Backup Strategy for small studio

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by shosterman, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. shosterman macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2011
    Hello all,

    I've been asked to help repair a backup system for a small art studio and wanted to ask for suggestions.

    They have maybe 6 or so Mac desktops/laptops and a mac mini server. They also have an older Netgear ReadyNAS RND4450 and a newer Synology DS412+ plus 2 Western Digital My Book devices a 2TB USB 2.0 and a 3TB USB 3.0. Both the MyBooks are connected via USB to the server.

    The owner of the studio also has another DS412+ at her home.

    The current system hasn't backed up in months, but was setup in the following way.

    All the current work being done is stored on the ReadyNAS which has 4 share folders. All users in the studio connect to those shares using the same master credentials. That ReadyNAS then backs up to the mounted 2TB MyBook on the server. About 1.5TB being used

    All the archived work is stored on the DS412+. Again, all users in the place have access to the archive share. That DS412+ backs up to the mounted 3TB MyBook on the server. About 2TB being used.

    I mention the connect credentials because I think a future task should be to set permissions on some of these based on employee access.

    CCC is on the server so I think that's what was meant to be used or previously used but I didn't see much evidence of it. I also found Arq on the server so I think they planned on using Amazon Glacier for offsite. Lastly, the server is being used as a workstation for employees which I think should be avoided once I get the backup plan operating.


    My plan was to keep the ReadyNAS and Synology as they were, but then move the respective MyBook to a USB port on each NAS device and have the NAS backup directly to the drive and not use the server as an intermediary. For offsite, I will set the Synology in the studio to backup to the one at the home.

    However, I am also thinking to have the Synology host everything and connect both MyBooks to it or repurpose the ReadyNAS to hold the local backups.

    At the same time how well does the Synology do incremental backups? If I leave the MyBooks connected to the server I think CCC might do a better job of the local backup task. Plus store a boot image of the server on USB. Don't think you can boot to a networked image.

    Lastly does the other Synology work well enough for offsite? Should I consider CrashPlan or Glacier as that's a lot of data to push up unless I can seed the backup.

    I have more concerns, but I figured this is a good start. I look forward to input.

  2. DaPhatty macrumors member

    Jul 12, 2008
    Wow, that's one hell of a task before you. Before I get too specific with my advice, I have several questions.

    1. Could you elaborate on the types of backups your client would like (Full Time Machine Backups, file level backups, share level backups, etc)? Are they leaving that up to you?
    2. Is there any particular reason why the staff need access to both NAS devices? (In your environment, it is best practice not to keep backups on the same device as your network share.)
    3. Is the studio owner open to buying more equipment for this endeavor? Another Synology perhaps?
    4. What is the capacity of both NAS devices? (I read your entire post but only saw storage info on the USB drives. Maybe I missed it?)
    5. Lastly, how much data are you realistically looking to back up? It sounds like there is a lot of data spread out across the two NAS devices, not to mention data on each OS X machine that may not exist anywhere else. This info will directly affect your backup footprint.

    From what you've stated so far, you certainly have a good foundation to work with. You may only need some supplemental hardware. I think you are on the right track with using the Mac Mini to manage the backups. (IMO, the easiest solution includes using the Mac Mini Server as the central management point for all of the OS X backups for ALL of the devices.) But how and where you store this data depends on the answers you provide to the questions above. The Synology can also provide supplemental backup functionality that will allow you more granular control over certain types of backups, but again, I need a clearer picture of the environment before making recommendations that would be suitable for your situation.

    - Rob
  3. shosterman thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jun 23, 2011
    Good questions.

    The backups are left up to me. Time Machine for workstations would be nice to restore from failures would be nice, but besides applications I don't plan to have them store any data just simple terminals. Versioning would be nice if the overhead is not too large. Not sure if that answers your question or not.

    No reason. Only now because it's setup like that. The ReadyNAS was purchased in 2007 and the Synology last year as capacity needs grew. If I understand correctly, you are saying not to use one NAS for backups like Time Machine, etc., while at the same time hosting the data shares?

    Yes. But they have 2 Synology DS412+, 1 Netgear ReadyNAS, and 2 2TB MyBook's, so I'm hoping we can work with what they have.

    Sorry, I can't find in my notes the storage. I will get capacities tomorrow.

    Again, will look at capacities tomorrow, but ignoring the likelihood that some data is redundant, I would say 4TB of data to be backed up.

    I hope that helps and please ask again if I didn't answer something completely.

    From what you said I'm picturing the Synology as the single device that hosts all the network shares, both Current and Archive. While the ReadyNAS could host Time Machine backups and the Synology backup. However, I'm excited to hear what you have to say now.
  4. jakesaunders27 macrumors 6502a


    Jan 23, 2012
    United Kingdom
    Sorry to bring back an older thread but google "Chase Jarvis Workflow" thats a backup! You might be able to get something out of that, its a good watch.
  5. Trhodezy macrumors regular

    Dec 29, 2010
    Although many people will disagree:

    If they have high-speed internet; Bitcasa. Just have a ganders. Might not be up your way, but still - have a look. :)

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