Which 3.5'' HDD enclosure for RAID5 with MP 6.1?

CFartist

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 4, 2020
22
2
I'd like to set up four 3.5'' HDDs in a RAID5 array to back up my files and for Time Machine. I have no idea what I should be looking for though. Could you guys point me in the right direction?

Cheers!
 

CFartist

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 4, 2020
22
2
Right! I did some research and at first I thought a Drobo 5D3 would fit the bill. It has many cool features. Then I found out that many people have problems with Drobo products in terms of compatibility with the latest macOS and customer service.

Then I stumbled upon Akitio Thunder 3 Quad Mini. The price is quite reasonable, I can use it with Softraid and it's backwards compatible with TB2. Then I noticed that it's sold out everywhere.

So I guess my only option is OWC Thunderbay 4?
Any suggestions?
 

wardie

macrumors 6502
Aug 18, 2008
410
133
I'd like to set up four 3.5'' HDDs in a RAID5 array to back up my files and for Time Machine. I have no idea what I should be looking for though. Could you guys point me in the right direction?

Cheers!
Why do you need a RAID5 for backups? Is it because of the total combined space requirement versus a single disk, or the redundancy for drive failure.

I could understand the latter more of it was for a primary file server, but for a backup personally i would just buy a big slow single HDD and use that. I tend to have two different ones as a couple of different backups - one TM one cloned hard drive. If one fails you still have the primary data and one backup.

Ps I have had both hardware and software based NAS’s in the past.
 

CFartist

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 4, 2020
22
2
Why do you need a RAID5 for backups? Is it because of the total combined space requirement versus a single disk, or the redundancy for drive failure.

I could understand the latter more of it was for a primary file server, but for a backup personally i would just buy a big slow single HDD and use that. I tend to have two different ones as a couple of different backups - one TM one cloned hard drive. If one fails you still have the primary data and one backup.

Ps I have had both hardware and software based NAS’s in the past.
Thanks for replying wardie!

That's what I've been doing... until now. (FYI, I've had a few SSDs and HDDs in the past. All but Seagate's died. So, I only trust Seagate) The biggest desktop HDD they make is 10TB. So I'd have to buy 2 and clone them. That would be around £450 and I'd have only 10 TB actual storage. Mind you, I'm producing 7TB of data in a period of 5 years. So that set up would keep me going for about 6-7 years.

On the other hand, a RAID array would save me from all the hassle and the clutter. I've just stumbled upon OWC's Thunderbay 4. For around £1k (using 4x Seagate BarraCuda 8TB) I could have a RAID 5 array, with 24 TB of actual storage. My data would be safe, the set up would be good for maybe 15 years, and everything would be taken care of by OWC's software (Softraid). Does that make any sense?
 

wardie

macrumors 6502
Aug 18, 2008
410
133
Thanks for replying wardie!

That's what I've been doing... until now. (FYI, I've had a few SSDs and HDDs in the past. All but Seagate's died. So, I only trust Seagate) The biggest desktop HDD they make is 10TB. So I'd have to buy 2 and clone them. That would be around £450 and I'd have only 10 TB actual storage. Mind you, I'm producing 7TB of data in a period of 5 years. So that set up would keep me going for about 6-7 years.

On the other hand, a RAID array would save me from all the hassle and the clutter. I've just stumbled upon OWC's Thunderbay 4. For around £1k (using 4x Seagate BarraCuda 8TB) I could have a RAID 5 array, with 24 TB of actual storage. My data would be safe, the set up would be good for maybe 15 years, and everything would be taken care of by OWC's software (Softraid). Does that make any sense?
Yes it makes sense, especially software RAID. But have a read of this re RAID limitations for redundancy as the drives sizes get bigger but with constant failure rates... another factor so you may want to consider multiple redundancies like RAID6 but it really starts getting expensive...
https://www.zdnet.com/article/why-raid-6-stops-working-in-2019/
 
Last edited:

CFartist

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Feb 4, 2020
22
2
Yes it makes sense, especially software RAID. But have a read of this re RAID limitations for redundancy as the drives sizes get bigger but with constant failure rates... another factor so you may want to consider multiple redundancies like RAID6 but it really starts getting expensive...
https://www.zdnet.com/article/why-raid-6-stops-working-in-2019/
Interesting article!
So I guess another option is to just buy a couple of HDD drives. Use the first as my backup drive, the second as a clone, and also backup my data to a Cloud server, like Backblaze or Carbonite.
 

wardie

macrumors 6502
Aug 18, 2008
410
133
Interesting article!
So I guess another option is to just buy a couple of HDD drives. Use the first as my backup drive, the second as a clone, and also backup my data to a Cloud server, like Backblaze or Carbonite.
Yup that’s where I ended up. Big, slow, simple backup drives. Sounds like big HDDs now get close to your overall need like 14TB+...
 
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