What Apple needs to make some home servers!

superspiffy

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 6, 2007
736
0
With all this talk of home servers I think Apple needs to get in the bandwagon and give this frenzied market some of its simplistic touch. I've wanted to buy a NAS for a long time because I want data storage accessible from any network but all of the NAS or home servers out there sucks. The first problem is that all of them are overpriced for what they do. The ones that are full featured are geared towards corporate and could be as much as 1k. The second problem is all of them have amazingly poor UI and clunky backup tools. The third problem is most of them look horrible. I think the second and third is where Apple can truly revolutionize. I'd love to have seamless integration, good interface, and beautiful design. Find me a NAS like that and I'll buy it.
 

grockk

macrumors 6502
Mar 16, 2006
360
1
What you just described is an airport extreme plus usb hard drive. They make usb hard drives in the same form factor as the extreme. though any will do. and you can hook up a hub to run multiple externals.

I have one and all my macs and PCs see the backup drive. I even have it set up to broadcast on the net so I can connect from anywhere with my powerbook.

pretty cool. much better than the P3 Win 2000 server I had running in my college apartment.
 

Flynnstone

macrumors 65816
Feb 25, 2003
1,421
73
Cold beer land
I think Apple needs an Extreme mini!
(perhaps like the Cube) or mini PowerMac

needs :
- real graphics card that supports 2 or 3 monitors
- faster hard drive

why?
In many offices I see computers with 2 or more monitors. Mostly 2.
present mini doesn't work.
iMac with extra monitor would work, but looks like a patch job. Nice patch job, but still a patch job
PowerMac will work, but it's big.

This would also work well as a home server too.
 

Chef Medeski

macrumors 6502a
Jun 14, 2005
983
0
New York, NY
What you just described is an airport extreme plus usb hard drive. They make usb hard drives in the same form factor as the extreme. though any will do. and you can hook up a hub to run multiple externals.

I have one and all my macs and PCs see the backup drive. I even have it set up to broadcast on the net so I can connect from anywhere with my powerbook.

pretty cool. much better than the P3 Win 2000 server I had running in my college apartment.
I have to agree. It seems that way you can have all your music, photos in one location for anyone to access through itunes (just change the directory, of course there is no iphoto for windows so ur upheld there, but...). Plus easily backup. So I think thats a pretty good solution.
 

synth3tik

macrumors 68040
Oct 11, 2006
3,955
2
Minneapolis, MN
There are multipule ways to make an Apple home network, for instance here is what I have.

Mac Pro - work computer, plus it hold all of my iTunes libraries.
Airport Extreme with a 1TB back up hard drive for all computers.
Apple TV for the bed room TV.
Mac Mini to steam iTunes and to watch Joost in the living room.
I also have my MBP for school/work stuff or if I want to watch something in the kitchen when I am cooking. :D

This Makes a great network, for work and for play.

Now you don't need all that to have an apple network, but A Mac Mini, Apple TV and even an Airport Express will work.
 

sblasl

macrumors 6502a
Apr 25, 2004
844
0
Heber Springs, AR
I agree with the OP, I want a dedicated server made by Apple with a price point for the home user. I want it to have the iTunes server software on it so as to support the :apple:TV. It should have the same form factor as the :apple:TV, up to 1TB of storage, does not need a graphics card, should be "n" & 1000baseT.

I'm ready to buy.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
AFAIK, All you need to do is buy a Mac Mini and install Ubuntu Server on it. :) Thats what I would totally do.
How would anything about that, for this particular purpose, be better than the Mac Mini without Ubuntu server? :p

Seriously, this wouldn't do you much...you'd still probably need an external drive enclosure because you'd still have very little space (because of the 2.5" drive).

At least if you leave it running OS X, you can set it up by your television with the remote control and have it also used for watching / listening content on the home entertainment system....
 

superspiffy

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 6, 2007
736
0
What you just described is an airport extreme plus usb hard drive. They make usb hard drives in the same form factor as the extreme. though any will do. and you can hook up a hub to run multiple externals.
I want a NAS that I can access from Starbucks. I was under the impression that the Airport Extreme won't work like that.

AFAIK, All you need to do is buy a Mac Mini and install Ubuntu Server on it. :) Thats what I would totally do.
As tempting as the Mac Mini sound, I really don't want to shell out the extra cash for a brand new computer. If I'm gonna go that route, I might as well reuse an old PC and run Ubuntu. Not the most simple and elegant of solutions.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
I want a NAS that I can access from Starbucks. I was under the impression that the Airport Extreme won't work like that.
Ahh, I misunderstood this part initially.

Look at this:

http://www.switchingtomac.com/wp/airport-extreme-base-station-2/

About 25% into the article...

There is an option to “Share disks over the Ethernet WAN port” which means you can basically access the drive from anywhere over the internet - this basically replaces the need for Apple’s .Mac.
...
I had a friend try to connect to my Airdisk over the internet. This involves knowing your IP address (which can be found on the summary page of the base station) and using the Finder’s ‘Connect to Server’ function (press CMD-K in Finder to bring this up). I gave my friend my IP address and the base station password and he was able to connect remotely to the drive and see the files I had put on it. We tried streaming the video files and as expected, they were choppy and slow. This is mostly to do with the upload speeds provided by your ISP which is usually quite slow compared to your download speed. Still it worked great and will be useful to drag and drop files to and from the Airdisk when I’m away from home.
 

superspiffy

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 6, 2007
736
0

zioxide

macrumors 603
Dec 11, 2006
5,725
3,711
get a ****** old pc for like $50 bucks, throw a big hard drive in it, hook it up to your network, install ubuntu server, sudo apt-get install netatalk

plus you'll be able to run a website (lamp ftw), torrent box (yay rtorrent), etc on it.

all done :)
 

nick@

macrumors newbie
Aug 30, 2007
5
0
My Place
What you just described is an airport extreme plus usb hard drive.
I half agree with you and I'm considering that at the moment. But its not exactly what the OP suggested as I'm not sure the speeds achievable are right for all purposes. It would be interesting for views on how useful the USB Air Disk solution is to support stuff like video editing, photo editing etc.

I've got a new MBP and an AEBS is in on its way to me in the mail. I'm planning on having my LaCie external attached directly to the MBP with FW800 rather than attaching it to the AEBS as a USB Air Disk. I will keep my main photo library for Aperture and video files for iMovie on the LaCie so want the connection to be as fast as possible (without spending any more money!). The downside is the LaCie then isn't a networked disk. So I guess the question is would the USB Air Disk support my needs?

For backup I think the USB air disk is a great solution - speed doesn't matter that much. If I can get another drive through the front door without being noticed I will do that anyway.

Best of all though would be what the OP suggested. Fast, easy and attractive. Enough to make anyone spend more money:eek:
 

phuong

macrumors 6502a
Aug 16, 2006
525
0
What you just described is an airport extreme plus usb hard drive. They make usb hard drives in the same form factor as the extreme. though any will do. and you can hook up a hub to run multiple externals.
that is nice but when you want to expand the storage capacity it won't be tidy.
i can imagine those flunky chunk of cables crawling on the floor connecting to the USB hub, which connects to the AEBS via yet another cable.
oh, i almost forgot to count in those hard-drives' power cords .

if there were such thing as the OP suggested, all we would have to do is to simply attach the new hard-drive into the server.

i know you would probably argue that an external enclosure that have 4 (or more) hard-drive slots would do the same job. however, what if we wanted to RAID those drives we have? a server would make that a much easier process.
 

twoodcc

macrumors P6
Feb 3, 2005
15,315
25
Right side of wrong
that is nice but when you want to expand the storage capacity it won't be tidy.
i can imagine those flunky chunk of cables crawling on the floor connecting to the USB hub, which connects to the AEBS via yet another cable.
oh, i almost forgot to count in those hard-drives' power cords .

if there were such thing as the OP suggested, all we would have to do is to simply attach the new hard-drive into the server.

i know you would probably argue that an external enclosure that have 4 (or more) hard-drive slots would do the same job. however, what if we wanted to RAID those drives we have? a server would make that a much easier process.
those 4-drive enclosures usually have built-in raid
 

alFR

macrumors 68020
Aug 10, 2006
2,443
449
I'd love to have seamless integration, good interface, and beautiful design. Find me a NAS like that and I'll buy it.
Try here. Just got one for home, it was up and serving about 5min after I opened the box. Supports Bonjour and AFP, RAID 0/1/5, will serve printers over the LAN, has built-in iTunes streaming server etc. etc. Nice web-based admin utility, works fine. It's about the size of a 4-slice toaster and it even looks quite nice when the front drive door's shut. :)
 

sananda

macrumors 68020
May 24, 2007
2,365
59
Try here. Just got one for home, it was up and serving about 5min after I opened the box. Supports Bonjour and AFP, RAID 0/1/5, will serve printers over the LAN, has built-in iTunes streaming server etc. etc. Nice web-based admin utility, works fine. It's about the size of a 4-slice toaster and it even looks quite nice when the front drive door's shut. :)
superspiffy said "beautiful design"! :D
 

motherduce

macrumors 6502
Oct 3, 2005
265
0
Houston, TX
I have a Quicksilver G4 I'm considering turning into a home server for iTunes and Movies. I would like to see Apple address the mass storage product gap - seems like they could design something really sweet to act as an iTunes server and/or backup utility - especially with Leopard and Time Machine right around the corner.
 

timswim78

macrumors 6502a
Feb 8, 2006
697
0
Baltimore, MD
I am beta testing MS Home Server, and it is a nice product. It has so many useful features that you can not get on most NAS/APE combos.

- Data redundancy as long as you have more than one drive.
- Easy as pie to upgrade the storage capacity without having to worry about drive letters or RAID. Just add another drive and click the add button. WHS adds the space to the storage spool.
- Printer server for as many printers as you want.
- Automatic backup of Windows machines
- It's supposed to be a good backend for Time Machine
- Ability to open previous versions of files
- Does not require a fast computer.