Sync File Servers in Different Locations

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Server, Xserve, and Networking' started by sevoneone, Apr 4, 2018.

  1. sevoneone macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 16, 2010
    #1
    Our company currently has an internal marketing/graphic design department. We have 4x graphic designers on iMacs and a 2012 Mac mini running as a File Server where all their files/data is stored. A thunderbolt to ethernet adapter, Link aggregation, and a compatible Gigabit switch keeps everything working smoothly.

    In about a month, we're going to be more or less duplicating the setup in a second location about 15 miles away. Each location will have 3 graphic designers and while the designers in each location will mostly be working on files/projects related to their area, our goal is to be able to have anyone be able to open and work on any project when needed. We're talking large Adobe Indesign projects and associated file links which are mostly high-res images, so "streaming files" over the internet is not my first choice. I am looking for opinions and suggestions for the best way to enable collaboration/sync between the two locations. There is no need for high availability, meaning the sync can complete overnight.
     
  2. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    Location:
    No longer logging into MR
    #2
    A few years ago, I had two backup systems that needed to replicate to each other for offsite requirements.

    We opted for a hardware based system that included compression and deduplication. The replication worked in a blocks of a few MB each. If the source system was sending data and the destination system already had the block in question, the destination simply updated a file pointer. These blocks were deduplicated and compressed _before_ replication and saved a lot of time.

    I'm not advertising this as the solution to your problem but rather giving some ideas on what to look for in a system built for the purpose.

    How much data do you need synced initially and what are the change rates?
     
  3. sevoneone thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 16, 2010
    #3
    We have about 1.1TB of data total. Up to 10GB of changed/new data per day.

    The initial sync I can be done locally. Ideally, I could just clone the drive storing the data take it to the new location and then begin the sync. What hardware-based system were you guys using?
     
  4. belvdr macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2005
    Location:
    No longer logging into MR
    #4
    Ours was designed for backups, not file serving, so keep that in mind.

    It was a Dell DR series appliance. It’s an awesome device.
     
  5. Flint Ironstag macrumors 6502a

    Flint Ironstag

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2013
    Location:
    Houston, TX USA
    #5
    Can your fileserver handle a doubling of clients? If so, a single fast connection between connections may be all that's needed. Hard to say without testing. But, you've indicated that isn't your first choice.

    If you're duplicating the setup at the remote office, sounds like you just need to choose Carbon Copy Cloner, Super Duper, or rsync to handle cloning duties at night.
     
  6. DJLC macrumors 6502a

    DJLC

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2005
    Location:
    Mooresville, NC
    #6
    My gut reaction is that you're asking for problems with version control if you do this. I don't think you're going to find a solution to keep the various shares synced in real-time, and a nightly sync could become problematic — ie., a file was edited remotely at 3:15pm AND locally at 3:20pm; which one should it keep?

    I would investigate establishing VPN access into each location. An end user could connect to the other office's share via VPN. This keeps things secure, eliminates problems with version control, and still allows access to projects stored in remote offices. Obviously you would need solid Internet connections at both ends with high upload speeds for this to work well.
     

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