RELIABLE external hard drive for storing iMovies

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by edavt04, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. edavt04 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 12, 2016
    #1
    Hello,

    I am terrified of losing my precious family iMovies that I make. I have two Seagate external hard drives. I heard they are not most reliable, so I ordered G-technology's G-drive (4TB).
    I also was considering Samsung's SSD external hard drive (expensive, only 500GB), what I read is that SSD's are more reliable.

    What is your recommendation? Where do you keep your precious videos and movies?

    Thanks!
    Edita
     
  2. kohlson macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2010
    #2
    I keep mine on a Raid-1 (mirrored) set up, with standard format (ext3). And on a separate drive in a different location. You'll see lots of solutions here. Keep in mind that drives don't last forever, no matter what the brand. So plan on making changes every 5-10 years. One indicator of drive longevity is the warranty, but that may not work out in a specific instance. Plan on, and be prepared for, drive failure.
     
  3. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Location:
    NH
    #3
    I have a working drive and also keep a backup copy on a RAID-1 Mirror set of WD Red drives. These drives are near bullet proof, but even they will fail eventually. With a mirror, hopefully they both won't fail at the same time, so you replace the failed unit and let the RAID software/hardware recover. After recovery you may want to replace the other as a preventative measure. I also keep mp4 copies of my videos on line (compressed for practical purposes). I rent my own server, but there are outfits like Vimeo, YouTube, etc that are designed to store large amounts of video. These online outfits have redundancy and backups on their own.
     
  4. Unami macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Austria
    #4
    hard drives will fail eventually, it's only a matter of time - i don't know wich seagate drives are used in your external drives, but they once had a series of 3TB drives with a failure rate of 30% after three years. however, you won't know if your g-technology drive (or samsung ssd) won't fail in a few years because they are a bad batch or just because. so, there's that 3-2-1 rule for backup: have at least 3 copies of your data, store the copies on two different media, keep one copy offsite.

    i use lto-tapes for long-time archival, but for smaller amounts of data (or faster access) i hear good things about rdx-drives or archival grade blu-rays.
     
  5. campyguy macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2014
    Location:
    Portland / Seattle
    #5
    This. I bought my first G-Tech unit in 2009, FW 400-800/eSATA/USB 2, 2 2TB Hitachi drives in a RAID-0 configuration, 3-year warranty. 7 years later, it's still working via a cheap USB 3-to-eSATA adapter...

    I'm waiting for the G-Tech drives with the newer interface ports then I'm popping for 3-4 of those new G-Tech drives but with the 6TB HDD in it. $50 more for 50% more space over the 4TB unit. The 4TB unit is still a steal even at full price IMHO with a HGST drive in it...
     
  6. JamesPDX Suspended

    JamesPDX

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2014
    Location:
    USA
    #6
    HGST Ultrastars or desktop versions? Start saving and you can jam big SSDs into that enclosure when the spinners die after 3-5 years.
    And figure in cost per GB. There's always MDISC. But really, I wonder if Amazon Glacier is cheaper in the long run as your 3rd storage backup.
     
  7. Unami macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Austria
    #7
    wih a max capacity of 100gb ? so that's about 15 minutes of 4k video in prores 422HQ - maybe for photos...
     
  8. JamesPDX Suspended

    JamesPDX

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2014
    Location:
    USA
    #8
    Yeah, it's cheaper in the long run to work from SSDs and backup your projects and media to cheaper bare 2.5" HGST or Toshiba, as big as you can get (who had the last stock of Hitchi drives) and rotate them around then out after (insert MTBF here) and keep them in plastic cases and keep that somewhere safe. My advice? Sell the G-Drive (Thunderbolt?)
    and get what I'm using: https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/blackmagicmultidock
    You'll wonder how you ever got by without one. No Wall warts, no fans, no drivers.
     
  9. HDFan macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    #9
    If you're really concerned about not losing your media you want to keep backups on 3 different media types in 3 different locations. Both Hard Drives and SSD's have a decay rate which means that you can't just put a backup HD or SSD in a safe deposit box and expect it to work in 10 years. They need to be refreshed periodically.

    Here are the latest backblaze hard drive stats:

    https://www.backblaze.com/blog/hard-drive-failure-rates-q2-2016/

    HGST still seems to be the best but maybe Western Digital replaced Seagate as the worst.
     
  10. ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2008
    Location:
    NH
    #10
    I had nothing except issues with HGST drives recently, all 5 failed within 16 months. Also issues with all the Seagates toward the end or just after their two year warranty. I've had nothing but good results with WD, especially the Red Pros. I think you have to look at specific drive models, not brands in general. And NAS type drives are built better (but some may be slower).

    Over the years, backblaze has proven to be an unreliable predictor of consumer use drives.

    There are a couple schools of thought, spend more money on drives that have long warrantees and run till they die, or buy the least costly drives you can get and just routinely replaced them at one or two year intervals. I hear many value conscience big data centers use the second approach.
     
  11. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    #11
    I have 164 terabytes of storage across many different drives and RAID systems. I have had all brands fail. Re HGST (as you said) you can't trust any specific brand to never fail. All drives are subject to failure, even SSDs.

    I don't think Backblaze is an unreliable predictor, rather people don't know how to interpret it. E.g, they reported poor Seagate reliability (mostly one specific model), then suddenly everybody thinks Seagate as a brand is poor quality. In fact the failures -- by any brand -- are:

    (1) Usually limited to a single model, and
    (2) Impossible to determine ahead of time

    E.g, if people interpreted the earlier Backblaze reports as Seagate is generically bad and WD is generically good, then bought WD drives with the expectation they would rarely fail, they will likely be disappointed. As the saying goes "the past is not prologue".

    As already said, the solution is redundancy -- not banking that a particular brand of HDD or SSD will not fail.
     
  12. martinX macrumors 6502a

    martinX

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #12
    While you are right about the correct interpretation of Backblaze's data, I haven't trusted Seagate for some years now based on my own experience. Back blaze may be able to provide specific model reliability data, and I can provide nothing more than "I have a bad feeling about this brand", but with a buttload of WD's and no Seagates (OK, one Seagate. To spread the risk) I have had no HD failure for years and years. Long way of saying "one satisfied customer can bring another customer; one dissatisfied customer will steer ten away."
     
  13. Anonymous Freak macrumors 601

    Anonymous Freak

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2002
    Location:
    Cascadia
    #13
    To go back to the original question… (Which was referring to home movies in iMovie, not 4K ProRes files,) what I use is an inexpensive dual-drive "toaster" style USB hard drive case, with three hard drives I rotate through.

    I use a 2.5" 4 TB USB drive as my "main" iMovie storage drive, and back it up to a software RAID-1 on two drives in the USB toaster after every import. Once a month or so, I swap out one of the "live" drives for the third drive (then in another month, I replace the not-swapped-last-time drive for the one I took out the time before, etc.)

    I store the "third" drive in my fireproof safe, in an anti static bag.

    WD Red are good reliable drives, but at present I'm using older Seagate 2 TB drives because I got them free. I figure I'll replace them all with WD Red when the first one dies.

    The dock I use is the older USB 2.0+eSATA version of this: http://www.provantage.com/startech-hddslev25~7STR93MM.htm

    I got it before USB 3.0 ones were available, and for my use, it's enough. Yeah, rebuilding the RAID when I swap drives every so often would go faster with USB 3, but I only just got a USB 3 equipped Mac, so it's not a huge deal yet.

    The nice thing about using a three-drive rotation with software (OS X built-in) RAID is that any one drive, connected to any USB-to-SATA adapter, has all of the data ready to go. When I go on a long vacation, I leave a second of the three drives at a friend/family member's house, so that even if my house burned down and collapsed on the fire proof safe destroying it, my backup will be safe elsewhere. (And if there is a big enough natural disaster to destroy my house AND wherever I leave the second drive, I figure recovering those files will be the least of my worries.)
     
  14. mildocjr macrumors 65816

    #14
    WD is pretty good, Samsung makes a good hard drive, hitachi is ok, Toshiba and Seagate I'd stay away from.
     
  15. bent christian Suspended

    bent christian

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2015
    #15
    I have only had one drive fail inexplicably on me, so I don't pay great attention to brands. Currently, we have Seagates, Toshibas, and other unknown sealed external drives in the house. The Toshiba 2.5" I use for media is almost ten years. The two Seagate 3.5" are eight or nine. Having a switch to be able to turn off spinning drives I think will help increase their longevity.

    For archival purposes, I think it's a good idea to back up to disc as well as having a cold storage HDD. DVD and Blu-Ray discs will likely out live all the spinning drives you currently have in service.
     
  16. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    #16
    They have good archivable durability. But unfortunately DVD and BR are very slow, have limited capacity by today's standards (OP asked about video storage) and optical media is on the way out technologically. It's possible in 10 years finding a computer with an optical drive will be like finding one with a floppy disk drive or tape cassette interface.

    The iPhone 7 goes up to 256 GB. It would take 54 DVDs or 5 Blu-Ray discs to back up just that one phone if totally full.

    Here are some other options (none perfect): http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/saying-goodbye-alternatives-to-the-optical-disc/

    M-Disc: https://9to5mac.com/2015/11/02/review-owc-mercury-pro-mac-burn-archival-m-discs-play-blu-rays-dvds/
     
  17. bent christian Suspended

    bent christian

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    Nov 5, 2015
    #17
    Optical drives will be made for quite some time. DVD drives have bascially been obsolete for eight years, but are still readily available and inexpensive. Blu-Ray holds quite a bit of data. Five discs is not what I consider difficult to store for important files. As long as people continue to use Blu-Ray for home entertainment, drives will be built for storage use. And long after that. Solid state is not a good long-term solution, IMO. Drives can fail and data can rot of the drive is not used on a a semi-regular basis. Discs and HDD are still my go to. In the print industry, we rely heavily on discs. I regularly encounter files ten or more years old that are still totally useable. I don't trust cloud storage and I don't think solid State is there yet.
     
  18. joema2 macrumors 65816

    joema2

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    #18
    Document storage is often relatively easy from a space standpoint. The OP asked about video storage. An iPhone 6s takes 375 megabytes per minute for 4k video, or about 22 gigabytes per hour, which may explain why the new iPhone 7 is available in a 256GB version.

    The problem with cloud storage is not just trust but getting large quantities of video up there. I have 100 megabit service but that only means 20 megabit upload or about 2.5 megabytes per sec and realistically this will be less than 2 MB/sec. So it would take about 36 hr to upload one top-spec iPhone 7. If various family members are shooting on multiple iPhones, iPads, cameras, etc. the problem is obvious. This also assumes the ISP has no intrusive monthly data cap, which often exists.

    With computer Blu-Ray drives, one problem is they are relatively rare and getting less common as optical media wanes. Another problem is they are slow, which discourages people from using them. So there's a difference between what is available vs what the average computer user will avail themselves of to back up personal video files.

    A Blu-Ray M-Disc burner looks pretty good and is only $120, but a single-layer disc is about $2, holds 25GB and is limited to 4x write speed. Including the verify pass, the real-world transfer speed can be about 7 megabytes per second or an hour for each disc. To back up a full 3TB iMac it would take five days, changing discs once every hour for a stack 120 discs at a cost of about $240. Most people won't have a full iMac but HDD storage growth is incessant. In the relatively near future they will have 10TB and 3TB will be a little corner of the disk.

    There is the new Blu-Ray XL which holds 100GB. USB 3.0 BDXL drives are not expensive but the discs are about $10 each, and still slow.
     
  19. bent christian Suspended

    bent christian

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    Nov 5, 2015
    #19
    I can pull up what is probably a few hundred different Blu-Ray drives on Amazon alone. Blu-Ray drives are not hard to find. They will continue to be made in some capacity for quite a long time.

    If you are pulling files off of Blu-Ray discs with any consistency, you re doing it wrong. Discs are still viable, I use them all the time, but should only be accessed as a last resort - when all else fails.
     
  20. Les Kern, Sep 10, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2016

    Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

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    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    Alabama
    #20
    Not if, when.
    All drives fail. Some faster than others. Lucky to get 5 years.
    RAID is silly as it has drives... that will fail.
    An SSD's life is terrible.
    These aren't long-term solutions.
    I just transferred all our home movies to dual-layer top brand DVDs. Several copies. One in bank safety deposit box. They last 100 years.
    Don't be crazy.
     
  21. ChrisA macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #21
    In 100 years no now will know what a DVD is and certainly no-one will have a DVD drive to read your disks, It is like those 8 inch floppy disks I have. Now way on Earth to read them.

    The only way to keep data around is have multiple copies on multiple locations and to keep reading and testing it. You pile of DVDs will only last for 100 years if you have multiple stashes and every year or so you read every disk and replace any that have failed and then when you find this hard to do, because DVD drives are getting hard to find you re-record to the next kind of media.

    RAID can work. The computer can automatically "scrub" it periodically and test every file. It can recover from a disk failure and let you replace a drive but you need at least TWO RAIDS at different locations that keep in sync. This is expensive so I pay a service to do this for me. Cost maybe $60 per year for cloud backup

    Also. DVDs don't hold enough data. Even if you could get 10GB on each one that means 100 DVDs are needed for each TB. New video camera can fill up a TB quickly. You will have many hundreds of DVDs and Bech one needs to be checked periodically. You will be doing this and not much else for the rest of your life. I can buy several 8TB disk drives and test them every night and have the computer sound an alarm if there is an err and then automatically rebuild the failed drive
     
  22. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2002
    Location:
    Alabama
    #22
    I can, and they still have floppy disk readers. But okay. Just put a cheap unopened DVD reader in your deposit box with the movies. Or better yet, an unopened laptop. :)

    So for the next 20-30 years I have to constantly monitor my disk drives? How about every 10 I make new copies, adding new material if made?

    Sure they do. An 8.4GB dual-layer a disk that costs a few dollars is way cheaper than multi-TB drives... which I have to monitor for the rest of my life.

    Sorry, simpler is better, and my time is worth more than that. I feel secure knowing masters are made, safe in the bank. Sure, I have 1 other master set plus 4 backups locally since you can't really have enough, but sometimes complicated and time-consuming technology is not the answer.
     
  23. Keebler macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    Location:
    Canada
    #23
    As others have said - plenty of solutions & plenty of hardware suggestions, but imho, no matter what you do, back them up on multiple hard drives - at least 1 extra set.

    Here's what I do (plus what I'm about to do :)

    I have a raid-10 set up for my photos, itunes and documents. It also contains my home videos (from our camcorder tapes).

    I have seperate internal hard drives for photos, itunes and home videos. These are at home & backed up bi-weekly.

    I have an exact duplicate of those in a bank safety deposit box which I update every month or so.

    Very soon, I'm (most likely) buying a Synology DS416+ with 6 TB in a Raid 10 (using WD Red drives) which will give me 12 TBs with redundancy and space. The included software is pretty sweet and apparently rock solid to use.

    Space for future plus immediate space as I have about 5 years worth of various HD camcorder files I need to edit and export to mp4 most likely. That is the big push as I transfer tapes for other folks, but like the proverbial shoemaker whose kids go to school with ratty shoes because he works on everyone else's shoes, I need to finish my own videos!

    I'm also going through iTunes and my photo library erasing duplicates because I sucked at it before. I've become much better organized and thorough. That will save me some space as well.

    I do employ G-Tech drives and they are fantastic. Actually the best externals I've personally ever used. Love the aluminum casing which seems to keep them far cooler than anything else. I am looking at those as well, but the Synology seems more driven for backups/streaming media (photos and home videos) whereas the G-drives are for multi-media work. Although (contradicting myself? lol ), the Synology are plastic cases and I don't like that for heat dissipation.

    Decisions... lol

    Bottom line: backup at least once, store offsite if you can
     
  24. Rockadile macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2012
    #24
    You can create encrypted disk images and upload it like that with files inside.
     
  25. JamesPDX Suspended

    JamesPDX

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2014
    Location:
    USA
    #25
    Well, if you want a professional solution look here:

    https://www.small-tree.com/categories/shared-storage/


    http://www.avid.com/products/avid-nexis

    https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/blackmagicmultidock

    But the Thunderbolt 2 and Ethernet solutions may need some scrutiny if we're going to use professional products with computers that change or eliminate ports every year or whim...
    --- Post Merged, Sep 15, 2016 ---
    It's funny because have Sony 3.5" disks (for an old sampler) that still run flawlessly after 25 years. I've had some random DVD-R data rot on TDK, Ritek, Imation, Sony, Apogee, MAM, etc. I'll see how M-DISC pans out. Anyway, per GB, buying a new bare HGST and swapping out clones is the best value. Or you could go with AWS Glacier: I've heard that they use M-DISC. But one never knows.

    It all comes down to convenience, maybe your internet connection, and your wallet. If you have enough dough, anything is possible. http://www.pcworld.com/article/2984...edia-and-methods-for-archiving-your-data.html
     

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