Outgrown current TC storage, time to go to NAS?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by miklovo, Sep 14, 2012.

  1. miklovo macrumors member

    Dec 18, 2008
    Short story: I do not want to buy a 3TB Time Capsule to replace my (almost full) 2TB one and not enough long-term room and just too expensive for only 1 more TB.

    Note: I will only use this network storage for my media (no time machine backups) and it will be stored in a media cabinet that is enclosed so heat and noise may become an issue since I am used to running my TC (which produces neither of each).

    So...I have been researching Drobo, Syncology and Mediasonic solutions. I think (for now) buying 2 x 2TB HDDs will suffice my need for storage and give me room to expand in the coming years. I like the Drobo solution since it seems like more worry-free HDD backup than the other NAS devices for a novice like me but don't like the idea of having to rely on the proprietary RAID configuration.

    Question: Suggestions for best setup for my situation? RAID5? HDD Mirroring? Drobo??

    Also, I would like to keep a backup of all my data offsite but I'm not quite sure how to do this with a RAID type setup. Currently I use a 2TB external drive to make a copy of my media content roughly every 3-4 months and I put it in my dad's fire safe at his house. Would an online storage service act as a better solution instead of keeping a physical backup?

    Thanks for your help!!
  2. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    Only you can decide the answer to your "question". Raid5 vs. Drobo is an either or. RAID5 is probably going to be cheaper for the same capacity. Generally Drobo seems more elegant.

    If you are going to diligently maintain a separate backup, the mirroring need may not be that great. If you are not sure you can be diligent, mirroring can be very helpful. However, mirroring mirrors, so when a file(s) is accidentally erased on one side, it is mirror erased on the other.

    RAID5 can be thought of as just big storage. So for offsite backup, you can buy another RAID5 with equal storage or you can use more of what you might have on hand. For example, if you have a few external drives on hand, you could set up folders on the RAID equal to just shy of the capacity of your external drive. Then, just manually backup each folder to their external drive. Example:

    Suppose you buy a RAID5 of- say- 6TB and you have some old external drives: a 1TB, a 2TB and a 3TB (thus 6TB in total). You could set up a 1TB, 2TB and 3TB folder on that RAID. As each reaches their capacity, new media will no longer be added to them. So, when the 1TB folder is very close to 1TB, it is backed up to that 1TB external and the latter is stored offsite. When the 2TB folder is near full, it is backed up that 2TB external and the latter is stored offsite. Etc.

    Cheaper solution: if 2TB is full and you think 3TB will be plenty for a good while down the road, buy two 3TB externals (one for home and one for off site backup).

    Even cheaper solution: hook a 1TB external up to your TimeCapsule for your additional 1TB of space. Buy one 3TB external to back all that up and store offsite.

    Final thought: I'd give some real consideration about adding just 1 more TB- especially if you are getting into 1080p media. I've ripped some of my BDs and they seem to be running at about 10-15GB each. 1000GB/12.5GB = 80 files. You may want to aim higher than one more TB so that you're not going through this again sooner than later. 2TB-3TB externals are pretty cheap.
  3. mpossjr macrumors member

    Nov 8, 2011
    Georgia, USA
    I'm at 50% storage capacity on my 2 TB HDD so I haven't done a lot of research on upgrading yet. Please post what you decide to go with as I will be in the same boat in the future.

    Any physical backup runs a risk of losing data so I back up online only now. I even accidentally deleted some important pictures and I was able to restore those from back up in 10 min without getting out of my chair.

    I use CrashPlan to auto back up everything on my home pc/iTunes server (about 1TB). It works great for a simple backup. It's only about $50 per year for unlimited backup for 1 pc.
    I use Carbonite business at my office. It works better for files and music as it does not auto back up video. However, you can manually select the videos to backup but it gets old quick if you have a lot of movies. I would not recommend carbonite if you have movies.
  4. Hammie macrumors 65816


    Mar 17, 2009
    Wash, DC Metro
    What is your budget?

    I am running a Netgear ReadyNAS NV+ for all of my media. Based on current Amazon prices, you can get the updated v2 chassis for $353.53 and four (4) 3TB drives for around $600. This gives you a VERY robust solution for under $1000. Or go with four (4) 2TB drives for around $400 and be under $800 total. You can then upgrade to 3TB as needed down the road.
  5. thejadedmonkey macrumors 604


    May 28, 2005
    I have a synology NAS with 2 HDD's in it. It's cool and quiet. Occasionally an offsite computer VPN's into the network and copies everything off of the drive and onto its internal drive, so we have an offsite backup, too.
  6. d21mike macrumors 68040


    Jul 11, 2007
    Torrance, CA
    My setup:

    I have 2 Synology DS212+ units. 1 at my office and 1 at my house. Each has 2 x 2tb drives setup as mirrored for backup (so only 2tb usable). The Synology software has a feature to automatically backup from 1 DS212+ to the other sending only the files that change. Since I have FIOS 35/35 at both locations this has worked extremely well. At my home I also have an external 3tb drive connected too the Synology where is use another piece of software they call Time Backup that works much like the Time Machine backup on the Mac. This is a business setup so very important to be redundant with my backups. Can not afford the time even if 1 drive went out to have people setting around waiting to have it repaired.

    I was using the Synology at my house for Time Machine backup of my Macbook Air but once I got Mountain Lion it stopped working. So I got a 2tb Time Capsule for my Time Machine backups.

    I have been very happy with the Synology Machines for the main reason I got them for. I use the one at the office for all of our File Sharing needs. Mac's, PC's, remote and local. Very clean setup.
  7. charlien macrumors 6502

    Jul 3, 2006
    I went a little different route. I have a couple USB drives hanging off my TC. I purchased a second TC pretty cheap and have USB drives hanging off it in another part of my house. I use Cronosync to duplicated the data on the drives late at night. While it doesn't produce an off-site backup it is easy to set up and manage.
  8. Zeke D macrumors 6502a

    Zeke D

    Nov 18, 2011
    I use a DNS-323 from dlink. It is a BYOD setup and features an iTunes server. Additionally, they are easy to hack to add web servers and many others. I run a pair or 320gb in a raid 1 configuration, but you can also run raid 0 and JBOD. It will also accommodate a single sata drive.
  9. miklovo thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 18, 2008
    Good idea..... but I don't want to have all the externals "hanging" off my TC. And I want to be able to treat my storage disk as one large volume as opposed to multiples.

    I like the idea of being able to configure RAID 0 so I have one large useable volume and use an online backup company to house the backup. But is there a service that will do this? (I loathe the idea of having to keep a $1000 setup in offsite storage JUST to backup my files)

    With 720p HD movies eating up a minimum of 4TB per file I can see my library expanding to 4TB in a year or so.

    Is there a way to compress all my files to store externally yet use a smaller amount of HDD space? Say...compress a 4TB media library down to a 2TB zip file??
  10. miklovo thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 18, 2008
    See...all I have are video files......almost 2TB of them and growing....
  11. Cinephi1e macrumors regular

    Jul 19, 2012
    Northwest Ohio
    Everyone's requirements are different. In my case I don't see the need for backup as I regard my original CDs, DVDs and Blu-rays as backups. I recently began buying my movies from iTunes and those are always available for redownloading. What I need is a single large drive to house all my media. I have one of these hanging off of my Mac Mini:
    I installed four 4TB drives in it to get 12TB with RAID5. So far I have used less than 1/3 of it and I expect to be well set for many years.
  12. Zeke D macrumors 6502a

    Zeke D

    Nov 18, 2011
    I would caution against RAID 0. If you lose one of the disks, you lose everything, whereas if you do JBOD, only the data on the failing disk is lost.
  13. miklovo thread starter macrumors member

    Dec 18, 2008
    So Raid 5 sounds like my best option. Question now is.....do I do a standard Raid 5 setup or do I go Drobo?
  14. Zeke D macrumors 6502a

    Zeke D

    Nov 18, 2011
    Drobo is pretty neat, but lacks an ethernet port for network attaching.

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