Media server and backup questions..?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Cbdboz, Nov 17, 2013.

  1. Cbdboz macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #1
    My iMac internal hard drive is maxed out with movies, pictures and music and I am looking at external storage and NAS devices.

    In addition to the maxed out 600g hard drive I have a 2TB Time capsule.

    Is it possible to use a new external drive as the home for my ITunes folders and content, and will Apple TV and iPads be able to seamlessly connect to this content if on an external drive?

    Also, if I am able to use an external drive as the read/ write source for ITunes, can I configure my Time capsule to be able to back this up automatically...or does time capsule only back up internal hard drives?

    In terms of storage or NAS devices to buy..I have been steered towards synology web site..but not sure what I would need as a set up....basically looking for future proof expandable storage that can also be used as above for media, and potentially even accessed over the internet.


    Welcome any guidance please.... :confused :)
     
  2. priitv8 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #2
    TimeMachine does not back up external volumes. Be it USB or network connected.
    Also, you'd be hard pressed to find a TimeCapsule that will have room for your NAS-worth of data.

    A NAS in itself is unable to do Home Sharing. There are workarounds, of course (like Synology Video Station, DLNA, File Browser), but they require 3rd device (a Mac or iPhone/iPad) to initiate AirPlay playback.
    If you plan to continue to use iTunes on your iMac to provide Home Sharing server, a DAS would be much reasonable way to go. Less setup&maintenance, better overall functionality (thanks to full-fledged OS X) and better performance. The performance is no issue for iTunes media sharing, but you could use your DAS also for hosting iPhoto, Aperture etc libraries. Esp if you can go the ThunderBolt route.
    Search this Apple TV and Home Theater forum for keywords "iTunes NAS" to find several discussions on library migration and caveats.
     
  3. pMad macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2008
    #3
    My iTunes application is one my iMac?
    My iTunes library is on a external HD.
    I use Carbon Copy Cloner to duplicate that drive onto a separate external HD.
     
  4. Pyromonkey83 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 24, 2009
    #4
    I personally have a Synology DS413j. I keep my music on my local machine (just because it is easier for me, but it is in no way shape or form required), and have my videos and tv shows stored on the Synology. I map the drives at startup to my Video folder on the Synology so that every time I start up the iMac they are connected. I have both my iMac and Server hardwired with a gigabit LAN connection for speed.

    The DS413j is a 4 bay ARM-powered home/small business server. The upsides are that it is A) cheap, B) expandable up to 16TB, and C) extremely energy efficient. The downsides are that it is somewhat lmited compared to the Atom based machines, but I never have issues with what i use it for. Essentially the limitations are with real time transcoding for video and audio if you plan on streaming outside of your network. My workaround for this is to use PLEX on my iMac with the same mapped drives, which can do the transcoding no problem.

    I would highly recommend this setup to anyone interested and would be happy to answer any further questions if you have them. I should also preface this that you must convert all movies and shows to .mp4/m4v containers to work seamlessly with iTunes (unless of course you buy them through iTunes anyway, which i do not). I use handbrake to do this with all my blu rays and DVDs.
     
  5. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #5
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    ..so unless I use something like CCC, is there any point in getting a time capsule with a large drive size if the internal hard drives on the respective computers is comparatively small? I was hoping that the TC could back up both internal HD and any DAS
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    I am guessing that DAS is just a hard drive plugged directly into the computer rather than via a network....if so, am I looking at all the same products eg synology etc.... Any if the I tunes library is on this external drive...would this still be visible to my Apple TV via normal home sharing..or would I need to access the content in another way??
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    Do you by any chance have an Apple TV...and if so, can you see your iTunes library which you say us on your external HD, when you go in to your Apple TV ( if ATV and computer (with DAS) are on same network ?
     
  6. priitv8, Nov 18, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2013

    priitv8 macrumors 68020

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    #6
    As long as there's iTunes between your appleTV and media storage, everything will be bueno and you can browse & play from aTV UI (Home Sharing must be on on both aTV and iTunes).
    Applies to both NAS and DAS (direct-attached storage) setups.
    Normally NASes don't act as DASes. Some companies provide both, some only either one. Syno does only NASes imho.
    My next storage will be Drobo 5D Thunderbolt-DAS.
     
  7. pMad macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2008
    #7
    Here is my stet up.
    I have an iMac.
    I have an external HD working as a Time Capsule that I back up my iMac on to with Time Machine.

    I have an external HD that has three partitions:iTunes HD, Photos HD, Movies HD.
    I have another external HD that has three partitions:iTunes Back Up, Photos Back Up, Movies Back Up.
    CCC sees each of those as separate hard drives.

    The iTunes on my iMac has it's library set to "/Volumes/iTunes HD"
    The iMac and the ATV are on the same network.

    The ATV sees my iTunes Library just fine.
     
  8. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
    #8


    So, would a good option be to have a DAS connected to a Mac mini ( which I am considering buying in addition to my iMac) and then use the Mac mini server functionality to effectively also create a NAS for all the household?
     
  9. dbanderson1 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2013
    #9
    Time Machine should be able to backup a connected hard drive. So you can store
    your iTunes folder and other media folders there. Then open time machine preferences and click options. Devices to exclude should have the attached drive, unclicking this will ensure that it gets backed up. When you open iTunes after moving your files you may have to tell it where to look if it gives you the cannot find folder error. Once this is done enable home sharing and your iPad and iPhone will be able to access it as long as you are on the same network. If you want to do this outside of the house ... that is a different story but feasible. You want to download PLEX server for you iMac and the 4.99 app for your iPad and iPhone.
     
  10. Cbdboz thread starter macrumors regular

    Cbdboz

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2013
  11. dbanderson1 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2013
    #11
    Sharing @ Home and Away

    NP. To share in iTunes just click iTunes -> preferences -> sharing tab -> mark the box share my library on my local network

    On your ipod/iphone/ipad click music app -> more -> shared -> you should now see your iMac's library and have access to it.

    Plex will do this outside the home but you may have to configure the router to let it access a port to bypass the firewall and you will have to give your iMac a static IP. I had no idea how to do any of this prior to installing Plex but you should be able google port forwarding and your router to figure it out. Once you install plex it will automatically add your iTunes music and videos and make them accessible on any client including the 4.99 plex iOS app.
     
  12. priitv8 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2011
    Location:
    Estonia
    #12
    It'd be the most feature rich and best-performing solution. But not the cheapest, of course.
    You can extend the functionality even more by installing $20 OS X Server on the Mini. Then you have created a fast TimeCapsule as well, among other things.
     

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