Network storage/ backups

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by jfoley89, Jul 20, 2015.

  1. jfoley89 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2013
    #1
    I think this is the right place to post this

    So my plan is to buy a 4 port USB hub and 4 2GB powered external hard drives

    Plug the USB hub into the back of my AirPort Extreme and plug the external hard drives in to the hub

    I will have..
    1x hard drive for iTunes library
    1x hard drive for iTunes library backup
    2x hard drives partitioned into 4 partitions

    First hard drive will be arranged as follows..
    1 my MacBook backup
    2 my Photos library
    3 partners MacBook backup
    4 partners Photos library

    Second hard drive will be arranged as follows...
    1 my MacBook backup backup
    2 my Photos library backup
    3 partners MacBook backup back
    4 partners Photos library backup

    Is this a good setup for hard drive failure and making sure we don't lose everything in case of a MacBook failing?
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #2
    @jfoley89 Keep in mind that drives can be partitioned out as well. You should not have just a local backup, so look into either an offsite or a cloud backup. The AirPort Extreme does not offer any option to clone drives so you would lose that redundancy.
     
  3. jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Sep 1, 2013
    #3
    What do you mean partitioned out? I'm not going to get a offsite copy just yet but thank you for your help
     
  4. glenthompson macrumors 68000

    glenthompson

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    Virginia
    #4
    I see various problems with your solution. It may be an ok solution for protecting against drive failure but it provides little protection for other failures. One good thunderstorm could take out everything. A small fire or theft would leave you with nothing.

    When you say backup backup, do you mean a copy of the backup? If so, it's a bad idea. Each backup should be independent.
     
  5. jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2013
    #5
    Thanks for the response, I'm not trying to make a 100% fool proof system, just a good beginners backup system, I will have a surge protector with everything plugged in and my house has a surge protector covering the whole house too, so I'm not too worried about lightning, fire is another thing I'm not really worried about either cause of the whole just setting up a beginners backup system.
    When I say backup backup I mean 2 copies of my files, not actually backing up the backup hard drive, if that makes sense
     
  6. imaccooper macrumors regular

    imaccooper

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    North Carolina
    #6
    I don't mean this disrespectful at all, but if you are not going to back it up for all foreseeable problems then that doesn't sound like much of a backup. I doubt you will have a problem if a drive fails and you seem to have a decent protection for storms but you never know. Others have mentioned things like fire or theft which are important things to consider.

    The point is, backups are not like a good wireless network or a good home theater. You can't just get one or two pieces at a time and deal with it for a few years while you collect everything you want. You need to do it correctly the first time.

    Your setup isn't bad; it is just incomplete. As was mentioned, cloud backup is a great solution that can be had for pretty reasonable prices. You may even have cloud storage and not know it. Currently I use Dropbox for my files but I also have the basic iCloud everyone gets. I have who knows how much Onedrive storage from my office 365 subscription, another pile of storage from Amazon prime and more from Verizon for some reason. I don't use all of these, but my point is that they are easy to get and you may already have access to some storage.

    Another option is to change the location of the "backup backup" as you called it. Get a large portable hard drive (ridiculously cheap now) and partition it out as much as you need. Make your second backup onto that drive and store it in a small fireproof safe somewhere. Obviously you will have to manually continue to keep this drive current, but it will provide a inexpensive and virtually foolproof way of backing up you data if you are not into using cloud storage.
     
  7. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    Location:
    California
    #7
    In theory what you have spelled out here will work and gives you good backups, although without anything offsite as mentioned. But I'm struggling with how exactly you will backup from A to B in my example here? I guess you could use something like Carbon Copy Cloner to do incremental copies of the data from A to B. But that application would need to run off one of the Macs, then each time you did a copy (backup) the data would be downloaded from drive A over the network and through the Mac then back out over the network to drive B. This is going to be very very slow.

    A >> 1x hard drive for iTunes library
    B >> 1x hard drive for iTunes library backup
     
  8. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #8
    You can create partitions on any hard drive. This will make them appear as multiple volumes to the Mac. I hope you do understand the risks of single backups like this. Also, note that you should not store your iTunes library on a server of any sort.
     
  9. jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Sep 1, 2013
    #9
    Don't worry I'm completely open to feedback and won't be offended :D

    My main concern is only drive failure cause it has happened more then theft/fire or storms, but with the hard drives I'm considering getting, they have Kensington holes on the back of them so I can bolt them down in the future if needed.

    I use iCloud photos to store all my photos/videos and that is probably the only thing I need to be 100% safe as the rest of my files/data are replaceable but my photos are not

    The main reason I want to set this up is cause it's just annoying replacing all my files when a drive fails, like recently my iTunes drive failed and I had to re download a terabyte of media.

    The goal is to have minimum 2 copies of everything, with the setup I've planned and with the only thing I need 100% secure(photos) in the cloud, would you say this is a reasonable setup for hard drive failure?
     
  10. jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2013
    #10
    Thanks for the reply, in the future I am planning to get a Mac mini to play as a media server and would be able to run CCC off that, would it still be a slow process if I wired a MacBook via Ethernet to the AirPort Extreme?
     
  11. jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Sep 1, 2013
    #11
    Yeah I mentioned I would be partitioning 2 of the drives. What risks do you mean for a single backup? I wouldn't consider my backup plan a single one tho as I will have 2 copies of everything, just no offsite copy of most of it.
    What is the reason I shouldn't store my iTunes on a server? Iive always run my library off a external plugged into my AirPort Extreme as I use a MacBook and it's annoying having something plugged into it all the time and haven't really had any problems with it
     
  12. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
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    #12
    If you use multiple computers with the same library it can cause issues. You should have a cloud storage or an offsite option like bringing a hard drive to work type of thing for redundancy. I have had a thunderstorm knock out a computer and two external drives here and all the data was lost in a matter of three seconds.
     
  13. jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

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    Sep 1, 2013
    #13
    ohh ok, my MacBook is the only thing that connects to my iTunes drive, taking to work is not a option as i work in a bar and we don't have lockers in the staff room, all my important stuff (photos) are in the cloud also, and as previously stated i will have surge protectors on my setup :) thanks for your help tho
     
  14. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
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    #14
    Surge protectors can only do so much. With there being so many cloud storage offers what I would do is make sure your next hardware purchase includes one of the offers. For instance, my Chromebook came with 100 GB of Google Drive space that I can use for backups. I also have an on site backup off my AirPort! It is your data and I am just trying to give you the best possible solution to prevent the worst possible problem.
     
  15. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    #15
    Yeah, it would be pretty slow because anything you copy from one of those drives to the other has to be essentially pulled down to the Mini then pushed back up to the other drive.... so two moves of the data over ethernet. Those Airport Extremes are kind of slow with disk access anyway. Like I say, this will work, but I doubt you would be happy with the speed.

    Since you mentioned getting a Mini... that changes everything. You can install OS X Server edition on the Mini and attach all the disks to the Mini and use it for TM backup and also to serve up the other libraries. Much much better solution if yu have the money to set that up.
     
  16. jfoley89, Jul 21, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2015

    jfoley89 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2013
    #16
    Speed isn't too much of a concern cause I don't have a whole lot of data, so when I get a mini with OS X Server i can set it up to do everything i want pretty much? it will backup my macbook to a certain hard drive and my partners to another hard drive and so on and so on?

    Ive decided to buy OS X Server for future use, would there be any problems with me installing this on my daily driver to have a look? or should i wait for a server only computer?
     
  17. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    Mar 26, 2013
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    Elkton, Maryland
    #17
    You can load it on any machine you want but keep in mind that you need to buy the new version every time it comes out so you may want to hold off.
     
  18. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

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    California
    #18
    It will work just fine on your existing machine.
     

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