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Is my NAS configuration plan workable?


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Hello all,

 

I have a few thoughts regarding my impending first NAS purchase that I would like to get peoples input on. I intend to purchase the Synology DS214 for the purpose of backing up my computer files and to serve my music files, via a cat6 Ethernet cable, to my music PC. Right now, my computer contains around 450 GB, and my music library is 231 GB. My first instinct is to get two 2 TB hard drive (WD red) and run them in a RAID 1 (mirrored) backup configuration. I could go as large as two 3 TB drives but not sure if it is necessary. For redundancy and security sake I would like to keep one drive in the NAS while the other is stored in our safe. Once a week, or as warranted, pop the second drive in to update to current status and then move one of the drive back to the safe.

 

What are peoples thoughts on this scenario? Is my plan reasonable or even feasible?

Thanks to all, Garth

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Hello all,

 

I have a few thoughts regarding my impending first NAS purchase that I would like to get peoples input on. I intend to purchase the Synology DS214 for the purpose of backing up my computer files and to serve my music files, via a cat6 Ethernet cable, to my music PC. Right now, my computer contains around 450 GB, and my music library is 231 GB. My first instinct is to get two 2 TB hard drive (WD red) and run them in a RAID 1 (mirrored) backup configuration. I could go as large as two 3 TB drives but not sure if it is necessary. For redundancy and security sake I would like to keep one drive in the NAS while the other is stored in our safe. Once a week, or as warranted, pop the second drive in to update to current status and then move one of the drive back to the safe.

 

What are peoples thoughts on this scenario? Is my plan reasonable or even feasible?

Thanks to all, Garth

 

There is a difference between redundancy and backup. The former protects you against a drive failure. However, a RAID configuration should be run with both drives present in the NAS. The idea is to write to both drives simultaneously so the the data on each is always current. OTOH, therein lies the reason why RAID is not backup. Should you accidentally erase files, they are erased on both drives. Or, if there is a catastrophic failure of the NAS, both drives can affected. Therefore, in addition to a RAID configuration, backup to a separate portable USB drive such a WD My Passport or a Seagate Backup Plus is recommended.

"Relax, it's only hi-fi. There's never been a hi-fi emergency." - Roy Hall

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - William Bruce Cameron

 

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+1 on what Allan said.

 

Not only that, because it is not a backup the time it will take to resynch the drives when you pop in the extra one may be significant.

 

Definitely not how a NAS is designed to work.

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Thank you guys for your input. Ok, so my idea is not conventional, but is it possible, If I am willing to wait for the two disks to sync up overnight for example? If I have to chose between redundancy and backup, I think I will chose backup. I already have a 1.5 TB Seagate external hard drive which I use to back up my laptop (although, not as often as I should). Then maybe I should just get a single bay NAS if the two bay Is not going to function the way I had hoped.

 

I guess what I'm trying to do is find the "best" way of having my files backed up in three "formats", computer, NAS and something else. A way that is straightforward and convenient. I say thee because even if one thing goes down, I will have a backup. Suggestions?

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Keep the DS214 on your list and use the redundancy.

It is a really bad hourly wage to restore your music source from a disk failure. The probability for this can be reduced for $100.

 

Then the additional external drive for backup.

 

Resynchronization is for emergency, not for regular use. It also is an unnecessary stress for the disks. Of course, it should work.But imagine the source disk dies during the synch :-O

Home: Apple Macbook Pro 17" --Mini-Toslink--> Cambridge Audio DacMagic --XLR--> 2x Genelec 8020B

Work: Apple Macbook Pro 15" --USB--> Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 --1/4\"--> Superlux HD668B / 2x Genelec 6010A

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Thank you guys for your input. Ok, so my idea is not conventional, but is it possible, If I am willing to wait for the two disks to sync up overnight for example? If I have to chose between redundancy and backup, I think I will chose backup. I already have a 1.5 TB Seagate external hard drive which I use to back up my laptop (although, not as often as I should). Then maybe I should just get a single bay NAS if the two bay Is not going to function the way I had hoped.

Possible ... yes.

 

A good idea ... no. If nothing else while the SATA connectors are designed for easy connection, they are not designed for repeated connections and after several cycles you will likely find they do not connect securely.

 

A single drive in a NAS with an external backup drive would be the ideal solution for you. Either a single bay NAS or get the dual bay NAS but only use a single drive so you can decide later if you want to add redundancy.

 

Eloise

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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As pointed out above, the additional cost to set up a proper dual bay NAS in a RAID configuration with external USB backup is about $100. It will give you both redundancy and backup. For security, you can store the external USB drive in your safe between backups.

"Relax, it's only hi-fi. There's never been a hi-fi emergency." - Roy Hall

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - William Bruce Cameron

 

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i would suggest ssd for permanent backup...no moving parts, and no chance of head crash.

you can get a 250gb for $150...as your library grows, ssd prices will come down.

 

For less than that amount of money, you can buy a 3TB USB 3.0 drive. A SSD drive is better suited for the main drive of a computer, where the higher performance provides real benefits and the cost can be justified. That performance is not really necessary for a backup drive.

"Relax, it's only hi-fi. There's never been a hi-fi emergency." - Roy Hall

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - William Bruce Cameron

 

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Ok, you all make a persuasive argument. So no swapping drives in and out of a DS214. From Eloise’s comment, apparently one can operate a two bay NAS with only one disk installed, which was a question I had pondered.

 

More naïve questions: I will connect my NAS to my wireless router. I can then “tell” it to continually (or regularly) back up my home laptop that is connected to my router via wifi, correct? Can I then connect my Seagate external hard drive to the NAS via USB 3.0 cable to create another backup of all my computer files? I guess this would my ideal setup If feasible.

 

Thanks to all for your continued help, Garth

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to me the cost is justified for backups..i have had a backup usb sata die on me when it had little to no use...there is much less chance of ssd drive failure than sata drive failure...anyway, it's ssd for my backup now...

For me, the size limitation of SSDs makes it impossible. Multiple spinners are the only affordable devices with multi-Tb capacity, afaik.

Kal Rubinson

Senior Contributing Editor, Stereophile

 

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Ok, you all make a persuasive argument. So no swapping drives in and out of a DS214. From Eloise’s comment, apparently one can operate a two bay NAS with only one disk installed, which was a question I had pondered.

 

More naïve questions: I will connect my NAS to my wireless router. I can then “tell” it to continually (or regularly) back up my home laptop that is connected to my router via wifi, correct? Can I then connect my Seagate external hard drive to the NAS via USB 3.0 cable to create another backup of all my computer files? I guess this would my ideal setup If feasible.

 

Thanks to all for your continued help, Garth

 

I would just copy from one drive letter to the other drive letter.

this is a script i use which will copy any newer files (including subdirs), so you don't waste time copying over files that already exist. plus if any files are open the backup won't abort. copy the file to the root of what you want to backup (e.g. d:\music), the source variable will copy everything in the current directory (%CD%) and all subdirs below to the destination folder (e.g. H:\music in this example)

 

@echo off

set source=%CD%

set dest=H:\music

echo copying %source% to %dest% for new or changed files

pause

XCOPY /d %source% %dest% /s/c/i/h/r/y/k/g

pause

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For me, the size limitation of SSDs makes it impossible. Multiple spinners are the only affordable devices with multi-Tb capacity, afaik.

 

He said he had 230gb of files.

 

I have a monster 512gb ssd which is fine for my purposes...i love it....very small and fast.

Amazon.com: Monster Digital SSDOU-0512-A 512GB Overdrive 3 Solid State Drive: Computers & Accessories

 

to me i love having a ssd for my backup...makes me feel a little more secure with my data.

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Thank you guys for your input. Ok, so my idea is not conventional, but is it possible, If I am willing to wait for the two disks to sync up overnight for example? If I have to chose between redundancy and backup, I think I will chose backup. I already have a 1.5 TB Seagate external hard drive which I use to back up my laptop (although, not as often as I should). Then maybe I should just get a single bay NAS if the two bay Is not going to function the way I had hoped.

 

I guess what I'm trying to do is find the "best" way of having my files backed up in three "formats", computer, NAS and something else. A way that is straightforward and convenient. I say thee because even if one thing goes down, I will have a backup. Suggestions?

 

I guess it would be helpful to understand how much you wish to spend on this? And how many computers are you going to back up on this?

Silver Circle Audio | Roon | Devialet | Synology | Vivid Audio | Stillpoint Aperture | Auralic | DH Labs

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I guess it would be helpful to understand how much you wish to spend on this? And how many computers are you going to back up on this?

 

he already said he plans on purchasing a nas for his data.

since a nas is networked, it doesn't matter how many computers he has...he can share the same data to all his computers.

his backup would need to be as big as the data he wishes to protect.

cost is pretty irrelavant, considering you can buy an ext 4tb sata drive for under $150.

I just recommend a second ssd drive as a secondary backup of his most valuable data...you can get 250gb for $150 or 512gb for $350.

 

I think of the old days when a cheap 286 computer would set you back over $2k with a monochrome green screen and a 20mb hard drive...cost these days is irrelevant imho.

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He said he had 230gb of files.

 

No, he said that his music library is currently 231GB and that he also wants to back up his computer which contains about 450GB. So, even a 1TB drive is not recommended because it leaves far too little room for expansion. The cost to back up 1TB on a SSD at current prices would be very expensive. It doesn't make practical sense to spend several times the cost of your main drives for your backup drive.

 

What computers cost in the old days has absolutely no relevance to the OP's solution. To suggest that "cost these days is irrelevant" is frankly silly, IMO, unless money is of no concern.

"Relax, it's only hi-fi. There's never been a hi-fi emergency." - Roy Hall

"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted." - William Bruce Cameron

 

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Allan's recommendation was spot on, if it were I, and again based on how much you want to spend.

 

1. At least a two drive NAS

2. (2) WD RED Nas drives - 2 terabytes models are about $100 each.

3. One external toaster drive to use to backup from the NAS (yes NAS is redundant but still requires backup). A Pluggable external toaster drive (USB) is $25.

4. One WD RED NAS drive for backup of the NAS. See cost above.

 

All in that is about $325 for drives and external backup device, plus cost of the NAS.

 

Again, all based on assumption that original poster is only backing up his own computer and opting for 2 terabyte drives to allow for growth.

Silver Circle Audio | Roon | Devialet | Synology | Vivid Audio | Stillpoint Aperture | Auralic | DH Labs

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I would go with bplexico's detailed plan. Don't listen too much to the SSD crowd ... for backups spinning disks are fine - or even tape ;)

Home: Apple Macbook Pro 17" --Mini-Toslink--> Cambridge Audio DacMagic --XLR--> 2x Genelec 8020B

Work: Apple Macbook Pro 15" --USB--> Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 --1/4\"--> Superlux HD668B / 2x Genelec 6010A

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No, he said that his music library is currently 231GB and that he also wants to back up his computer which contains about 450GB. So, even a 1TB drive is not recommended because it leaves far too little room for expansion. The cost to back up 1TB on a SSD at current prices would be very expensive. It doesn't make practical sense to spend several times the cost of your main drives for your backup drive.

 

What computers cost in the old days has absolutely no relevance to the OP's solution. To suggest that "cost these days is irrelevant" is frankly silly, IMO, unless money is of no concern.

 

I suggested he buy an ext 4tb for $150 and a 250-512gb ssd as a secondary backup for his most valuable data.

You are silly. I am sorry you don't like my recommendation, and i hope he follows your "silly" advice and his ext spinning drives fail on him. jk

 

Just because my opinion is that a $200 ssd as a small secondary backup of important data is money worth spent and that small cost is irrelevant compared to the value of his data, does not warrant the "silly" remarks. Also having a small ssd to tote around compared to the size of an external 4tb hd has it's benefits as well. I think an ext 512gb ssd drive are great, and small cost is irrelevant imho. It may not be irrelevant to him as i don't know his budget, but it would be my advice, and i do consider the cost irrelevant. You can't be too safe with your data, especially on disks that do have moving parts and do fail. JMO silly allan....

 

I will always have my important data on ssd.

 

Not to mention the time you save...

 

And for what it's worth, i further recommend you backup your most important data to dvd/blu-ray/tape or other medium as well...you can't be too safe. In the case of music, you can always get it back. Another idea is to give copy to friends or family....JMO, silly me.

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