PDA

View Full Version : iCloud Not There Yet; When Will Someone Get it Right?




nchambers
Jun 18, 2011, 02:36 PM
iCloud is a move in the right direction, but without the ability to store all my video in the cloud it's not nearly the solution I need.

Here's the situation: I have roughly 300 GB of music, video, and photos stored on my MacBook Pro's hard drive. I currently back up my entire hard drive to an external drive that my wife also backs up her hard drive to. We have an Airport Extreme network connected to a fiber optic 100 MB up/down local ISP. We also have an Apple TV (Black).

This situation is clearly far from ideal. Those 300 GB of music, video and photos are spread across two laptops and some of it is duplicated. Whenever we want to watch video or play music on the Apple TV we have to make sure the required laptop is on, awake and plugged in. It's silly to take up so much space on both computers with video that we rarely watch. It's silly to take up so much space on both laptops with music that has basically been archived but that we occasionally get the urge to listen to. It's silly to take up so much space on both laptops with photos that we only need every once in a while.

What I want to do is to store all of those videos, music and photos on a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device that can stream to a set-top media device (Apple TV or otherwise). I then want to back up both laptops to the NAS and then have all the data on the NAS (backups of both laptops and all the music, video and photos on the NAS) backed up to the cloud (Crashplan or similar). I also want to be able to access all of the information on the NAS over the internet while I'm traveling so that I don't have to worry about taking it with me (although I would load up any movies, music and videos I knew I would need while traveling on my laptop so I had a local copy).

What I wish a manufacturer would provide (ANY manufacturer at this point) is a solution that could do all of that.

Doing a bunch of research it seems that I could hobble something together using a Synology Atom-based NAS heavily modified to run the Crashplan headless client and a jailbroken Apple TV running FireCore to stream media from the Synology. The problem is I don't have any Linux skills and it seems like they would be needed to modify the Synology to run the Crashplan headless client. I'm afraid to spend all that money only to find out that I can't get it up and running myself.

Why can't an OEM provide this solution out-of-the box? It wouldn't have to be with Crashplan or the Apple TV. It's only the concepts that I care about.

Does anybody know of any solutions like this out there or has anybody come up with solutions on their own that don't require a ton of technical knowledge? I can't be the only one that wants something like this.

If iCloud stored all of my music, videos and photos and allowed them to be streamed to all of my devices, that would be a step in the right direction.



marc11
Jun 18, 2011, 05:03 PM
iCloud is a move in the right direction, but without the ability to store all my video in the cloud it's not nearly the solution I need.

Here's the situation: I have roughly 300 GB of music, video, and photos stored on my MacBook Pro's hard drive. I currently back up my entire hard drive to an external drive that my wife also backs up her hard drive to. We have an Airport Extreme network connected to a fiber optic 100 MB up/down local ISP. We also have an Apple TV (Black).

This situation is clearly far from ideal. Those 300 GB of music, video and photos are spread across two laptops and some of it is duplicated. Whenever we want to watch video or play music on the Apple TV we have to make sure the required laptop is on, awake and plugged in. It's silly to take up so much space on both computers with video that we rarely watch. It's silly to take up so much space on both laptops with music that has basically been archived but that we occasionally get the urge to listen to. It's silly to take up so much space on both laptops with photos that we only need every once in a while.

What I want to do is to store all of those videos, music and photos on a Network Attached Storage (NAS) device that can stream to a set-top media device (Apple TV or otherwise). I then want to back up both laptops to the NAS and then have all the data on the NAS (backups of both laptops and all the music, video and photos on the NAS) backed up to the cloud (Crashplan or similar). I also want to be able to access all of the information on the NAS over the internet while I'm traveling so that I don't have to worry about taking it with me (although I would load up any movies, music and videos I knew I would need while traveling on my laptop so I had a local copy).

What I wish a manufacturer would provide (ANY manufacturer at this point) is a solution that could do all of that.

Doing a bunch of research it seems that I could hobble something together using a Synology Atom-based NAS heavily modified to run the Crashplan headless client and a jailbroken Apple TV running FireCore to stream media from the Synology. The problem is I don't have any Linux skills and it seems like they would be needed to modify the Synology to run the Crashplan headless client. I'm afraid to spend all that money only to find out that I can't get it up and running myself.

Why can't an OEM provide this solution out-of-the box? It wouldn't have to be with Crashplan or the Apple TV. It's only the concepts that I care about.

Does anybody know of any solutions like this out there or has anybody come up with solutions on their own that don't require a ton of technical knowledge? I can't be the only one that wants something like this.

If iCloud stored all of my music, videos and photos and allowed them to be streamed to all of my devices, that would be a step in the right direction.

Why not use a small cheap server, like a Mac Mini running a media server like plex. Then your library can live on the mini or live on your nas and backed up on the mini, the mini runs plex which will server your content to any device over wifi or 3g? If you only wanted local servering, the running the mini with your libarary either on the nas or the mini and home sharing would also work.

The problem with your desire to back up everything to the cloud is the size of your media, I am in the same boat, I have almost 500 gigs of movies, music, pics and home video and keep multiple back copies to be safe. No way I can get that into the cloud unless I send a HD out to be loaded for me. What I can do with something like Plex or even my Mac is access my NAS from anywhere I have an internet connection (wifi or lan) for streaming or downloading.

nchambers
Jun 18, 2011, 09:24 PM
Why not use a small cheap server, like a Mac Mini running a media server like plex. Then your library can live on the mini or live on your nas and backed up on the mini, the mini runs plex which will server your content to any device over wifi or 3g? If you only wanted local servering, the running the mini with your libarary either on the nas or the mini and home sharing would also work.

Interesting ideas. I hadn't heard of Plex before, but I had thought about using a Mac Mini running a full version of OS X. That would certainly be compatible with Crashplan without too much fuss. I wish the Mac Mini could be configured with a larger hard drive than 500GB. I guess I could use the Mac Mini Server and put two 500 GB hard drives in there and RAID it, but it's really silly it can't be configured with anything larger than 500 GB. If I could put two 3TB Seagate or WD hard drives in there and treat the Mac Mini Server as an NAS it would be perfect—in theory. In theory because then I'm likely looking at $1,500 for that solution if it even existed.

The problem with your desire to back up everything to the cloud is the size of your media, I am in the same boat, I have almost 500 gigs of movies, music, pics and home video and keep multiple back copies to be safe. No way I can get that into the cloud unless I send a HD out to be loaded for me. What I can do with something like Plex or even my Mac is access my NAS from anywhere I have an internet connection (wifi or lan) for streaming or downloading.

Luckily where I live I have 100 MB/s upload and download speeds over a fiber optics line for about $40 per month and no real usage cap (if you have more than one month of usage over 200GB they start to ask questions, but I'd only have one month of ~1TB of uploads and then it would be incremental after that). Crashplan supports unlimited backup storage for $5/month, so not too bad (and a hell of a lot better than, say Amazon S3). I know the 100 MB/s line would still take quite some time to do the initial backup (a couple of days?), but that's not such a big deal as it would be working in the background.

santaliqueur
Jun 20, 2011, 12:03 AM
I have way more media than both of you combined. It is ALL backed up in the cloud, via Backblaze. With a reliable upload speed (I have Fios), I'm never more than an hour away from being fully backed up. You are only limited by your upload speed, not availability of providers.

Backblaze is $5/month, unlimited backup. But here's where they are different: NO THROTTLING. Once I went over 200GB with Mozy or Carbonite, they throttled me horribly. Backblaze has yet to do this.

flynz4
Jun 24, 2011, 01:16 AM
I'd only have one month of ~1TB of uploads and then it would be incremental after that). Crashplan supports unlimited backup storage for $5/month, so not too bad (and a hell of a lot better than, say Amazon S3).

Crashplan does not throttle... but even better, they also let you seed your backup via a HDD service. I had no cap when I uploaded mine... but now I have crappy Comcast, which has a 200GB cap. When I buy a new iMac, I think I will use the seed service. It is worth the one time fee for me.

/Jim