External HDD or NAS-System

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Rzyrek, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. Rzyrek, Jun 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2013

    Rzyrek macrumors newbie

    Mar 30, 2012
    Hey. Hope you can help me.

    Im searching a good way to store my data (photos (iPhoto-/Aperture-libary), movies (streaming to apple tv through iTunes), documents, ...) + time machine of my macbook air.

    1. 2x external HDD 3Tb plus an USB-Hub (approximately 396€)
    2. NAS with two 3Tb internal HDD with RAID1. (Synology DS213j + 2x WD Red = approximately 460€)

    What would you recommend?
  2. DoctorK4 macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2011
    I use an external 2TB USB 3.0 HDD plus a NAS. I think you'll have much better success with Time Machine backups on the USB drive. Time Machine over a network with a non-Apple network solution can work, but can also frequently be unreliable.
  3. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816


    Nov 27, 2010
    Actually the NAS he chose does use the actual Time Machine protocol.

    Personally I highly suggest going with the Synology NAS. Aside from the built in Time Machine, it has a whole host of apps to handle just about anything you could ever want it to do. I think of it like, I may not need all the extra functionality now, but later, who knows. Better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it.

    I don't have a Synology NAS at the moment, but I have been researching them a lot because I need to upgrade my frumpy little DLink to a decent 4-bay.
  4. DoctorK4 macrumors regular

    Jan 31, 2011
    There are quite a few NASes that use the Time Machine protocol, but technically it's not supported by Apple. I used to use one but from time to time would get an error that my backup was corrupt and I had to build a new one. It's not an infrequent complaint of people using third-party network Time Machine solutions. I was a little more concerned about reliability so I went with the USB drive for Time Machine and use the NAS for media storage.
  5. Ralphalph macrumors member


    Mar 7, 2009

    I use the Synology 212j and the thing works like a charm. I have never had an error or any problems. The best backup is the one you use.

    The Synology also has software to work as an iTunes server, although I have not tinkered with that. Plus with that arrangement you can backup any number of computers, and allow yourself access to the files through the internet.
  6. fongkahchun86 macrumors member


    Nov 7, 2010
    If you are looking at iPhoto/Aperture library management, an external HDD will be a better option than a NAS.

    However, if you are looking for Photo storage, go for Synology PhotoStation. Not only it store your photos in a RAID configuration, it will also generate a web gallery for you. Though a static IP will give you that add benefit.
  7. SDDave2007 macrumors regular

    Apr 12, 2007
    I too have been using a Synology box for about 2 years now... and it it configured to Time Machine an iMac, a MacPro and two MBP labtops on my network.... and it works flawlessly..... not to mention it also streams video to the TV in the living room.

    Note : Photostation is not a Synolgoy box... it is software that comes standard with the basic NAS unit
  8. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    Just chiming in, I also have a Synology DS212j and can't imagine my home network being complete without it.
  9. coolspot18 macrumors 65816

    Aug 16, 2010
    I have a Synology NAS and it works well with OSX. However, I stopped using Time Machine, I found Carbon Copy Cloner to be much more reliable than TM.
  10. Rzyrek thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 30, 2012
    I also took a look for the Photostation, but I read that you need minimum an DS213+ that this software works sufficient. Or does somebody use the DS213j with it and has no problems? I've got like 100Gb of Photos.
    DS213+ would be 150€ more. Or is the price difference worth it for a normal user?
  11. Dalton63841 macrumors 65816


    Nov 27, 2010
    I am currently working on deciding between these two:

    They both seem to have a decent set of apps, but I believe only the Synology handles Time Machine. Moreso, I need to know how well they handle the plex media server, and potentially transcoding(I don't think they will). Also built in tools like Rsync, Unison, or something like that. I believe they are effectively linux OS'es so those types of tools should be there...

    Anyone know of any gotcha's I should know about or look out for?

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