Home Network/Server

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by eightysjoe, Mar 6, 2013.

  1. eightysjoe macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    #1
    Hello everyone. As I'm sure you'll be able to tell I am new to the forum. I've used a bunch of the existing forums to solve multiple problems I have run in to in the past and always find this site very helpful.

    Before you read any further I would like to preface all of this with a warning statement: I am in now way a computer expert. I don't claim to know the majority of correct terminology/jargon associated with the questions I am about to ask. I am just very interested in learning and setting up some sort of home network to manage my media.

    As I'm sure many of you are in a similar situation, the amount of media I have begun to acquire is getting out of hand. I have about 3 2TB external drives almost full with a mixture of movies, music, and home photos/videos.

    While the external drives have been a god send for collecting all of this information I am beginning to become paranoid that it is going to disappear some how. Either a broken drive, house fire, spilled drink accident, or unthinking friend/spouse doing a delete of something they for sure should not.

    The idea was brought to me to just do a cloud back up of all this data. I plan on following that advice, but the idea of whatever company I choose to save my data with going under is also scary.

    So this is the plan: I want to build a home network/server (Again I'm not sure what the proper term would be in this case). I will use the cloud and the home server, plus have an extra copy of all the data on another set of drives, not connected to the network.

    I would like at least 8TB (with the option of adding more in the future) of space available to store my current data and any additional data I am going to come across. I would like to be able to access this data from any computer/tablet/phone that I give the password to the server.

    This might be a simple question or it might be complex. Right now I have the Mac Airport Extreme to push my external drives to all the computers in the house. This works, but I want something more solid.

    Any advice would be appreciated. I'm not lazy, I can do research into exact models/brands and such. I just need help to figure out exactly what I am looking for.

    Also, a computer to run the server would be required from what I understand. I was thinking an iMac just because I prefer iTunes to interact with my media, but I am open to any advice in that area too.

    I appreciate any and all replies in advance. I will check back fairly frequently and will probably have more questions with each reply. I'm not trying to be a pest, I just really want to learn.

    -Joe

    [NOTE: I apologize to any admin if this I post this in the wrong Forum. I will comply to any admin request to move this Thread]
     
  2. phoenixsan macrumors 65816

    phoenixsan

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2012
    #2
    Seems to me....

    you have two options, IMHO:

    a) Option Sinology NAS attached to least expensive Mac possible (mini)
    b) Option outdated Mac Pro with internal hard drives

    Not so sure about what option is more cheaper. But from the top of my mind and reading your post, these two things strike me. Option B supports SATA II disk drives, officially up to 8 TB and unofficially up to 12 TB.

    Hope that helps.


    :):apple:
     
  3. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

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    In the core of a black hole.
    #3
    Option A would be better IMO, reason, the Mac Pro uses lots more electricity, if it's on 24/7 this will save lots of money, and, as a side affect it is greener.:)
     
  4. eightysjoe thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    #4
    Wow. I didn't expect a response so quickly. I appreciate these answers guys. And as I predicted, I have a few questions.

    These options I'm going to assume are awesome, but they kind of confuse me. Sinology NAS attached to a mac mini. I did a quick search and the specs i'm finding are saying 256MB memory. Would I attach this to my external drives? If so I may need to find a model with more than 2 usb ports. Unless a split would be possible? I've always thought those slow the functionality of drives down, however. And i'm not looking to do that.

    Option B seems to be way more expensive from the quick search I did on it, but I'm sure I could find them way cheaper than on the apple store. I just wouldn't even know what to do with a quadcore. Do you run it like a computer on its own?
     
  5. phoenixsan macrumors 65816

    phoenixsan

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2012
    #5
    Ok.....

    I was missing a very important point: You actually have 3 2TB external discs :eek:. If so, you are right about the ports needed in the Sinology box. Sinology products usually are sold/come diskless. But still, I have heard there are Sinology boxes with 4 USB ports. And I know for sure that Seagate makes a line of hardware called Black Armor what offers NAS and more than 2 USB 2.0 ports.But I dont know how much cost and about diskless/external disk options. Of more concern is what usually the ports are USB 2.0 (slower). Yet, exists some NAS hardware with 4 or more USB 3.0 ports, but it is my understanding that it is very expensive. The Mac Pro option is doable, but you will need a USB card to manage/access the external drives currently you have (if you have/want USB 3.0 speeds).....

    :):apple:
     
  6. eightysjoe thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    #6
    Yeah. It is a lot of data. I have just about every movie imaginable. And have spent hours upon hours sorting threw the music. On deployments in the army everyone has an external drive and you just pass movies and music around. I'm talking like 30GB per person in a platoon. And then you meet up with people in other sections.

    And I'm like a sponge. I never say no to data. If the internet ever crashes and the world ends, I want to be able to watch movies and listen to music, damn it.

    I'll be honest, a lot of it is probably duplicates of movies/music & such. I still haven't gone threw all of it. I'm just trying to set up this network for when I get back stateside so I can begin to sift threw everything.

    I do like the idea of the Sinology NAS with the mac mini. What if I got a powered USB split and used all powered USB drives. as long as I don't access more than one drive at a time, that should work, right?

    and the USB 3.0 is preferred. If I am going to buy this, I want to at least buy the newest and best. So it is useful as long as possible.
     
  7. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Location:
    Xhystos
    #7
    It's not clear to me why you want a server and a computer. If "all" you want to do is to get access to your stuff easily from any device, then a single NAS unit should be enough. A NAS is a server after all and runs from its own internal computer.

    If you pick the right NAS, then you can use USB drives with it as well as the internal drives. If you are worried about additional backup, then you will need a second set of drives to mirror the drives in use.

    Am I missing something ?
     
  8. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2007
    Location:
    In the core of a black hole.
    #8
    I am not really a favorite of a NAS ("Slow if wireless"), I prefer attached drives.
    The MacPro is easier, just drop in the HD's and off you go, and the cheapest MP 1.1 would be enough for this and aren't that expensive, most likely the cheaper way, but they do consume much more power than the Mini.
     
  9. phoenixsan macrumors 65816

    phoenixsan

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2012
    #9
    And still....

    putting my mind to work in these hours, exists another options:

    Mac mini normal + Mac OS X Server (10.7) + USB 3.0 hub and

    Mac mini server + USB 3.0 hub

    The option 1 seems to me cheaper. But you have to buy the Server version of OS X apart. In the option 2 that is not need, because the mini Server version comes with the OS X Server license/software. But the mini itself is more expensive. With the added USB 3.0, you can use one port on the mini and manage/control the external discs you currently have. But the server version have 4 USB 3.0 ports and maybe the hub is not too needed. And I think the server version comes with 2 TB of storage as a bonus.

    :):apple:
     
  10. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

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    #10
    Everything is slow if wireless.
     
  11. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

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    #11
    True, but just a few years to go and we get ac/ad
     
  12. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

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    #12
    Yippee !! Agreed.
     
  13. justperry macrumors 604

    justperry

    Joined:
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    #13
    But then the files get bigger and bigger, super bluray, AAC instead of mp3 and so on which again will be slow to transfer.:eek:
     
  14. drsox macrumors 65816

    drsox

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2011
    Location:
    Xhystos
    #14
    My files are already big - Lossless Audio and BluRay, but then I usually use a CAT6 LAN for moving stuff around. I'm looking for quicker access and fast transfer for all the small files from WiFi devices. AC/AD enabled AEs are what I want, then I'll swap out my MBA.
     
  15. troy14 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2008
    Location:
    Las Vegas (Summerlin), NV
    #15
    Well how much are you willing to spend?

    A good NAS unit can do what you're asking, If you wire it up with gigabit Ethernet the speeds should be decent.

    I can't imagine getting terabytes of your storage into the cloud though, and how much that would cost.

    I would get a ReadyNas Ultra 6 (or plus)... you could put in 6 3TB hard drives for a total of 9GB mirrored to protect you against drive failure. A fire, flood, etc would still be detrimental though.

    This way you can access your NAS from your home network and any computer with Internet access. Of course the transfer speeds over the Internet might not be that great depending on your ISP upload speed....

    But, this set up is very costly. Seems like a lot to just back up some music and bootleg movies. Home videos / photos I understand though
     
  16. bt22 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Location:
    Alabama
    #16
    I think these are really nice units. You can connect to them via usb 3.0 or Ethernet and you can buy DX510 to add additional storage, should you need it. It also states that you can upgrade the internal memory on this unit to 3 GB. I think something like this would be a better solution than a Server or PC running 24/7. You could plug this into your computer of choice and use iTunes and stream all of your media throughout your house. And this may also give you the ability to access this from outside your house.

    http://www.amazon.com/Synology-DiskStation-Diskless-Attached-DS1512/dp/B007CFRF72
     
  17. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    #17
    I would go with a good sized NAS device and hardwire it to your network. Copy all your existing media over to it and maintain the originals as a backup.

    The NAS will work with your existing computer(s) and isn't specific to Mac or PC.
     

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