view/listen to the pictures/videos/music over DLNA with our Blue-ray players and game consoles.


After reading everything what I'd like to find is a NAS box that we can store stuff to and have the NAS push everything to an online backup service automatically. Does such a system that won't break the bank exist?

I believe a Synology NAS can be mirrored with a second identical unit, which could be in another physical location..
I've been toying with setting on up at a family or friends' house so that we both have the benefit of a NAS AND both get offsite backup automatically.

I use the cloud function in the Synology NAS to keep work files synced between my laptop and desktop and was pleasantly surprised to find out that the cloud still synchronizes while I'm out of town (with no special router settings or setup. it just worked on its own!)

Jason
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Craig Hauber

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Re: Home Network Attached Storage device
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2013, 12:12:39 am »

That's true, but I wrote assuming that the OP and most reader here are not 99%ers. A FreeNAS system is certainly more complex, but can be built on a cheap repurposed box with reliable components and will in many cases perform better than most low-end NAS boxes.

And if it's that important you can actually buy/build a new (or lightly used) business-grade machine for not all that much (it can be run headless and without having to buy a Microsoft OS)

FreeNAS also can be run off a live CD or USB stick so you can try before you commit, as well as having a fairly quick way to get into your shares if you do have some kind of hardware failure.

FreeNAS doesn't need to be that complex for those who don't know but for those that do it is much more versatile and customizable than the equivalent priced consumer grade devices.

Also if you run a mac-centric system I've found mac-mini's to be a good NAS system just by using the stock file-sharing.  You can connect rather large pro-grade drive enclosures to it very easily.
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