Best NAS to use with mac

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Radioman, Dec 19, 2011.

  1. Radioman macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    I want to get a NAS device to hold backups of three macs in the household and also the space intensive items such as pictures and music.

    Before taking the plunge I would be interested to know if anyone has good or bad experiences with different brands of NAS device.

    I have been looking at Synology DS212j, QNAP TS-210 and Netgear RND2000 so far.

    I want to be able to have at least 2TB of storage and mirrored RAID so I can have a third drive that I take off site for backup. Owing to the volume of data I have cloud storage is not really an option.

    I would appreciate any thoughts on the good, bad ugly etc :)

    Cheers!
     
  2. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #2
    First of all, you need to search. This exact thread pops up probably once a week.

    Second, there is no such thing as "best NAS for mac." All of them have slightly different features and interfaces. You're just going to need to do your research and make sure the one you get will do what you want.

    All that being said- The three you picked out should all work great with OS X. Just a matter of figuring out which one will do what you need and fits in your price range.
     
  3. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #3
    For What It's Worth

    I use Synology NAS stuff. Superb
     
  4. Radioman thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #4
    Thanks for the replies.

    Sorry for posting a thread that crops up often. In my defence I did a search and I found threads that were very similar for sure, but not exactly what I was asking. Maybe I didn't search well enough...
     
  5. flynz4, Dec 19, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2011

    flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #5
    Are you sure that cloud backup is not feasible? Many people are using cloud backup with over 2TB of data. It is far more reliable than manually moving drives off-site. I personally have 6 machines backing up to the cloud, with my largest single machine at 1.2 TB... but many people using cloud backup have more data that I do. Even if your ISP has severe BW caps (I have Comcast with only 250GB/mo)... you can prioritize what gets backed up, and turn-on more each month. Once primary data is backed up, the incremental backups are quite minimal.

    Also, pulling drives from a RAID 1 array, and then rebuilding with rotated drives is a recipe for disaster. I would strongly recommend against doing that. Rebuilding can introduce errors, which are then replicated. You are MUCH better off just copying the data to an external drive and moving that offsite rather than using RAID to rebuild arrays. The rebuild process is to be used after a failure... not part of a normal operation.

    Actually, I recommend against any manual physical rotation process because you are almost guaranteed to fail....nearly 100% of humans do... and then we will be reading about your woes here in the future when you are trying to restore your critical data that was never backed up.

    After owning several NAS boxes, I have finally given up on them. I do have home server that still has 4 2TB drives installed... but I ONLY use it for data I do not care about (liked my ripped video collection) which can be easily re-created if possible. I would NEVER put any primary data on a NAS device... because it cannot be automatically backed up to the cloud (not using my current providers) and I have not found an economical way to do it. As I said... having RAID is NOT a backup strategy IMHO.

    /Jim
     
  6. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #6
    Can I ask where you are getting 2TB of cloud storage and how much you are paying for it?
     
  7. Macman45 macrumors demi-god

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #7
    Cloud Storage

    iCloud > accounts> manage, but I've never seen anything like 2 TB available.

    50gb is the maximum in the uk anyway.
     
  8. Radioman thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    I am interested to know why you are so dead against RAID as a backup strategy, I thought that was the main reason for RAID1 mirrored. And also why do you think pulling drives is a bad idea? This has been standard practice at several businesses I have worked at over the years, and I am not aware of any problems.

    Also I have a 50GB monthly transfer limit, I am in the UK countryside and there's not a lot of options...
     
  9. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #9
    The point of RAID1 is to maintain availability in the event of a drive failure, not to make a backup of said drive.
     
  10. Radioman thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #10
    Now, that doesn't really answer the question does it...

    I was asking why you were against RAID as a backup device and what would go wrong in your opinion if I occasionally swap one of the mirrored drives as an off-site backup.
     
  11. reebzor macrumors 6502a

    reebzor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #11
    It does answer your question. RAID doesn't work that way. The two drives are not independent disks that are copies, they are two drives that are mirrored and part of a set. Now this will depend on exactly how the devices performs the RAID but you can't expect to take a drive out of a RAID set and be able to plug it into a computer and read the contents of it. The drive needs to remain PART OF THE RAID SET in order for it to function. As soon as you break the RAID, the drive won't be readable until it is formatted.

    the R in RAID stands for redundant. Redundant does not mean Backup.

    Now, if I were you- I would have the NAS in a RAID1 (for redundancy), then connect a 2TB external to the enclosure for backup. I know you can do this with the QNAP and I'm sure the other support this too. You can then schedule a full backup of the contents of the array to the External. The external will be what you move offsite. The two drives in the RAID1 are there to support each other in case one of the drives fails.
     
  12. Radioman thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    That's a good idea actually, thanks. Simpler than fiddling around removing a drive from the enclosure and fitting another.

    I was taking a look and there seem to be various options for mounting a former RAID1 disk and accessing data such as here: http://http://www.dtidata.com/resourcecenter/2009/06/15/raid-1-data-recovery-freeware-full-version-raid-software/ though I prefer the idea of a separate 2TB drive backed up from the USB port (as far as I can see most of the enclosures have this facility). I must say I am gravitating to the Synology as a result of the comment further up this thread and research I've been doing online.
     
  13. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #13
    This is what I do with my Synology DS211....using a 2TB Iomega external USB HD and the built-in backup tool that Synology provides.
     
  14. Radioman thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #14
    Sounds like the perfect solution to me.

    Do you use it with Time Machine? Any issues getting Time Machine to work with the NAS on the Synology?
     
  15. MiamiC70 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2011
  16. blevins321 macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2010
    Location:
    Winnipeg, MB
    #16
    It works fine. You can create a dedicated Time Machine user with a quota to stop it from trying to take the entire volume. One note - when a major OS release is published (Snow Leopard to Lion, for example), it usually breaks Time Machine compatibility. Took about 2 weeks after Lion for Synology to update their firmware to support the new version of the AFP to reenable Time Machine. Pretty much same story with QNAP I believe. This didn't bother me very much at all.
     
  17. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #17
    See the following post of mine which explains one reason that I am not a fan of RAID for consumers. I've owned several RAID boxes so I am not just shooting in the dark here:

    http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=14027952&postcount=2

    /Jim
     
  18. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2007
    Location:
    (Central) NY State of mind
    #18
    I don't use it with Time Machine even though it's supposed to work. I use a firewire 800 drive for Time Machine. My issue is with trying to restore a completely hosed system, it's a lot easier to boot from DVD and restore from firewire than to hope the system recognizes and mounts my network drives.
     
  19. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #19
    I use QNAP and found it to be a great NAS, though many people here at MR seem to prefer Synology
     
  20. MiamiC70 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2011
    #20
    I can also tell you which one NOT to use.... LACIE :mad:
     
  21. Radioman thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #21
    I always feel one is paying for the design and the name with Lacie.
     
  22. slowfranklin macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2011
    #22
    Synology, Netgear/ReadyNAS, Qnap, Lacie and all the others use the Opensource software Netatalk for Mac AFP filesharing services. Imo it's worth checking out which vendor supports Netatalk development and which do not: Netatalk support
     
  23. lexvo macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2009
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #23
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A405 Safari/7534.48.3)

    I am also using QNAP and it works great. From what I read, QNAP and Synology are the top brands for NAS.
     
  24. MiamiC70 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2011
    #24
    Your certianly not paying for "support" so when you buy one that becomes unusable due to lack of support for OSX LION it might as well "look" nice. :)
     

Share This Page