New Mac user needs help with NAS

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by bluestarCVO, Jun 27, 2012.

  1. bluestarCVO macrumors member


    Mar 20, 2012
    Hello all. I'm still very new to the Mac world, and I am wanting some help in getting and setting up a NAS. I plan on getting a synology and have some questions. Will I be able to format this thing to the Mac OS journaled format? I want to be able to put my photo library on here, but I've read around on the forums that you cannot store photos from iPhoto library unless it is the Mac OS journaled format. And if I can format it to the above, will I still be able to use it as raid 5?

    Sorry for being such a newbie, but that is what I am when it comes to macs.

  2. marzer macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    I know from experience RAID 0 and 1 sets can be formatted as journaled. Never used RAID 5 or higher but would imagine it would work.
  3. silverjam macrumors regular

    Apr 25, 2012
    My suggestion for NAS on Macs that I also currently use is to use an external hard drive via the USB port on an Apple Airport Extreme. I have read a few reviews that the NAS speed on the AirPort Extreme is quite fast and from my experience it is the fastest NAS I have ever used on a Mac or Windows (Versus Seagate and Western Digital specific NAS setups). You can also connect more than one drive via a USB hub I believe but I haven't tried that.

    Theoretically you can also use the AAE NAS with a hardware Raid (RAID 0 or 1 on an OWC Mercury Elite Pro for example) but I am not sure about other RAID setups or if you could do it via RAID software.

  4. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
    Synology uses EXT4 filesystem as do almost all Linux based NAS's. It'll show up as a share just fine on your Mac.
  5. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Jan 5, 2006
    Redondo Beach, California
    How large is your photo library? If it is under 1TB is will fit just fine on one external drive. A FW800 drive will be faster than a NAS.

    You are also going to need a backup plan. That might be hard if you have many TB of data
  6. bluestarCVO thread starter macrumors member


    Mar 20, 2012
    I do have less than a TB of photos, but what I'm really wanting to do is use the NAS as a central hub for all my media (photos, music, videos, and movies) which all combined is easily over 6 TB and growing. I have just read that are problems putting an iPhoto library on any file system other than Journaled. Can anyone confirm this?
  7. silverjam macrumors regular

    Apr 25, 2012
    For what you want I would suggest even more my original system of using an Airport Extreme as your router which allows you to NAS any USB drive. It is technically the only Apple NAS available and works seamlessly with Finder. You can also access the NAS disk remotely. If you want to go a little further you also buy an Airport Express which provides what is called AirPlay. That allows you to plug a sexy set of speakers into the device (which is also a WiFi extender) that runs via your network (wired or WiFi). Any iOS or iTunes device can then play music through AirPlay to the speakers.

    I have an OWC Mercury Elite Pro with two 4TB Barracuddas (8TB total) that I run via FireWire800 but have used it through my AAE as a test run. FW800 is still the best option (unless you have TB or eSata) to fill 6TB. You'll be there for a while using NAS to fill 6TB.

    Also I believe you're right about only running iPhoto on HFS+. I can't imagine how you would run it on a NTFS drive when they are read only. If you are making the switch to Mac as a long term PC user like I did a few years ago then just go Mac all in. If you want to play with your PC with NTFS drives etc then use Parallels with Win 7 installed as this will allow you to do seamless transfers from a Mac drive to a windows Drive while running both OS's at the same time. Boot Camp is a waste from my point of view.

    That is my two and a half cents worth. Apple Airport Extreme is not the cheapest option but it is the sexiest and is all Apple.

  8. bluestarCVO thread starter macrumors member


    Mar 20, 2012
    Thank you for the information, but I really think I want to go more towards the direction of a NAS so that I can have it setup in a RAID configuration. That way I will have redundancy, and the computers will see it as a single drive instead of a bunch of separate USB drives.

    Does anyone have a Synology NAS with there iphoto library stored on it that can confirm it works? Sorry for all the questions. As I said before, I am VERY new to the Mac world.
  9. monsieurpaul macrumors regular

    Oct 8, 2009
    I own a Synology DS212j. Drives are formated in ext4 and iPhoto and Aperture library (and now unified libraries) are just fine on it. I do not work extensively on them though, I rather work on the local libraries and backup the local libraries on the NAS.

    IMHO, the real question is: what do you really need ?

    I found that quite often the logic behind getting a NAS is the following: "I want a NAS (or a Drobo) because I want to do some RAID because I want to backup my data."
    First, RAID is not for backup. Second, you don't need a NAS to have RAID drives (and you don't need to put your disk on RAID to use a NAS).
  10. Ifti macrumors 68000

    Dec 14, 2010
    I also have a Synology, and review Synology units for the company. I've had a NAS for over a year now, with no problems whatsoever.

    The best RAID to use on the unit by far is Synology Hybrid RAID (SHR). It's in essence the same as RAID5, but it's easier to upgrade disks to a larger size, and it will use the full space on each disk, even if the ones in the array are different sizes - standard RAID5 will only use the same amount of space on each physical disk, depending on the smallest sized disk in the array.

    As someone said above, RAID5 is a fail safe. It's not a backup. All it does is save you should a single disk in the array fail.

    The format used is EXT4, which is standard for most Linux based systems. You can use all MAC services, such as Time Machine, iTunes server, and so on, perfectly fine. The MAC will find the NAS on the network straight away automatically and list it in Finder for you - very easy.

    Take a look at my YouTube channel for lots of videos on Synology NAS. The ones that may interest you in particular are the ones where I look at the DSM management software, and the backup software built into the system. I also review the mobile management app - where you can use an iPhone or iPad to completely manage the device.
    Synology have just sent me a DX510 expansion unit, which attaches onto the initial NAS via a secure eSATA connection, which can be used to extend your current volume, or backup your entire NAS. I'm reviewing this at the moment, so keep an eye out for the video, which should be up within the next week or so - you may find that useful when it comes to learning about backing up etc.

Share This Page