Mac file server or NAS

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by priddy, Feb 12, 2014.

  1. priddy macrumors newbie

    Feb 12, 2014
    Hi all.

    I work for a TV station running an all Mac environment.

    The current file server storage raid is soon going to be updated (22tb). Does anyone know which option will be best? Taking into account the speed, permissions/security and stability (some of the files are massive). The video editing is done locally but encoded over the lan, so speed is very important.

    Option 1
    . New Mac Pro (overkill but lets say money isn't an issue)
    . Running both a 20tb & 16tb raid over thunderbolt 2
    . Using server 3.0.2 to edit shared & permissions (currently using 3.0.2 as a server)
    . Using an aggregated link for load balancing /fail safe

    Option 2
    . Mac Mini
    . Running both a 20tb & 16tb raid daisy chained using thunderbolt 1
    . Using server 3.0.2 to edit shared & permissions (currently using 3.0.2 as a server)

    Option 3
    . Using a 20tb & 16tb raid NAS

  2. mvmanolov macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2013
    unless you have 20GbE ethernet you won't notice the difference between TB1 and TB2 over the Lan, although what you can do, is create a LAG with multiple TB to Ethernet adapters and be able to send at max 1000Mbit/s to multiple machines - but you need a switch that allows LAGs.

    In either case though TB2 won't make a difference in throughput. But a nMP will make a difference in having multiple TB ports, so if you use 2 for the DAS you are left with 4 TB + 2Eth for LAN so theoretically you should be able to send data from the nMP to 6 other gigabit ethernet machines at the full speed simultaneously! So this may be helpful.

    Personally if speed is important and $$$ is no issues then perhaps you may want to hire an IT pro to create a proper Lan for your needs. Hope this helps.
  3. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

    Sep 5, 2013
    Oregon, USA
    NAS vs mac is about administration. How many users and how complex are the permissions. Does it matter if team A can edit/erase team Bs files, for example.

    Lowest cost, highest value option would be a 2014 mini with dual TB ports, if such a thing existed...
  4. mvmanolov macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2013
    please correct me if i'm wrong but aren't Nas's relatively slow in terms of throughput? I mean slower than what a LAGed Mac can offer?
  5. Silencio macrumors 68020


    Jul 18, 2002
    Some NAS units have 2-4 1000-BT ports that can be LAGed. Some even have 10GB ports, if your network infrastructure supports it. The higher-end NAS units with 8+ drives can perform quite well overall.

    I think at this point I would still opt for an older Mac Pro (2009 or later), and add a Fiber Channel or SAS RAID. You could also add a PCIe for more 1000-BT ports or 1-2 10GB ports.

    What kind of video footage are you pushing around? How many concurrent users will be hitting the server / RAID?
  6. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

    Feb 6, 2014
    That comes down to the amount of throughput needed, and the number of drives being used. FC with a switch will, as I recall, add more latency than SAS with multipliers.

    From what I can see in the OP, he's working with a large network of video editing systems, and with multiple people, so DAS is not ideal for that kind of environment. FCoE or iSCSI would be best.
  7. mvmanolov macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2013
    I love the assuredness and sheer breadth of your responses...

    Just thought, i'd make a public note of appreciation and acknowledgment. :D
  8. AmestrisXServe macrumors 6502

    Feb 6, 2014
    I'm not sure if that was meant as fact, or witty sarcasm, but I will try to take it as the former--this being the singular problem with written word, as compared to speech--and thank you for the appreciation. I always try to examine things on a case-by-case basis, considering the needs of any individual or group in any assessment that I make, from whatever information I have at my disposal.

    I try to avoid suggesting impractical, over-the-top, or un-ideal solutions to any problem, and work with the most straightforward method of making something work.
  9. chrfr, Feb 14, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2014

    chrfr macrumors 604

    Jul 11, 2009
    That you work for a TV station leads me to make the implication that both speed and reliability are of the utmost importance.
    As someone who currently administers several OS X Servers at work, I wouldn't recommend going with an OS X Server for your replacement. Apple simply doesn't sell real server hardware and Apple has no real commitment to the enterprise market with their server software.
    I'd strongly recommend you seek out and hire someone with proven experience in your market, rather than asking here for advice. Your needs are specialized enough that an internet forum won't cover the details you need covered to come up with a successful solution to your requirements.
  10. mvmanolov macrumors 6502a

    Aug 27, 2013
    Hahah, sorry about that, i should have specified.
    It was definitely meant as a fact :)
  11. unplugme71 macrumors 68030

    May 20, 2011
    Depending on how critical and fast your data needs to be, I'd look into these two options:

    Drobo B800i
    2x Ethernet
    8 drive bays (24TB RAID 5 and 21TB RAID 6)

    Drobo B1200i
    4x Ethernet (1 for management)
    12 drive bays (38TB RAID-5 or 34TB RAID 6 or 24TB RAID 6 w/ Data Aware)
    1 cache drive (mSSD)
  12. Aiva macrumors newbie

    Apr 1, 2014
    I second this. If you have the option of a clean start and unless you specifically need mac os for hfs+ for example, get the pro's to set up a 'proper' server, and learn it over time to maintain it in shape (Linux, bsd et cetera).
    Apple's AFP isn't great on the best of days, and mavericks still isn't mature enough to trust it's SMB in anger :(
  13. RIZZO124 macrumors member

    Nov 15, 2013
    Look at the Synology Rackstation 814 (4 bays) or higher models. They have 2 GE ports that are LAG able.

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