Server Expansion

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by ecth, Sep 11, 2015.

  1. ecth macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2015

    I'm wondering if anyone can help me in some way. I'm currently running a small server (Mac Mini 1TB Server), and connecting to it via ethernet (4-5 machines all local), but am now rapidly running out of space.

    What would the best way to expand the storage solution on my server? I don't really want to replace internal hard drives, but wonder wether an external Thunderbolt/USB/Ethernet drive would suffice? We work directly from the server, nothing too large like video, but do deal with large images, indesign layouts etc.

    The server is also automatically backed up to a cloud, so having an external, standalone NAS drive isn't ideal, unless theres a way to have the mac mini manage the backup?

    Sorry, bit of a newbie when it comes to this.

    Any advice would be great!

  2. DJLC macrumors 6502a


    Jul 17, 2005
    Mooresville, NC
    I would look into a Thunderbolt storage device of some sort -- SSD obviously would give better performance, and they have Thunderbolt SSD RAID boxes available as well.

    Theoretically I don't think you'd notice a difference from the clients.
  3. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    You said no NAS, Why? Unless you are working with HD Video then look at a NAS like Synology DS414. With it's many Apps you can have your client save to that Synology NAS through it's VPN Sever software and you or you clients can access it anywhere , if you want it. Plus it's always on and can easily added to any server setup.
  4. Nicholas Savage macrumors newbie

    Oct 19, 2013
    Southern Wisconsin
    Given that you are presently doing fine with a 1TB mini server you don't really have to do anything complicated. A simple storage add-on would to be to go with something like the OWC Elite Dual Pro or equiv. Buy it with their drives or get your own WD Reds or Seagate NAS drives. Avoid it's built-in RAID-1 and just JBOD and run Apple Software Raid 1.

    Best reliable bang for the buck and you can yank the drives if the case dies w/ little down time.
  5. thats all folks macrumors 6502a

    thats all folks

    Dec 20, 2013
    Austin (supposedly in Texas)
    How much space do you think you need? Are all other things meant to remain the same or do you anticipate growth in other ways? A 3TB USB3 drive can be added for $150.
    But I would probably recommend something sturdier, with a better warranty,
    (get the 2 or 4 TB almost all 3TB desktop drives, from any manufacturer have proven less reliable than the 2 or 4TB)

    Either of the above options will be faster than your current drive. I would avoid any simple raid solutions, reliability and long term stability decreases rapidly with these.
  6. ecth thread starter macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2015
    Okay, so after much deliberation, I decided to go for a Synology DS414 NAS box. It's a really decent piece of kit, and so far speeds etc are great.

    However, and I probably should have mentioned this.. We have offsite backups by a service called Backblaze, which backs up all of our local machines, as well as the server (And any attached hard drives). I've discovered that it won't back up any NAS drives. This is a bit of a problem, as we really can't afford to lose any data, and if theres only going to be one copy of the data (On the NAS), if it's stolen/destroyed this would cause big issues.

    I've found a possible solution though, and wanted to get any advice I can on this.. I've been able to create a LUN drive on the NAS (Essentially a virtual drive sitting over all available space).

    First question – The NAS box is 4x 2TB drives, and when configured with RAID SHR, it gives ~5.8TB. It seems that RAID SHR keeps a drive for redundancy. If I was to create the virtual drive (accessed via iSCSI) that is also 5.8TB – is this a bad idea? Having such a large 'virtual' drive?

    I'd then have my Mac Mini mount the virtual drive (Via iSCSI), and create a share point, so people on the network would still connect to the [Mac Mini] Server, but see the additional storage as another sharepoint. This method also allows backblaze to backup the additional drive as it sees it as a 'local' drive instead of network.

    Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!

    TLDR: Is this overkill? Should I just return it and get a thunderbolt drive instead?

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