MacMini Server - i want one but not sure why.

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by bluap84, Feb 24, 2011.

  1. bluap84 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #1
    I am a Apple Fan boy through n through. Well i like to call myself the MAC daddy haha!

    I have just come across the mac mini server. I want it!!! But not sure it can replace my current set up.

    In my garage, i have a Dell 390 workstation with 4 TB of space. I manily use this to keep all my movies, music, and media on. I stream my movies from it via shared drives to my WD TV Live box. Which i love... I use programs like, Vuse / Handbrake actually they are the most common apps i use. Eventually id like to be able to back up my external drives from my imac to the server.

    Just wondering if the mac mini server could replace that. As the Dell is power hungry, large and just plain ugly. But it does have 4TB worth of space.

    Could the mac mini replace this setup, and if so how?
     
  2. zedsdead macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    #2
    It could, but it doesn't have that much space. I would hook it up to an external raid array.

    I would recommend a Drobo S.

    It is not cheep, but I have 9 gigs of drives in it, 6 available. Great product, keeps your data safe, it's fast, and easily expandable.
     
  3. bluap84 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 12, 2011
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    UK
    #3
    I see you got FCP in your sig, i use Premiere CS5 and Photoshop you suggest the drobo would be good stuff like that? I have checked out the drobo before, they do look good. I just need something i can remote into and control when im away kick off downloads etc...as the server will be headless (no monitor)
     
  4. MikeDTyke macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #4
    Are you talking about the mac mini or the mac mini server?

    if it's the dual HD server, then you won't get a built in DVD drive.

    Personally if you want to keep power down, i'd invest in something like a qnap TS410 NAS. It'll take 4 drives, up to 8TB and will allow you to protect the data by using RAID 1,5 or 6. You can plug your existing external drives into it. It has built in mac/win/ftp sharing, upnp, itunes sharing, iphone access and will draw less than 40 watts at peak usage. Then use your dell for ripping dvd's. I'm assuming it's a hackintosh if you are running handbrake?

    amazon linkie

    :D

    EDIT: just noticed your question to the other poster. This is indeed headless and can do bitorrent in the background.
     
  5. zedsdead macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2007
    #5
    The regular Drobo was too slow for HD video editing, but the Drobo S works great. It is not necessary as fast as a RAID-0, but I have had no slow downs or stuttering in FCP with the Drobo S.
     
  6. bluap84 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #6
    Hmm its actually a windows PC (dont hurt me :( ) haha
    so i remote in via logmein and use it that way. Im ok for a cd drive as i dont really need anything which uses a cd apart from installing the OS

    Just looking at that NAS...oooooooo have you got one?
    Whats the interface like? I am put off by linux web interfaces, id rather have something like logmein. if that makes sense? I feel its more controllable...but please correct me if im wrong
     
  7. MikeDTyke macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #7
    I won't hurt you for running windows as long as it's either 2K, XP or 7, each to their own and some software just exists/works better on PC.

    The UI is an ajax webpage, it's pretty fast and fairly self explanatory as long as you don't drift into the dark recesses of iscsi targets, luns and whatnot.

    I set one up for a local business that needed basic filesharing/backups. Have to admit i didn't play with all the bells, but qnap support were helpful and it was plenty fast for a group of 8 office users.

    I like the fact that it could remain online all the time and draw ~12 watts on standby and less than 40 when 4 drives were up and spinning. It's got a load of ports on the back so plugging in external usb/esata drives and sharing them was a piece of piss.

    If you feel you have plenty of drives already and maybe only want a small proportion of your storage protected against hardware failure, have a look at it's 2 bay little brother. QNAP TS219. Does all the same just less internal disks.
     
  8. bluap84 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 12, 2011
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    UK
    #8
    NAS noob question now.
    how do you transfer files between folders and drives etc?

    i think thats whats putting me off is ease of file management
     
  9. MikeDTyke macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #9
    Ooh thats an interesting question, that you would think simple to answer. NOT!

    So lets say you have the NAS with 4 internal drives and say an external off usb.

    The 4 drives will typically be in an array, so one protected filesystem. Off this you can have one or more network shares using this one filesystem, each can be restricted user/pc access and can have a usage limit set.

    External drives are seperate filesystems so a network share would normally need to be set up to show the contents of the external on the network.

    So we end up with something like:

    Internal 4 drives = Filesystem 1 = Network share 1
    External 1 drive = Filesystem 2 = Network share 2

    So say you had a file on the external and you needed it on Filesystem 1?

    Option1: mount both network shares from your PC and copy from 2 to 1. SlOW
    Option2: SSH onto the NAS (It's just a linux server) and type cp /filesystem2/filename /filesystem1 (Eveything is copied locally on the NAS, you're well l33t now)
    Option3: SSH onto the NAS and create a softlink connecting the external drive as a folder under Filesystem1. ie. ln -s /filesystem2 /filesystem1/External (External drive will appear as a folder under the Network share 1 , now you are super l33t, proceed to IT godlyness)
    Option4: Setup RTRR (real time rsync replication) the qnap NAS' can have jobs set up to replicate between filesystems. (Not as l33t, but everything is duplicated nicely)

    3 Means that everything will appear under 1 big filesystem. 4 means you do it once and then never repeat it. Moving files under 1 or 3 from a pc will result in a lot of network traffic. :cool:
     
  10. bluap84 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Feb 12, 2011
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    UK
    #10
    right i need a nap now...you have turned my brain to mush! haha.

    i think i understand, im so use to stuff like drag a drop. NOOB! lol
     
  11. MikeDTyke macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2005
    Location:
    London
    #11
    That's option 1, just connect to both network shares and drag/drop to your hearts content.

    Even though i said it's slow, if you have a nice fast network switch/router 1000BaseT is the way to go here, then your files will go lickety split. :D
     
  12. bluap84, Feb 25, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2011

    bluap84 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2011
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    Cheers Mike - looks like this will be my next geek purchase.

    is it easy to download t*rr*nts with the interface?
    you know of any good NAS online tutorials / videos?

    i know where to come if i get stuck with anything ;)
     

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