Best setup for home movies and pic

crazycat

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 5, 2005
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0
Hello

Whats the best setup I can have that will allow me to store all my home movies and thousands of pictures privately. I was thinking of the latest iMac, with an external hard drive to store the media on and unplug it before updating the computer. My aim is to have all my media on one Mac that will only be used for storing and organizing family photos, that is not connected to the net.

Thanks
 

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,140
6,573
The "external drive" scenario is a good one, but remember that only one copy of your data is not enough!

That means you'll need a SECOND external hard drive to serve as a backup drive (I suggest either CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper to create and maintain it).

A THIRD backup is even better, particularly if you can store it in another location (as a precaution against disaster).
 
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MSastre

macrumors 6502a
Aug 18, 2014
592
262
The "external drive" scenario is a good one, but remember that only one copy of your data is not enough!

That means you'll need a SECOND external hard drive to serve as a backup drive (I suggest either CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper to create and maintain it).

A THIRD backup is even better, particularly if you can store it in another location (as a precaution against disaster).
Great advice!! Wholeheartedly agree.
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,155
What is the approximate size of the files you wish to store?
Are you actively adding new movies/photos to the ones you wish to keep?
What kind of a budget are you looking at?
Do you have a preference of USB vs. Thunderbolt?
Do you care whether the setup uses 3.5-inch desktop HDDs, 2.5-inch laptop HDDs, or 2.5-inch SATA SSDs?

If you are going to store all of the files on the iMac's local hard drive, one external drive for Time Machine, and a second external drive for clones, would IMO be a good way to go to get the golden number of three. The Time Machine provides protection from software corruption (and some protection from hardware failure), where as the clone will provide protection from hardware failure in a form that is actually bootable. Additionally, the Time Machine drive can be left plugged in continuously, where as the clone drive can be plugged in only when creating a new backup and could be stored in a different physical location (e.g., a fire-resistant safe) when not in use.

If you are NOT going to store all of the files on the local hard drive, then it may be worth consideration of a RAID enclosure with a level that provides protection from physical drive failure, such as RAID 1 (where identical data would be saved to two separate physical disks automatically), and configuring the Time Machine drive to backup both the local hard drive and the RAID volume.
 

crazycat

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 5, 2005
1,319
0
What is the approximate size of the files you wish to store?
Are you actively adding new movies/photos to the ones you wish to keep?
What kind of a budget are you looking at?
Do you have a preference of USB vs. Thunderbolt?
Do you care whether the setup uses 3.5-inch desktop HDDs, 2.5-inch laptop HDDs, or 2.5-inch SATA SSDs?

If you are going to store all of the files on the iMac's local hard drive, one external drive for Time Machine, and a second external drive for clones, would IMO be a good way to go to get the golden number of three. The Time Machine provides protection from software corruption (and some protection from hardware failure), where as the clone will provide protection from hardware failure in a form that is actually bootable. Additionally, the Time Machine drive can be left plugged in continuously, where as the clone drive can be plugged in only when creating a new backup and could be stored in a different physical location (e.g., a fire-resistant safe) when not in use.

If you are NOT going to store all of the files on the local hard drive, then it may be worth consideration of a RAID enclosure with a level that provides protection from physical drive failure, such as RAID 1 (where identical data would be saved to two separate physical disks automatically), and configuring the Time Machine drive to backup both the local hard drive and the RAID volume.

I am planning on using a 27 inch iMac, with two external hard drives. One will be beside the iMac, the other backed up when new media is added and be stored in a different location.

I wonder if having all the media on the external drive and disconnecting it before doing updates on the iMac is the best solution or should I just using the iMac in offline mode all the time, is that even feasible and how much will not updating my iMac effect me.
 

nexesnex

macrumors regular
Sep 18, 2014
183
214
What is the approximate size of the files you wish to store?
Are you actively adding new movies/photos to the ones you wish to keep?
What kind of a budget are you looking at?
Do you have a preference of USB vs. Thunderbolt?
Do you care whether the setup uses 3.5-inch desktop HDDs, 2.5-inch laptop HDDs, or 2.5-inch SATA SSDs?

If you are going to store all of the files on the iMac's local hard drive, one external drive for Time Machine, and a second external drive for clones, would IMO be a good way to go to get the golden number of three. The Time Machine provides protection from software corruption (and some protection from hardware failure), where as the clone will provide protection from hardware failure in a form that is actually bootable. Additionally, the Time Machine drive can be left plugged in continuously, where as the clone drive can be plugged in only when creating a new backup and could be stored in a different physical location (e.g., a fire-resistant safe) when not in use.

If you are NOT going to store all of the files on the local hard drive, then it may be worth consideration of a RAID enclosure with a level that provides protection from physical drive failure, such as RAID 1 (where identical data would be saved to two separate physical disks automatically), and configuring the Time Machine drive to backup both the local hard drive and the RAID volume.

Thanks for clarifying the CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper suggestion. I was a little confused as to why TimeMachine wasn't good enough....
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,155
I am planning on using a 27 inch iMac, with two external hard drives. One will be beside the iMac, the other backed up when new media is added and be stored in a different location.

I wonder if having all the media on the external drive and disconnecting it before doing updates on the iMac is the best solution or should I just using the iMac in offline mode all the time, is that even feasible and how much will not updating my iMac effect me.
If you have a good backup solution, I personally think you will be good to go either way. My mother still uses an older iMac with the final stable release of Mountain Lion almost exclusively for importing and storing raw photo images because it meets her needs well and she simply needs operational stability (as it's an offline system used for a single purpose, she does not need new features or security updates.) In a few years after APFS has been around a while and if it makes compelling improvements over HFS+, she might reevaluate that situation, but for now it works very well for what she needs.

So the media will also be on the Mac's local disk in addition to the two HDDs? If so, I think you are golden with three separate copies and have a great plan of action. :)
 

crazycat

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 5, 2005
1,319
0
So the media will also be on the Mac's local disk in addition to the two HDDs? If so, I think you are golden with three separate copies and have a great plan of action. :)
No. The media will be on the external hard drive, I will use another hard drive as a back up stored off location. My thought process is that if I ever need to update, connect to the internet or do online stuff I can just unplug the external drive. That was I can still do what I need to be done without any risk to my media.
 

ZapNZs

macrumors 68020
Jan 23, 2017
2,310
1,155
No. The media will be on the external hard drive, I will use another hard drive as a back up stored off location. My thought process is that if I ever need to update, connect to the internet or do online stuff I can just unplug the external drive. That was I can still do what I need to be done without any risk to my media.
In that case I would shoot for 3 hard drives, if it were me personally. A 2-drive RAID 1 setup + 1-drive TM might be a simple execution to get two separate style solutions to account for both corruption and disk failure, across three physical disks.
 

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