Best NAS for MAC? Around $500 for the enclosure?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Terry Smith, Mar 13, 2010.

  1. Terry Smith macrumors member

    Terry Smith

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto
    #1
    No easy search here that rendered obvious results. I think this is a good question that would be well received by forum readers.

    What would be a good NAS to buy if everything in the house is going to be linked to it.

    I want to use it as a media storage server for the 6 or 7 MACS in the house, plus the occasionally logged in MacBooks.

    I was using a TimeCapsule, but it's bogged down with no help here from the forums - and thinking perhaps it is being asked too much of.

    So general use would be to be the iTunes music repository for the household, including Apple TV files and Movies/TV shows downloaded from iTunes, and anything I feel worth ripping, plus Elgato EyeTV output stuff as a DVR.

    Backup/Raid/itunes server/AFP/Bonjour/ What should we all be looking for?

    Can I please have suggestions? If I have missed any pertinent data points, let me know and I'll flush them out.

    Thanks in advance.

    TMS
     
  2. spaceballl macrumors 68030

    spaceballl

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2003
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #2
    Are you interested in building your own little linux-based NAS? Or do you want something pre-packaged? If you're interested in doing it yourself, I really recommend the Sheevaplug. It's a computer the size of a power-plug, and I LOVE mine. I run AFP services on it so that my drive shows up right next to my time capsule drive in finder. It also works as a squeezebox server, web file server, etc. Here are a couple posts I've made out about it: here and here. The Sheevaplug is $99 and you can hook up a bunch of drives to it.

    If you prefer something a bit more "out of the box" then there's the drobo + droboshare....
     
  3. Terry Smith thread starter macrumors member

    Terry Smith

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    Jan 28, 2009
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    Toronto
    #3
    Not Smart enough to do the Shivaplug thingy...

    Sounds cool, but think I would like to have it just sort of work.

    One of the things I really appreciate about the Mac, is that they, well, just sort of work. I don't have to spend endless hours fiddling with crap that is outside of just using it.

    Thanks for the suggestion, and will take a look at the drobo.

    TMS
     
  4. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

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    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #4
    The ReadyNAS NV+ and ReadyNAS Pros both look very good.
     
  5. Terry Smith thread starter macrumors member

    Terry Smith

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    Jan 28, 2009
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    Toronto
    #5
    Flipping Between the WD Sharespace and the Thescus 4100Pro

    I am sure no one here knows about the Thecus thing, and I read a few posts about Sharespace.

    The WD option looks really easy, but the specs/reviews on the Thecus read swell, but not sure about Apple Support - although it has AFP support.

    The Drobo scares me a little with it's proprietary systems - as I was burned a couple of years back with a Netgear NAS that was the same, and completely lost a years worth of film making work.

    Not easy to find a way to compare anything... almost as frustrating as buying a mattress.

    TMS
     
  6. Terry Smith thread starter macrumors member

    Terry Smith

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
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    Toronto
    #6
    Oh, the ReadyNAS suggestion...

    Pastry, after the failure with the other Netgear NAS, I don't think my experience points to using them again for this sort of thing.

    You are right, they do look good, and thanks for your suggestion.

    TMS
     
  7. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #7
    No prob.

    In regards to your concerns about Drobos. I've been using two for close to a year. They have worked as advertised and I haven't had any problems with them. Since I've had them, I've upgraded every drive that I originally had in them and the drive upgrade process has gone flawlessly.

    The only reasons why I didn't recommend them were because of the slow speeds. For my needs, the speeds are adequate but, for others, they may be too slow. Based on the description of your needs, though, the speeds should suffice. Also, the Drobo is not a "NAS". I have mine connected to a Mac mini which is on 24/7 with file sharing enabled to access them over the network.

    The reason why those ReadyNAS models attract me is because of their X-RAID and X-RAID2 which allows for easy drive upgrades (like on Drobos). I think this is an extremely important feature. My thinking is, people are looking for a multi-bay NAS, chances are that they have need for lots of storage.
     
  8. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

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    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #8
    I've been using a Thecus N2100 for a couple years now to share between PCs, Macs, and my Roku Music player (the Thecus serves up my iTunes library without the need to have a computer running). I have 2 disks in RAID 1....haven't had any issues with it.
     
  9. Terry Smith thread starter macrumors member

    Terry Smith

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    Jan 28, 2009
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    Toronto
    #9
    Hard to set up?

    Hi fhall,

    Do you consider yourself ridiculously technically astute? I really don't have the aptitude to go through lots of complicated questions and set up routines.

    The Thecus looks good (and all the reviews talk about the machinery being top notch) but the software is apparently lacking in user-freindliness.

    Is the speed fast... I do a lot of digital video editing too... and I know local is best - but pulling components (read) from the NAS would be great if it can handle it.

    Lastly, the two GB network hookup - does it bind the streams (aka ghostbusters) producing more throughput, or is one just a fallback for the other?

    Awesome to have someone here who actually uses it live.

    TMS
     
  10. Maks macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2009
    #10
    Synology is going to be one of the best NAS systems you can buy. Native AFP support and the boxes can also be used as web/FTP servers and also run a bittorrent client directly on them...among other features. Pricey, but top of the line.
     
  11. brentsg macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2008
    #11
    Not exactly just a NAS but the HP MediaSmart servers are awesome.
     
  12. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #12

    I've been in IT for almost 30 years, so I'm pretty astute, but you don't need to be to set up an N2100 for most of its functionality...if you want to replace its version of Linux or install 3rd party modules using SSH it helps, but I haven't done any of that - I did upgrade the RAM and firmware.

    The web interface isn't any worse (or better) than most other webcam, router, etc web interfaces. Setting up accounts and share permissions wasn't a big deal. I did give it a static IP so setting up my machines to find it was easier.

    My home LAN is all GigE, but I don't have jumboframes set, so it's fast, but not as fast as it can theoretically be.

    The two GigE ports do not loadshare from what I can tell...according to the manual the two ports have to be on different network segments (IP subnets), so it will act as a network share for two different local nets.
     
  13. Terry Smith thread starter macrumors member

    Terry Smith

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto
    #13
    Well, understood most of that...

    Thanks for the thoughts fhall.

    In a real bind mentally now, as I have other people telling me add raid 0 drives to a mac mini, and let that be the server, and just mirror them for backup.

    My understanding is that this won't be as fast, and is prone to other trouble?

    Thoughts on that.

    FYI - my time capsule is almost dead - with no help found yet - as it took 3 minutes to move a 15 MB file last night. I am almost afraid to keep it turned on - except it's my router too!

    Folks, your thoughts are appreciated... please keep them coming. This weekend is the buy and install - whatever it is!
     
  14. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #14
    IF you go to the Apple TV and Home Theater forum here and search on "NAS" you'll get a lot of info....probably more than you want, but there's a lot of user experience documented in there. Especially the thread titled "Storage to keep my crazy itunes library under control" (or something close to that)
     
  15. abmedic macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2010
    #15
    Dns 323 Nas

    I've been using the DLink DNS 323 with two Western Digital hard drives as my media server and backup hard drive for my (minimal) home network for about a year. The box is small, runs cool & quiet, connects via my router, and provides access to all computers in the house via PowerLine adapters or draft-N wireless (iMac, Mac Mini running Plex, classic xBox running XBMC, laptops that connect wirelessly) where each computer can play movies, TV episodes or music files (unprotected/DRM-free) pretty much simultaneously from the DNS 323. No hiccups so far. The device was pretty easy to setup (purchase hard drives, install and format, move data to hard drives, go), and I am definitely not tech proficient.

    All of my solutions are fire and forget, or the result of closely following tutorials that others have laid out. Main drawback is that the DNS323 only has two bays, and since I'm not running any RAID configuration if one of the drives dies, I'm out of luck. I'm currently looking at a media server/backup destination device from Lime Technology (based on their unRAID software) that provides for more expansion, and RAID-like backup so that if a drive fails the data is not lost. Bottom line - the DNS323 has worked great for me (media server, backup drive, FTP server to access files when away from home; haven't used iTunes server feature). Hope that helps.
     
  16. bjenk macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    Location:
    Vancouver
    #16
    Dlink 323


    I bought one of these today but promptly returned it when I couldnt confirm if it supported Time Machine. Do you currently use it in your configuration?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  17. HeelToe macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2010
    #17
    Dns-323

    Running on a mixed win/mac network. I don't have Time Machine working on it but have an rsync script cron job that lets me sync my macs. All my PCs use robocopy for backup.

    The NAS is less than $200 plus cost of drives. Raid capable if you want. Video and audio streaming. Had it for almost three years now. Rock solid.
     
  18. bjenk macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    Location:
    Vancouver
    #18
    I know i know. I found a store here is Vancouver that has it for $139 but to be honest, I need time machine. My wife is not going to use some hackey workaround. Most NAS drives support it, I find it odd that dlink doesnt. Too bad.

    Costco has the WD World Edition 2 TB for $179 right now. I'll probably end up getting one of those. It says right on their site that they support Time Machine.
     
  19. dcl macrumors regular

    dcl

    Joined:
    May 28, 2006
    Location:
    Calif.
    #19
    Synology ds210j

    I'm very pleased with the Synology ds210j - 2 drive NAS

    Good customer service and easy install - $199 made the deal
     
  20. vert18 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2010
    #20
    Synology 411+ here with four 1Terabyte drives in raid 10 configuration.
     
  21. Mhaddy macrumors 6502

    Mhaddy

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #21
    I can echo the positive feedback on the DNS-323, I love mine.
     

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