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alpha752
Mar 24, 2011, 04:48 PM
This is slightly off topic, but MacRumors has been a wealth of infomration in the past, so I though id try.

Heres my set up; I have a Windows 7 desktop machine that I rarly use. I just keep it up and running to act as a server for my 1TB Media drive (tv/movies kind of stuff). I typically access this drive via Homegroup on my MBA. I dont like sharing with Windows becuase I can never get the permissions right. I can view and access most data on the drive, but have trouble moving files or deleting things.

I was thinking about taking out the large drive (its not the Windows system drive) and putting it in a NAS enclosure. I thought that would make it easier for both systems to access the drive (I use the Windows box to download files to the drive since its always on, and view them on the MBA).

I have no experience with NAS at all. Can anyone recommend a good (inexpensive) NAS enclosure, or some other (better) way of going about this?

Thanks!



oakie
Mar 25, 2011, 05:04 AM
if you go with a NAS, you'll need either a static IP address so you can access it on the road, or pay for something like DynDNS that keeps track of any changes on a dynamic IP account to ensure you can access it across IP reassignments.

however, instead of paying for a NAS with DynDNS service, you can check out Pogoplug for a $99 device ($50-70 street) that's basically a compact linux webserver that you can plug your drive into and once registered, will allow you to access the drive from anywhere. it will basically do as you're doing now but with their software to make access over a dynamic IP a simple username + password affair.

before running off and spending any money, check out the pogoplug website as they're beta testing new software to convert your windows or mac machine into a pogoplug style device that works with their redirection system but without having to buy a pogoplug device. here's an article about the service: http://lifehacker.com/#!5785352/pogoplug-beta-will-turn-your-computer-into-a-personal-cloud-file-and-print-server

i personally use a pogoplug and i cant say im completely happy with it... i get far more effective use from my time capsule and imac servers using back to my mac, and can access both from my ipad and iphone using connect my mac, either locally or over the internet (wifi or 3G). i assigned a subdomain to redirect to my home's DNS and IP so i can reach them worldwide. my IP is dynamic, but it hasnt changed in over a year since there havent been any service interruptions... but i have other ways of acquiring my home IP should it change so i can make the necessary changes on the road if need be.

sgdnfan
Mar 27, 2011, 09:40 AM
I'm using a 2 bay NAS drive by DLink called the DNS-323. It is pretty awesome -- has a USB port on it so you can have a network printer, has RAID support (or JBOD), etc. I've been using it for probably over 2 years now and haven't had any issues. It was around $120 CDN and that was 2 years ago.

I'm using it in a RAID1 configuration with 2 1TB drives in it. I have 3 mac's (macbook pro, imac, and macbook air) accessing the NAS and doing timemachine backups to it. It can also be 'hacked' to run a utility called funplug that allows you to setup usenet or bittorrent clients directly on the NAS. Pretty cool stuff.

The only issue I have with it is the write speeds. I found it was too slow for writing large amounts of data... I originally was using it for my iTunes library, but found it would take upwards of 2-3 minutes to add an album via iTunes! I since moved my library off the NAS :) The read speeds are fine and I have streamed 1080p HD videos off of it without issue.

I believe DLink is supposed to be announcing a replacement for the 323 at some point this year...

Hope this helps


This is slightly off topic, but MacRumors has been a wealth of infomration in the past, so I though id try.

Heres my set up; I have a Windows 7 desktop machine that I rarly use. I just keep it up and running to act as a server for my 1TB Media drive (tv/movies kind of stuff). I typically access this drive via Homegroup on my MBA. I dont like sharing with Windows becuase I can never get the permissions right. I can view and access most data on the drive, but have trouble moving files or deleting things.

I was thinking about taking out the large drive (its not the Windows system drive) and putting it in a NAS enclosure. I thought that would make it easier for both systems to access the drive (I use the Windows box to download files to the drive since its always on, and view them on the MBA).

I have no experience with NAS at all. Can anyone recommend a good (inexpensive) NAS enclosure, or some other (better) way of going about this?

Thanks!

KnightWRX
Mar 27, 2011, 10:14 AM
if you go with a NAS, you'll need either a static IP address so you can access it on the road, or pay for something like DynDNS that keeps track of any changes on a dynamic IP account to ensure you can access it across IP reassignments.


There are free dynamic DNS services out there, no need to pay. I use no-ip.com's free service myself.

alpha752
Mar 27, 2011, 01:20 PM
Thanks! Ill check out that D-Link box.

I dont really need to access the drive outside of my home network, so Im not concerned about static IP (unless that matters for in network).

My biggest need is to stream video off the drive, over wifi. Some is SD, some is HD 1080p. When I stream it from the Windows box, it skips and stutters, thats why I was looking at a NAS. Could my wifi be an issue? I have a Linksys WRT54G2 which is a G router, in mixed mode, because I have an older PC with a B card. I dont know a ton about networks and wifi. If I got a better router, would I get better speed/performance? My primary consumption device is my 2010 MBA, but I also have a PS3, Wii, older Win XP laptop, and old XP PC all on the network (but not necessarily in use all at once)

neteng101
Mar 27, 2011, 02:24 PM
I have a 2 bay Synology - a very good investment IMO, and faster than most of the bargain NAS boxes like the D-Link, etc. Have the 2010 model, the 2011 one has a bit faster of a CPU...

http://www.synology.com/us/products/DS211j/index.php

There's a higher-end 2-bay Synology even, but you probably don't need the extra CPU power (mostly if you host additional services and such). I do have iTunes streaming (only audio, video won't work without a Mac as the actual server), uPNP media server and such running on mine.

Just get 2TB drives and set them up as a mirror so your data is protected in case anything happens to one of the drives.